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Is Cadillac's Image Dying and Does Anyone Care?

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  • chevy598chevy598 Posts: 162
    Stunning is when review after review call it a better ride then a 70k Land Rover. Theres never been a better looking suv made.
    Ask Lexus if entertainers and athletes can build a brand. They'd know more then anybody what Famous people can do for a brand. Cadillac now sells 200k units a year, and a lot of that is due to Escalade floor room traffic.
    I do not understand why people try to knock the Escalade by comparing it to the Tahoe, Suburban, or Denali. All of them are perfection on wheels compared to their competitors in that segment. Thats like saying a Ferrari aint nothing but a dressed up Lamborghini. Ford, Chrystler, Toyota, Honda or any other major automaker can only dream locking down the large suv segment like the General has. GM is as dominating in suvs as Toyota is in Hybrids.
  • fintailfintail Posts: 33,560
    With the reliability issues and stigma of Rovers, I don't know if that's a big victory.

    Which famous people drive Lexus and flaunt it? Lexus is a success because it has offered most of what was good about a Mercedes with little of what was bad about a Mercedes. It's a very understated car, bland styling, cushy interiors, nothing flashy.

    A lot of people are suspicious of badge engineering (a classic GM issue), and maybe people feel the Escalade looks too much like its siblings. I won't deny these are excellent SUVs, but there's some hype involved. I think a lot of us would like to see Caddy in a position where there most popular model isn't a big SUV.

    Ferrari and Lamborghini aren't really related.
  • What review called it a better ride than a Land Rover? And, for 70k don't you mean Range Rover? A 70k Land Rover is almost impossible, since they don't make it anymore, and when they did, you'd have had to try awful hard to get it to 70k.

    Sources please.......
  • chevy598chevy598 Posts: 162
    I agree, Cadillac needs better cars. We'll see in January where Cadillac is going when the 2008 cts unveils at the Detroit auto show. For a first attempt at getting back in the luxury game the STS wasn't a bad ride it just needs to evolve.
    The DTS is so misunderstood its crazy. GM couldn't have built a better boat for the segment their after with the DTS. If your into old school (boats) there's not much out there to choose from. That car was designed for the over 50 crowed and hit the nail on the head. It's easy money for GM because people who like driving cars like the DTS don't have any other choices. Even Lincoln doesn't build anything that says old school anymore.
    I do have one question about badge engineering. Don't most Lexus's share the same under pinnings as common Toyotas? Thats common practice in todays world.
  • chevy598chevy598 Posts: 162
    I think it was Car and Driver, but every head to head review says the Escalade is dominating compared to a more expensive Land Rover. I think the word they use is "Hip Factor". Cool is Cool!
  • lemkolemko Posts: 15,144
    The only guy I can think of who is rich and famous and drives a Lexus is Bill Gates. It's only because he wants to be modest. However, I hear he's a big fan of Porsche.
  • chevy598chevy598 Posts: 162
    Randy Moss got busted with drugs driving a Lexus.
    The Detroit News has an article about the new James Bond movie, and Lexus offered millions to be the only cars in the movie.
    In today's world I think it's more important how many rapers sing about your brand on the radio then who is actually seen in them.
    You'd be surprised by how many people that would die for a Lexus, Cadillac, Benz, or BMW that have never been in one.
  • lemkolemko Posts: 15,144
    I remember a Chuck Berry song about the Oldsmobile "Rocket 88" that would make me want to run out and buy an Oldsmobile in a New York second.
  • snakeweaselsnakeweasel a Certified Edmunds Poster.Posts: 11,700
    Yep its all about image and less about substance.

    The sign said "No shoes, no shirt, no service", it didn't say anything about no pants.

  • chevy598chevy598 Posts: 162
    Absolutely, Image is everything in the luxury market. You can buy a Toyota or Chevy with heated seats/navigation displays and the same under pinnings as a Lexus or Cadillac. Image is what separates luxury from non luxury.
  • grbeckgrbeck Posts: 2,361
    But if the image is to be lasting, it must be backed up by substance.

    Compare a 1960s Cadillac to a 1960s Chevrolet Impala/Caprice - just from looking at the car on the outside, it is obvious that the Cadillac is better built than the Chevrolet. There was substance to back up Cadillac's image.

    The problem with the Escalade is that it doesn't strike me as a better deal than the comparable Chevrolet products. The workmanship isn't any better; the interior looks almost exactly the same; and the performance isn't all that different.

    The Escalade's good qualities spring from its corporate platform - not anything inherent in the Cadillac nameplate, or even anything that the Cadillac Division did to that corporate platform. Realistically, the comparable Chevrolets are a better deal.

    Sooner or later, that will catch up with the Escalade. At least the CTS is uniquely Cadillac, and offers buyers something different.
  • chevy598chevy598 Posts: 162
    The Escalade has 400 hp and a 6 speed.
  • fintailfintail Posts: 33,560
    I'd like to see the Escalade in a unique body. Let's justify the price premium through something other than hype. Caddy cars can do it, why not the blingmobile? Pop culture is pretty dumbed down right now...I don't know if I'd want to be the vehicle that sums up the current movement. Short term vs long term, maybe.

    Oh, and some dumb athlete getting a drug bust in a Lexus isn't exactly star power. Maybe if a future Janis Joplin could sing about one or something...
  • chevy598chevy598 Posts: 162
    You don't know how positive it would be for Cadillac to have an athlete get pulled over with a kilo of cocaine. Better yet Cadillac would die to have OJ do another chase seen on the highway in a white Escalade.
    Like it or not, the society we live in is all about hype.
  • fintailfintail Posts: 33,560
    Does any other source think having an overrated athlete busted for drugs in any given make of car gives it any cachet? I think that's a bit far out there. That incident did not have any effect on Lexus sales or popularity.

    I don't see lots of people running to old white Broncos today.
  • snakeweaselsnakeweasel a Certified Edmunds Poster.Posts: 11,700
    But if the image is to be lasting, it must be backed up by substance.

    Not always, sometimes it is pure image and no substance. Case in point is how much money is spent on bottled water?

    The sign said "No shoes, no shirt, no service", it didn't say anything about no pants.

  • snakeweaselsnakeweasel a Certified Edmunds Poster.Posts: 11,700
    Pop culture is pretty dumbed down right now...

    Right now? You mean there was a time when it wasn't dumbed down?

    The sign said "No shoes, no shirt, no service", it didn't say anything about no pants.

  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    and fat old white guys.

    Ahem....I resemble that remark! And besides, I drove Navigators......so there. :D
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    The GMT 900s are good SUVs, but nothing groundbreaking or advanced about them. No new Technology per se, that others don't have. And they are badge engineered to the max.
  • chevy598chevy598 Posts: 162
    Next year the gmt 900 gets two mode Hybrids. Business Weeks reporting over 20 mpg combined driving. That is ground breaking as it gets. Competitors are lucky to get 14 mpg and I mean lucky to get that.
    Better example: Gm would be happy to pay Lebron James 50 Million dollars to get pulled over in an Escalade with a kilo and Uzi. With no affiliation to the company of course!
  • lemkolemko Posts: 15,144
    ...to a Cadillac to see a difference back in the 1960s. A Pontiac Bonneville or Grand Prix looked like a much more substantial car than a Chevrolet Impala or Caprice. Good God, Pontiac was an awesome car back then!
  • fintailfintail Posts: 33,560
    I think the strangely fawned over thug/skank ideal is a lot worse than what we've seen in the past. But that's just me.
  • fintailfintail Posts: 33,560
    LOL no offense meant :P

    Speaking of these dempgraphics, the middle aged well-to-do male was originally intended as the primary consumer, I am sure. Anyone know why the younger sometimes criminal ostentatious set fell for these things? Their ability to take 24" wheels?
  • chevy598chevy598 Posts: 162
    Cadillac knows the market their after. GM got input from Musician, athletes, and entertainers while the Escalade was in design stages. Any vehicle with a price tag of over 60k is a niche vehicle.
    Nobody complained when Toyota built the Prius for a certain crowed. I think we would be pretty spot on if we profiled the average Ferrari buyer.
  • fintailfintail Posts: 33,560
    I certainly don't think Caddy knew their deluxe SUV would be the darling of gangstas and rappers, wannabe and otherwise. I don't see the same crowd driving in a Lexus LS.

    I'd love to know what "input" they got and which of it they used.

    I see a pretty wide crowd in Prius, maybe only having political leanings in common.
  • chevy598chevy598 Posts: 162
    When the caddy first came out it wasn't designed for Gangstas, but when Gm seen the interest they ran with it. The Detroit News ran a story about how GM gathered a bunch famous Escalade owners together to find out what they wanted in the new model before design ever began. The rappers wanted big wheels, and thats exactly what they got. Half the reason its sales are so good is the Escalade was partially designed by the people who already owned them.
    You have to admit the Prius could have been made a lot more main stream then it was. The Camry hybrid is mainstream. The Prius is built to say I'm an Environmentalist, and your not.
  • chevy598chevy598 Posts: 162
    This kind of image hype isn't new. Im sure back in the day when James Dean died most teens could tell you exactly what he was driving when it happened, and wanted it.
    On a funnier note: Everbody knows Tony Saprano doesn't roll in anything but GM's suvs.
  • fintailfintail Posts: 33,560
    They needed to create a survey to realize that big wheels would be a selling point? Who does GM hire? I wonder what percentage of Escalade sales are really to entertainment types, and not just to the average overpaid exec/kept woman/younger lessee...

    To me, a Prius says I don't care about cars. Then again, a Camry says little different. An Escalade says some things too.
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    The rappers wanted big wheels, and thats exactly what they got.

    Well, there you go (fintail), input from the main customer. Funny how fat old white guys are villafied for their "wasteful opulence" when they drive one of these sleds, but Rappers certainly need a truck like that don't they? Double standard at the least. That's the problem - and a good reason to get an LX-470 - the anti-rapper SUV.
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    PRIUS - I'm an old hippie, actually, who wants to make a statement that I'm an environmental extremist now.
    CAMRY - I don't care about cars, but like the least possible trouble and good economy in my car.
    FUSION - I got a better deal on the Ford than the Camry.
    MALIBU - I don't care what the hell I drive.
    STRATUS - I don't KNOW what the hell I drive.
    ALTIMA - I like the looks of this car better.
    ELANTRA - Cheaper than anything else, and the warranty is great.
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