The Cadillac CT5 sedan has not yet been released, but when it finally rolls out, it will mark the start of a “lean and mean” approach to the struggling sedan market for General Motors’ luxury brand.
As Car and Driver noted, the once-ubiquitous sedan market has seen better days, as consumers tend to opt for SUVs and crossovers as their new vehicles of choice. Cadillac, on the other hand, remained focused on “traditional” four-door sedans, including the ATS, CTS, and XTS, CT6, only for the company’s domestic sales figures to continue faltering. According to Reuters, Cadillac has enjoyed a 27 percent increase in global sales through the first six months of 2017, but has also seen a 1.6 percent sales decline in the U.S., with a 16.3 percent decline in sedan sales over the same timeframe.
In reaction to the seeming lack of consumer interest in the automaker’s sedan offerings, Cadillac President Johan de Nysschen told Reuters that the company will be “rebalancing (its) sedan portfolio,” which means phasing out the ATS, CTS, and XTS once their life cycles end in 2019. That’s where the Cadillac CT5 comes in, as a single sedan to be marketed to car buyers looking for sedans in the $35,000 to $45,000 price range. The CT6 will remain active and will be sold to consumers who prefer larger cars costing $50,000 or more.
With the impending phase-out of the “slow-selling” ATS and CTS, Cadillac will add more SUVs to its portfolio, including a compact vehicle known as the XT4, and an unnamed larger SUV that, according to Reuters, will have three rows of seats as it goes up against vehicles like the Volvo XC90.
As for the Cadillac CT5 sedan, the automaker will be manufacturing the car at the same Lansing, Michigan-area plant that presently builds both the ATS and CTS. The factory will also be working on a “small luxury sedan” that will compete against the Audi A3 and other cars in its class.
Although de Nysschen made no mention of it in his interview with Reuters, Car and Driver speculated that Cadillac probably won’t do anything with the popular Escalade SUV, which remains the company’s top moneymaker.
Aside from launching the Cadillac CT5 as a replacement sedan for the soon-to-be-retired ATS, CTS, and XTS, the automaker is also planning to release more hybridized and/or electrified vehicles, wrote Reuters. De Nysschen said that these plans are “not dissimilar” to Volvo’s plans to go purely hybrid or electric starting in 2019, but may likely have to wait until the second half of the 2020s.
[Featured Image by Gene J. Puskar/AP Images]