DETROIT -- The CT6 sedan due late next year is intended to be more than just a high-end Cadillac.
General Motors is counting on the car to be a rolling showcase of the company’s engineering and technology prowess, and its determination once again to rise to the top of the automotive world.
“We want to establish Cadillac as the absolute pinnacle of General Motors,” President Dan Ammann said at strategy presentation today at GM’s Milford Proving Grounds.
He acknowledged that the three German brands have “owned” the luxury-car business, but vowed that Cadillac will join them in the upper ranks of the segment. “We are starting with an absolutely iconic brand,” Ammann said, “and the [Cadillac] business is already very profitable today.”
A key to the strategy will be the CT6, a new model that will be positioned at the top end of Cadillac’s lineup, ahead of the CTS and XTS, and aim to compete with flagships such as the BMW 7 series, Mercedes-Benz S Class and Audi A8.
To entice shoppers, the CT6 will be loaded with new technologies. The car will be made from a new lightweight body structure combining steel and aluminum that GM is counting on the give the car both stiffness and agility. The body, which was shown to an audience of investment analysts, makes use of an aluminum-to-aluminum spot-welding technology that GM has patented, according to Mark Reuss, executive vice president of global product development.
The CT6 will also come loaded with advanced electronics, such as the Super Cruise suite of automated-driving systems. At the presentation, GM offered a glimpse of another innovation due in the CT6: a new type of rear-view mirror that’s more than a mirror. It streams video from the car’s rear-view camera, giving the driver a broader, wider look at what’s behind the car, free of obstructions such as headrests and seats.
“Cadillac is the place where we will experiment with technology our customers want in the future,” Reuss said.
The CT6 headlined a parade of new and updated models GM described for investment analysts. Among them were the Colorado midsize pickup; redesigned Chevy Cruze and Volt; an updated Buick Verano; and revamped versions of the Opel Corsa and Astra for its European unit.
GM executives also said a new plug-in hybrid electric vehicle is in the works, and will go as many as 75 miles on battery power alone.
Separately, GM said today U.S. Cadillac sales were unchanged in September with sales of 13,829 units. Year-to-date U.S. sales have fallen 4 percent to 127,837 vehicles -- well behind BMW, Mercedes, Lexus, and Audi.