Cadillac, General Motors’ luxury brand, will double its nameplates over the next year or so, according to marketing chief Don Butler. He made the ominous announcement during the XTS sedan’s media launch. The XTS will debut in June. Since the DTS and STS sedans were discontinued last year, Cadillac has been offering only three nameplates: the CTS line, SRX crossover and Escalade SUV.
This has been the slimmest lineup that Cadillac has had in decades. This has made an impact on sales. Cadillac is on track to still have a slump in monthly sales this month – its eighth straight month of declines.
Butler said that the debut of the XTS signals the arrival of an “avalanche” of new products. Butler said that the XTS sedan marks Cadillac’s return to its “large luxury” roots. It’s believed that the XTS’ spacious trunk and interior will attract the traditional DTS and STS buyers. The XTS features plenty of technology and performance advancements such as the magnetic ride control and Brembo brakes.
The ATS sport sedan, which is expected to be Cadillac’s volume leader, will arrive by late summer. How this car will be received will affect the outcome of the goal of GM CEO Dan Akerson to transform Cadillac into a true global powerhouse comparable with German luxury leaders BMW, Mercedes and Audi.
In 2013, Cadillac will launch the ELR, which will use a variant of the Chevrolet Volt’s plug-in hybrid powertrain. There won’t be a vote of confidence from skeptics who think that the Volt is a slow-selling political pawn.
GM executives are actually optimistic about the ELR’s chances. Volt owners have been focused on beating each other’s records on longest trips between getting fuel. GM officials are confident that Cadillac buyers will want to do this as well but won’t be bothered as much with the high cost of the vehicle.