Book by Cadillac is, well, closing its books temporarily. According to Cadillac, the brand will cease its car subscription service on December 1.
The Wall Street Journal first reported on Book’s hiatus and said the brand will “cancel” its service. A Cadillac spokesperson told GM Authority:
Following nearly two years of service, Cadillac will temporarily pause the Book by Cadillac program effective December 1, 2018. Book by Cadillac launched as a pilot program, providing the brand with valuable insights and contributing to Cadillac’s ongoing commitment in identifying new and innovative luxury experiences for their customers. The brand will use these insights to make adjustments to the Book by Cadillac strategy moving forward. Additional details will be made available at a later date.
While Cadillac insisted the program will be suspended temporarily, the WSJ reported a handful of cost factors led the brand to shelve the Book subscription service. Sources familiar with the program cited mounting costs associated with the back-end technology to run the system, often time-consuming and tedious functions.
Additionally, ensuring maintenance, repairs and detailing services were executed within 24 hours also added costs to the program. Expanding such a service outside of its pilot markets may have been deemed too costly to continue.
Book by Cadillac debuted in January 2017 as one of the first car-subscription services. Joining the program awarded a member the ability to swap cars up to 18 times per year, insurance coverage, maintenance, detailing, white-glove delivery and more for $1,800 per month. The service initially launched in New York City but expanded to Los Angeles and Dallas in November of last year.
Since then, numerous other luxury brands have jumped onboard with their own subscription services. Porsche, Audi, BMW, Mercedes-Benz, and others have launched similar services. However, Book’s demise may be proof that it’s difficult for automakers to diversify outside of the time-tested idea of selling and repairing automobiles.