Cadillac may convert the DeVille to rear-wheel drive when a version debuts for the 2007 model year, dealers were told at the make meeting Monday.
Officials from the luxury division earlier indicated that the DeVille might be an exception to Cadillac's move to rwd. The reasoning was that the current front-wheel-drive version would help Cadillac retain its older, traditional buyers while it moved most of its car lineup to rwd.
Dealer Bob Thomas of Bob Thomas Cadillac in Bend, Ore., said Cadillac also gave strong indications it will build an ultraluxury car, incorporating elements of the Sixteen concept car, which is a V-16, 1,000-hp sedan displayed at the Detroit auto show last month.
"They did talk about being very serious about building a very prestigious car of the ilk of the Sixteen," Thomas said.
Mark LaNeve, Cadillac marketing general manager, confirmed that General Motors wants to do "an ultraluxury, super-premium, almost unattainable type product," but said plans are incomplete.
Thomas also said dealers are being asked to pay $12,000 to $14,000 to carry the XLR roadster being introduced this year. The fee primarily will cover enhanced training for sales and service personnel.
"I think a significant amount is to make sure we're prepared to competently deliver a $75,000 automobile," Thomas said. "It's not unreasonable, but you're not going to get your investment back initially."
He added that about 900 of 1,200 Cadillac dealers have signed up.