QOTD: How Would You Fix Cadillac? (2024)


QOTD: How Would You Fix Cadillac? (1)

by Tim Healey (IC: employee)

Published: May 9th, 2024

QOTD: How Would You Fix Cadillac? (2)

Today has become, completely unplanned, Cadillac day around here. Sometimes one story about a brand begets another one or two. That's been the case this afternoon.

I gave you my thoughts on why Cadillac sales slipped in Q1, and some ideas on how to improve the brand. Now it's your turn.

What would do you? Bring back some famous names? Move away from Art and Science design and go retro? What else?

Pretend you're the new boss of Cadillac. If you have the keys to the kingdom, how would you roll?

Sound off below.

[Image: Cadillac/GM]

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QOTD: How Would You Fix Cadillac? (3)

Tim Healey

Tim Healey grew up around the auto-parts business and has always had a love for cars — his parents joke his first word was “‘Vette”. Despite this, he wanted to pursue a career in sports writing but he ended up falling semi-accidentally into the automotive-journalism industry, first at Consumer Guide Automotive and later at Web2Carz.com. He also worked as an industry analyst at Mintel Group and freelanced for About.com, CarFax, Vehix.com, High Gear Media, Torque News, FutureCar.com, Cars.com, among others, and of course Vertical Scope sites such as AutoGuide.com, Off-Road.com, and HybridCars.com. He’s an urbanite and as such, doesn’t need a daily driver, but if he had one, it would be compact, sporty, and have a manual transmission.

More by Tim Healey


May 9th, 2024 5:30 PM

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  • QOTD: How Would You Fix Cadillac? (4) NJRide 2 days ago

    These are the Q1 Luxury division sales

    Audi 44,226

    Acura 30,373

    BMW 84,475

    Genesis 14,777

    Mercedes 66,000

    Lexus 78,471

    Infiniti 13,904

    Volvo 30,000*

    Tesla (maybe not luxury but relevant): 125,000?

    Lincoln 24,894

    Cadillac 35,451

    So Cadillac is now stuck as a second-tier player with names like Volvo. Even German 3rd wheel Audi is outselling them. Where to gain sales?

    Surprisingly a decline of Tesla could boost Cadillac EVs. Tesla sort of is now in the old Buick-Mercury upper middle of the market. If lets say the market stays the same, but another 15-20% leave Tesla I could see some going for a Caddy EV or hybrid, but is the division ready to meet them?

    In terms of the mainstream luxury brands, Lexus is probably a better benchmark than BMW. Lexus is basically doing a modern interpretation of what Cadillac/upscale Olds/Buick used to completely dominate. But Lexus' only downfall is the lack of emotion, something Cadillac at least used to be good at. The Escalade still has far more styling and brand ID than most of Lexus. So match Lexus' quality but out-do them on comfort and styling. Yes a lot of Lexus buyers may be Toyota or import loyal but there are a lot who are former GM buyers who would "come home" for a better product.

    In fact, that by and large is the Big 3's problem. In the 80s and 90s they would try to win back "import intenders" and this at least slowed the market share erosion. I feel like around 2000 they gave this up and resorted to a ton of gimmicks before the bankruptcies. So they have dropped from 66% to 37% of the market in a quarter century. Sure they have scaled down their presence and for the last 14 years preserved profit. But in the largest, most prosperous market in the world they are not leading. I mean who would think the Koreans could take almost 10% of the market? But they did because they built and structured products people wanted. (I also think the excess reliance on overseas assembly by the Big 3 hurts them vs more import brands building in US). But the domestics should really be at 60% of their home market and the fact that they are not speaks volumes. Cadillac should not be losing 2-1 to Lexus and BMW.

    • See 2 previous
    • QOTD: How Would You Fix Cadillac? (5) Theflyersfan 2 days ago

      NJ Ride - really good post. Some of those numbers had me looking up other numbers, especially the BMW figure.

      To the surprise of no one, 77% of BMWs moved out of dealers are leased. 77%!!! I didn't go looking, but I'm wondering if BMW had some excellent leasing offers to move some metal. I guess there are a ton of helicopter moms who need that X5 to shuttle their one child to school each day and then spend the day drinking wine out of a box.

      Lexus is 55%, I'm also discovering that not all automakers break down their numbers between buying and financing. But an older figure showed that 75% of Nissan Q50s were leased (and then tossed and never seen again.) There was a small blip last year with total Infiniti sales/leases, but it is again in total freefall. Nissan, be prepared to yank the plug out of the wall.

      Wrapping up, Audi is 70% leased, Mercedes-Benz is 67% leased, and Volvo is down to 59% leased.

    • QOTD: How Would You Fix Cadillac? (6) Bd2 2 days ago

      Although Lexus is numerically ahead of several brands by selling knockoff toyotas of little to no substance, Genesis by Hyundai is winning in the ATP and e-ATP segment which Lexus does not compete in. While 90% of Lexus content are the same part numbers as toyota, Genesis has a totally separate structure and 100% bespoke parts for improved luxury feel. Infact Lexus is more equivalent to Hyundai these days, it's all about (e)ATPs.

    • QOTD: How Would You Fix Cadillac? (7) Jeff 20 hours ago

      NJRide--I never thought of Tesla being Buick-Mercury upper middle of the market but that is a good analogy. If Cadillac does come out with good upscale EVs they could very well capture Tesla owners and customers who want a nicer more upscale EV. The Cadillac Lyriq has a nicer interior than a Tesla and for the money is a nicer EV. Tesla seems to not be interested in refreshing and updating their current EVs and their only all new product is the Cybertruck which is off to a less than stellar start.

  • QOTD: How Would You Fix Cadillac? (8) Bd2 2 days ago

    Lexus is just a higher trim package Toyota. ^^

    • QOTD: How Would You Fix Cadillac? (9) Tassos Jong-iL 2 days ago

      You have said quite a lot of rude and nasty things here today. People will not take you seriously if this continues, you used to be such a decent and polite person.

      Like Flagged comment

    • QOTD: How Would You Fix Cadillac? (10) El scotto 21 hours ago

      Owning a Lexus dealership is a license to print money. Owning an H/K/G dealership means having many employees dedicated to getting financing for the subprime.

  • QOTD: How Would You Fix Cadillac? (11) El scotto 21 hours ago

    No rag-top, no rag-top(s) = not a prestigious car brand. Think it through. All of the high-end Germans and Lexus have rag-tops. Corvette is really its own brand.

    World-leading engines. AMG, M, S and well Lexus is third-world tough. GM makes one of the best V-8s in the world in Bowling Green. But nooooo, noooo, we're GM only Corvettes get Corvette engines. Balderdash! I say. Put Corvette engines in the top-tier Cadillacs. I know GM could make a world-class 3.5 liter V-6 but they don't or won't.

    In the interior everything that gets touched, including your butt, has to feel good. No exceptions.

    Some think that those who pay above MSRP and brag about it are idiots. Go the opposite direction, and offer an extended 10-year 100,000-mile factory warranty. At a reasonable price. That's Acura's current business model.

    • QOTD: How Would You Fix Cadillac? (12) Jeff 20 hours ago

      The 10 year 100,000 mile factory warranty should be offered as standard no extra cost with concierge service. Cadillac needs to go bigger if they are to repair their image and be taken serious as a true luxury brand.

  • QOTD: How Would You Fix Cadillac? (13) Lorenzo 17 hours ago

    You can't sell an old man's car to a young man, but you CAN sell a young man's car to an old man (pardon the sexism, it's not my quote).

    Solution: Young man styling, but old man amenities, hidden if necessary, like easier entry/exit (young men gradually turn into old men, and will appreciate them).

QOTD: How Would You Fix Cadillac? (2024)
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