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Cadillac to chart new brand course in N.Y.
Marketing chief seeks to craft image of pure luxury
November 29, 2014
Krishnan M. Anantharaman

LOS ANGELES -- Uwe Ellinghaus doesn't like to see Cadillac explicitly comparing itself to German luxury competitors in its ads. But he's determined to see Cadillac adopt the marketing strategies used by those rivals, including his former employer, BMW.

The results of that drive will show up in April, said the 45-year-old marketing chief, when Cadillac unveils its range-topping CT6 sedan, the first car to carry its new vehicle-naming system, at the New York auto show, along with a revamped strategy that will seek to position Cadillac not just as a car brand, but as a pure luxury brand.

"Johan de Nysschen, my boss, and I always say we want to build the first luxury brand that just happens to make cars," Ellinghaus said in an interview at the Los Angeles Auto Show. "That sounds like a joke, but we're serious about it."

The new image will come from a General Motors division that is in transition under de Nysschen's leadership, preparing to distance itself from the GM mother ship in Detroit and set up as a new business unit with its own headquarters in New York. After a hot 2013, Cadillac sales have slid this year as higher sticker prices repelled customers, leading to gluts of CTS and ATS sedans on dealer lots.

CONTINUE AT AUTONEWS.COM
 

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AutoNews.com said:
New names will be introduced over time as vehicles are redesigned or added to the lineup, Ellinghaus said, rejecting the quick-change "Infiniti route." After the CT6, the next to switch will be the successor to the SRX, and then the updated CTS and ATS.
So I guess that means that we won't have to wait for the all-new replacements for the CTS and ATS to see new monikers afixed to those products. We'll just have to wait for the MCEs if each before they're rechristened. That is news since they alluded earlier that the new names would debut when models were replaced or were added to the portfolio.

AutoNews.com said:
In the meantime, he's grateful for support from de Nysschen, as well as CEO Mary Barra and President Dan Ammann, for the changes he's pushing and for the move to New York, saying it will provide the "breathing space" that Cadillac needs from GM's other brands as well as a different talent pool.

"When I recruit new people, I do not need petrolheads," he said. "We have more than enough petrolheads, and we will still. I need people with experiences in other industries but with luxury brands."
I see his point, and applaud the "out of the box" thinking here, but I hope he doesn't take his eye too far off the product. I still have bad memories of Ron Zarella coming to GM, convincing everyone that the product didn't matter, and that retail sales were only about marketing. Thankfully folks like De Nysschen and Reuss are very product oriented and his job is to stay on advertising/messaging side of things.

AutoNews.com said:
Mercedes-Benz recently issued a complex diagram to explain a realignment of names across its vast product portfolio. At Cadillac, the rules will be simpler for now. All the new sedans will take a CT prefix -- C for Cadillac and T for tourer -- along with a number designating its place in the hierarchy. SUVs and cross-overs will use XT and a number.
I'm making my peace with the new naming scheme, and I absolutely get his point on the rationale behind adopting a "German style" moniker scheme. I don't dispute this. However, the justification for what the letters stand for is beyond idiotic to me.

C stands for Cadillac? Really? Do we really need remind the customer that they're driving a Caddy by tipping them off with the first letter? You mean the badges on the front/rear and on the steering wheel aren't enough? The new attention to the luxury buying experience they hope to roll out won't remind them?

Yes, Audi does this with their scheme. Citroen does this with many of their models. And now it seems that Kia is doing the same in some markets with products like the K4, K9, et al. To me, that's justification enough to find another letter altogether so I'm not copying what others are doing, especially "down market" brands like Kia and Citroen.

T for Tourer makes some sense since that was what the original justification for the letter in the CTS (and subsequently, the DTS, STS, XTS). But in modern car-talk, isn't a "tourer" just another word for a station wagon-type car? Isn't that what they're calling shooting-brake style vehicles in Europe and Subaru Forrester-wannabes? What's more, will they come up with another scheme for a sports cars, convertibles, hybrids, electric cars, autonomous cars, and such? Will there be a CE#, CH#, CA# in Caddy's future?

And to take their logic a step further, if "C" stands for Cadillac, what does pray tell does "X" stand for? Is X a secret Caddy sub-brand? Does it stand for Xena Warrior Princess or X-marks-the-spot or something? Wouldn't XC# make more sense? Nope, Volvo would get upset. What about CX#? Nope, Mazda would get annoyed. If the justification is that "C" sands for Cadillac, and you abandon that on your crossovers/SUVs, then perhaps they should have come up with another naming scheme entirely to tie it all together, no?

By comparison, Lincoln's justification for the MK* scheme is brilliant since it at least "Mk" harkens back to a famous series of models from their past portfolio. And the same could be said of Q at Infiniti since they launched brand in the US on the back of the Q45 (and M30).

If this is the justification, then maybe they should have readopted the "Series" designation. Or maybe just take "D" because, up until recently, the DTS was a huge seller for Caddy and was nearly as "identifiable" with the brand as CTS was/is. They could have easily explained away the adoption of "D" and just say it was in honor of Detroit's founder, Antoine Laumet de La Mothe, sieur de Cadillac. Hell, even just using "T" alone would make more sense if you use the "tourer" rationale (T5, T6). Wait, nope. Volvo would probably get upset. Ugh!

Either way, perhaps they should have kept their mouths shut on what each letter stands for just so it doesn't get picked apart (by ranting people, like me).

AutoNews.com said:
The Escalade name won't be touched. "That's a brand in its own right," Ellinghaus said, adding that the ELR plug-in hybrid will also sit outside the traditional model hierarchy.
Brilliant. Even more deviations. He's right about the Escalade, which again, makes you wonder if they shouldn't have done something else entirely (even using EC#, EX#, ES#, ER#, EV# or something to tie the Escalade name to the crossover/SUV family would have made more sense in light of his admission here). And the ELR? I give up.
 

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Cadillac to chart new brand course in N.Y.
Marketing chief seeks to craft image of pure luxury
November 29, 2014
Krishnan M. Anantharaman

New names will be introduced over time as vehicles are redesigned or added to the lineup, Ellinghaus said, rejecting the quick-change "Infiniti route." After the CT6, the next to switch will be the successor to the SRX, and then the updated CTS and ATS.
"So this means we muddle through for a few years [until] one day, all the cars have the new nomenclature," Ellinghaus said. "That's not a happy picture -- I accept that," but he'd rather not "muddle through forever."


SOURCE: http://www.autonews.com/article/201...chart-new-brand-course-in-n-y?template=mobile
New strategy for the future products is glueing a new badge on arse of Cadillac, and keep the fingers crossed? Mmmmm

That's gonna fool Americans, can see Europeans rushing into 1 UK (Luxury dealership, oops can't mention luxury word) Cadillac dealer based in a rundown ghetto no-go area in Manchester where that find a dead cat in the trash they think its a treat to eat now rushing into buy a Cadillac with CT6 rather than a CTS.

"Firstly, if you need to say that you are luxury, you are not luxury," Ellinghaus said. "Louis Vuitton does not say they are luxury. They simply are. Secondly, it's not meaningful. We realize that even in the U.S., people don't understand what makes American luxury different from European luxury."

Which is considered to be more 'luxurious' and which is considered a "dangerous death trap" with steering wheel fitted on the wrong side to Brits?

Cadillac CTS is rated a 2 Star hotel car accommodation by What Car for being "LHD only"
£65,766 Comes with over inflated price and steering wheel fitted on the wrong side "passengers seat" the car returns 24 UK MPG and costs £65,766 = 0 UK sales, having a steering wheel fitted on the wrong side of the car is very dangerous a lethal hazard nobody in the UK will ever touch one. UK is General Motors 4th biggest market in the world by GM product car sales volume, UK is the biggest luxury market in Europe, Europe is the biggest luxury buying car market on the planet.

Dacia Sandero - What Car car of the Year, bare bones 3 star accommodation.
£5,995 A bare bones Dacia Sandero at the moment seems to have more "luxury" equipped, come fully RHD equipped with steering wheel fitted in the driver seat, and returns a healthy 80+MPG, IS EU $9 a gallon gas price friendly.



How can Dacia build a WHOLE car for £5,995 ($9,378) with a steering wheel fitted to the correct side of the car?
Sales charts are soaring vertically in the UK and out of control.


Why does Cadillac charge £65,766 ($102,903) and fits the steering wheel in the passenger seat?
0 UK Sales 2014.
 
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"We realize that even in the U.S., people don't understand what makes American luxury different from European luxury."

If Americans don't understand American "luxury" then Cadillac has no chance - it has to start at "home" and get it's basics right.

Part of the difference between American luxury and European "luxury" is that it isn't actually the European luxury sector - Audi, BMW, Cadillac, Jaguar, Lexus and Mercedes-Benz are in the European premium sector - it's Bentley, Rolls-Royce and maybe Maybach/Pullman that's the European luxury sector.
 

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I'm starting to get it. Unfortunately for the current Caddy Lack Brain Trust, they are no longer needed now that things have been 'splained properly.

The 'murrican pipples are stupid, they have been schnookered before by a combination of lies, BS, and disinformation/noninformation, they can be hoodwinked again.

Fire the current Caddy Brain Trust and hire this genius, J. Gruber. Wasn't he in McHale's Navy?

http://nypost.com/2014/11/27/stupid-...face-congress/

Originally Posted by Oldsmobile stopped
New strategy for the future products is glueing a new badge on arse of Cadillac, and keep the fingers crossed? Mmmmm

That's gonna fool Americans, can see Europeans rushing into 1 UK (Luxury dealership, oops can't mention luxury word) Cadillac dealer based in a rundown ghetto no-go area in Manchester where that find a dead cat in the trash they think its a treat to eat now rushing into buy a Cadillac with CT6 rather than a CTS.

"Firstly, if you need to say that you are luxury, you are not luxury," Ellinghaus said. "Louis Vuitton does not say they are luxury. They simply are. Secondly, it's not meaningful. We realize that even in the U.S., people don't understand what makes American luxury different from European luxury."

Which is considered to be more 'luxurious' and which is considered a "dangerous death trap" with steering wheel fitted on the wrong side to Brits?

Cadillac CTS is rated a 2 Star hotel car accommodation by What Car for being "LHD only"
£65,766 Comes with over inflated price and steering wheel fitted on the wrong side "passengers seat" the car returns 24 UK MPG and costs £65,766 = 0 UK sales, having a steering wheel fitted on the wrong side of the car is very dangerous a lethal hazard nobody in the UK will ever touch one. UK is General Motors 4th biggest market in the world by GM product car sales volume, UK is the biggest luxury market in Europe, Europe is the biggest luxury buying car market on the planet.

Dacia Sandero - What Car car of the Year, bare bones 3 star accommodation.
£5,995 A bare bones Dacia Sandero at the moment seems to have more "luxury" equipped, come fully RHD equipped with steering wheel fitted in the driver seat, and returns a healthy 80+MPG, IS EU $9 a gallon gas price friendly.



How can Dacia build a WHOLE car for £5,995 ($9,378) with a steering wheel fitted to the correct side of the car?
Sales charts are soaring vertically in the UK and out of control.


Why does Cadillac charge £65,766 ($102,903) and fits the steering wheel in the passenger seat?
 
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Well that was enheartening. I didn't really see anything to cheer about there in those sales charts.

Cadillac executives have admitted the product and the customer experience (plus authenticity and legitimacy) need work before Cadillac came become a true luxury brand. So they raise the prices (luxury items cost more, right?) ahead of the completion of the aforementioned transformation and barrage the marketplace with bluster and outrageous pronouncements in the middle of the resultant sales chart turmoil. By definition the heretofore superior value proposition has been jettisoned so the Cadillac brand can compete on a more even footing pricewise with brands offering real legitimacy in the marketplace (Mercedes, BMW, Lexus et al) as opposed to aspirational bravado and wonky marketing schemes.

Is this a recipe for success? I am waiting for a rabbit and a hat.
 

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New strategy for the future products is glueing a new badge on arse of Cadillac, and keep the fingers crossed? Mmmmm

That's gonna fool Americans, can see Europeans rushing into 1 UK (Luxury dealership, oops can't mention luxury word) Cadillac dealer based in a rundown ghetto no-go area in Manchester where that find a dead cat in the trash they think its a treat to eat now rushing into buy a Cadillac with CT6 rather than a CTS.

"Firstly, if you need to say that you are luxury, you are not luxury," Ellinghaus said. "Louis Vuitton does not say they are luxury. They simply are. Secondly, it's not meaningful. We realize that even in the U.S., people don't understand what makes American luxury different from European luxury."

Which is considered to be more 'luxurious' and which is considered a "dangerous death trap" with steering wheel fitted on the wrong side to Brits?

Cadillac CTS is rated a 2 Star hotel car accommodation by What Car for being "LHD only"
£65,766 Comes with over inflated price and steering wheel fitted on the wrong side "passengers seat" the car returns 24 UK MPG and costs £65,766 = 0 UK sales, having a steering wheel fitted on the wrong side of the car is very dangerous a lethal hazard nobody in the UK will ever touch one. UK is General Motors 4th biggest market in the world by GM product car sales volume, UK is the biggest luxury market in Europe, Europe is the biggest luxury buying car market on the planet.

Dacia Sandero - What Car car of the Year, bare bones 3 star accommodation.
£5,995 A bare bones Dacia Sandero at the moment seems to have more "luxury" equipped, come fully RHD equipped with steering wheel fitted in the driver seat, and returns a healthy 80+MPG, IS EU $9 a gallon gas price friendly.



How can Dacia build a WHOLE car for £5,995 ($9,378) with a steering wheel fitted to the correct side of the car?
Sales charts are soaring vertically in the UK and out of control.


Why does Cadillac charge £65,766 ($102,903) and fits the steering wheel in the passenger seat?
0 UK Sales 2014.
I think I am beginning to get your point. Naturally I am not a GM executive. How these guys can keep talking about becoming a world luxury brand without the basics covered is bewildering. But bluster and illogic are the world of the auto executive.

Maybe they can go sponsor a seventh place cricket team somewhere in England. I'm sure someone has $559 million sitting in his budget somewhere.....
 

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I guess I'm willing to give Jo and Uwe a chance. We all knew Caddy would need some big 'change agents'. Well, here they are. A few things are making me cringe, but lets see how this plays out.
 

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So I guess that means that we won't have to wait for the all-new replacements for the CTS and ATS to see new monikers afixed to those products. We'll just have to wait for the MCEs if each before they're rechristened. That is news since they alluded earlier that the new names would debut when models were replaced or were added to the portfolio.
Things seem to get muddier.
The thing I see is that at least for the most part the sales are steadily increasing, but those Canadian figures to me are an embarrassment.
 

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"We realize that even in the U.S., people don't understand what makes American luxury different from European luxury."

I spent many years in the IT industry and the first mark of a failed product is the mantra, "Well the customer just doesn't understand (either the product's capabilities or the value proposition, or both). Blaming the customer. Yeah. That ALWAYS works.

"We can definitely, long term, imagine a car on top of that even. I'm not saying we will, but we are definitely dreaming high."

This is a mixture of braggadocio and delusion. They want to get away from a "product centric" marketing approach? Wow. Better stand back. You don't want to get hurt. This is going to get ugly.

At least he admits they are dreaming. I am forced to concur.

Where is Michael Moore when we need him? Why, decade after decade, does GM hire charlatans, carpetbaggers (from Montblanc Pen Company, no less; you can't make this up) and just plain village idiots to run things?

It's sad when Roger Smith is starting to look like the answer.
 

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I'll give this some time.

Only makes sense to give them time to accomplish their vision and plan...


Personally I think the third generation non v sport cts is lacking in allure...

The ATS is nice
 
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I think what they said is great, they have a strong direction and commitment. If they stick to this Cadillac will get there. Luxury is a concept, you can't just declare yourself luxury because a car uses fine materials, has a high price, etc. it needs an identity to make people believe you are getting something greater than a normal brand. A Tiffany diamond really isn't much different than a well crafted no name diamond. An Impala will drive you to Target just as well as an S Class, yet Mercedes has been able to convince people that their car is worth $70,000 more. Cadillac needs to build that image and can only get there with strong leadership and consistency.

And they are exactly right, no one knows what American luxury is. Not because I'm an idiot, just because there isn't such a definition. Cadillac and Lincoln need to tell us what American luxury is, they need to define the segment.
 

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I sure hope sales move ahead with excellent product, better marketing and better dealership experience. I don't agree with the new naming structure, however, I hope I'm wrong. Good luck to the new Cadillac team. They sure need success.
 

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I think these guys are going to absolutely kill Cadillac as there is no way on Earth that GM will have the patience to allow their vision to come to reality. A couple of years of absolutely abysmal sales, which the new Caddy leadership fully expects, and GM mgt will show them the door and start trying to get back the traditional customer that these new guys are trying to leave behind.
 

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So I guess that means that we won't have to wait for the all-new replacements for the CTS and ATS to see new monikers afixed to those products. We'll just have to wait for the MCEs if each before they're rechristened. That is news since they alluded earlier that the new names would debut when models were replaced or were added to the portfolio.


I see his point, and applaud the "out of the box" thinking here, but I hope he doesn't take his eye too far off the product. I still have bad memories of Ron Zarella coming to GM, convincing everyone that the product didn't matter, and that retail sales were only about marketing. Thankfully folks like De Nysschen and Reuss are very product oriented and his job is to stay on advertising/messaging side of things.
I don't think what he sas contradicts thathe plan. MY 2017 CTS and ATS will get the refresh and new names. ATI could come MY 20TH b/c it's a year older
 
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