The Crossover Craze Calamity is sweeping the automotive market by storm, and is rewarding brands with a strong portfolio of popular people movers. Yet Cadillac has been making do with just one crossover on the market – the XT5 – while Asian and European competitors offer a myriad of crossovers in different shapes and sizes. It should be no surprise then, that most of Cadillac’s near-term product planning resources are being funneled into expanding its vehicle lineup with future crossovers above and below the XT5. And Automobile Magazine is reporting that Cadillac will introduce four all-new crossovers and four new or revised passenger cars within the span of 5 years from now.
The article breaks down analytical predictions of these eight vehicles, which are listed as follows:
XT1 (or XT2): BMW X1-sized. Due in 2020.
XT3: BMW X3-sized, built using GM’s rear-drive long wheelbase Alpha architecture. Expected in 2018.
XT5: Second-generation model to be BMW X5-size and based on Omega hardware. Due in 2021.
XT7 (or XT8): BMW X7-size. Also Omega-based and expected in 2019.
A similar pattern applies to the upcoming passenger cars:
CT1 (or CT2): BMW 1 Series-sized. Due in 2021.
CT3: A Mercedes CLA-Class competitor that will replace the ATS. Alpha-based and expected in 2018.
CT5: Long-wheelbase, Alpha-based replacement for the CTS due for 2019.
CT6: Already launched.
CT8: A new Omega-based flagship due in 2021.
Automobile also predicts that the Escala will make its way into the production fold as a new halo model, as well as right-hand-drive and several electrified vehicles… eventually.
Nothing against one of the most storied automotive publications of all time, but we have the right to remain skeptical to these outlined predictions. Though, based on USPTO filings, the names are likely genuine. But while we fully expect Cadillac to introduce multiple crossovers, we are not anticipating the article’s predictions. We’ll go line-by line, offering our counter-points about the future Cadillac lineup:
- Cadillac XT1 or Cadillac XT2: Agreeably, more than likely BMW X1-sized, but if there are no spy shots of such a vehicle within the next year, it’s likely beyond the 2020 timetable. We fully expect a vehicle of this nature to be on a front-wheel-drive based architecture.
- Cadillac XT3: More than likely, that’s the Cadillac XT4 we’ve seen spied. Unfortunately for enthusiasts, we don’t expect the dynamic Alpha architecture to underpin this product.
- Cadillac XT5: The XT5 has been on the market for a year now, and is outsold Cadillac’s entire sedan portfolio last month – which again points to the importance of crossover products these days. 2021 is an aggressive timetable for an all-new model, yet we wouldn’t expect the current-generation Omega architecture to be available in its current form. What will support a new XT5 is anybody’s guess.
- Cadillac XT7/Cadillac XT8: If indeed this vehicle will feature the Omega architecture, it will likely be Cadillac’s sole RWD crossover offering. It may also mean the postponement of an Omega flagship sedan, due to the current prioritization of a crossover over a passenger car. However, we believe that another crossover is in the works in the form of the Cadillac XT6, which will ride on the long wheelbase version of the C1 platform underpinning the XT5.
- Cadillac CT1/Cadillac CT2: We find it hard to believe that Cadillac can spare the development resources for this low volume segment in the near-term, even if it would do well in China and Europe. We’d flip a coin on this one.
- Cadillac CT3: Likely the replacement of the ATS, but not likely to compete with the Mercedes CLA. We don’t expect a departure from a RWD configuration, but we do expect a hypothetical CT3 to excel where the ATS didn’t. Which is to say that there’s likely to be massive interior material and packaging improvements.
- Cadillac CT5: Likely the replacement for the CTS, and we expect it to stick to formula.
- Cadillac CT6: There are major milestones ahead for the CT6, which include the introduction of a new V8 engine, Super Cruise, and likely a facelift along the way.
- Cadillac CT8: Sorry guys, this one’s stillborn. Why? Likely because of the prioritization for a crossover instead. We don’t expect a Cadillac flagship sedan by 2022.
- Not mentioned – Cadillac Escalade: The popular Escalade has been around in its current form since 2014. This bread-winning SUV will eventually need a new generation soon, and we can’t see Cadillac abandoning this segment. However, there will be strong headwinds coming in from new upmarket SUVs, including the Bentley Bentayga, Rolls-Royce Cullinan, new Mercedes G-Class, Range Rover, and even a future Aston Martin SUV. If the new Escalade doesn’t move upmarket, it could lose out on pent-up demand from affluent buyers that seek large and luxurious transportation.
- Cadillac XTS (not renewed): The Cadillac continues to do well in the livery business, and for those seeking a plush ride over superior vehicle dynamics, but we doubt that the XTS will see another generation.
We understand that some of you may eyeroll at Cadillac’s crossover cadence. But without building vehicles that are popular, halo vehicles and fun cars will never see the light of day. Even if we would like to see a large flagship sedan over anything else, as there’s nothing more Cadillac than that, that large flagship may never come without the help of successful crossover SUVs.