Cadillac Relaxes Some Requirements Surrounding Project Pinnacle Dealer Overhaul7
Cadillac’s dealership restructuring program, Project Pinnacle, has been a source of disagreement between executives and dealerships themselves. Since Cadillac President Johan de Nysschen revealed the sweeping changes in 2016, dealers have voiced their opinions over various facets of the program.
Now, Cadillac has relaxed a few areas of Project Pinnacle to allow for a smoother transition into the program. Notably, small dealerships will be able to keep physical inventory on hand, rather than switch to a virtual reality dealership. Previously, Cadillac offered buyouts to its smallest dealers, which few took.
Small dealerships have felt the changes were an effort to squeeze them out of the system, but de Nysschen reiterated that was never the intention.
“We are not our dealers’ enemy,” de Nysschen told Automotive News in a phone interview. “We are here to work together, but it is going to require a shifting in approach over time from both ourselves and our dealer partners.”
Aside from the virtual inventory requirement, dealers do not have to provide 24-hour roadside assistance and do not have to work with brand reputation consultants.
Project Pinnacle places Cadillac dealers in tiers, and the program aligns various incentives and rewards accordingly with volume. Dealers may also move up a tier, but dealers must make various investments to meet requirements. The program’s structure largely encourages dealers to remain in the same tier they are assigned, though.
Dealers will meet with Cadillac this week to discuss changes and updates to the program for 2018, but for now, Project Pinnacle soldiers on as many dealers already know it.
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The whole idea of a Virtual Reality dealer inventory just seems like a pipe dream to me; appealing to the stereotype of a modern car buyer who neither cares nor knows what the car should “feel like”. And we wonder why people are loosing focus of the raw driving fun in cars. Then again, people buy Camrys because a commercial said they were fast and fun, so maybe it really does work. Craziness…
It sounds anti-competitive to me. If I’m a “small” dealer and I want to become a “large” dealer, isn’t that just good for business???
It kinda sounds like Cadillac want be to stay a “small” dealer because I might push out the edge of my customer ‘territory’ in an effort to become large or overlap another dealers ‘territory’. But hell, if I’m more efficient and aggressive with my sales team and customer base (= selling more Caddies), who are Cadillac to ‘restrain’ my business??
It doesn’t work that way. Your comment supposes that dealers *aren’t* doing everything they can to achieve greater sales and profits. They most certainly do.
Interesting take. But no. You completely missed the point.
I am saying that Cadillac has the tenets of an *anti competitive* strategy buried in this program. It is an attempt to eliminate the *small* dealership ~ “squeeze out” ~ “buyouts…which few took”.
All dealers in a region Should be required to provide roadside assistance during the warranty period like Mercedes-Benz does and charge afterwards its part of being a luxury proposition, superior service and customer care. The dealer experience is vastly sub par compared to Mercedes-Benz, and a reason I have not gotten another Cadillac. Inventory schminventory they have too many dealers and profit per dealer is below all other Luxury brands AND some areas don’t have a dealer in key areas like the wealthiest neighborhoods. Take Buckhead in Atlanta? Closest dealer is in Marietta or Sandy Springs, people live in Buckhead because they don’t want to go to the burbs, it’s just not convenient
VanStaker, You are spot on. It is the “Dealership” experience that the Cadillac demographic wants. If you spend your hard earned money on a CT6 or an Escalade, you don’t want to be treated like just another Malibu customer or fleet truck customer. Don’t even get me started about the availability and cleanliness of the loaner vehicles. Completely unacceptable. Your point about having the dealerships geographically situated is also key. As to the local dealers, they need be professional too and be on fire for the brand. They need to make sure that every employee is well versed in the the product and technology. As technology becomes a bigger part of the vehicle, you can’t have employees who don’t know the this stuff inside and out (i.e. CUE). I was dismayed to see a local dealership owner driving a Porsche. Wrong answer. Why not a top of range CT6? If you don’t care, why should I? I say this all as a passionate Cadillac owner (XTS VSport, Escalade and XT5) who only wants Mary Barra, Johan de Nysshen and the local dealers to be as passionate about the brand as I (we) am (are). Please know the sensibilities of your customer!
I have been a Cadillac sales consultant for 6 years. Volume has become the name of the game to get the dealership to monthly and quarterly benchmark bonus payouts. This coupled with the new invoicing which has basically illiminated dealer hold back and thus gross has made my job focused on relying on the pinnacle program for my income based on the number of units sold monthly. However, the new pinnacle
Program requires a multitude of extra qualifiers for vins sold to be eligible for the bonus pay and yet the payout has remained the same or less for the last 3 years. Shouldn’t this program help to reward its dealership and sales consultants who take care year in and year out of their rebeat customers and new customer base rather then make them work harder for less pay? This program was explained to me to separate Cadillac from GMs other brands to show the value in what Cadillac offers to its customers. Instead I see it as a way to cop out of paying their peak performers I.e. Dealer/sales consultants to help fatten their bottom line for their shareholders. I hope that they realize the people
Selling their product are the front lines to
Building value and loyalty to their brand!!!!!