China has long been the birther of the long wheelbase vehicle. The older, Chinese buyer prefers to sit in the rear, be chauffeured around, and not do much of the driving.
The youngsters in China? Not so much. They want to drive, and they don’t like the idea of a big estate vehicle. The average age of a Chinese Cadillac buyer is only 34 years old, and the brand is beginning to gain major momentum.
According to Reuters, in an effort to court even greater numbers of Chinese buyers, Cadillac will kill off the LWB models in its lineup (like the ATS-L) in favor of a one size fits all approach across the globe. The “right size” global mindset will be an attempt to exploit the younger Chinese buyer’s preference, while also saving development costs by foregoing the extra engineering.
Cadillac President, Johan de Nysschen, told Reuters we’ll begin to see subtle design changes still for the Chinese market, notably softer lines.
“You will see a softening of some of the hard edges, and more three-dimension styling on the side of the car,” de Nysschen said, while stating future vehicles will still be “instantly recognizable as Cadillac.”
The strategy shift comes at a crucial time for Cadillac in China, as de Nysschen targets a 25-percent increase in units sold across the People’s Republic. It may not be far off either. Cadillac’s 17-percent growth far outpaced China’s entire industry growth of 7.3-percent last year.