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Toronto, Ontario, Canada
My passion is also my business, as I am with the Toronto based Hav-A-Kar Auto Group. I sell or lease any make of car, van or truck available in Canada. My interest in all things "car" has helped me with my many clients in Ontario over the past 20+ years. Please give me the opportunity to assist you.

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Sept 1: Re-establishing a brand

This morning I had to take my Cadillac ATS into the dealer for one of those annoying, but necessary(?) recalls. What I like about Cadillac service is that they always give me a loaner and if available, they give me another Cadillac (I also like the free maintenance, but that's another story). Today, I was given an XTS.

At one time, I wanted to drive the biggest cars I could get, but those days are long gone. Now I like smaller, easy to park and great handling rides, hence my ATS with the Performance package. So back to the XTS. Currently, this is Caddy's top model, at least until the 2016's arrive. Unlike most luxury cars, this one is front wheel drive, usually the kiss of death in this part of the market. But the XTS was always meant to be a temporary car, ie put in the line up until the real top model arrived.

As I have written in the title, Cadillac is working hard to re-establish their brand. So is Lincoln, but while they are using many rebodied Fords, Cadillac is developing their own unique cars (now let's not get into shared platforms, since it's not the same thing as being rebodied). Cadillac has tried before to establish their name at the top of the luxury car pecking order with very mixed (read not great) results.

Remember the Allante?

Initially underpowered, with bodies shipped from Italy to Michigan, to be mated with their chassis and drive train. A very costly route to take, the Allante ended up being a reasonably good car, but it just couldn't sell up against the big name Mercedes SL's.

Another effort was the XLR. A true made in America sportscar based on the Corvette.......

......and with a love it or hate it design (I liked it). It also didn't do well, but ten years later, this design has aged well. And you have to give Cadillac an "A" for effort.

Rather than take on Lexus, the "new" Cadillac division has chosen to go after BMW and to go after them hard. The ATS now comes in a coupe, as well as the sedan, in order to try to cover the 3 series.......

In the case of the great handling ATS, beauty is definitely much more than skin deep.

Cadillac's next move was to reset the CTS's position in the market place, with an extremely competent (it won Motor Trend's prestigious 2015 Car of the Year award), bigger sedan (think 5 series or E Class). And to top the CTS range, the CTS-V is being introduced for 2016........

Read those numbers. This one again uses the Corvette motor, putting out 640 HP. Fast? Read those numbers again. But this car has all the right moves and every car magazine that I've read, puts its browess ahead of any other luxury performance car competitor. Question is, can this halo car pull the rest of the slow selling CTS line along with it?

And also for 2016, Cadillac is finally bringing a proper top of the line luxury model to market, with the strangely named, rear wheel drive CT-6.........

Strong family resemblance, but that is almost a given with the luxury brands these days, as every Audi, BMW and now Benz carry all the same family styling cues.

One has to hand it to Cadillac, they are trying hard to hit the nail on the head and get people thinking Cadillac again, when they think luxury cars. Now folks think Audi, BMW, Lexus and Mercedes, with Cadillac coming in a poor fifth. Thank goodness for the gigantic Escalade's popularity, but funny how that hasn't carried over to the rest of the line.

Try to re-establish any brand that, although it has a great history, had become complacent and failed to move on with the times. Tough job. Do I think that they'll be able to pull it off? One never knows with General Motors, but everything that I've seen says, commitment and determination. So my vote is being cast with the "yes" side. And if I'm financially able to, I'll continue to support the brand as it gets re-established.

Until next time........

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