Cadillac Aims To Launch Boutique Dealerships To Greatly Enhance Customer Experience7
“A strong, financially healthy dealer organization is an essential element of Cadillac’s expansion plans. The stronger our dealers are, the better our service quality will be. Cadillac is on a journey back to the pinnacle of premium brands, and dealers will contribute every step of the way.”
Those are the words of Cadillac president Johan de Nysschen, regarding the current state of the brand’s dealer network. Of which, is one of the largest luxury vehicle dealer networks in the nation, yet sales have been thinly stretched among franchises. As it stands, Cadillac has over 900 dealerships nationwide, where other premium brands like Audi, BMW, Lexus, and Mercedes-Benz each have between 200 and 400 dealerships. Yet each of these brands outperformed Cadillac last year, BMW and Mercedes each outselling the marque by roughly 2-to-1.
However, those 900 dealerships may stick around, as Cadillac has officially stated that it’s not in the plans to reduce the number of dealerships. Instead, the storied brand aims to make the dealership experience better as a whole.
So, de Nysschen outlined a plan at the NADA conference detailing the transition of about 700 of the nation’s smaller and/or dealerships mixed with other brands into “boutique stores.” The 200 or so larger, standalone dealerships would remain the automaker’s flagship locations.
The 700 or so dealers to be transitioned – many of which lie on shared lots with Chevy, GMC, and/or Buick – would receive a breadth of posh updates. The showrooms would contain a few exemplary staples of the brand’s offerings in-the-flesh, complimented by “virtual showrooms” displayed on televisions or even in holograms, which would enable the customer to explore whatever models aren’t physically present. The plan also calls for highly trained sales and service staff, and “luxury amenities.” (Dom Pérignon, anyone?)
It’s not anticipated that this ambitious plan will see fruition this year. The boutique Cadillac dealership plan also sounds similar to a concept de Nysschen envisioned during his tenure at Audi.
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As a Luxury Brand, this should have been done Years Ago, Why buy a Luxury Vehicle with Yugo Showrooms & Service!!!!
When I walk into a Cadillac dealership, I expect Will Ferrell’s Anchorman to come around the next corner. The entire experience is so 1980’s. The German experience blows them right out of the water.
My dealer experience has been amazing at both Budds in Oakville and Old Mill in Toronto. They really do make you feel special. However, even as both have done major renos which look good, they are a pittance to the experience at Budds BMW or Dowtown BMW. Look at the outside http://www.bmwtoronto.ca/about-us . The inside is just as impressive. You FEEL like you have arrived when you drive up. That feeling is a huge draw. You have arrived.
Old Mill etc are great, but they are fairly cramped with Cruze etc right next to the CTS etc. They treat you different, but there is nowhere near the buying experience. It will be a tough one for Cadillac to overcome.
This is just another step in Cadillac resurgence . As the article said its part of the experience of owning a premium brand . It starts withe the appearance of the dealership when you drive in . Are the cars freshly washed , is the building upscale and welcoming . Are the salesman friendly and knowledgable about the product , ( ive had encounters withe some salesman where I knew more than they did ! ) . Another thing is the salesman going to be there for you after you purchase their product . The turn over rate at some dealerships is awful . I don’t want to deal with some ( green behind the ears ) salesman that is just there for his commission . And the same withe the repair side and how you are treated . plus , the waiting room should have the creature comforts that make you feel like the dealership realizes your time is important and offers you an enviroment that is first class . It is the sum of all these parts that Cadillac should offer their customers . First class from the initial drive in to the drive home with your new car .
The first thing to do is kill the number of dealers but that is not easy to do. GM has too many dealers of all brands and has had issues with the government and state laws that prevent them from closing dealers down.
Too many dealers compete with each other and get lower transaction prices. Also when the car retail prices go up and Cadillac moves to the lower volumes they expect each dealer will sell less cars per dealer.
This is a poor formula for sales, profits and customer care.
Cut this number in half and leave the strongest dealers in the region and you will have what you need. The trouble is there is no way to do this unless you make standards high enough some dealers have to give up.
The problem then is they take you to court and you are made out to be evil to the Duncan family dealer of BF Egypt Nebraska. You also have high cost of legal fees or the high cost of buying out these dealers too.
About the only option is help the strong dealers buy out the weak.
This is similar to the sell direct deal that Tesla is pushing. The existing MFG can not kill dealers even thought they want to. They can not afford to buy them out or even legally force them out. the fact is there is no simple answer to this for the older larger companies that were forced into the dealerships years ago via 50 different state laws.
I hope they can do this as they only need about 350 of 900 dealers.
While many look at the small issues at the dealers this is the over riding issue that creates many of the small issues and it is difficult to fix.
If someone has a real solution GM would pay you well for it.
Am I missing something here , but didn’t De Ny say that separate Cadillac dealerships was the future centerpiece of their marketing thrust ?? The marketing strategy center to be moved to New York and a lot fewer separate dealerships in key locations , right ? Now about 700 GMC dealerships to be re-positioned , enhanced ? Has GM management reined in their new Cadillac CEO ,,,, to me it sure seems like it . I suppose we will never know , but it would be nice to have the person who made the call to stand up and be counted ! I agree the stand alone entities was not the best solution , however , the biggest challenge for GM and its many dealers is to be able to attract and KEEP quality and highly trained committed staff in the dealerships …compromised by probably far too many dealers who are not making enough profit from sales and service . This can have disasterous consequences for potential buyer interaction and quality customer vehicle service …this problem will , like the quality parts/components and suppliers issues , not soon go away , ,,,,the core of GM’s dilemma !!
great a european feelng to buying a 2015 escalade . im just wanna see james jefferson with his 58 year old co signer sitting in those
high back leather lounge chairs waiting to explain to the salesman gustov why he cant be on the loan but he wants the insurance in his name and she is gonna buy the car she has no id but has a great score …and she has 28k in cash down amd a open used audi a8 thru bmw credit thats she cant trade because its in florida at the moment ….