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Posts Tagged ‘Cadillac ATS’

Cadillac Counting on New Product to Reverse Slump

New Caddy boss expected to accelerate product expansion plans.

by on Jul.30, 2014

The new Cadillac crest - minus the wreath - debuts on the 2015 ATS Coupe.

“New product is the lifeblood of any brand,” said Jim Vurpillat, the marketing director for Cadillac, as he took a break during a media drive of the luxury maker’s new ATS Coupe.  He and the rest of Cadillac’s management team certainly have to hope so after the unexpected slide the General Motors division has taken so far this year.

The ATS Coupe, a new line of performance models, a flagship sedan, a compact crossover and other new products are moving their way through the Caddy pipeline. But the brand could see the pace of that rollout accelerate in the near future under the guidance of a new global brand boss who will officially join the Caddy team later this week.

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Johan de Nysschen, most recently the CEO of Nissan’s Infiniti division and before that head of Audi of America, was brought in as part of a plan to give Cadillac more independence from GM. And company insiders suggest that the South African-born executive negotiated a deal that will also give Caddy more of the product it needs to compete against aggressive German rivals Mercedes-Benz, BMW and Audi, as well as Infiniti, Lexus, Lincoln and luxury upstart Hyundai.

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Sales in a Slump, Cadillac Loses Another Key Executive

Global chief Ferguson returns to Washington as top lobbyist.

by on Jul.11, 2014

Cadillac's global chief Bob Ferguson with the 2015 Escalade during its NYC debut.

General Motors is looking for an executive to head up the Cadillac division, following the announcement that the luxury brand’s current leader Robert Ferguson has been named Senior Vice President, Global Public Policy.

It’s the latest in a string of top management departures for Cadillac, and comes at a critical time for the brand which is struggling to regain momentum as it rolls out key new products in a bid to reverse a sharp and unexpected sales dip.

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A veteran Washington hand who spent 10 years in the nation’s capital as AT&T’s top lobbyist, Ferguson had spent only two years as Cadillac’s global chief. But his departure isn’t entirely unexpected, as he has been splitting his time between the luxury brand and a key role as part of the management team responding to the recall crisis that has engulfed GM since February.

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Cadillac Loses Another Top Exec

Turmoil at the top as sales bottom out.

by on Jun.19, 2014

Bill Peffer becomes the third U.S. sales chief to leave Cadillac in less than two years.

This was supposed to be a big year for Cadillac as it rolled out new models like the CTS and updated Escalade, and solidified the gains of other recent models, such as the compact ATS and big XTS sedans. But instead of growth, the brand has been wracked with turmoil, losing a procession of senior managers as sales have unexpectedly tumbled.

Cadillac’s only recently hired U.S. sales chief has left the company for supposedly personal reasons. Whether he fell short of expectations, General Motors isn’t revealing, but the luxury brand’s volume was down 2.3% for the first five months of the year, a sharp disappointment considering Caddy had been anticipating double-digit sales growth in 2014.

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The departure of Bill Peffer, who joined GM just last autumn, is the latest in a series of executive departures, a list that includes former Cadillac global strategic development chief Don Butler, who left the company last August, and Peffer’s predecessor Chase Hawkins, who was fired as sales chief for “violating a company policy.”

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Cadillac Adds New ATS Coupe to Line-Up

New 2-door expected to be nimbler, "more fun to drive."

by on Jan.14, 2014

Cadillac has beefed up the performance and handling of the new-for-2015 ATS Coupe.

Cadillac’s downsized ATS sedan is about to be joined by a new coupe – which is making its debut today at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit. And it promises to be a seriously fun ride.

The 2015 ATS Coupe is the smallest 2-door ever offered by Caddy, and it follows a very different design direction from the earlier, over-the-top CTS Coupe and reflects the general toning-down of the edgy Art & Science design language Cadillac first introduced more than a decade ago.

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“What you see is a clear progression for the brand,” explains Andrew Smith, Cadillac’s new executive design director, adding that the goal was to blend the familiar Cadillac hard creases on softer, more “subtle forms.”

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Cadillac ATS Lands in China

Luxury model joins XTS in Asian line-up.

by on Nov.27, 2013

The Cadillac ATS makes its Chinese debut.

Hoping to build momentum in what is rapidly becoming the world’s largest luxury car market, Cadillac is introducing its compact ATS model into China where it will join the bigger XTS model introduced earlier in the year.

For now, however, the smaller of the two luxury cars will continue to be imported from the U.S. which means buyers will have to pay a premium in the form of import duties. Caddy began producing the XTS model in China this year.

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The ATS, which Cadillac bills as a luxury sports sedan, is making its official debut at the Auto Guangzhou 2013 car show in Southern China. The imported model will be offered in four trim levels along with five exterior and two interior color options, and will be priced from $52,000 to $72,000, General Motors officials said.

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New Cadillac ATS Coupe to Get Detroit Auto Show Debut

One of many new models under development.

by on Nov.25, 2013

Cadillac is prepping a new coupe version of the ATS.

Gone are the days when a luxury manufacturer could get by with just a handful of different product lines.  These days, high-line makers are racing to fill in all the white spaces they can think of.  Just think BMW, Audi and Mercedes-Benz.

And while Cadillac officials say they won’t try to match their German competitors model for model, General Motors’ flagship brand is well aware that it, too, needs to expand what has been, in recent years, a fairly narrow line-up.

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A number of new products have been launched of late, the new Cadillac ELR plug-in hybrid and CTS sedan just the latest. But you can bet there are more on the horizon – including an all-new coupe version of the compact Caddy ATS that, we’re hearing, should make its debut at the 2014 Detroit Auto Show less than two months from now.

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Humbled Caddy Needs Products – and Patience – Admits Global Brand Boss

Opinion: Cadillac is far from again being “the standard of the world.”

by on Oct.08, 2013

The 2015 Cadillac Escalade will again serve as the luxury brand's de facto flagship.

It was inevitable that at least one Cadillac executive would repeat the tired old cliché, describing the brand as “the standard of the world,” during a preview of the new 2015 Escalade in New York City on Monday night.

But Caddy’s global marketing chief Bob Ferguson put a more realistic frame around things when, in a later interview, he admitted that new models like the Escalade and 2014 CTS sedan are, “right now stronger than the brand.”

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It’s been nearly a half century since Cadillac could bill itself the unquestionable standard in the luxury market, and more than a decade since it gave up its U.S. sales lead to import makers like Lexus, BMW and Mercedes-Benz.

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Compact Luxury Cars Could be the Next Big Thing

Mercedes, BMW, Audi and other high-line brands move mainstream.

by on Oct.02, 2013

The new 2014 CLA 250 takes Mercedes-Benz into a segment where competitors include Ford's upscale Fusion Titanium editions.

While the all-new 2014 S-Class sedan might serve as the “flagship” of the Mercedes-Benz line-up, the German luxury maker’s big news this coming year is actually its smallest offering, the new CLA.

At first glance, it’s easy to confuse the coupe-like sedan with the older Mercedes CLS model, something that was far from coincidental, company officials concede.  But there’s no confusing the numbers on the Munroney window sticker, the compact CLA starting at just $29,990 – compared with the $73,025 base price of the bigger four-door.

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With the launch of the CLA, Mercedes is going after a new generation of luxury buyers that it hopes will become long-term brand loyalists. But the German maker isn’t alone.  Virtually every manufacturer in the luxury car segment, from BMW to Volvo, is rushing to market downsized and lower-priced luxury models, whether sedan, coupe or crossover.  And that could be particularly bad news for mainstream manufacturers like Ford Motor Co. who have themselves been pushing upwards into the luxury segment.

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Cadillac Readies Overdue Escalade Replacement

GM plans “most sophisticated” SUV it has ever built.

by on Jun.14, 2013

Cadillac is finally getting ready to launch a replacement for the aged Escalade SUV.

The next generation Cadillac Escalade, which is due out next spring, will be the most sophisticated sport utility vehicle every built by General Motors, GM executives told analysts this week during a meeting at the company’s Milford Proving Grounds.

Robert Ferguson, GM vice president of Global Cadillac, offered analysts a glimpse at the 2015 Escalade and emphasized it is expected to play a major role in the growth of Cadillac, which is enjoying its best year since 1976.

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“The Escalade is still a very bold vehicle,” Ferguson said. “But the next generation is going to become more sophisticated.”

Ferguson said the new Escalade will meet or exceed the expectations of high-line buyers with a luxury interior that will match or exceed those found in luxury passenger cars.

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2014 Cadillac CTS Will Be Bigger; So Will Price Tag

New sedan takes more direct aim at Euro imports.

by on Jun.14, 2013

The 2014 Cadillac CTS makes its debut at the recent New York International Auto Show.

In its first two incarnations, the Cadillac CTS was a so-called “tweener car,” sized somewhere between the BMW 3-Series and the bigger 5-Series.  And that was reflected in a price tag smaller than comparable European models.

Not anymore.  When the 2014 Cadillac CTS rolls into showrooms later this year it will be more directly targeted against its bigger German rival – and it will carry a larger MSRP, as well, the maker has announced, more in line with the BMW 5-Series.

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That means a starting price of $46,025 for the third-generation CTS, up from around $40,000 today – and much closer to the $48,725 base BMW 528i. The totally redesigned Caddy won’t quite reach as high as its German rival, however.  The new, high-performance CTS Vsport will go for $59,995 compared to $65,925 for the BMW 550i xDrive – the BMW term for all-wheel-drive. And the German maker’s own super-performance model, the M5 will set you back $92,425.

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