Cadillac aims 2 new models at luxury leaders

Automotive News reports on Cadillac's future model plans.

Cadillac ATS
Cadillac ATS Cadillac

Next year Cadillac will place two big bets in its quest to compete more directly with such global luxury brands as Mercedes-Benz and BMW.

General Motors' luxury brand is readying a compact sedan for 2012, named ATS for now, as its entry-level offering and purported BMW 3-series fighter.

Also planned for 2012 is the XTS sedan. It's more stylish than the outgoing STS and DTS sedans and is meant to lure buyers of European luxury makes.

But GM still hasn't green-lighted a rear-wheel-drive flagship sedan to take on such cars as the Mercedes-Benz S class and BMW 7 series.

Here are highlights of Cadillac's plans for the 2012-14 model years.

ATS: Cadillac will launch its compact in mid- to late 2012 as a 2013 model. It's based on GM's new Alpha rwd platform and will come in a four-door sedan and two-door coupe. All-wheel drive will be an option. Engine choices probably will include a 3.0-liter V-6 or a 3.6-liter V-6 and probably a four-cylinder.

Cadillac probably will follow with a convertible version within a year. Expect a V-series performance offering by 2015. Cadillac might introduce an ATS wagon for European markets and is mulling one for the United States.

CTS: GM is planning a redesigned version of the sedan for mid- to late 2013 as a 2014 model. A coupe will be introduced along with the sedan, thanks to strong sales of the coupe version released last year, especially the V-series model.

The sedan will move to the rwd Alpha platform, from the current Sigma platform. It will be longer than the current version.

XTS: The large sedan will be built on GM's Epsilon front-wheel-drive platform and launch in the second half of 2012. It's likely to get the same power train as the concept shown at the Detroit auto show in 2010: a 3.6-liter V-6 combined with a plug-in hybrid system. All-wheel drive will be optional or standard. A twin-turbocharged V-6 is a likely option.

Rear-drive flagship: GM execs haven't approved production of an rwd sedan that would be priced in the $125,000 range, to go up against such luxury cars as the Mercedes-Benz S class, BMW 7 series, and Audi A8, but sources say GM is studying platforms on which to build the car.

SRX: The 2012 version of the crossover, due this summer, will get a more powerful 3.6-liter direct-injected V-6, replacing the current 3.0-liter engine. The SRX is scheduled for reskinning, including an extensive interior redo, for the 2013 model year. GM recently scrapped plans to add a plug-in hybrid variant.

Crossover: A large crossover on the front-drive Lambda platform, which also underpins the Chevrolet Traverse and GMC Acadia, is planned for the 2014 model year. GM will aim this crossover at buyers who need seven-passenger seating but don't want the gasoline-chugging size of the Escalade. It will take on the Mercedes M class and Audi Q7.

Escalade: A redesigned version of Cadillac's SUV is due in the first half of 2013. It will stay on GM's rwd, full-sized truck platform rather than move to the Lambda large crossover platform. But it will use aerodynamic styling and various technologies to boost fuel economy.

(Source: Automotive News)

 

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