- Image: Cadillac Pressroom

Opinion: Cadillac are heading in the wrong direction

The brand has so much more potential

31w ago

If you're an American reading this, then there's a chance that you will not relate to what I'm about to talk about: the sheer size of your damn cars.

As a Brit - or even a European - seeing an American vehicle on the roads is somewhat of an eye-opening moment. Standing out in the field of chic, subtle econoboxes is a bulbus, gigantic piece of chrome-covered bling. I'm not just talking about pickup trucks here, even so-called 'mid-size' cars are unnecessarily enormous.

For example: I've seen a couple of Ford Crown Victorias on recent occasions: in films, they look like standard cars in the same way that us Brits would classify the Mondeo. In the flesh however, they're roughly the same size as a current Mercedes S-Class! It staggers me that each time I see such a thing, I could picture it doubling as an aircraft carrier. Never mind the ridiculously enormous yachts of the 50s, 60s and 70s; they might as well be suburban houses in some English villages.

Image: Cadillac Pressroom

Image: Cadillac Pressroom

Perhaps the one American car brand that pops to mind more than any other is Cadillac. Over the years, they've developed an image that makes even an arctic tribe well-aware of what they represent. When you think Cadillac, you think size, chrome, style and possibly rock star or gangster culture.

Cadillac was a brand that once showed the world what American designers and engineers could give, no matter the cost or inefficiency. If you drove a Cadillac 40-50 years ago, you were winning the game of life. Fact.

I say once for good reason though. That's because within the last 20 years or so, they've been slacking... a lot. Their grand plan was to ditch the floaty, luxury yachts and focus more on getting a taste of BMW, Mercedes and Audi buyers. Some good products have resulted, sure. But generally speaking, I don't think it's right for the Cadillac name.

Image: Cadillac Pressroom

Image: Cadillac Pressroom

At the time of writing, they recently announced that two saloons (or sedans) have been dropped: the CTS and CT6. Focus is to be refined on the newly-released CT4 and CT5; presumably, those are to capture German car buyers on a higher-volume level. There's also an array of crossovers and the Escalade currently in stock, but I honestly don't believe General Motors is using the luxury brand quite to their full potential.

As mentioned, some good products have been released since the dawn of Cadillac's new direction. This includes the likes of the CTS-V, which in essence, is a 4-door Corvette. It handles brilliantly, has a decent punch of power and has always looked very handsome.

While these are good aspects for a car, they're questionable for something wearing a Cadillac badge. This applies to pretty much all of their current line-up.

Image: Cadillac Pressroom

Image: Cadillac Pressroom

Personally, I believe GM should be utilising Cadillac to sit as a top-end, super-exclusive arm of the car market. A brand that is within the interests of S-Class Mercedes and even Bentley customers.

GM is a confusing company: there are instances where they get things so right - such as the C8 Corvette - yet the position of Cadillac prove that those positives are easily overweighed by things that are wrong. Cadillac's line-up of mid-sized cars should realistically be Chevrolets and Buicks whereas the larger, far more luxurious cars (like the Escalade or a theorised Bentley Flying Spur rival) should be called Cadillacs.

If GM want Cadillac to be seen as their luxury division. Well... they should be serious about it! I don't know exactly what the XT5 or whatever small new crossover is supposed to represent, but when you think Cadillac, you should immediately think big and expensive. The Escalade does exactly that and is - to be fair - the only 'proper' Cadillac currently available. The spirit of the Escalade should be applied to everything they produce.

Because at the end of the day, you want to feel like you've won when driving a Cadillac. You certainly don't feel like you want to be compromising.

Thanks for reading: feel free to share your thoughts in the comments.

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Comments (15)

  • For me Caddy should be benchmarking Bentley or even the Lexus LS.....NOT some M or AMG product.

      7 months ago
  • You know I think they have thrown out some fantastic designs with the saloons recently, but I take your point and from reading that it's actually shone a real light on cadillac to other europeans like myself. So am I right in suggesting that they may be having a slight identity crisis, and should put their hardwork into their luxury abilities? Cuz that to me seems like a very favourable course of action.

      7 months ago
  • Yeah i 100% agree. They have lost their charm and it's like they're trying to alianate their customer base by going all sporty.

      7 months ago
  • They should never try to beat Mercedes and BMW at their own game, even Audi or Lexus are still not quite up to the mark. And Cadillac, badge engineered Chevy's, most certainly isn't

    Not because they are not good enough, but no matter what Lexus you get, or how expensive the A8 was, after ten years they are just old, and the S-Class is still an S-Class. Bit like a Rolls...

    The Cadillac buyer 50 years ago would never consider a Benz, BMW was sporty luxury back then, Audi were fancy VW'S, Toyota was still copying European cars. And Cadillac was the epitome of American Luxury, with capitals, yes...

    Never forget your roots, don't be a copycat...

      7 months ago
    • Think you may have summed it up better than myself!

        7 months ago
    • Thanks Aaron, but you did a great job there 😉

        7 months ago
  • I would say-until the CTS-V is there,Cadillac is just fine.Once it is discontinued,they are Toast

      7 months ago