Who Is Steve Carlisle, Cadillac’s New President?60
Cadillac has a new chief executive in Steve Carlisle, formerly president and managing director of GM Canada, after GM ousted Johan de Nysschen. But, who is Carlisle, the man who will now oversee the luxury brand’s attempted rebirth?
Automotive News dug into Carlisle’s professional career to provide a snapshot of the executive. With the move, GM appears to be making an attempt to bring Cadillac closer into its radius after four years of distancing. Carlisle, age 55, has spent 36 years with GM and has helped GM Canada make a turnaround. He will be Cadillac’s seventh top executive since 2004.
He took over GM Canada in 2014, and since then, he’s led the unit through two labor negotiations, a massive lawsuit from dealerships, and sales rose 15 percent from 2015 to 2017 under his watch. Carlisle also created a better working relationship with GM’s dealers.
Carlisle also happens to echo GM’s upper management on mobility and future technology. He’s championed efforts in Canada and highlighted Canadia engineers’ role in developing the 2018 Cadillac CT6‘s Super Cruise system.
Now, Carlisle will face a shaken dealer network that was not expecting the sudden shift in management. He’s scheduled to have a phone meeting with dealerships this week.
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Sounds like the perfect puppet for the GM Board.
A GM lifer running Cadillac with no luxury goods experience and then a woman used to peddling Big Macs to the masses is in charge of their marketing. That really isn’t really making me think Cadillac is going to be alright. Granted, a South African and a German were a little worrisome too but at least they had experience with the kind of buyers Cadillac needed.
McDonalds is another troubled American icon brand that’s pretty much been run into the ground through bad management, poor service, and muddled marketing. I’m not aware of any messaging miracles that happened there while she was at the marketing helm so I have trouble seeing why she was picked.
Carlise is a little more obvious. GM wants to reign Cadillac in and exert more control.
The South African (Johan) and the German (Uwe) did not have the experience necessary for their roles. Neither one of them understood Cadillac or the American market. Furthermore Johan was a sales/marketing guy who had no background in car design, engineering, production, or economics – and all of that showed. He wasn’t even good at the sales/marketing part at Cadillac.
Uwe had a background in German cars (BMW) and fancy pens (Mountblanc). Uwe thought that telling the customer to “Dare Greatly” would sell cars, dare greatly how? Maybe Cadillac should have dared greatly by making real Cadillacs instead generic copies of German cars, but telling the customer to dare greatly sounds like you are inviting them to drive a death-trap. Uwe thought a great way to launch the XT5 would be to show a bunch of ditzy young women sitting in the car during a light rain, afraid to drive the car at that point but enjoying sitting there anyway. He also thought Americans loved the Oscars, and advertised there instead of the Super Bowl. This despite the fact that Hollywood liberals hate American products, so much that they gave the “Best Picture” most recently to an anti-American film where Cadillac is openly mocked and is embraced only by a sick, decaying White American male villain.
As to the McDonald’s woman, I agree she was the wrong choice, but wasn’t that Johan’s decision? Perhaps Carlisle can move her to “Book”, move Melody to a receptionist job somewhere, and give Renee Rauchut the top marketing position. Rauchut showed a much better grasp of marketing than Uwe ever did, ine short time she essentially filled that role. At any rate, I blame Johan for not firing Uwe (who left for health reasons), and for hiring or at least accepting the McDonald’s woman.
We don’t know what Carlisle plans to do. But I have much more confidence that a guy who grew up about 130 miles from Detroit and is a GM lifer, understands much better what Cadillac means to North Americans than Johan ever did or ever could. I also like the fact that he’s an engineer, and a production engineer at that. Perhaps he won’t have the obsession with fast track times around the Nurburgring Nordschleife that Johan had, maybe he won’t be endlessly worshipping the Germans, and maybe he’ll get back to making great modern cars that reflect Cadillac values – as well as proudly marketing that history, rather than acting embarrassed by it or pretending this is a new brand.
Carlisle at 55 is also just the right age to be taking over the role. He’s experienced enough to do the job well, he’s old enough to be aware of the time when Cadillac was something special and gave rise to “the Cadillac of… ” in the language. Yet he’s also young enough to have the energy to be at the helm for quite a while, hopefully 10 years or more. Good luck to Steve, and hopefully he remembers what made Cadillac “the Cadillac of cars”, and replaces faux-Teutonism with genuine American luxury.
Ah yes, the resident xenophobe “opines”. You don’t represent the United States.
Thank god there is no one like you anywhere near the top of the Cadillac brand, drew.
Notice how he says “North American”, like tacking on that qualifier is going to change Drew’s tune.
Drew wants American management at the helm of Cadillac. If a South African is unfit to run Cadillac, than a dirty, beady-eyed, Canadian isn’t either.
Rather than complain about it, Drew has changed his tune knowing that an American won’t pilot Cadillac, but a Canadian will do. So now, it’s us ‘North Ameircans’….like there was some great unity between us all.
“understands much better what Cadillac means to North Americans ”
No. You mean what Cadillac means to Americans. You’re not going to lump Mexicans and Canadians into your tired and directionless arguments.
Well, at least he’s white, right Drew? I know Drew wouldn’t consider a executive from GM’s Mexican operations fit for the job, despite fully meeting Drew’s new Cadillac management criteria of simply being a North American.
There goes Grawbuddy and his little sidekick the -vguy, spewing out venom, lies, and creating straw men that do not exist in real life. As I pointed out, Carlisle grew up about 130 miles from Detroit and has been a GM lifer. As such he understands what Cadillac means to people from the USA and people who live in Canada near the USA, especially the English speaking part of Canada. I know that you are Canadian Grabuddy, but the fact is that the vast majority of the Canadian population is quite familiar with American cars and American culture, especially America’s most famous car brand, the Cadillac.
In much of Spanish speaking Mexico, I don’t think they are as familiar with what the brand means to Americans, though some would be if they lived near the border and were aware of Cadillacs. On the other hand, Johan didn’t grow up in a country anywhere near the USA and furthermore it didn’t have Cadillacs. On top of that Johan was a German brand lifer, other than the short stint at Infiniti where he tried to make it the BMW of Japan, without regard to Japanese taste or culture.
It figures that you would make me a straw-man racist, when the only time I’ve mentioned race was when I pointed out that Cadillac once refused to sell to African-Americans, which I thought was wrong as well as stupid. Cadillac ended that policy in the 1930’s Depression, and doing so may have saved the brand from extinction. Today people like Johan didn’t want to sell cars to “old” people, and the brand likewise suffered as it did when refusing to sell to African Americans. But that’s a bit off topic here.
Speaking of White people though (BTW I always capitalize Black or White when it refers to people, just as I would with Hispanics, Asians, etc.) the last time I looked Johan was White, Uwe was White, and I didn’t think either of them were suited for their jobs. Also the “Mexican” filmmaker Guillermo del Toro is a White man (and a very corpulent and slovenly one at that), and I derided his “best picture” film as being anti-American and anti-Cadillac, because it is just that. I don’t deride his film because he’s Mexican, but because of the content.
Most of the Mexicans and Mexican-Americans I’ve met in the USA are friendly, thoughtful, hard-working people, and generally demonstrate a positive view of the USA. Mexico itself has good and bad points, but del Toro is kidding himself if he thinks that Mexico is above violence, corruption, and racism as he depicts in the US. By presenting the USA as a cartoon of violence, hatred, and decay, he is the one exhibiting the cultural bias, or the xenophobia as the little guy would put it (with his one big word, which he likes to misuse). Anyone with a functioning brain can see that the green color used throughout that movie represents gangrenous US decay, and just to make sure you get that point – he shows the Cadillac-loving, White strait American male as a horrible man with decaying green fingers (and of course he buys a green Cadillac, from a green-walled Cadillac dealer).
And of course Hollywood loves any movie that bashes America, which is why they gave the “best picture” award to it. Yet Uwe and Johan were too stupid and too unfamiliar with American culture themselves, that they went along and supported the Oscars with Cadillac/GM dollars. Again showing why they were a bad choice for Cadillac. As to GdT, if he thinks Mexico is so great and the US is so bad, why is he living in America? And what if an American moved to Mexico (which actually takes a lot of approval from the Mexican government) and made a movie trashing the Mexican government, people, and culture? I can’t imagine such a movie getting a “best picture” award, and I would understand if the Mexican people viewed that person as being ungrateful for being welcomed there and then seeing him trash them openly. But to you liberals, trashing America is good, and if you don’t cheer those who trash America or its icons, then you are a “xenophobe” as well as a “racist”.
@DRew »a movie trashing the Mexican government, people, and culture? I can’t imagine such a movie getting a “best picture” award« — well such movies were typical for Hollywood.
Observer7, I don’t want this to become a movie review thread. My original point was that Hollywood gave their most recent “best picture” award to a movie that trashed the USA and trashed Cadillac in particular. And I pointed out that only a culturally tone-deaf pair like Uwe and Johan would continue to support the Oscars in spite of this.
Someone else brought up the fact that the director was from Mexico (and he happens to be a White man, if that matters). In response to this I did add that I couldn’t imagine an American director moving to Mexico and trashing it in a movie, then being celebrated there for doing it.
As far as past Hollywood films depicting Mexico, I’m not aware of any that received “best picture” awards, whether trashing it or not. One celebrated Hollywood film that takes place in Mexico is “Treasure of the SIerra Madre” from 1948. And yes there are some bad “banditos” there, one of whom delivers the famous line about “badges”. But the movie doesn’t actually trash Mexico itself, the government, or the mainstream people there. In fact the real government troops oppose the banditos, and the local Mexicans are shown as welcoming to the Americans.
If you have an example of an American director immigrating to Mexico, making a movie trashing their government, people, and culture, as well as trashing their iconic automobile brand (if they have one), being given a “Mejor Pelicula de Mexico” award, and then supported financially by that Mexican automobile brand, you’d have something similar. The fact that some American movies have portrayed some Mexican bad guys is irrelevant to this.
Bam. Now thats what i call a rebuttal 🙂
I liked Creature From The Black Lagoon. I’d rather my director be made in Mexico than my vehicles.
I have zero confidence in anyone who grew up anywhere near Detroit. Cadillac’s distance was a good thing. This guy will be a disaster.
@Drew: “Hollywood liberals hate American products, so much that they gave the “Best Picture” most recently to an anti-American film where Cadillac is openly mocked” — which movie do you mean?
As a 45 year-long McDonalds investor, I strongly disagree that McDonalds has been “pretty much run into the ground…” I need only to view my accumulated stock holdings earned through reinvested McDonalds dividends to see that it has done well in one of the world’s most competitive businesses.
I’m sure many GM stockholders could say the same thing; they’ve made money on the company. But whether shareholders made money last quarter isn’t the only metric GM fans look at to determine whether they are being well managed. In fact, for a very long time I think GM was managed in such a way so as to keep short term profits going and the shareholders happy at the expense of the company’s long-term health. That kind of management included schemes such as settling union strikes by promising members better money in retirement in lieu of wage hikes now; a commitment that had an eventual pay day. Not investing in costly and essential future product programs so as to meet annual profitability goals was another of GM’s sins. Keeping plants running and dumping cars into fleets also comes to mind. As we all know, it all eventually came crashing down and the company went bankrupt. Too many years of bad decisions based on short-sighted management whose sole focus seemed to be making their numbers for the next quarter.
Instead of just the shareholder picture, I’m looking at whether GM is developing competitive products that can win in the marketplace 5-10 years from now and whether the company is in the markets with growth potential and exiting those that are trailing off. What they are doing today effects where they’ll be in 2030.
As for McDonalds, while they may still be making money, the product is bland and tasteless, the menus are confusing, the stores are dirty, the employees are unpleasant, and accordingly to what I have read they are struggling to remain relevant in a marketplace moving increasingly to the so-called fast casual concept. McDonalds big push with the 365Black campaign and their increasing emphasis on lower income minorities in ad campaigns (I’m Lovin’It) appears to me to be an effort to keep stores busy as middle class families with kids desert them for healthier choices. McDonalds was once a happy place where Ronald McDonald wooed kids and their novel indoor playgrounds kept them coming back. Today’s McDonalds isn’t that same happy place. They may still be making money but they appear to me to be a company on the decline, just like GM.
Although this gent seems like a far cry from JDN, we really can’t judge until we see how he will manage Cadillac. With that said, we will be watching, Mr.Carlisle. Don’t let us down.
JDN had moxie
“He will be Cadillac’s seventh top executive since 2004.”
What the GM Board is doing to Cadillac should be illegal. They may as well set fire to Yosemite; it would be a less painful way to see them destroy an American icon.
I just thought maybe with Johan we had a chance to avoid a Chevrollac. Don’t get me wrong I would own a Chevrollac if it were like a Corvette in differences from Chevrolet. Like the sleeper car or GTO or Cadillacs of the past in design differences. I have owned 5 Cadillacs in my 34 years of GM loyality. Originally bought first Northstar just because of differences. It would go faster, more acceleration, better mileage, and last longer than an Chevrolet “grocery getter”, and it did 20+ mpg, lasted 200,000+ miles, and it would go when you wanted. So much so that I convinced my mom to buy one, 99 Northstar. Well like, this is just a guess, 99.9% the head gaskets leaked 100,000 miles (cost cutting) no warranty Etc. So I get 2 more 2004 3.6 CTS. and a 2005 Northstar SRX, both great cars, both 140,000+ miles, transfer case chain in AWD of SRX at 78,000, CTS we still own nothing done to it but it needs the timing chains done like, I’m guessing 99.9%. But even in 2004 these Cadillacs were a little different than your standard Chevrolet. But after the Bankrupt stuff, just a Chevrolet. It seems to me GM turned up the focus on Chevrolet and let the rest fail. Like the new XT4, sure it looks different than a Chevrolet, GMC, or Buick, but at the end of the day same car LOOKS DIFFERENT. I just think GM wants a Lincoln. I also think there isn’t enough room for them all, and soon one will be gone. Chevrolet-CMC-Buick-Cadillac. Not all but most of the older 1% Cadillac owners now own Mercedes, BMW, Audi. The next class tier, Park Avenue/Cadillac drive Lexus, Enclave and XT5. But most of the new up and coming 1% are Audi, BMW, Mercedes. GM there are no new cool Cadillacs on screen. Where are ALL of the new 1% eyes, ON SCREENS. In movies, on TV, You Tube Videos, and not local ” POP UP ADS”, people hate pop ups. I would be willing to say after 50 shades of grey Audi saw a huge up tick in sales to woman, and transporter to men. I’m just not sure Cadillac cares anymore. They don’t have a car that sticks out anymore, and when they get one “Escala” they aren’t allowed to make it. My experience with the Dealers SUCKS lying Service managers NO brand loyalty. We have a 2014 ATS Premium Performance now, we will see what this new CTS is like, O I mean CT5, but we thought maybe XT4 but not even with a ” NEW ” 2.0 T FWD/AWD like our ATS. If were not happy with the performance of our 2014 ATS 2.0T over our 2004 CTS 3.6. how could we be convinced that a heavier XT4 would be better. But we will drive one and see before we buy something else. As far as how long it takes to develop QUALITY. Johan is correct. You have two choices #1 develop fast to market and fix all your mistakes for owners, or #2 take time to have good quality from the start. Also I think we are past the days of ANY one person or company trying to convince people they have good initial quality, especially with social media, every one knows someone who has something and the best quality will win. Long enough, I’m losing hope, we will see. ” Build a great vehicle, stand behind the owner of it (NOT the dealer) and fix it, you will have success.”
Try a paragraph break every once in a while, like every thousand or so words…..that way it will at least resemble a coherent statement and not a cocaine fueled rant……
I only got 595 words so I’m good then.
I’ll try to use more proper letter writing structure for you.
Do all those ………….. mean something you should try to use less ……….
What are we talking about…….. how people write…… or Cadillac……
I guess its dammed if you do…………………..Dammed if you don’t…………….
He will do well if he reverses the harmful acts of his prior Cadillac Admin.
He has two paths to follow.
One he does as he is told and we see a repeat of past sins of discount Luxury cars build on and with Chevy part bins. We then get a CT Malibu.
Two he show some back bone and stands up for what is right and then he gets cut off at the knees.
GM has a long history of this and while much of the old GM has been purged they still have the board who just does not always get products and how to deal with the divisions. You can not treat Chevy like Cadillac nor can you run Cadillac as Chevy.
Cadillac is a long term investment into GM’s future and to try to short term it we only repeat past sins.
GM is not the only one Lincoln too is still discount Luxury.
Cadillac may not be as profitable as they could be but they are still making money. You can not ram rod this along as you have to give the public what they are looking for and then let them accept it.
“You can not treat Chevy like Cadillac nor can you run Cadillac as Chevy.”
Yes but isn’t treating Cadillac like Chevy, what Johan did with the XT4? Sure it looks like a modern Cadillac from the front end, but the back end is generic and the interior looks extremely Chevrolet. The front legroom may even be worse than Chevrolet – the XT4 front legroom specs a full inch shorter than the Chevy Sonic! Even the Chevy Spark has nearly an inch more front legroom than the XT4.
Cadillac’s success was built on roomy luxurious comfort, not cramped generic plasticism. And the XT4 was Johan’s 1st full project, the one he was delaying until he “got it right” for Cadillac. I don’t think it’s a coincidence that Johan was fired a week or so after the XT4 debuted and was completely overshadowed by the Lincoln Aviator in Cadillac’s “home turf” (cough) of New York City.
He didn’t delay anything. It’s been less than 4 years. It takes 6 to develop a car.
You must be looking at the SRX, not the XT4. Or you’re just a troll.
“Yes but isn’t treating Cadillac like Chevy, what Johan did with the XT4?”
Context is vital.
Around the 2009-2020 (bankruptcy) time frame by, GM got Cadillac’s product planning really wrong by not forecasting for crossover demand. Every other major luxury automaker did a much better job, to various degrees of success… but GM got it extremely (if not totally) wrong.
As a result, the XT5 followed by the XT4 (and upcoming XT6) were rush jobs from a development standpoint. They had to get crossovers to market, but didn’t have “true” Cadillac platforms on which to base them on, since GM didn’t make any of the “true” Cadillac platforms (Alpha, Omega) compatible with high roof tops (HRFT) vehicles (aka crossovers) circa that 2009-2010 planning phase. That’s the setting.
So as Cadillac needed (needs?) crossovers badly for sales volume as the market shifts more crossover-heavy, it has no actual platforms. The solution is to use lesser Chevy platforms to get these vehicles to market much faster. The alternative is to develop all-new “proper”/”true” Cadillac platforms that support crossovers, which takes so much longer than taking an existing platform and modifying it.
Now, couple that entire scenario with the notion that upper GM management wanted Johan to actual bring Cadillac crossovers to market FASTER than he did… and you end up with the only logical solution: to base this batch of Cadillac crossovers on existing Chevy (GM) platforms, cutting so many corners but bringing the models to market at break-neck speed. From what I know, the XT4 and XT6 will be the fastest-developed Cadillac vehicles in history.
So in reality, Johan didn’t have any other choice than to “treat Cadillac like Chevy”… but I’m certain that wasn’t his first choice, and I’m sure that was part of the friction that ultimately led to his resignation – he just didn’t want to run a compromised luxury brand that is only focused on cutting corners rather than developing the products the “right way”. The platform sharing with lesser mainstream vehicles is ok on the low end (below XT4), but it’s not ok above it (XT4 and up).
Also, the Lincoln Aviator you speak of is a concept car, not a production one. And “being overshadowed” is relative… not sure how you can measure that. But even if the XT4 “was overshadowed”, then it’s because Cadillac used a sub-par Chevy platform for the XT4. An XT4 on a rear-drive architecture would have had much more presence from a design standpoint. But so what if Lincoln “overshadowed” Cadillac at an auto show with a car that will be $20,000 more expensive than the XT4? It’s the first time Lincoln would have “overshadowed” anything in over two decades. Ultimately, decisions about executive performance are not made at auto show introductions, but rather are based on performance on documents such as balance sheets, income statements, etc. The timing of Johan’s departure and the New York show is simply a coincidence.
I imagine its a double pronged sword, if after the BK and loans GM would have come out and said” were gonna spend this money on trucks and crossovers” they would have been raked over the coals, same thing the other way, if they would have said,”were putting the large/small RWD (ATS/CT6) on hold while we focus on crossovers and trucks” and they would have been roasted by the press, internet forums and all the fanboys….its damned if you do and damned if you don’t…….
Alex Luft, I realize that you think RWD makes a big difference in a vehicle’s appeal. But the public does seem to have a different take on that. I seriously doubt that the XT4 would have been greeted with more consumer interest had it been RWD but everything else the same. This is a CUV we are talking about anyway, not a sedan. CUVs are not generally purchased for driving dynamics. It may be purchased to some degree for cargo capacity, but those specs are disappointing as well, and this wouldn’t improve with RWD.
Putting the XT4 on a RWD platform wouldn’t do much except raise the cost, and in turn reduce sales or profits or both. Sure some people would buy it for the RWD, but at the same time some would prefer FWD (believe it or not). Even on RWD the car would have an unispiring, non-luxury interior, too much plastic and a copycat back end instead of a classic Cadillac one
The best selling luxury CUVs come from Lexus and are FWD. The best selling, most profitable Cadillacs made now are the XT5, XTS, and Escalade – of those 3 only the Escalade is RWD. Cadillac’s other cars are RWD and they don’t sell very well. Yes I know you think the CT6 sells great for a car in the “segment” of the S-class, Series 7, and A8, which it really isn’t in. For a full size Cadillac sedan, it’s had the worst 1st full year of production sales (in the US) by a wide margin. But great it’s RWD, like the slow selling ATS and CTS. There just aren’t as many “enthusiasts” begging for the RWD vehicles as you apparently imagine.
I agree that you have to experience a car to see how it “feels”, so that’s true of the XT4. We don’t know if the car will “feel” as underpowered as the specs, have to drive it. But the interior that was can see looks cheap, plasticy, exposed cupholders, boring dashboard, long row of tiny buttons, bland and imitative backside (instead of Cadillac classic one), small cargo capacity for its size, etc. As far as the front legroom, that’s something that would have to be tried out as well, but when I read the stated specs it looks bad. Maybe front legroom matters more to me than the average person (I am 6’3 and wear size 14 shoes), but I’ve noticed that everyone likes more legroom, and this used to be a hallmark of Cadillac. With Chevy, you might expect or accept less legroom. Regardless of the excuse, it appears to me that Johan delivered a Chevy-like XT4. And he lost his job. You can put 2 + 2 together or not, your choice.
The rear of the XT4 actually looks very good. Not sure what’s “generic” about it to you.
And regarding the measurements – you’re wrong.
XT4 front legroom: it’s 40.4 iinches “normal” but max is 44.1 inches
Sonic front legroom: 41.8 inches
Spark fornt legroom: 41.7 inches
Here’s some more XT4 interior and exterior specs for your education:
But what kind of ass-backwards criteria are you using, anyway? Nobody buys cars on maximum legroom, or whatever other measurement. Consumers buy based on feel – how the car feels. From that standpoint, the XT4’s cabin feels good in every conceivable way. Have you sat in one? (We already know the answer).
If people bought cars the way you’re trying to paint the picture of success or failure as an automotive product, then the XT5 would also not sell… as it, too, has less front legroom than both the Spark and Sonic. Ironically, the XT5 sells more than both of those models COMBINED, despite being three times more expensive.
It looks like a CRV from the back, thats the weakest styling on the XT4 in my opinion.
Have you seen the XT4 in person? If it looks like a CRV from the back, then so does the Volvo XC60.
The details is what matters here, and from that end – the rear end is executed really well… much better than anything from Honda.
At the end of the day, everything looks like something else… yet some cars sell by the boatload, while others do not. I’ll wager that this thing will fly off dealer lots very quickly, despite the criticisms from arm chair quarterbacks.
The XC60 also looks like a CRV.
” …. GM seems to be making an attempt to bring Cadillac closer into its radius after four years of distancing ” .
Sounds to me that their were a few folks that were not completely on board withe New York move . Johans thinking that moving across the river would do Cadillac some good , granted he didn’t have to co-mingle with other executives working at the other divisions , but he still had a hot line to Mary Barra’s office which I bet he wasn’t fond of .
Atleast Carlisle is a GM guy and has a decent record turning things around for Canada and a decent relationship with dealers . Johan was hired for the right reasons but I think for GM after working with him for his short tenure he just wasn’t the correct fit and his style or comments were something GM isn’t used too .
What really was the last straw IMO , was the lackluster interest in the XT4 from most journalists and got overlooked by Lincolns concept suv for 2020 . The XT4 just didn’t have much that was ground breaking enough and that counts for alot in that segment . They will sell , but there isn’t anything special enough to grab the customer from other brands .
Here is the thing. No matter who is in charge much of Cadillac is going to be a shared platform with Chevy. The key to success is how you deal with it in the details.
Vehicles like the XT4 are going to be shared with other GM vehicles just do to the price point. Even the engines will be based on the same versions. The key is to take what you are given and change it enough that is has its own focus, detail and traits. If you do it right no one will notice the foundations.
This means good styling like the XT4. Now also you need to have much better interiors and touch points like door handles and such. Details like the doors should shut with better sound and authority. The engines should even if it is shared be of its own tune and own designation.. Cadillac is always about more and better so the engine should offer more and do it better.
Now once you get to the high end you have more leverage with the price point. You can use the Omega for Cadillac only but use it you must not just one car. Second the engines should be special. The Turbo 3.0 while has Chevy roots is not a Chevy engine. The new TT V8 is just what the doctor ordered.
The reality is many luxury cars are based on or shared with lesser cars. Care must be done to protect the high end model. BMW is sharing a platform with Toyota, The Rolls is really based on BMW engines and bit. Bentley shares VW Audi technology with the W engine. Same with the W in the Bugatti. Aston Martin was using the small Toyota for a base for a luxury mini car not a good move.
GM did right by making the Alpha a Cadillac first then a Chevy Camaro Second. You can dumb down engineering but not up.
While Benz is not necessarily the best vehicle on the road it feels like it and because it feels that way it leads to belief by many it is. The Cadillac does not always feel like the best and that is a problem. They are improving. feel the door handle on a XT 5 and then the Traverse and you feel the difference. That needs to be on the whole car.
That is the mission of the new leader. Will he be permitted? I will let GM show me first before I say they won’t. I am skeptical and I want them to prove they care.
Gm.’s greatest competition has never been other brands it has been their management. They have done more damage over the years than Toyota or Honda combined.
Hey newsflash brainiac…………1st….none of them are “chevy engines” they’re made by GM Powertrain and 2nd the 3.6 was used in Cadillacs WAY before it was ever used in a Chevrolet…….
Fair enough, but…
Respected and highly successful luxury auto brands made by conglomerate automakers (those who have one mainstream brand and one luxury brand) typically have separate engineering arms for those brands… and limited overlap.
For instance, Volkswagen has Audi engineers and Volkswagen engineers. They also have Porsche engineers and Lamborghini engineers. The same goes for designers.
And when it comes time to make engines that will be used across VW and Audi vehicles, they engineer them in such way that they are feel like they belong in the vehicles of the luxury brands… and the lesser mainstream brands benefit from this.
So, where are the Cadillac powertrain engineers? Where are Cadillac engineers in general?
GM needs to return to the pre-Roger Smith days, when every brand was a standalone division with individual operations in design, engineering, etc… while also enabling the corporate “GM” to coordinate things at a central level to gain efficiencies and scale. This way, people work for the brand and develop an deeper understanding of and emotional connection with the brand.
I is so sad I have to explain this to you.
The point is when you get the same engine in a Chevy as a Cadillac it sends a poor message about Cadillac.
When you pay more for a Cadillac you should get more. Be it a Turbo set up like the 3.0 or a significant jump in power. Just putting on a new plastic engine cover sends a Poor message.
On the XT4 at a low price you can use the same engine but you should offer an option for the highest HP version available from GM.
The high end products should get their own stuff if you are going over $75k. These engines need to be more advanced, smoother and special just to Cadillac.
This means tuned and suited for their applications much more than Chevy.
Think of Cadillac as a custom made suit and Chevy is off the rack at JC Penny. You get what you pay for at least you should get more if you pay more.
So I do find it amazing that there are still simpletons that still buy the Corperate Engine game
I have a 08 Malibu, 17 Acadia and 17 Canyon all with a 3.6 nearly identical in the Cadillac and that is wrong. It sends a poor message to try to pedal a Cadillac. With an engine found in a value leading division.
GM may be able to fool you but many other are wise enough to want more for what they pay than a Acadia engine.
So you should feel lucky that your lowly common GM products were blessed with a Cadillac engine……
Its so funny that you attempt to back pedal when its shown that you have no idea at all about what you are talking about
“The Turbo 3.0 while has Chevy roots is not a Chevy engine.”
Which is wrong wrong wrong wrong wrong wrong wrong and wrong.
But then when you are called out you back pedal to something else.
Its a GM engine, first used by Cadillac and now filtered down to the cheaper cars.
The 3.0 TT has no other equivalent found in any other GM car anywhere.
“So I do find it amazing that there are still simpletons that still buy the Corperate Engine game”
Corperate? Really? LOL.
I mean we can’t all be geniuses like you……its Corporate by the way, a good tip to not look really stupid is not call people simpletons while at the same time misspelling a simple word like “corporate”
PS, how do your parents like their Acadia, Canyon and Malibu and show me how many more fingers before your a big boy and they let you drive them??
Sure a lot of …………..
What do they mean…………
What do you drive………….?
What kind of cars………….?
I have a …………1958 Corvette
I have a …………1968 Camaro
I have a …………1968 Chevy Truck
I have a ………….2004 Cadillac CTS
I have a ………….2015 GMC Canyon
I have a…………..2014 Cadillac ATS
I have a …………..2017 GMC Denali HD
No parent hand me downs or inheritance or free college all paid for. What you got you earned Toyota?
Sounding off from bottom to top…..
1965 Chevrolet Corvair Corsa 4 speed 140
1972 Buick Skylark 350
1975 Buick Estate Wagon
1975 Cadillac Eldorado
1978 Ford F100
1979 Pontiac Trans Am 10th Anniversary 4 speed
1980 Chevrolet Caprice Classic
2005 Pontiac G6 GT
2012 Chevrolet Camaro RS
2017 Chevrolet Malibu LT
Anything else you wanna know?
Nope, rated that one up. I’m even guessing that’s true, nobody would make up that diverse list. Looks good to me. First car I ever drove was a 1962 Corvair Monza, 12 years old, red with that little shifter lever thing and those two single carbs. Also first engine I ever rebuilt those pushrod tubes rusted holes in them had to braze them up at age 14. Fun little car. Is that a list of what you own now, or what you have owned, mine is what I have now. Have owned is,
1962 Chevrolet Corvair Monza
1962 Chevrolet fleetside pickup
1969 Chevrolet 4X4 pickup
1964 Ford mustang
1978 Caprice Classic 2 door
1982 Cutlass Supreme
1988 Chevrolet Beretta
1968 Chevrolet Pickup
1990 Cutlass Calais
1982 Chevrolet LUV Diesel 4X4
1982 Chevrolet Silverado 4X4 6.2 Diesel
1982 Chevrolet Custom Deluxe 4X4 6.2 Diesel
1996 Cadillac Deville Northstar
1996 Honda Prelude
1999 Chevrolet Silverado New style with 5.3
2002 Buick Rendezvous
1999 Cadillac Deville Northstar
2005 Chevrolet Silverado HD Duramax
2004 Cadillac CTS 3.6
2005 Cadillac SRX AWD Northstar
2007 Chevrolet Silverado HD Duramax
2015 GMC Canyon All Terrain 3.6
2014 Cadillac ATS AWD Premium Performance 2.0 T
2017 GMC Denali HD Duramax
A small list to compare reliability, performance and options to.
Thats everything I own right now.
In other words, you are the sort of buyer Cadillac doesn’t want. They want young, professional BMW driving demo elites behind the wheel. Older Camaro demo hurts brand “image”.
This is why Cadillac outside of China is doomed.
Here comes the Chevy parts bin back to Cadillac.
That will lower production cost and prices for the buyers. it is a good idea!
Before throwing too many eggs at Mr Carlisle, one has to look and examine the history of what Johan de Nysschen did and didn’t do as President of Cadillac; first thing is that JDN killed the Cadillac ELR which is sort of surprising as the ELR could have been a big seller in China and parts of Europe which is pushing for ZEV, JDN pushed back against Cadillac reverting back to Cimarron meaning he wanted distinctive vehicles and didn’t want to share platforms with other GM products although it’s worth mentioning that the best selling Cadillac car is the XTS which is shared by Chevrolet’s Impala and the Escalade which is shared with Chevrolet’s Suburban.. Johan de Nysschen did recognize the importance of CUVs which we would see in Cadillac’s new XT4 and XT5 in the next 6-12 months as well as how performance is the new luxury and reason for the 550 horsepower LTA Twin-Turbocharged 4.2L DOHC-4v V8 which is a Cadillac exclusive engine.
In such a fragmented market Cadillac will be fortunate to sell 35,000 units monthy–something very possible not that CUVs are on the menu plus Cadillac’s still surplus of dealers.
I’m of the opinion that margins will be an issue for the next decade as Cadillac yet again tries to rebuild it’s brand. This is a goal so far 20 years in the making and I question whether image repair is possible.
GM may end up with 3 similar brands: Delani, Avenir and Cadillac unless someone like Mark Adams, a man who gets the difference inside and out between an Opel and an Audi, is hired as designer. Even then Cadillac would be lucky experiencing a solid Lexus-like decade in terms of average transaction price.
Hyundai image was turned and they were far worse off in their early days. But it takes time, money and investment into a cohesive consistent plan.
Success it up to GM and right now they appear to be back to the old game again.
They are making money now but they need to improve the image to move them up in the segment to command higher prices.
GM appears to want to do it with volume only not higher prices. That is were the Buick conflict is.
That also leaves them with a Buick that really is stagnant with little space to grow.
Maybe, Mr Carlisle is well-fitted for the job, he has a technologic background and he managed to redress the GM Canada’s operations. For me, Johan De Nyschen wasn’t quite tech-oriented: He started to speak electric cars when several competitors showed their intents towards the EVs and, again, it will be too late, like we can see for the SUVs market, because the Cadillac’s management hasn’t clue for the future trends. If I had been JDN, I would immediately have launched the development of electric SUVs. Futhermore, the reliability/customer’s satisfaction of Cadillac’s product has to be improved and it’s a problem which JDN didn’t get much try to resolve. I hope that his successor will care of all these problems.
Edmond, all very good points. JdN was far too focused on “track performance” and rounded edges, he thought those were the main reason American people were buying German luxury cars instead of Cadillac. He should have noticed that Lexus was just slightly behind Mercedes Benz in US sales, and it got there mainly by imitating the old Cadillac of a nice refined reliable ride. And German car luxury sales are arguably about the luxury interiors and the status-symbol, than the track performance and rounded edges.
I don’t know if Carlisle has a great plan, but he certainly appears to have a strong understanding of the US/Canada market, he knows what Cadillac means as a brand, and he knows that what JdN tried to do wasn’t working.
I hope that the GM board lets Carlisle restore luxury and reliability to Cadillac, and lets him make modern Cadillacs with classic Cadillac values and Cadillac styling (which has been mostly very good, but JdN was moving away from it). Personally I don’t have a problem with Cadillac sharing some GM parts and platforms, as long as Cadillac has its own high standards. JdN seemed not to understand the economics of the auto business, he seemed to think that Cadillac should have its own platforms, parts, engines, and yet could also have fairly low sales numbers per model.
I think buyers care more about having Cadillac style and Cadillac virtues, plus real luxury interiors, refinement, and reliablity, than having track-worthy cars that don’t share anything with other GM cars, but otherwise have mediocre interiors, etc. GM is a for-profit business, and JdN seemed to think he should be bankrolled to build Cadillacs at a loss. Costs are a factor in business, and JdN did not seem to spend the money wisely, or in a way that would give strong profits to GM. To his credit, he did expand production in China, but I believe his US unit did not deliver the product or profits that GM sought. Maybe they even cared about the Cadillac brand remaining something they could recognize as Cadillac, not a generic copy of others.
I wouldn’t better said! About the “track performance” obsession, Cadillac can’t compete with BMW, Mercedes or Audi which have won many prestigious race like Le Mans, I wonder why they insist. Cadillac was the “standard of the world” because they were ahead of their time and through their character, not followers. Like they had launched a “war of displacement or power” with theirs V8s in 1950’s-60’s, I think that they should launch a “war of the range” with the electric cars, with the styling, only way to distinguish themselves. I have no more a problem the sharing of GM’s platforms or engines as long as it’s well done: Audi shares several engines, platforms with VW, they don’t try to reinvent the wheel and it’s a success story!
I hope Mr. Carlisle gives consideration to Cadillac customers who get problem vehicles. The way a company resolves issues speaks volumes. Many customers have been alienated to the point that they would not consider another Cadillac. Hope that does not continue.
There are fences to mend with actual Cadillac customers before addressing whims of people who never have and never will buy a Cadillac.
All I can say is THANK YOU !
Thank you for saying it.
You’re welcome. I’m feeling a little more hopeful about the significant issue on my car now that there is a new sheriff in town.
there staying in new York.
It will be interesting to see what vision and direction Carlisle have for Cadillac. Too soon to judge but time will tell in the upcoming months.
From the recent report from Motor Trend’s article “GM is Committed to Cars and Cadillac”, Cadillac is on track for new products every six months till the end of ’21 post JDN. This is coming for Barra’s comment published in the MT article.
It used to be Chevy sold only low end. Then you moved up the chain in options and expense. Now, you can get a $120,000 Chevy. Who’s going to buy an even more expensive Cadillac that isn’t any better than the Chevy GM makes? Even the auto reviews say it “get a cheaper loaded Chevy, and get almost all the goodies the much more expensive Cadillac has”. So, what’s Cadillac to do? Stop making fancy Chevy cars. As some have already said, don’t just make a copy of Mercedes either. Also, how about building a little brand loyalty? Crack a headlight on your former $100,000 Cadillac halo XLR, and the insurance company will total it. There are ZERO headlights and tail lights available from GM. At least the C6 guys can buy the wrong color match headlight and have it taken apart and painted. Bust a headlight or Tail light in your XLR, and you’re out of Cadillac. Probably for good. People in the forums are already pre-selling their XLRs before the value is nil thanks to the unavailability of 4 simple parts, that are now being scalped on ebay for $4k each. Pathetic.