GM’s recent $384 Million investment in their Detroit-Hamtramck plant, that also builds the Cadillac ELR among other GM products, will enable the factory to produce the new flagship starting in the 4th quarter of 2015.
Built on GM’s new Omega platform, designed exclusively for this uber-Cadillac, the new car’s name will be announced in the coming months (though rumors abound of it being called ‘LTS’). Additionally, Cadillac confirmed that the new car, expected to be a large 4-door sedan, will slot above the XTS in the lineup. For at least some time, the XTS will remain (likely as a hedge against seeing a drop in overall sales to Cadillac traditionalists if the XTS disappeared).
Keeping the front-drive based XTS will allow the brand to move the price of the new car in-line with its intended competition – the BMW 7-Series, Mercedes S-Class, and Audi A8. This would see the car starting in the mid-70k range or higher, depending on how Cadillac chooses to position the model (S-Class starts with turbo V-8’s priced in the mid 90’s, but BMW and Audi offer smaller engines and consummately lower prices.
Styling will take strong inspiration from the El Miraj concept car shown last year at Pebble Beach. Power will flow to at least the rear wheels, perhaps with an option for all-wheel drive, from engines that likely will range from normally aspirated 3.6l V-6, turbo V-6, and may top with a new 4.5l V-8 hinted at by the big concept coupe.
Technologies will run the gamut of Cadillac’s latest safety and infotainment tech and will likely include the first offering of GM’s SuperCruise automated driving tech. A second-generation version of Cadillac’s CUE center stack is also a likely offering.
This car will not only be Cadillac’s attempt to position themselves as the equal of any full-line luxury brand on the market, it will also be GM’s attempt to show off their technology prowess. This will simply be the best car GM knows how to build.
However, LTS isn’t expected to sell in volume. The competition falls between 6000-14000 units of their flagships per year. Each provide their respective brands a distilled essence of what their line of cars offer. They serve to communicate clearly what the ultimate expression of each brand means. In the case of the Cadillac, it will say as much that Cadillac is serious.
We look forward to seeing the car in a few months as well as the announcements the brand will dribble out over the next year showing what is possible when one of the worlds largest auto companies does their very best.