Cadillac product blitz is coming — later
Cadillac has a flurry of new products coming. Unfortunately for the dealers who desperately need them, those products are still at least a year away. Until then, the brand has to get by with one crossover, one SUV and a bunch of sedans that are all nearly the same size. Cadillac President Johan de Nysschen has promised a new vehicle every six months, starting with the XT4 in mid-2018, for a total of five major introductions by the end of 2020.
ATS/CT3/CT4: By virtue of being a year older than the CTS, the compact ATS should be the first car Cadillac replaces. It's likely to launch in early 2019, putting it next after the XT4. But we're waiting to see how Cadillac will apply its new naming convention to this car, which is expected to be slightly smaller than the ATS to create some breathing room in the lineup. Will it be the CT3, with a coupe version called the CT4? Or the brand may just choose one of those numbers and apply the same name to both.
CTS/CT5: Cadillac's midsize car should be redesigned and rechristened as the CT5 in early 2020.
XTS: The large, front-wheel-drive sedan was expected to fade into the sunset soon after the CT6 arrived. But it has become Cadillac's top-selling car, so instead it's getting a re-engineering this fall, including a new chassis, updated front and rear fascias, more comfortable front seats and the next generation of the brand's infotainment system. It's still unlikely to get a second generation, though, and will probably be cut around 2021, after the lineup is in better shape to absorb its demise.
CT6: Super Cruise, which Cadillac calls the first truly hands-free technology for highway driving, will debut on the 2018 CT6 this fall. The car will be due for additional modest updates around 2019, when it turns 3 years old. Expect to also see higher-priced variants in the coming years. A plug-in version arrived this year.
EV/sports car: De Nysschen has said Cadillac is planning a flagship that's not a four-door sedan. He also has previously said that the Corvette platform would be a good base for a "unique Cadillac." Such a car also could give the brand another plug-in option. But if it happens, don't expect to see it before 2021. Cadillac needs to straighten out its higher-volume offerings first.
XT3: The smallest of three Cadillac crossovers under development appears destined to hit the market last, probably not until 2021.
XT4: De Nysschen has confirmed that a crossover called the XT4 would arrive in the second half of 2018. Cadillac dealers are understandably eager to get it into their showrooms, given the popularity of the XT5.
XT5: Cadillac's sole crossover, introduced in 2016, already outsells all four of its car nameplates combined. A freshening will happen either next year or, more likely, in 2019. At that point, U.S. buyers may be offered the 2.0-liter, four-cylinder engine that's standard on the XT5 in China, in addition to the current 3.6-liter V-6. A redesign is scheduled for around 2021.
XT6: Cadillac appears to be going with XT6, not XT7 as originally thought, as the name for a vehicle that would fill the gap between the XT5 and the Escalade, arriving in mid-2019.
Escalade: Cadillac's best-known nameplate will get a 10-speed transmission this fall, followed by some updated styling and features next year to keep the upcoming Lincoln Navigator at bay. A full-blown redesign comes in 2020.
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