Cadillac No Longer Daring Greatly

For a brand that probably once caught the eye of Woodrow Wilson, there’s a late adolescent feeling to Cadillac’s current existence that belies its century-long history. Having run away from mom and dad to find itself among the towers of Manhattan, General Motors’ luxury division is heading home for a rest — newly matured, a new mentor in tow, and packing a couple of extra crossovers.

Completing the makeover, Cadillac tossed its “Dare Greatly” tagline in the trash, debuting new messaging during its Oscar night ad campaign. But does the new campaign “Rise Above” the criticisms flung at its predecessor?

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With CT6-V Sold Out, Cadillac Poised to Drop a Second V8 Shoe

We’ve hinted at this before, but now there’s order guides and pricing to share. While Cadillac’s CT6 flagship sedan will soon be without a home, General Motors hasn’t said anything about dropping the model. Once Detroit-Hamtramck Assembly shuts off the lights, GM would like to source its full-size sedan from some other place, be it China or another U.S. factory.

In the interim, there’s a new engine poised to appear beneath the sedan’s hood.

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Cadillac Boss Not Outwardly Terrified of Brand's Transition

Were it not for his Canadian place of birth, Cadillac President Steve Carlisle might make an ideal centrist presidential candidate. On paper, anyway. Mild-mannered and cautiously optimistic, not prone to exaggerated doomsaying, Carlisle would either be triumphantly swept into power, or creamed like a bushel of Iowa corn.

Well, he’s not running, though he is couching the importance of his brand’s product turnaround in less apocalyptic terms. Unlike, say, GM President Mark Reuss.

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With No New Vehicle to Show in Chicago, Cadillac Tweaks the XT5

The Cadillac XT5, which happens to be a perfect all-weather urban vehicle, is a major breadwinner for the upscale brand. By far the best-selling vehicle in the Caddy stable, the XT5 midsize crossover out-volumes the bigger and pricier Escalade by a factor of two to one.

Unfortunately, it’s no longer the freshest face at the party. Cadillac’s smaller XT4 bowed last year and the larger XT6 dropped its towel in Detroit. Hoping to return some interest back to its midsize crossover (and have something to reveal in Chicago), Caddy gave the XT5 an emo makeover, launching the 2019 XT5 Sport package. It’s a “limited edition” package, Caddy claims, without offering a specific number. Could it be that it’s limited to the number of Sport packages GM can sell in 2019? Could be.

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Buy/Drive/Burn: 2014 Midsize Luxury Sedan Shootout

Today’s edition of Buy/Drive/Burn was generated by a discussion over at the TTAC Slack room. The conversation turned to sporty midsize luxury sedans from 2014, and one staff member regarded one of these choices with a “meh.”

Let’s see how you feel about them.

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Cadillac XT5 Driver Pulls Off a Better Ad Than Cadillac's Marketing Agency Ever Dreamed Up

Maybe that headline’s too harsh, but have you seen a recent Cadillac commercial? If nothing comes to mind, that merely illustrates the brand’s problem. The bulk of its marketing efforts are, in this writer’s opinion, boring, forgettable, and uninspired. Just showing that a crossover can drive sedately down a dry, urban street isn’t enough to get audiences jazzed over a purchase. A Trabant can drive down a street and, yes, people can be merry and youthful inside it. (Odds are against it, but it could happen.)

Scroll down to see one of the brand’s latest, this one for its new XT4 compact. You won’t thank me.

Let’s face it — most of Cadillac’s ads could cure sleep apnea, leaving sufferers refreshed and alert the next morning. It was against this grim marketing backdrop that, while viewing a news spot from last night’s Great Lakes region snowstorm, I watched a random driver create the best ad Cadillac never paid for.

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'This Is Pretty Much It': New GM President Acknowledges Cadillac's Last Chance For Glory

Cadillac is at a crossroads. While the brand has enjoyed growth in Asia, domestic volume never fully recovered from the Great Recession. It’s come back a bit, with sales dipping and rising between years, but hasn’t managed to keep pace with the overall market. As of 2018, Cadillac possesses the lowest share of the U.S. market in the brand’s recorded history. Fortunately, the fourth-quarter arrival of the XT4 helped to Cadillac stabilize sales as the year drew to an end.

However, General Motors wants the luxury arm to become a legitimate success and prove the automaker’s effort to develop advanced powertrains and new technologies weren’t in vain. Cadillac is positioned to become manufacturer’s leading electric brand and GM’s newly appointed president, Mark Reuss, has acknowledged this is sort of its last chance at greatness.

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Book 'em Again, Danno: Cadillac's Revised Subscription Service Coming Later This Year

General Motors is readying another automotive subscription service after canceling “Book by Cadillac,” which was deemed too costly to keep operational, several months ago. However, whether that was due entirely to its own failures or related to the fact that the company is aggressively hunting for capital through its restructuring program is up for debate.

There were grumblings that the program’s complete lack of dealer involvement was a good way for Cadillac maximize profits (without sharing them). But, with it failing, it was also an excellent way to incur unnecessary costs. As a result, the brand intends to make its expansive dealer network an integral part of the fast-approaching “Book 2.o.”

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Cadillac's CT6 Isn't As Dead As You Thought

General Motors’ future passenger car lineup might not be as threadbare as initially thought. After sparking continent-wide hair pulling with its decision to shutter three assembly plants and cull six car models in the process, it seems the most prestigious vehicle of the bunch might live on after its plant goes dark.

The Cadillac CT6, which first hit U.S. sales charts in March of 2016, isn’t officially dead. It seems GM didn’t get its story straight back in late November, as Caddy’s flagship sedan might live on with another home base.

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A Crossover With No Name Is Cadillac's Hedge Against an Oilless Future

Everyone else is doing it. And, if lawmakers on this side of the Atlantic start going the way of their European counterparts, traditional American luxury will need a shot of cleanliness. Even if they don’t, a fickle U.S. public might suddenly fall in love with the green lifestyle and give a big middle finger to internal combustion road cruisers.

Not wanting to be left without a savior in this future scenario, and needing some electric American prestige to sell to discerning Chinese buyers, Cadillac unveiled this piece of emissions-free hardware on the eve of the North American International Auto Show. It’s not vaporware, General Motors insists.

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2020 Cadillac XT6 - Crashing the Party Late

I wasn’t sure if I’d see the Cadillac XT6 in person, even though I assigned myself the story when us editor types divvied up our coverage of this year’s Detroit Auto Show.

You see, I asked to be added to the media list a little late, and was told the event would be at capacity. But a journalist doesn’t let little things like “fire codes” stand in the way of his story. So I showed up a little late and used my Midwestern charm to get in the door. In a very polite way, I crashed the party.

Which is what Cadillac is doing, in a way.

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Forget About the Flops: Cadillac's Job Is to Make GM Greener

Remember the Cadillac ELR? Your author saw a single, solitary unit in the wild once, and there’s a good chance a journalist was behind the wheel. Not long for this world, the plug-in hybrid Caddy coupe gave way to the stately (but equally low-volume) CT6 Plug-in, whose death was revealed shortly before that of the sedan itself.

Not to be deterred from its goal of advancing electrification, or at least competing against glitzy foreign rivals, General Motors has announced the brand will once again pick up the green torch.

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Rare Rides: Take Note of a 1960 Opel Rekord

Long before Opel became a donor for the badge-engineered Cadillac Catera and Buick Regal, the then GM-owned company shifted its own cars on North American soil. Today’s Rare Ride is a very early example of such a North American offering: It’s a two-door Rekord sedan from 1960.

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Buy/Drive/Burn: Large Luxury Sedans of Compromise in 2018

Three large and luxurious sedans compete for around $70,000 of your hard-earned and imaginary Internet dollars. Surely this is a segment where compromise will not be a concern, right?

Nope.

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Gap-filler: Cadillac to Debut XT6 in Detroit

It’s no wonder the Cadillac brand is having a rocky time of late — the marque fields only two crossovers, and one of those, the XT4, only reached lots at the end of September. Having pledged to return its headquarters to its ancestral homeland of Detroit, Cadillac also plans to unveil a new vehicle there in January.

The XT6, not to be confused with the marked-for-death CT6 sedan, will bow at NAIAS 2019, the automaker has stated. With this vehicle, Cadillac gains considerable coverage of the light truck field.

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  • Carlson Fan The way the truck drops in the rear and the bed/tailgate become a ramp is genius! I'd buy it just for that alone!!! It would be awesome for loading snowmobiles and garden tractors in the back. However, my trucks need to be able to regularly tow heavy loads long distance, summer & winter. Sorry folks, current battery tech. isn't even close to what it needs to be for me to think even one second that a battery truck could replace my current ICE powered truck. An EV for a DD makes sense , but for truck you need a MUCH better battery.
  • Inside Looking Out For midsize sedan it is too small. It basically is a compact car.
  • Stodge I test drove the 200S and damn, its suspension was so firm, I was convinced it didn't actually include suspension at all. It hurt my spine and hip, it was that firm.
  • MRF 95 T-Bird If Mopar had only offered sport hatch versions of the 200 and or Dart they might have sold more of them for folks who wanted some more versatility without having to go for a small utility Compass Patriot or new at the time Renegade or Cherokee.
  • El scotto I started driving in the late 70's. The cars high school kids could afford and wanted were very very worn out muscle cars. Oh Lordy those V-8's bring back some happy memories. Oh there some outliers in my crowd, a VW Bug and a Dodge Scamp with slant six; neither car would die. In 10 years their will be young people wanting very used Teslas or Dodge's with hemis. B&B, I say that if someone is excited about their EV, Hybrid, or Hemi welcome them to the club of people who like cars.