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Ed Whitacre Instructs Cadillac to Build a RWD Flagship car

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Ed Whitacre Instructs Cadillac to Build a RWD Flagship car

June 10, 2010 at 10:10 am by Jens Meiners

2003-cadillac-sixteen-concept.jpg

Each week, our German correspondent slices and dices the latest rumblings, news, and quick-hit driving impressions from the other side of the pond. His byline may say Jens Meiners, but we simply call him . . . the Continental.

If Opel management was thinking that the “new GM” would give them plenty of independence and a blank check to move into additional markets without Detroit’s approval, they need to think again. We hear that Opel’s hopes to establish a wider footprint in China at possible expense to Buick won’t go very far—”unless Chinese customers start clamoring for the Opel brand,” as an insider puts it with mild sarcasm. GM’s control of Opel is underscored by design executive Liz Wetzel’s upcoming move to Rüsselsheim. She comes from a GM executive family, and her first full vehicle project was the Buick Rendezvous. From this summer on, Wetzel will head Opel interior design. Meanwhile, insiders wonder what exactly Bryan Nesbitt’s future role at GM is going to be. Some believe that a personal distaste for the color “blue” cost him his top job at Cadillac . . .

Cadillac fans will be thrilled to hear that Ed Whitacre himself has instructed the brand to build a true, full-size flagship above both the CTS and the upcoming XTS. The car has not been clearly defined yet. The Zeta platform (Holden Commodore, Chevrolet Camaro, etc.) is heavy and dated, and therefore the flagship is more likely be built on a stretched version of the CTS’s Sigma platform. On the other side of the brand’s spectrum, the BMW 3-series–fighting ATS, based on a shortened Sigma platform called Alpha, is almost certain to come. If its styling is innovative and daring enough, it could become a real alternative to the well-established competition.

Buick gets a compact SUV based on the small Gamma platform (Chevrolet Aveo, etc.), and there could be a Chevrolet version of this SUV as well. The four-cylinder Buick Regal GS will likely get up to 300 hp. And while the current Corvette will receive a well-deserved interior redo in 2012, GM is getting close to defining the next generation of the sports car. The internal competition between three different proposals is drawing to a close. Even now, the Corvette is gaining a lot of respect in Europe; if GM managed to create a sustainable infrastructure to sell and service its American cars, it might actually sell a few of them in the Old World.

link:

http://blog.caranddriver.com/the-continental-gm-future-product-including-a-rwd-cadillac-flagship-fiat-looks-curious-and-hispano-suiza-surprises/

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The car will be built on Alpha. Alpha is going to be the miracle worker.

Wasn't Zeta engineered to handle medium and large cars, which contributed to it being heavy?

So, what will make Alpha so good/light if it will supposedly handle small, medium and large cars? Personally, it seems to me like Alpha will stick with to small-medium.

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Wasn't Zeta engineered to handle medium and large cars, which contributed to it being heavy?

So, what will make Alpha so good/light if it will supposedly handle small, medium and large cars? Personally, it seems to me like Alpha will stick with to small-medium.

It won't be on Alpha, it will be on Beta so I've heard.

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Finally!

The comments on Sigma vs. Zeta make no sense, though.

Well at the end of the day it is media.

Wasn't 2013-14 time-frame for zeta overhaul, to overcome the shortcomings of the current one with special emphasis on weight reduction?

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Earlier than that, I think.

The point is that Sigma is far older than Zeta. Yes, Sigma has been updated, but what the article implies is rediculous.

I could see this new Caddy being built on either architecture - both are excellent.

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Earlier than that, I think.

The point is that Sigma is far older than Zeta. Yes, Sigma has been updated, but what the article implies is rediculous.

I could see this new Caddy being built on either architecture - both are excellent.

Yes both architectures are top notch, however, I see only one surviving. Considering the capabilities of either platforms, zeta seems to be a little more versatile and capable.

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The automotive press has reported that the next Cadillac DTS is expected to merge with the Cadillac STS to create a single flagship sedan for the brand. The original plan was reported to be a rear-drive sedan, powered by the new Ultra V8 engine (replacement for the Northstar), to bow for 2010.GM later stopped development of new North American Zeta-based models and canceled the Ultra V8 engine. A V-12 based on the Ultra V-8 was reported to be considered but cancelled some time ago. Most recent reports have stated Cadillac's new car will instead utilize the new Epsilon II-based Super Epsilon platform. Other reports maintain that Cadillac is still continuing with a rear-drive platform, perhaps an updated version of the GM Sigma platform Chinese Cadillac SLS. Instead of the Northstar or Ultra V-8, LS V8 engines would be used.

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That's MISTER ED to you, suckas! ;)

Man I hope this comes to fruition. A real Cadillac!

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Mimicking my reply to this over at GMI: Hey, someone at GM has balls after all! :)

:thumbsup:

Edited by ZL-1

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This is very good news, and finally Cadillac is getting a product they should have had all along. Cadillac desperately needs this, and I hope they get it right. The puzzling thing is why Sigma? That is also an old platform, it came out in 2002, and it isn't really made for bigger cars. I would think they'd need a new platform for a big, rear drive Cadillac. I hope they aim high, the Caddy better just embarrass the Lexus LS on performance, technology, refinement, quality, etc.

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I hope they aim high, the Caddy better just embarrass the Lexus LS on performance, technology, refinement, quality, etc.

That's aiming a little low, wouldn't you say? :P

I'm sure Eddie's got the big boys in his sights.

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I figure this will be a tough one here on the site. Half will love what they do and have will hate GM once it is out.

This is not going to be an easy car to please many here.

If they do the Sixteen style car will there be any here that just will have issue with the fact it will most likely have a V8?

Once we get past the V8 how close do they take this to the Sixteen? While the Sixteen is one sweet design it is also a show car that has features that will not translate into a identical street car very well. Things like the hood look great on the turn table but in the Streets of Newport Beach they would be a pain to park at the Fashion Center.

I hope they Keep the effect of the Sixteen but update the styling a little since it has been around for a while. I also hope they leave some of the show car features on the turntable. Thing like this has hurt the Camaro and SSR in the past.

It was just noted by a GM official that things like the Ugley steering wheel and shifter in the Camaro were saved to make it like the show car. While some show items are fine others need to be addressed to suit the public. The SSR had issues ergonomics due to it keeping with the show styling. Cadillace will need to address these areas with this car a everything has to be right and not for styling.

Who is going to complain if they don't make it a hard top. I can think of a Couple.

All I am saying keep an open mind here and understand the car many of you have built in your mind may not show up here. It may have parts of your dream car but just be willing and understanding this car may change a bit from the dream.

So keep it real when the start to leak some of the things on this car in the future it will make it less stressful on you.

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ya, i was going to say i thought sigma was older.

SLS:

Length:5120

Width: 1845

height:1479 (one that's 1505 but i don't know what 含鲨鱼鳍天线 is)

weight:1930

Wheelbase:3057

STS:

Length:4986 / 196.3

Width: 1844 / 72.6

height:1463 / 57.6

weight:1750 / 3857 --1919 / 4230

Wheelbase:2956 / 116.4

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Nothing is really being said about the Sixteen - a flagship need not take that particular form. Though, if it does, I would bet that GM springs for a true hardtop. The Sixteen's design depends on that far more than the Camaro's did, and at the pricepoint we are talking about, it shouldn't be an issue.

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That's aiming a little low, wouldn't you say? :P

I'm sure Eddie's got the big boys in his sights.

Well my thinking is, there is no way the Cadillac will touch the S-class, so beating the Lexus LS460 and Audi A8/VW Phaeton is probably the best one can hope for. The Lexus still has an 8-speed, parks itself, has the DOHC DI V8 and hybrid, etc. It is bland, but has technology. Cadillac may be able to rival the 7-series, but that is still a tall order. And I don't see Cadillac being able to style a car like the Jaguar XJ, Americans just can't style a car like the British or Italians.

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The Sixteen was 7 years ago, and this car is probably 5 years away. A 2003 design in 2015 isn't going to wow many people in to spending $100k on a Cadillac sedan. Plus much of the Sixteen's design isn't practical on a production car. Some styling themes like the grille, vertical headlamps and tail lamps can be used, but they need a new design. The technology will be the second challenge, they have to compete with Mercedes Pre-scan, auto swerve, self steering system, pre-safe, split view, etc, etc. In 5 years, probably an twin turbo V8 with an 8-speed tranny, and a lithium-ion hybrid assist system will be the cost of entry to this class. BMW has a 455 hp, 515 lb-ft hybrid 7 that gets 17/26 mpg right now, so where will they be in 5 years. Cadillac needs a chassis (Sigma is supposed to die in 2013), engine(s), and transmission, before they even get to the body or interior. This is a big task that I'd love to see them get right, but my worry is the bean counters will step in and things will go sour.

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The Sixteen was 7 years ago, and this car is probably 5 years away. A 2003 design in 2015 isn't going to wow many people in to spending $100k on a Cadillac sedan. Plus much of the Sixteen's design isn't practical on a production car. Some styling themes like the grille, vertical headlamps and tail lamps can be used, but they need a new design. The technology will be the second challenge, they have to compete with Mercedes Pre-scan, auto swerve, self steering system, pre-safe, split view, etc, etc. In 5 years, probably an twin turbo V8 with an 8-speed tranny, and a lithium-ion hybrid assist system will be the cost of entry to this class. BMW has a 455 hp, 515 lb-ft hybrid 7 that gets 17/26 mpg right now, so where will they be in 5 years. Cadillac needs a chassis (Sigma is supposed to die in 2013), engine(s), and transmission, before they even get to the body or interior. This is a big task that I'd love to see them get right, but my worry is the bean counters will step in and things will go sour.

The chassis that's being considered is called the Beta platform, and engine-wise all that's needed is to get the Ultra V8 into actual production.

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Well my thinking is, there is no way the Cadillac will touch the S-class, so beating the Lexus LS460 and Audi A8/VW Phaeton is probably the best one can hope for. The Lexus still has an 8-speed, parks itself, has the DOHC DI V8 and hybrid, etc. It is bland, but has technology. Cadillac may be able to rival the 7-series, but that is still a tall order. And I don't see Cadillac being able to style a car like the Jaguar XJ, Americans just can't style a car like the British or Italians.

You want Cadillac to be top notch yet you keep your expectations for the brand to perform and beat the so called big-wigs too low. That is oxymoronic.

Yes Americans can style cars better than British or Italians have some patriotism and faith in your own team buddy. As much as XTS is on a wrong platform according to many, the interior is light years away than the common template design the Germans use.

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smk4565 ~ >>"A 2003 design in 2015 isn't going to wow many people in to spending $100k on a Cadillac sedan. Plus much of the Sixteen's design isn't practical on a production car. Some styling themes... can be used, but they need a new design."<<

2015 - 2003 = 12 years.

2000 :

00602111990002-480.jpg

1988:

1988-bmw-7-series-chrome-accessories.jpg

Yea- this is never done by successful companies. :wacko:

I have some things I'd like to see changed on the Sixteen, but it's still light years ahead of anything BMW or mercedes is putting out.

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Well my thinking is, there is no way the Cadillac will touch the S-class, so beating the Lexus LS460 and Audi A8/VW Phaeton is probably the best one can hope for. The Lexus still has an 8-speed, parks itself, has the DOHC DI V8 and hybrid, etc. It is bland, but has technology. Cadillac may be able to rival the 7-series, but that is still a tall order. And I don't see Cadillac being able to style a car like the Jaguar XJ, Americans just can't style a car like the British or Italians.

You know what, if I were Big Ed and you were trying to bite my ankles like that, I'd kick you across the room like an annoying chihuahua.

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