When Cadillac launches two new cars in the next few years, a compact sedan (expected to be the new ATS) and the XTS sedan, General Motors CEO Dan Akerson says the cars will be “competitive,” but “they're not going to blow the doors off.” Akerson also told the Detroit News that the only GM brands to be sold globally in the future will be Chevrolet and Cadillac.
The new plan means that the GMC brand would be confined to the U.S. market, while Buick products would only be sold here and in China -- Buick has found incredible sales success in the Chinese market, moving over 3 million units in the 12 years since the brand launched there. Akerson said he believes the Chevrolet brand will be successful around the world immediately, but that Cadillac needs another year or two before it can compete on the world stage.
The global Chevrolet charge will be headlined by the new Sonic compact and the forthcoming 2013 Malibu sedan. Akerson even pushed to accelerate the Malibu’s launch from August 2012 to January 2012 because he believes it’s such an important new product.
Cadillac still needs work before the brand is ready to hit the global stage, Akerson said. Within the U.S., the Cadillac ATS and XTS -- new sedans that will slot in below the CTS and replace the DTS and STS above -- will help the brand increase its sales and market share once they launch in the coming years. According to Akerson, the ATS and XTS “will be very competitive” in the luxury-car class, even though he doesn’t expect the two models to “blow the doors off” their competitors. He is certain, though, that Cadillac will trounce Ford’s luxury brand, Lincoln.
“They are trying like hell to resurrect Lincoln,” Akerson told the News. “Well, I might as well tell you, you might as well sprinkle holy water. [Lincoln is] over.”
Over the next few years, GM will reduce its focus on big vehicles like trucks, and build more cars with fuel-efficient powertrains. Akerson dismissed hydrogen fuel-cells and ethanol fuel, saying GM will instead invest in development of new powertrain technologies.
Source: Detroit News