Prices for the BLS in the UK were announced this week. Cadillac has priced the cheaper models close to the BMW opposition. The top of the range BLS 2.8 Turbo at £30,200 looks very expensive when compared with a Chrysler 300C Hemi at just over £32,000 and Cadillac's own top of the range CTS 3.6 (just under £30k) and STS 3.6 (sold in Left Hand Drive only in the UK at £32k)
See press release below:
'Cadillac has announced prices for its all-new luxury midsize BLS saloon, which arrives in showrooms across Europe from April 8, 2006. The BLS marks Cadillac's first-ever entry in the luxury midsize market segment and the first time a Cadillac has been offered with a direct-injection turbo-diesel engine. In the UK, prices will start at £19,950.
The new Cadillac BLS offers an attractive and elegant alternative in the luxury midsize market segment, and it becomes even more desirable when buyers consider its price and generous list of standard equipment. The BLS offers competitive pricing combined with high levels of quality, equipment and performance.
In a Cadillac first, the BLS will be available with a turbo-diesel variant. The 1.9-litre four-cylinder 150 hp (110 kW) unit with common-rail direct-injection technology is offered with a choice of six-speed manual or six-speed automatic transmissions. Standard equipment includes air conditioning, cruise control, ABS and alloy wheels, with prices from £20,750.
The BLS petrol range starts with a 175 hp (129 kW), 2.0-litre four-cylinder turbocharged model, with five-speed manual transmission and prices from £19,950. The top of the range model is the Cadillac BLS 2.8-litre V6 turbo, which has 255 hp (188 kW), a six-speed automatic gearbox with Driver Shift Control and prices starting at £30,200.
Three trim levels will be available across the BLS range. The standard trim level, 'Business', offers 16-inch alloy wheels, engine immobiliser, front, side and curtain airbags, driver trip computer, three-spoke leather steering wheel with audio control buttons, cruise control, air conditioning, front and rear electric windows, a seven-speaker audio system with CD player, and 'Piano Black' interior decor trim.
The intermediate trim level, 'Elegance', features additional standard equipment including Cadillac's StabiliTrak electronic stability programme, wipers with rain sensors, eight-way electrically adjustable driver's seat, dual-zone climate control and 17-inch alloy wheels. Red walnut wood veneer trim enhances the interior decor.
The top of the range 'Sport Luxury' trim level additionally offers 18-inch alloy wheels, sports suspension, xenon headlamps, and heated and electrically adjustable leather front seats with memory function. The 'Sports Luxury' package will initially only be offered with the 255 hp (188 kW) 2.8-litre V6 petrol engine.
The new Cadillac BLS comes with a three-year or 60,000 mile warranty and will be on sale from April 8, 2006 at 165 Cadillac dealers across Europe.'
Cadillac has announced that the current 12 dealers in the United Kingdom will be expanded to 19 by the end of the year - still too few in my opinion to encourage the uncommitted to buy the BLS. But we shall see! I personally like the car and it will attract those buyers who wouldn't be tempted by a CLS and (currently Left Hand Drive) STS and who don't like the image of the BMW 3 Series (ubiquitous, ugly in its latest version and, in the UK, bought by aggressive status seekers who would sell their own mother to get ahead!)
Incidentally, I think the BLS Forum should now be moved to the current forums since the car is already being heavily promoted here in the UK, prices have been announced and Stratstone, operator of the Cadillac Franchise in the UK, is already listing the car on its website at www.stratstone.com