GM Planning to Build New “Top of the Line” Cadillac

Cadillac Elmiraj concept coupe Aug. 15, 2013 in Carmel, Calif. The Elmiraj is a four-seat rear-wheel drive coupe hinting at the details of the super-size Caddy under development. Powerplant is a 4.5-liter, twin-turbocharged V-8 delivering an estimated 500 hp. (PHOTO CREDIT: Cadillac)
Cadillac Elmiraj concept coupe Aug. 15, 2013 in Carmel, Calif. The Elmiraj is a four-seat rear-wheel drive coupe hinting at the details of the super-size Caddy under development. Powerplant is a 4.5-liter, twin-turbocharged V-8 delivering an estimated 500 hp. (PHOTO CREDIT: Cadillac)

General Motors plans to build a big, new rear-wheel-drive Cadillac flagship sedan at its Detroit-Hamtramck plant by the end of 2015.

The as-yet-unnamed new Cadillac is expected to draw inspiration from the Elmiraj and Ciel concept cars shown in recent years.

The new Cadillac sedan will be bigger than the current fullsize XTS front-drive car and more expensive.

“It’s top of the line,” GM CEO Mary Barra said this morning at a conference here. “It will be something that’s aspirational.”

The new flagship sedan will take on such luxury standards as the Mercedes S-class, BMW 7-series, Audi A8 and Jaguar XJ.

“What we have to make sure is we are relevant in the key luxury segments,” Barra told reporters today. “To be a true luxury brand, it has to be credible (in the flagship segment).”

GM, in its announcement, called it a “top-end, high-technology car.” Among the new tech is likely to GM’s new “super cruise” system, which can let the car steer, brake and accelerate by itself on the highway. The company had announced earlier this month that the super cruise system would be installed into a new Cadillac for the 2017 model year.

The news of the new prestige model comes amid reports that Cadillac chief Johan de Nysschen plans to scale back production to reduce a glut of cars on dealer lots. The Audi and Infiniti veteran is charged with injecting fresh life into Cadillac, whose momentum has stalled this year. Despite a successful launch of a redesigned Escalade SUV, overall Cadillac sales so far this year are down 4.7% from the period a year ago, according to Autodata.

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SOURCE: USA Today, Detroit Free Press
Nathan Bomey

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