Cadillac Reflects On Major Brand Milestones For 120th Anniversary11
Cadillac is celebrating its 120th birthday this year, which it has marked with a series of special edition models, including a special Cadillac CT5-V Blackwing 120th Anniversary Edition model. The automaker’s media department recently took the time to reflect on some of its major brand milestones since it was founded in August of 1902, tracing its history from early innovations like the V16 to current-day technology like Super Cruise.
“Cadillac’s history of innovations and achievements since its founding by Henry M. Leland in 1902 is well-documented, and a number of highlights have been collected in the accompanying timeline document,” the automaker said in a press release published this week.
While Cadillac’s early days may be marked by its complex multi-cylinder powertrains, one of its first innovations was rather simple. The brand’s implementation of standardized components, made possible by its precision manufacturing prowess, earned it a Dewar Trophy for engineering excellence in Britain, bestowing it with the now famous ‘Standard of the World’ moniker. The story behind how the brand won this trophy is worthy of an article all its own, with British importer Frederic Bennet impressing the Royal Automobile Club after he was able to disassemble and reassemble three different 1907 Cadillac Model K vehicles, interchanging their parts to prove the brand’s manufacturing consistency.
Other Cadillac innovations are perhaps more well known, such as the introduction of the first mass-produced V8 engine, as well as the introduction of the fist V16-powered production passenger car, the first electric self-starter and the first mass-produced fully automatic transmission.
Cadillac says its long-standing tradition of innovation continues today with the introduction of the Cadillac Lyriq, which “ushers in a new era of progressive advanced technology powered by the Ultium Platform while remaining true to the brand standards established over a century ago.”
“It’s an absolute privilege to guide this iconic brand through this period of exciting transition after 120 years,” Cadillac Global Vice President Rory Harvey said in a prepared statement. “Cadillac’s journey into the new, electrified era of driving allows us to push the boundaries of technology, engineering and design in an unprecedented manner.”
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The other day I clicked on the Cadillac site just to check things out. The first thing that came up was about this 120 years and it’s history. I was very intrigued to say the least, as I thought how amazing it will be to take a look at the past compared to the present. How disappointed I was when they were comparing some of the most iconic and beautiful Cadillac’s of the past to nothing but it’s current SUV lineup! There was only one part about the V8 that actually referenced today’s high performance V-series car and the rest was all about SUV’s. The disappointment was huge as I watched them try to compare some of the best from Cadillac’s past to the boring boxes they push today. Not one single comparison to a CT4 or CT5.
A total fail in my opinion.
The brand still has of a distance to go before it can be considered a global luxury standard bearer. But considering where the brand was 20 years ago, the situation was far more dire at Cadillac.
They had one RWD car in the CTS, a thinly restyled Tahoe, Avalanche, and a bunch of dated FWD based cars that couldn’t hold a candle to any brand but Lincoln.
Going electric seems to be a good motivator for Cadillac to have a laser sharp focus on what the brand will represent moving forward. Case in point: the Celestiq.
Ehdit0r: To some, that may be true. To me and others that were selling Cadillac’s at the time you reference, they made the very wrong turn in going after the wrong people instead of being true to the brand and who they are (were). Don’t take me wrong, I’m not saying that Cadillac should still be selling larger front drive only cars with WW tires and vinyl tops, but they didn’t have to totally abandon who they were either.
For a refresher, I went back onto the Cadillac site and looked at the 120th thing again. What irks me most is that they have the brains to be able to go back and pull up the cars that made them who they were and then compare them to the bland Buick and GMC and Chevrolet re-boots that they call a lineup today. Yet on the other hand, these same people will be the first to take a swipe at Cadillac for those same cars from years ago! In that article, they referenced 10 different cars and/or historical moments in Cadillac’s history. Of the 10, 3 compared to the Lyriq (SUV). 5 to the fancy Taholade (SUV). One to some POD thing and then one to the CT5 V. Not one thing about the Celestiq, CT4.
I agree Dan or the CT6. Now we just need to wait to see 120th Annnv. Edition Beast Escalades with fender skirts and wide white wall tires.
now the decline ..
And the owner is still waiting for delivery from Cadillac!
they still seem to be laboring under the false equivalence of profit=excellence.
Over the last 40 years I have owned MBZ,BMW and Audi cars/SUV. I never considered buying a Cadillac until today.
I have an order for the AWD Lyriq. Going to dump my barge 350 GLE and use the Lyriq for town and short trips.
You ought to watch the Jay Leno’s Garage episode on the Lyriq. Turns out Leno is a long time Cadillac fan and can quote the innovations that Cadillac brought to autos. He felt the Lyriq is a return to that innovation and excellence.
The real paas/fa for me will be if the dealer sticks to the MSRP and try to gouge me on the price ($65K WITH dealer and deliver fees).
You’re buying the Lyriq for town and short trips. Listen to yourself. What’s a person to do who can’t afford or justify a second ICE vehicle for trips any longer than one charge will take them in an electric vehicle?
First my feeling is I don’t want to use an EV for greater than 300 mile trips as I am not patient enough to sit around waiting for a charge. Add to that non-Tesla connectivity is still spotty.
Second EVs are optimized for town driving. No direct pollution in congested areas and you get the advantage of regen. ICE vehicles are not efficient in stop and go traffic.
Third, I’m 73, why can’t I buy a Lyriq just because it might be cool? One last dance for an old guy.
Cadillac is becoming the Standard of the World again with the introduction of Celestiq. So much heritage. Sad Ford won’t allow Lincoln to compete with Cadillac or Buick. Would have been interesting to see what Lincoln would have done to counter Celestiq. We will never know.