Operating a dealership isn't as simple as shoveling out cars from some retail space. Automakers have standards, and often, they have a lot of them. Kick it up a notch and move into selling luxury vehicles and parent automakers want to ensure customers are walking into a fine establishment. For Cadillac dealers, they're going to need to open up their business accounts in a big way if they want to sell the brand's future electric cars.
Rory Harvey, Cadillac's vice president of sales, service and marketing, told Automotive News Wednesday that the company will require dealers to make a $200,000 investment into their facilities if they want to sell electric cars wearing the iconic crest. While that sounds like a lofty sum of money, Cadillac worked closely with its dealer council to draw up the requirements. All dealers must follow franchise agreement regulations to a T, and the current agreement expires this November.
Should a dealer not want to make the investment, it will have to part ways with General Motors' luxury division. Harvey told the website its council communicated there "may be a few dealers" that don't "share the Cadillac vision," but by and large, he expects smooth sailing.
A Cadillac spokesperson told Roadshow, "We see Cadillac's dealer network as a business advantage, and they will remain a critical part of the retail and relationship chain with customers. And together, with our dealer partners we must co-develop the transition to electrification. It is critical that all Cadillac dealers participate, assuring the optimal experience for our customers."
The approximate cost of $200,000 is a "minimum," according to Cadillac and dealers must complete the upgrades by the second quarter of 2021. The spokesperson added the timeline aligns with the upcoming Lyriq's launch.
What does the $200,000 buy dealers? The big-ticket items are. It's hard to sell an EV if you don't have a place to charge them, after all. Harvey also told the website the cost could increase with time as Cadillac rolls out more EVs. GM already tasked the division with leading the automaker's all-electric future, so definitely expect a lot of electric cars from Cadillac this decade.
We'll first be treated to the, which Cadillac showed last month in prototype form. It won't actually launch until two years from now, however. We also know the brand has a hand-built electric flagship sedan in the pipeline, called the . All of will ride on a platform known as BEV3 and support the company's new . Just this week, GM also announced " " as its blueprint for a family of electric powertrains to propel its future zero-emission cars.