Cadillac's volume seller in Europe will be a Saab, mostly.
The BLS, dubbed the "baby Cadillac," goes on sale in Europe this month, and General Motors expects it to account for 75 percent of Cadillac's 20,000 targeted European sales by 2010. It's built on the same platform as the Saab 9-3 and shares 80 percent of the 9-3's components, but has the angular styling of its U.S. cousins.
It's the first Cadillac developed for the European market, and will be the first Cadillac in Europe with a diesel option.
The BLS has an ambitious mission: Make Cadillac a global player in the luxury market. The brand has a ways to go: GM sold 2,019 Cadillacs in western Europe last year, according to research firm JATO Dynamics, compared with 21,895 for Lexus. The BLS, which is built by Saab in Sweden, won't be sold in the United States - but that could change. "Our current thinking is that the next generation will be available around the world," GM Vice Chairman Robert Lutz wrote on GM's FastLane Web site.