QOTD: How Would You Fix Cadillac?

Tim Healey
by Tim Healey

Today has become, completely unplanned, Cadillac day around here. Sometimes one story about a brand begets another one or two. That's been the case this afternoon.

I gave you my thoughts on why Cadillac sales slipped in Q1, and some ideas on how to improve the brand. Now it's your turn.

What would do you? Bring back some famous names? Move away from Art and Science design and go retro? What else?

Pretend you're the new boss of Cadillac. If you have the keys to the kingdom, how would you roll?

Sound off below.

[Image: Cadillac/GM]

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Tim Healey
Tim Healey

Tim Healey grew up around the auto-parts business and has always had a love for cars — his parents joke his first word was “‘Vette”. Despite this, he wanted to pursue a career in sports writing but he ended up falling semi-accidentally into the automotive-journalism industry, first at Consumer Guide Automotive and later at Web2Carz.com. He also worked as an industry analyst at Mintel Group and freelanced for About.com, CarFax, Vehix.com, High Gear Media, Torque News, FutureCar.com, Cars.com, among others, and of course Vertical Scope sites such as AutoGuide.com, Off-Road.com, and HybridCars.com. He’s an urbanite and as such, doesn’t need a daily driver, but if he had one, it would be compact, sporty, and have a manual transmission.

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4 of 142 comments
  • Lorenzo Lorenzo on May 12, 2024

    You can't sell an old man's car to a young man, but you CAN sell a young man's car to an old man (pardon the sexism, it's not my quote).

    Solution: Young man styling, but old man amenities, hidden if necessary, like easier entry/exit (young men gradually turn into old men, and will appreciate them).

  • Klkrause Klkrause on May 13, 2024

    I've thought that Cadillacs have at least been decent looking for the last decade or more, but their interiors have been quite lacking. The build quality and materials used in the interior seem like slightly upgraded Chevrolets instead of in the class of Audi, BMW, or Lexus.

    If I'm paying a premium for a luxury brand I expect to feel "pampered" when I'm driving or sitting in it.

  • Orange260z Orange260z on May 16, 2024

    Modern Cadillac sedans look and drive great. Yeah, the interior materials aren't quite as good as the competition, but if they undercut them in price it can offset.

    IMHO, they need to step up in a big way on their warranty, service and customer service.

    H/K/G shows confidence in the quality of the product by offering long standard B2B warranties and low-cost exclusionary extensions. My Caddy became a money pit after the warranty with only 75K kms; yes, the Germans do that, but they have the established cachet that they get away with it. They need to make sure that their cars still look good after 10 years (i.e. no trim issues, no undercarriage rust issues, etc) - my CTS was all rusty underneath after two years, they told me that was acceptable and not under warranty. Cadillac needs to do more.

    In Canada, there are few (if any) standalone Cadillac dealerships; they are typically co-located with all the other (remaining) GM brands. However, this doesn't have to be a kiss of death - Lexus successfully built their rep despite co-location, by investing in dedicated Lexus sales areas, sales people, service advisors, technicians, lounge areas with private offices, perks (free coffee/treats, car wash and vacuum with any service, a large complimentary Lexus loaner fleet available for any service visit), etc.

    By contrast, for Cadillac service I would line up with the 20 other people waiting for one of 5-7 service writers that know nothing about my car because they service 10,000 different GM models, answering a question about maintenance requirements "How am I supposed to know?". During the first 4 years I had access to complimentary Enterprise rental cars as loaners, but I had to spend 20-30 mins going through a car rental process every time. The guy who would do complimentary service washes did so with a big scrub brush he just used to wash a work truck that was covered in mud. They can't sell a premium car with crappy service like that, they have to be better than their competition.

    If it weren't for these issues I would not have hesitated to buy a new CT5 V-sport (winter DD, want AWD). I bought a G70 instead, we'll see how that goes - but at least I have a long B2B warranty.

  • Glennbk Glennbk on May 24, 2024

    First, Cadillac no longer has brand cache. And as such, the prices need to drop. Second, reliability. Cadillac doesn't have that either. Dedicate GM funds to re-design the High Value Engines. Third, interiors are too gimmicky. Take a step back and bring back more buttons and less black plasti-chrome. Forth, noise isolation. These are supposed to be luxury cars, but sound like a Malibu inside.