The Super Bowl has built a reputation among automotive aficionados as a place to watch for a first glimpse of new sheet metal. Now, it seems, automakers are using the Oscars as another venue to provide a sneak peek at what they have coming.
Cadillac, anyway. The Detroit luxury maker dropped the first official image of the new CT6 flagship sedan during one of the spots it ran during the annual Academy Awards ceremony. That revelation came as a double surprise. Caddy had earlier released a 90-second teaser of its new ad campaign, titled “Dare Greatly,” which appeared to avoid showing any of its products at all.
The new CT6, which will slot into the top of the Cadillac range – at least for now – is set to make its formal public debut at the New York Auto Show in April.
The CT6 was shown in one of four Caddy commercials to air during the Oscars telecast, generally one of the year’s most widely watched broadcasts. The spot began by featuring a number of folks who had achieved unlikely success in their careers, then set the stage for the big sedan to roll out, the announcer asking, “How dare a 112-year-old carmaker reinvent itself?”
The CT6 appears to introduce the latest iteration of Cadillac’s distinctive Art & Science design language. There are the familiar creases and folds, along with the hexagonal grille and recently updated crest. But there are all-new versions of the vertical Cadillac headlamps, almost certainly adopting LED technology for both the main lamps and the daytime running lights. A sharp character line, meanwhile, extends from the front wheel well all the way through to the back deck.
The broader Cadillac ad campaign took an unusual approach for a luxury maker, putting more emphasis on philosophy than product, turning to President Theodore Roosevelt and a 1910 speech known as “The Man in the Arena.”
“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better,” Roosevelt declared at the Sorbonne in Paris on April 23, 1910.
“The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming … who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.”
(Cadillac turns to Teddy Roosevelt in new ad campaign. For more, Click Here.)
Cadillac long stumbled in the arena known as the U.S. marketplace. Once the dominant luxury brand, it was little more than an afterthought for many buyers by the time it introduced the original CTS – and the Art & Science theme – a little over a decade ago. Since then, the maker has struggled to regain lost ground, though it actually slipped in the U.S. market by about 5% last year.
(Click Here for details about Cadillac’s “boutique” dealership program.)
New CEO Johan de Nysschen has repeatedly cautioned that Cadillac could take several years to rebuild its momentum as it rolls out an assortment of new products. That blitz began with the recent introductions of new CTS-V and ATS-V performance sedans, and will continue with the launch of the new CT6.
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De Nysschen has also told TheDetroitBureau.com that Cadillac is working on a trio of new crossover-utility vehicles, a new entry-lux model to slot below the ATS and an even more upmarket sedan that could push up into the $150,000 range.