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Is Cadillac's Image Dying and Does Anyone Care?



  • sls002sls002 Posts: 2,788
    As far as I know, the 4.5 liter engine was new in 1988, so was it bad for 3 years running? Or are you talking about the RWD Fleetwood that had the 5 liter or 5.7 liter V8? Neither engine was new.

    The northstar has had some oil consumption problems too. Mine uses about 4 quarts between oil changes.

    As I see it, discontinuing the Allante after 7 years of production was not a big deal, although after upgrading to the northstar, I wonder why they did not keep it going a couple of more years? The basic point is that Cadillac was still in business, and parts and warranty service continues.

    When GM discontinued Oldsmobile, Oldsmobile dealers were gone. However, Oldsmobile owners could go to other GM dealers for service. While my 2002 Cadillac Seville was not an Oldsmobile, my dealer was an Oldsmobile_Cadillac_GMC dealer, and they are gone. The Cadillac franchise moved to the Chevy dealer.

    When De Lorean went out of business, the owner were left with uncertain service.

    In the 1960's, the Mercedes 600 was basically a flop, as some of you have called the Allante.
  • Merc1-

    Did the Allante suck as you claim? I thought its only blunders were that it was ridiculously overpriced and the convertible top didn't fit at well as many would have liked.

  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 58,844
    The Allante didn't suck.

    What happened was that Cadillac built a car to compete with a Benz that was obsolete. So, by 1993 Cadillac had a perfect competitor for a 20 year old Benz design.

    Once again, Cadillac showed up, but they missed the bus.

    Now I'd say they are only 2-3 years behind, so the situation has vastly improved for Cadillac. They are a "player", although with a handicap of having a less than wonderful parent organization funding them. IMO Cadillac's biggest challenge is to remain as independent as possible of GM's corporate management up there on floor 14, especially the accounting department.

    No easy task but so far, not bad, not bad at all.

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  • sls002sls002 Posts: 2,788
    I think a lot depends on what you expected from it. It was not a sports car.

    However, the Mercedes SL that made the SL a legend is this one: L_Gullwing_Coupe_34_right.jpg/400px-1955_Mercedes-Benz_300SL_Gullwing_Coupe_34_r- ight.jpg

    By the early 80's the SL looks like this:
  • Esuomm-

    The sad thing is G.M. really doesn't care, and it's cheaper for them to pay off whatever lawsuits are filed and continue to build the car wtih defects than fix the problem. To fix the problem means they would have to start from scratch again, and trust me that is much more expensive to them than any litigation trouble. Ford does it all the time. Look at all the complaints and lawsuits galore the electrical system nightmare Cadillac Catera and Ford Focus had when they were first introduced...

    And then they wonder why Toyota is poised to beat them in car sales and volume soon. My Toyota Corolla (keep in mind this is a low end entry level car) didn't start developing problems until 170,000 miles. The problems I'm now having with the car are normal wear and tear "problems", bearings, tire wear, clutch. The rest involves change oil and go. Not bad for a $6500 investment, AND, I bought this car used. G.M. can't beat that. No way in hell they can be that. They don't have the mindset or business model to beat that.


    Sorry you had to get rid of the Caddy. But anyone that think GM makes class cars has another thing coming. All you have to do is look at a couple of those TSB and see that they (GM) allows real problems to go unresolved for years. Last one I saw was for a steering clunk that was found on 7 or 8 models of GM built cars (Caddy, Hummer, Buick, Sierra's, etc.) from 1999 and continued through 2006.
  • lemkolemko Philadelphia, PAPosts: 15,294
    Mine uses about 4 quarts between oil changes.

    What? Geeze, if mine loses 1 qt. it's doing bad. You might have that dreaded lower crankcase seal problem. The seal is only $44, but the labor cost will kill ya. They have to yank the engine to get at it.
  • louisweilouiswei Posts: 3,717
    At least it's back to being looking like this:


    Saw a white one in the show room couple weeks ago, GORGEOUS...
  • sls002sls002 Posts: 2,788
    My garage floor is dry and clean. I am quite sure that the oil is burned. The last oil change was an annual oil change after about 10,000 miles. A quart about every 2000 miles.
  • lemkolemko Philadelphia, PAPosts: 15,294
    Uh, maybe I got this wrong, but did you say you change your oil every 10K miles? Are you using synthetic? I change mine every 3K and use regular dino oil.

    Here's a dumb question, but I'm going to ask it anyway. Will it hurt your car if you've been using dino oil all along and suddenly switch to synthetic?
  • sls002sls002 Posts: 2,788
    Yes, the current SL is more like what one would expect, and with the turbo V12 has decent performance, even if it can't pass a gas station. Automobile had an interesting story on it. It can get from a standstill to nearly 120 MPH in a quarter of a mile.
  • sls002sls002 Posts: 2,788
    I do what the oil monitor says. However, since the Chevy dealer took over Cadillac, and they have Mobil 1 synthetic for the Corvettes, I have them put 5W30 Mobil 1 synthetic in it. I usually drive my car at least 10 miles when I start it up cold in the morning, as the nearest place I would go is ten miles away. So, the engine and oil are warmed up by the time I shut it off. This makes a big difference in what the oil monitor decides for the oil change interval.
  • bumpybumpy Posts: 4,435
    Will it hurt your car if you've been using dino oil all along and suddenly switch to synthetic?

    No, with a few caveats. Older cars with rope seals and loose tolerances will leak like a sieve on synthetic, and cars with a LOT of miles (150k, 250k, something in there)might have problems if the synthetic loosens the accumulated gunk from the dino oil.
  • laurasdadalaurasdada Posts: 3,126
    Actually, I believe that the XLR does have a Northstar engine. But, like the Allante, it is ridiculously overpriced. In base and -V guise. A recurring Cadillac theme...

    '13 Jaguar XF, possibly my favorite of all the cars I've owned. But, my '09 Jag XK was a beauty, as was my '05 Acura TL, '88 Acura Integra, '84 Mitsubishi Mirage Turbo & '78 VW Scirocco (my first!). And, of course, the '92 Nissan Sentra SE-R and '95 Saab 900s I bought for the ex... Ok, I like a lot of the cars in my life.

  • fintailfintail Posts: 43,307
    The 600 was a flop? An almost 20 year production run and an endless list of celebrity clientele might say otherwise. It is a monstrously overdone car, but not a flop.
  • fintailfintail Posts: 43,307
    Just as how a SL550 and CTSV are almost identical in price, but the basic non-tuned MB is barely outperformed by the top of the line tuned Caddy, like by a couple tenths .
  • sls002sls002 Posts: 2,788
    Well, 2677 in 20 years? Even the Allante did better than that. This car was supposed to blow Rolls Royce out of the market.
  • laurasdadalaurasdada Posts: 3,126
    Yes. The MB SL series, over a long period of time, has "earned" its price premium. It is the roadster for, "The Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous." When Lexus came out with its "SL competitor" (never mind at what level it actually competes...), the SC430, they were not presumptious enough to price it anywhere near the SL. Caddy, with the XLR imho, flew a little too close to the sun with their $75k+ price tag, leading to disappointing sales and a 50% production cut within a year. And an interior that, again imho, does not reflect the price of admission.

    Also, being based on the 'Vette (which these days ain't a bad thing!) and priced ~50% higher than a 'Vette convertible probably did not help.

    But, I still want one. And/or a Jag XK. Porsche 911, AM V8... "...and the purse strings of a pauper."

    '13 Jaguar XF, possibly my favorite of all the cars I've owned. But, my '09 Jag XK was a beauty, as was my '05 Acura TL, '88 Acura Integra, '84 Mitsubishi Mirage Turbo & '78 VW Scirocco (my first!). And, of course, the '92 Nissan Sentra SE-R and '95 Saab 900s I bought for the ex... Ok, I like a lot of the cars in my life.

  • fintailfintail Posts: 43,307
    It was priced like a Rolls (a coachbuilt one), not meant to be mass market. Comparing a massive limo to a SL pretender is apples to oranges.

    Do you have anything stating MB actually intended to steal the RR show? How many Phantoms did RR sell during the time period? The fact that it was grossly expensive, grossly complicated, and not a beauty queen, yet still sold for a long period to the highest order of clientele says all I need to know.

    The 600 will be well-remembered in 50 more about the Allante?
  • fintailfintail Posts: 43,307
    That's a good analysis. And I don't hate the XLR or's an interesting enough car, and the market needs more of those. It just needs more polish.
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