Officially <em>"a future Cadillac model derived from Chevy Cruze is completely false,"</em> those are words David Caldwell, Cadillac's Communications Manager, sent our way last night.
Although interestingly, the rebuttals Cadillac sent to us, <em><a href="http://jalopnik.com/cadillac-is-planning-a-hatchback-based-on-the-chevy-cru-1773391429" target="_blank">Jalopnik</a></em> and <em><a href="http://www.autoblog.com/2016/04/27/cadillac-small-sedan-chevy-cruze-delta-platform/" target="_blank">Autoblog</a>, </em>all use the same language--*<em>there will not be a Cadillac derived from the Chevy Cruze--</em>but no one said there won't be a Cadillac based on the platform architecture D2XX.
As you may know, the Chevrolet Cruze is but one derivative of D2XX, other notables include the Opel Astra K hatchback and the Buick Envision SUV.
<h3><strong>So, D2XX Sedan?</strong></h3>
We know how difficult, short of impossible it is to <a href="http://www.roadandtrack.com/car-shows/detroit-auto-show/news/a27870/cadillac-smaller-rwd-sedan/" target="_blank">shorten Alpha</a> anymore than already, and still function as a viable sedan- see the rear seats of both ATS and Camaro for further details.
We also know that small rear-wheel-drive projects from any of the Generals arsenal of brands is met with extreme prejudice on the basis of cost and consumer interest. Small rear-wheel-drive cars are an enthusiasts wet dream, but year over year their market performance continues to decline. The Code 130R program was stillborn, as Opel's GT Concept looks to be.
And if you wander into the wild, wild marketplace hope for small rear-wheel-drive dwindles even further. Audi's A3 is front-wheel-drive with AWD available and Mercedes CLA follows the same playbook.
The lone holdout is BMW's 2 Series Coupe, which can offer rear-wheel-drive because BMW doesn't have to worry about packaging it as a sedan. The 2 Series Coupe is <a href="http://www.bmwblog.com/2016/01/07/rumor-major-changes-coming-to-2-series-lineup-front-wheel-drive-and-new-bodystyles/" target="_blank">expected to be joined by an arsenal of 2 Series derivatives</a> based on the <a href="http://BMW_UKL_platform" target="_blank">UKL front wheel drive architecture</a>- currently under the Minis.
Fittingly, news broke this morning that <a href="http://www.carscoops.com/2016/04/acura-is-no1-luxury-brand-among.html" target="_blank">Acura is the most popular brand with millennial buyers</a>, specifically the Acura ILX has captured the most buyers in the 18-34 demo over the last four years. Acura is doing this with FWD based Honda platforms, obviously with enough differentiation to interest the fickle demographic.
Uwe Ellinghaus said early this month that Cadillac wants to be the <a href="http://www.foxbusiness.com/features/2016/04/05/can-cadillac-be-millennials-car-choice.html" target="_blank">'hottest car brand'</a>*to millennials, Ellinghaus continued "Millennials are far more interested in fashion, design, architecture and also lifestyle than previous generations of luxury car buyers” the actual nuts and bolts of this car thing are becoming increasingly irrelevant to buyers in the segment.
If Cadillac wants to chase the millennial demographic they need to produce product for them, and sorry, no ultra-lux flagship is attainable for millennials, Cadillac needs the demo in their cars not just aspiring to their cars. But I digress.
<h3><strong>How About a D2XX CUV?</strong></h3>
The hatch designation in the program code may not necessarily indicate a true hatchback. because of the increasingly blurred line between hatchbacks and compact CUVs it's possible the Caddy based on D2XX is actually the rumored XT1 small crossover. For context, the Mercedes small crossover, the GLA, is technically <a href="http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2014/10/narcissism-small-differences-part-2/" target="_blank">considered a hatchback in certain configurations</a>.
The Buick Envision is already underpinned by D2XX, and just yesterday the new D2XX Equinox was spied.
It would square with Caddy's game of semantics, no Cadillac based on the Cruze, of course not-- that would draw unfavorable comparisons-- but a high rider based on D2XX is relatively insulated against outrage, and would allow Cadillac to keep it's promise of only rear-wheel-drive sedans.
<h3><strong>Now For Something a Little Crazy...</strong></h3>
Could Cadillac be exploring a derivative of the new Volt?
The Volt not only rides on D2XX but is also technically a liftback or hatchback. Although considering the debacle that was the ELR I would imagine Caddy is extremely weary of this avenue.
So I concede, there will be no Cadillac derived from the Chevrolet Cruze, but I strongly believe-- and so do my sources- that a Cadillac is coming that will ride on the Delta platform architecture...