: Jerry Flint: Cadillac in the Slow Lane



gdwriter
10-23-06, 05:48 PM
According to this article (http://www.thecarconnection.com/Auto_News/Commentary/Flint_Cadillac_in_the_Slow_Lane.S192.A10986.html) by Jerry Flint at The Car Connection, Cadillac's renaissance is over. Although I disagree with parts of his article, he makes a few good points. Cadillac lost so many customers after 1980s disasters like the V-8-6-4, HT4100, Cimarron, downsizing, etc.; they switched to Mercedes, BMW and Lexus and never looked back.

I guess we can take some solace in that Lincoln isn't even in the game anymore. Their model lineup is truly pathetic.

I~LUV~Caddys8792
10-23-06, 06:33 PM
Uhhh..... where's the article?


Edit: I found it. It's a hypertext.

I~LUV~Caddys8792
10-23-06, 06:53 PM
I read the article and agree with him. We need a showpiece. A 70k sedan that will compete with the A8, S Class, LS, 7 Series so we're not a 2nd rate company.

gary88
10-23-06, 07:08 PM
::cough bringbackthefleetwoodbrougham cough::

gdwriter
10-23-06, 07:39 PM
I want to see a non-watered-down version of the Sixteen brought to market. That's an impressive car. And it's distinctly Cadillac.

90Brougham350
10-23-06, 09:09 PM
HEY GM! HEY YOU IN DETROIT! YEAH, YOU! HEY, WE KNOW YOU'RE LISTENING. WE'RE NOT THE ONLY ONES WHO THINK YOU BLEW IT BY KILLING THE FLEETWOOD! IDIOTS!


Cadillac failed to build a serious rear-drive large car. They did well by making the CTS rear-drive, but that's not a large car. Cadillac has two larger car models, the front-drive DTS and the rear-drive STS, which actually isn't so large. What they need is to do a great rear-drive car with take-your-breath-away looks. One model, not two. But GM isn't willing to invest. The fact is Cadillac never recovered from the GM decision to go front-drive, a mistake they have yet to correct.

davesdeville
10-24-06, 04:38 AM
I guess we can take some solace in that Lincoln isn't even in the game anymore. Their model lineup is truly pathetic.

I don't think we should take any solace in Lincoln's troubles. Lincoln is more like a brother to Cadillac than an adversary. Sure they've always competed, but it's MB, BMW, Lexus, Audi, Infiniti, etc that we're fighting.

Jesda
10-24-06, 06:28 AM
He complains about Cadillac styling, yet higher-volume Lexus is horribly dull in that regard.

P-Funk
10-24-06, 09:30 AM
He complains about Cadillac styling, yet higher-volume Lexus is horribly dull in that regard.

:yeah:

dp102288
10-24-06, 12:02 PM
But they still sell because they are great cars. Full of tech and luxury.

Cadillac isn't considered a high-end car maker to some people, and that is the problem right there. They are upscale, but not high-end.

People I know believe Cadillac is on the path to MB, BMW, Infiniti, Lexus, etc. Its not the end, but a phase, the brand you have before moving up.

If Cadillac can just have at least one car to rival the other makers, then it will be the end for people who have Caddys. They won't have to go somewhere else to get an ultra luxury car. The XLR doesn't fit the mold where people are looking too. People want a big sedan or coupe with a back seat. The XLR is a roadster.

ShadowLvr400
10-24-06, 02:34 PM
Lincoln's model line stinks? The classic Town Car, the lively LS, and the plush Navigator. Not a half bad selection IMO.
Additionally, Lincoln is Cadillac's kid sister. Founded by the same guy.

Wiseguy2
10-24-06, 06:32 PM
Yep it stinks. The new Navigator is OK I suppose, the LS is now nearly 8 years old and dead. The Town Car is largely sold to fleets, and the Aviator was a flop.

Adam
10-24-06, 06:40 PM
::cough bringbackthefleetwoodbrougham cough::

:yeah: actually take "Sixteen" off the side and put Fleetwood where it should be!

That was the truest article i have ever read. and i like how he said it too. its not Cadillac, its the brass at GM. never did like bob lutz. i hope he dies in a car wreck driving a solstice; and i hope what he hits is a saturn sky.

Benzilla
10-24-06, 07:11 PM
Whats sad is that me - the total Cadillac junkie - totaly agrees with him, an era has ended, and I don't think Cadillc will ever bounce back. GM is choking the life out of it. You can only bounce back so many times.

Adam
10-24-06, 07:17 PM
Whats sad is that me - the total Cadillac junkie - totaly agrees with him, an era has ended, and I don't think Cadillc will ever bounce back. GM is choking the life out of it. You can only bounce back so many times.

unfortunately you are right. i dont see it going the way of Olds, but i do see it going the way of Lincoln... a big joke. its a shame. i bet Harley Earl is turning in his grave...

SpeedyArizona
10-24-06, 07:42 PM
Lincoln is a huge joke, they only have one semi-successful vehicle, the Navigator and even that's slipping. The Town Car is OK but it's sold in mass quantities (as someone pointed out) and can't compete with the Lexus, MB, and Beemers in the marketplace. The LS is a complete joke, it has bland styling and the interior competes with that of an Impala. The Aviator was a nice vehicle but it was a flop also.

Lincoln is going to the dogs.

Back to the article. Cadillac NEEDS to refresh its' image as the true standard of the world by making a luxury vehicle to compete with the new Lexus LS460, BMW 7-Series, and MB S-Class. The problem isn't so much Cadillac's styling but their interiors. I mean a $40,000-$50,000 car needs an interior worthy of the price. Right now I see better interiors in $30,000 vehicles (look at the Lexus ES350 and BMW 3-Series).

I like Lexus styling, it may be conservative but conservative sells. If Cadillac could somehow take the Lexus' interior and put it in the DTS, I'd bet it'd sell well. But as of now, NOBODY can touch Lexus in terms of quality, luxury, gadgets, and reliability. And I may be flamed for saying this but I'd rather have an ES350 than a CTS as of now (it may change...hopefully).

I~LUV~Caddys8792
10-24-06, 10:35 PM
Cadillac should have a model line indentical to the current Mercedes Benz line. They have something from the upscale/ entry level ~$30,000 C Class to the otherwordly $150,000+ S65, CL65 and SL65 AMG's. They've got low, mid and high level sedans. High performance, dead sexy four door coupes. The mid range, mid sized CLK Coupe/ Convert, and the top end full size CL coupe. The small, sporty SLK roadster, the bigger, more mature SL roadster. The wagon, and the mid and full size suv. We need this!

Adam
10-24-06, 10:41 PM
i'll agree that we need it. but i really dont think the public does. we all know how the rest of the world feels about Cadillacs. i still get it to this day. "why would you want a big gas hog?" and then they see my car and go "that's a Cadillac?! id rather have a benz or a lexus, Cadillacs arent that reliable." that is where we are getting hurt, people think Cadillacs are big long unreliable gas hogs. and no matter what they try to do to change that image, it still sticks. that is our problem.

I~LUV~Caddys8792
10-24-06, 10:42 PM
Do you know what else sucks gas and is (somewhat) unreliable? Big V12 7 Series! Hah!

SpeedyArizona
10-24-06, 11:10 PM
Do you know what else sucks gas and is (somewhat) unreliable? Big V12 7 Series! Hah!


Those who can afford a new V12 7-Series probably don't care what kind of gas mileage they get. If you can afford to plunk $120,000 for a car, I highly doubt it'll phase you to pay $50 for a tank of gas at the 7/11.


Cadillac should have a model line indentical to the current Mercedes Benz line. They have something from the upscale/ entry level ~$30,000 C Class to the otherwordly $150,000+ S65, CL65 and SL65 AMG's. They've got low, mid and high level sedans. High performance, dead sexy four door coupes. The mid range, mid sized CLK Coupe/ Convert, and the top end full size CL coupe. The small, sporty SLK roadster, the bigger, more mature SL roadster. The wagon, and the mid and full size suv. We need this!

I agree 100%:thumbsup:. Although I doubt a Cadillac wagon or $150,000 coupe would sell well. The XLR is a great roadster for those who can afford a ride of that caliber (the XLR-V even more so).

Cadillac CTS- Perfect entry-level ride. Competes with the MB C-Class, BMW 3-Series, and Lexus ES and IS lineup.
Cadillac STS- A performance-oriented sedan. Competes well with the MB C-Class AMG and. BMW 5-Series
Cadillac DTS- Signature vehicle of the Cadillac lineup. Competes with the MB E-Class, BMW 5-Series, and Lexus GS.
Cadillac SRX- Not my taste, a bit of a failure but a Cadillac nonetheless. Compete with the MB M-Class, BMW X3, and Leuxs RX350.
Cadillac Escalade- Great luxury SUV. Competes with the MB GL-Class, BMW X5, and Lexus GX470.
Cadillac XLR- The luxury roadster. Competes with the MB SL-Class, BMW 6-Series, and Lexus SC430.

Basically Cadillac is missing a top-of-the-line sedan and a luxury coupe. When they got rid of the Eldorado, they lost their market share of the luxury coupe market. They also need something to compete with the 7-Series, S-Class, and LS460.

Hopefully they'll listen and make a bit more competition for the foreign luxury brands.

I~LUV~Caddys8792
10-24-06, 11:36 PM
Ok, here's my ideal lineup...

CTS- Entry Level sport/ luxury sedan, competes with: A4, 3 Series, C Class, IS350, G35, TSX

xxx- Entry level luxury sedan competes with: ES350 and the other "not so sporty" starting level luxury sedans

STS- mid level sport/ luxury sedan, competes with 5 Series, A6, E Class, M45, TL, GS

DTS- top level (for Cadillac, currently), really competes with nothing in the world market, bigger and more american than the other cars in price range. Should compete with Q45 and RL in the class between the 5 and 7 series. Ya get what I mean?

XXX (Fleetwood or Brougham)- top end luxury sedan. Should compete with 7 Series, A8, S Class, XJ, LS etc etc. Offer all the features and amenities, but with distinctly american styling! An updated last gen Fleetwood!

XXX (Eldorado)- mid range luxury coupe. needs to compete with 6 Series, CLK, XK, Maserati Coupe

XXX (Biarritz?)- Top end luxury coupe. needs to compete with CL, Continental GT, Vanquish.

SRX- mid range luxury SUV. Competes with smaller SUV's. MDX, Touareg, ML Class, RX, X3

XXX- performance SUV. Competes with X5, Cayenne, SRT-8 Grand Cherokee, etc

Escalade- Big SUV.

XLR- luxury/ performance roadster- Competes with SL, SC430, 6 series cabrio..

SpeedyArizona
10-24-06, 11:59 PM
11 Cadillac models may be a bit excessive. Overall your list is great though:thumbsup:. Ideal lineup:

Near Luxury Sedan- CTS
Luxury Sedan- DTS
Top-of-the-line Luxury Sedan- ??? (Sixteen)

Luxury Midsize Crossover SUV- SRX
Luxury Full-Size SUV- Escalade

Luxury Coupe- ??? (Eldorado)
Luxury Roadster- XLR
Top-of-the-line Coupe/ Roadster- ???

Of course the V trim would be avaliable on all except the SUV's and the Sixteen (how can you make a Sixteen cylinder engine more performance oriented:D?).

I~LUV~Caddys8792
10-25-06, 12:02 AM
Of course the V trim would be avaliable on all except the SUV's and the Sixteen (how can you make a Sixteen cylinder engine more performance oriented:D?).


BY ADDING A GIANT TURBO!!!

90Brougham350
10-25-06, 08:04 AM
Hahahahaha, I suppose that's one way! But let's be realistic here. This is Cadillac we're talking about here, not Lexus or MB or BMW. The potential for a large RWD sedan within the next 5 years, I'm guessing, is 50/50. Maybe that's too optimistic, maybe 40/60, but I can't believe they aren't aware of what idiots they were for dumping the Fleetwood in the first place. As for the luxury coupe, I just don't see Cadillac building one, too much resistance from accounting and management over in GM HQ. I found this in a chapter of one of my textbooks called, "Managing Global Competitive Dynamics."

Whether opting for competition or cooperation, firms need to be organizationally prepared to engage in desirable actions. Some firms are better organized for competitive actions, such as stealth attacks, rapid responses, and willingness to answer challenges "tit-for-tat." This intensely competitive, "warrior-like" culture not only requires top management committment, but also employee involvement down to "soldiers in the trenches." Historically slow-moving, conservative firms find it very difficult to suddenly wake up, and become more aggressive.

dp102288
10-25-06, 09:05 AM
Everyone is bringing up another good point. Where is the affordable luxury coupe? The Eldorado, in some form, needs to come back. When it was around, it was a powerful coupe with a back seat. No XLR can be had for the price the Eldorado occupied.

But as an owner, any "ETC" would probably be ugly if/when they bring it back.

SpeedyArizona
10-25-06, 11:15 PM
Everyone is bringing up another good point. Where is the affordable luxury coupe? The Eldorado, in some form, needs to come back. When it was around, it was a powerful coupe with a back seat. No XLR can be had for the price the Eldorado occupied.

But as an owner, any "ETC" would probably be ugly if/when they bring it back.


It needs to be RWD instead of FWD, that was a major flaw of the Eldorado. I love my Eldo and Cadillac truly needs a sport coupe to compete with all the other luxury sport coupes (ex: M3, CLK, etc) but it cannot be overpriced. $42,000 would be an ideal starting price for a new generation Eldorado ESC and maybe $48,000 for the ETC. Unfortunately I don't see this happening anywhere in the near future <sigh>.

dp102288
10-26-06, 10:04 AM
^^ Exactly.

Nothing else to say because he is perfectly right. GM will never get it if they continue to "not think."

Lord Cadillac
10-26-06, 12:30 PM
I think everybody is forgetting about Lincoln's new lineup. The MKZ is a very nice car. The MKX - ah, we'll see how that goes.. It's ugly. So that'll be they're Cimarron. But the new Navigator is inexpensive, high-end luxury. It's a VERY nice SUV on the inside - and the grille isn't so bad in person. However, I'm sure there will be a HUGE grille aftermarket... The Town Car is sticking around for awhile.. And the MKS is going to be a huge success (okay, that's just a prediction).

See where Lincoln is by the end of next year before you write them off. They're going to be doing fine...

As for Cadillac - it seems everybody agrees they need a high-end luxury car. Something along the lines of a Lexus LS, Mercedes S, BMW 7 or Audi A8... Why they don't have one - I have no idea.. Bring back the Fleetwood or call it Brougham or FTS. Or at least the Sixteen...

HITMONEY
10-26-06, 03:41 PM
The difference at how I am treated at a Cadillac dealership, and how I was treated at Lexus translates directly into the brands success.

I dread going to the Caddy dealer, on the other hand when I took the Lexus in, on the rare occasion, it was always a pleasant experience.

Lord Cadillac
10-26-06, 04:08 PM
That's true. The Cadillac dealership experience is a bit lacking in comparison to the Lexus experience.. They really do have that down...

SpeedyArizona
10-26-06, 05:05 PM
I agree with you there. There are a couple different Caddy dealerships down here and I've tried 3. 1st was absolutely horrible but it was also the most convient to reach from my home. The 2nd and 3rd were OK but their salesmen didn't seem knowledgeable about the vehicles which kind of worried me.

On the other hand, the Porsche dealership experience is spectacular! I'm always treated well and their salesmen (even mechanics) seem to know every nook and cranny of their cars.

dp102288
10-27-06, 09:33 AM
^^ Another valid point. The Lexus dealership we got my Eldo from in 1999 (so effin ironic right??) was the best dealership I have ever been to. Tvs, coffee, cakes, chairs, couches. If was the cold months, and they had so many kinds of hot drinks and the place was so toasty.

The Caddy dealership by me just sucks. The car are nice but the only chairs are by the salesmen's desks. There is nothing to do there if you are jsut waiting. At the Lexus dealer, you could relax while waiting for whatever.

The saturn dealership by me is better too (not in luxury terms, but in layout and waiting area).