NINETY EIGHT REGENCY

Luxury Sedan Fight! | '16 Mercedes S550 vs '16 Cadillac CT6 video

123 posts in this topic

Come on.. water in the glovebox.. From where? Also... the engine sound BS was classic. While a V8 certainly sounds better than any Turbo 6.. the complaints this guy gives are silly at best

 

Crazy that Cadillac starting at $54K big car was able to hold its own in many areas with Benz's starting  $96K flagship. That is a whopping $42,000 difference.. and the differences were no more than $5,000 in upgrade costs to improve. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The way they were optioned for the test, the Cadillac was 89k and the Mercedes was 116k.

 

Overall, if you've got cash money to burn, the S-class is the superior vechicle in almost every measure that is traditionally desired in a large luxo sedan.  The Cadillac simply could not hold it's own in interior materials. Styling a subjective thing - I like the way the CT6 looks on the outside, but rear-end looks fat in some angles, the S-Class read-end drooping makes it appear smaller. And the rear seat legroom is not the same. And yes, the S-Class feels just that bit more airy, and relaxed than the Cadillac.

 

Cadillac CT6 is the best value right now under $100k. But the interior, the cheapness of some of parts used, it's there.

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

One thing right off the bat, the CT6 certainly makes the s550 looked really dated! It's still '2001' at mercedes...

 

Why would that matter?

 

Really? Why would that matter. Most top-end luxury sedans like Rolls and Bentley rarely if ever evolve their design languages.

 

It doesn't matter if the Cadillac looks newer or not. because it just looks like a bigger CTS. And in that sense - people say it looks new, but it's actually because Cadillac didn't even have a product in that size category.

 

We can sing love songs for the CT6, but sure as hell isn't the best flagship sedan out there in many measures.

  • Upvote 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Bentleys look QUITE cheap, stylistically, so there's that. Not sure how the brand gets away with it, they need a major styling revamp. I mean, talk about 'phoned in'...

 

Rolls look uber expensive, and are incredibly uncommon, so their styling falls into a different category. Rolls really doesn't have to restyle it, maybe ever- they have that cache that the s-class can't even hope to approach.

 

The s-class, on the other hand, is EVERYWHERE, the 'Camry of flagships' if you will. Each new generation is preceded by dropping sales (& piled-high incentives) as buyers hold off "for the new one". That's a different dynamic there. And as the highly-vaunted flagship, it should bring the best & the newest to the showroom floor, but there were MANY comments that there was not enough differences to warrant the 'new' factor. I agree with those sentiments; the current car looks too much like the previous one, and the one before that. No; they're not identical, but the line is not advancing stylistically… tho that's likely due to the fact that it's built for the Chinese market.

 

Cadillac has clarified that the CT6 is not officially their flagship model (other than by default). 

Edited by balthazar
  • Upvote 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It may be the Camry of luxury large sedans in sales, but it sure isn't a Camry equivalent in terms of engineering, or interior quality or price.

 

The S-Class stagnated in the previous gen, biding its time too long. It was this new generation that has unsurped the competition and left BMW and others trying to chase it. With not even an effort to even try, Cadillac has conceded that it'll be extremely tough to get there.

 

Chinese market or not, the S-Class sells well and even with incentives is pricey. 

 

The S-Class is a better flagship car largely thoughtout, and commands a flagship price. The CT6 exists in its own segment sometimes does battles with the XJ or Audi A8, unable to say which vehicle to targets the most.

 

And clarifying after 5 years or so that their vaunted flagship program (the entire industry was told to expect big things) resulted in a car not being a flagship, shows a lack of ambition to do the hard things that don't pay off at first. Such as spending a LOT more money to get the interior right, to get the door handles right, to get elevate the car that suddenly has to bear the burden of being the best Cadillac out there.  

 

It's up to the CT6 to convince those getting large sedans that slightly downsizing, shedding a lot of weight  - those merits on their own, even besides the price point or interior quality is desirable for a large sedans. But let's not kid ourselves. The CT6 takes up almost the same footprint on the road as any large sedan,

 

Having a claim to performance or handling ability doesn't suddenly make the car smaller. All it does is mask some of the girth and ultimately to handling ability - the potential is for those who want to tap into it. 

 

I strongly believe if some is buying a sedan, a large sedan - their priorities clash intensely with those wanting to hound a sedan around corners. In that respects it's a sheer wall Cadillac faces.

 

I like the CT6 a lot. But you have to look at if from other perspectives as well. 

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

"Camry of flagships" ha, the Camry wishes it could outsell its next 3 closest competitors combined like the S-class does.

I'll have to watch the video when I get home. Good news is next year the S-class gets an inline 6 which I hope they sell in the USA so there is a sub-$90,000 S-class. That car will debut the 48 volt electric system too.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

One thing right off the bat, the CT6 certainly makes the s550 looked really dated! It's still '2001' at mercedes...

Why would that matter?

Really? Why would that matter. Most top-end luxury sedans like Rolls and Bentley rarely if ever evolve their design languages.

It doesn't matter if the Cadillac looks newer or not. because it just looks like a bigger CTS. And in that sense - people say it looks new, but it's actually because Cadillac didn't even have a product in that size category.

We can sing love songs for the CT6, but sure as hell isn't the best flagship sedan out there in many measures.

Did you seriously ask why design should matter on a $100K luxury car? I thought you were familiar with the automotive business. Edited by surreal1272

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Alright, before this starts becoming a mud slinging finger bang....

 

The CT6 is incredible. The reviewer ultimately made the mistake of comparing each car as if they were ever going to be equals. It was unfair to the CT6, and unfair to the S-Class.

 

I think the CT6 has to be compared to E-Classes (like how in China there is the E-Class LWB), 5 Series and Audi A6, Lexus LS in certain trims, GS in others, Q70L or the Kia K900, Genesis G90, Volvo S90. Those are the cars the Cadillac really has a chance against. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 

 

One thing right off the bat, the CT6 certainly makes the s550 looked really dated! It's still '2001' at mercedes...

Why would that matter?

Really? Why would that matter. Most top-end luxury sedans like Rolls and Bentley rarely if ever evolve their design languages.

It doesn't matter if the Cadillac looks newer or not. because it just looks like a bigger CTS. And in that sense - people say it looks new, but it's actually because Cadillac didn't even have a product in that size category.

We can sing love songs for the CT6, but sure as hell isn't the best flagship sedan out there in many measures.

Did you seriously ask why design should matter on a $100K luxury car? I thought you were familiar with the automotive business.

 

 

I'm asking why continuity is such a bad thing. There's certain degrees as to what someone measures as to how much changes there are in a certain new product. 

 

But design stagnation is present in every company now.

 

And I can easily point out how many people were also completely let down how the CT6 failed to bring the promise of the Elmiraj and Ciel concepts. It too was tamed for the Chinese market.

 

Cadillac was actually running much sharper, defined creases in 2001 as well. And now they've soft-ended.

 

I think the CT6 does make the S-class look dated. But looking dated as in being stodgy - it plays right into Mercedes narrative that this is a car about craftsmanship and old-world style luxury.

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

One thing right off the bat, the CT6 certainly makes the s550 looked really dated! It's still '2001' at mercedes...

Why would that matter?

Really? Why would that matter. Most top-end luxury sedans like Rolls and Bentley rarely if ever evolve their design languages.

It doesn't matter if the Cadillac looks newer or not. because it just looks like a bigger CTS. And in that sense - people say it looks new, but it's actually because Cadillac didn't even have a product in that size category.

We can sing love songs for the CT6, but sure as hell isn't the best flagship sedan out there in many measures.

Did you seriously ask why design should matter on a $100K luxury car? I thought you were familiar with the automotive business.

 

I'm asking why continuity is such a bad thing. There's certain degrees as to what someone measures as to how much changes there are in a certain new product. 

 

But design stagnation is present in every company now.

 

And I can easily point out how many people were also completely let down how the CT6 failed to bring the promise of the Elmiraj and Ciel concepts. It too was tamed for the Chinese market.

 

Cadillac was actually running much sharper, defined creases in 2001 as well. And now they've soft-ended.

 

I think the CT6 does make the S-class look dated. But looking dated as in being stodgy - it plays right into Mercedes narrative that this is a car about craftsmanship and old-world style luxury.

Fair enough but I think Balth covered it pretty as to why design absolutely should and does matter here.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yet old world style means NOTHING to majority of Millennials. Hell even the last few generations before them do not care unlike baby boomers and ultra conservative folks that cannot move past holding onto everything old will become new attitude.

 

I totally agree with Balthy on what he stated about the s class line.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yeah, Mercedes has a luxury BRAND that is entrenched - that is what feeds the desire for their cars.

 

And you're telling me now that Millennials are the target buyer for large luxury sedans?

 

Or are they buying crossovers in bulk like they used to sell at Costco....

 

I'm a millennial, and I find the Mercedes brand in many ways still much higher that Cadillac. Their Mercedes-Pretendz models are a joke, but that doesn't condemn the rest of their vehicles. And in reality, the B-Class, A-Class were on sale in Europe for about two or more decades now. 

 

Would I buy this Mercedes, of course not. I'd get the Cadillac CT6. But I would never boast or be bombastic how this is the best thing since sliced bread.

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

And I can easily point out how many people were also completely let down how the CT6 failed to bring the promise of the Elmiraj and Ciel concepts. It too was tamed for the Chinese market.

Sure, but these are the same tiny group of people who "were completely let down" the current s-class didn't pull cues from the F700 concept. IE: there will always be a few who expect (rather than idly hope) concepts to be built as is. If they have any clue RE the auto business' track record, the chances of that are extremely slim.

 

Further, tho indeed styling is subjective, I don't get anyone's sensibilities if they think the '02 CTS somehow looks more refined or modern than the CT6. It was certainly eye-catching for the period, but each generation has improved the language. There's no point to the simplistic 'but the edges were sharper'- edge sharpness does not a design language make.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

So you agree that the CT6 was also chiseled for China? It was, they even build CT6's in China.

 

I would say while Cadillac has come up yes.....BUT this not Cadillac at their greatest. there are still a lot areas where they can definitely improve to put them above and beyond, especially divesting of the shared parts-bin mentality for interior pieces and door handles.

 

The folks at Mercedes might say that their S-Class isn't targeting any vehicle. They benchmark themselves. Will Cadillac benchmark themselves again, and then decide to retain everything that made the Elmiraj great? 

 

Again, they spent so much effort to make the most advanced structure. I'd say if we were more complacent, and the CT6 was not as light but drove much like the S-Class, but its interior was easily a match - then the press would be still satisfied, and the vehicle would be superior for its intended function at a lower price to the S-Class and any competitor still.

 

And no, that's not rubbing salt towards Cadillac, nor is it saying the car should be an S-Class in American clothing.

 

It's about weighing the priorities. The Volvo S90 for example is largely all Scandanaivan style and exquisite interior. Cars like that and the Conti and XTS are also just pure styling exercises.

 

The S90 and its like don't really want to be a scalpel in a large sheath. The Escalade is a sledgehammer, and it does so well, because it knows what needs to be - unapologetic, no stones chased, no expectations left off the table.

 

The Cadillac flagship needs to be a blunt instrument of American conquest on the outside, and relive the legend of the standard of the world in the inside. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

So you agree that the CT6 was also chiseled for China? It was, they even build CT6's in China.

 

I would say while Cadillac has come up yes.....BUT this not Cadillac at their greatest. there are still a lot areas where they can definitely improve to put them above and beyond, especially divesting of the shared parts-bin mentality for interior pieces and door handles.

 

The folks at Mercedes might say that their S-Class isn't targeting any vehicle. They benchmark themselves. Will Cadillac benchmark themselves again, and then decide to retain everything that made the Elmiraj great? 

 

Again, they spent so much effort to make the most advanced structure. I'd say if we were more complacent, and the CT6 was not as light but drove much like the S-Class, but its interior was easily a match - then the press would be still satisfied, and the vehicle would be superior for its intended function at a lower price to the S-Class and any competitor still.

 

And no, that's not rubbing salt towards Cadillac, nor is it saying the car should be an S-Class in American clothing.

 

It's about weighing the priorities. The Volvo S90 for example is largely all Scandanaivan style and exquisite interior. Cars like that and the Conti and XTS are also just pure styling exercises.

 

The S90 and its like don't really want to be a scalpel in a large sheath. The Escalade is a sledgehammer, and it does so well, because it knows what needs to be - unapologetic, no stones chased, no expectations left off the table.

 

The Cadillac flagship needs to be a blunt instrument of American conquest on the outside, and relive the legend of the standard of the world in the inside.

Why do you keep bringing up the El Miraj? It is now a dated concept car that was never meant to see production. It was only to provide a base for their future design language and it shows in the CT6.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The Elmiraj had some design details while wholly impractical - like equivalents from Mercedes such as S-Class coupe or Bentley Continental - were extremely flamboyant and oozing an essence, a desire to never compromise anything. No more being look down upon. It was the time to rise.

 

But they're so close, and as total fan of Cadillac as well loving everything they produce performance wise...

 

but one thing is true. The large sedan era is actually already peaked, 3-row crossovers/SUVs with efficiency gains have supplanted the large sedan as the vehicle of choice, the vehicle of luxury with practicality.

 

Maybe Cadillac is playing the long game, and has set its sight on emerging segments, and perhaps the sedan right in between is the right formula. That is totally possible, and a legitimate play.

 

But it creates an insurmountable limit, and undue bruden if this is to be the placeholder flagship. It's a mighty fine car, but the context has to be changed, has to be made clear.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I personally think the days of full size sedans have peaked at Suav has pointed out. My own baby boomer parents have gotten rid of the last of their cars and only have cadillac SRX's as they like the ease of sliding their old butt in and out rather than having to do a deep squat to get out of the car. I suspect that more and more elderly that can afford it will ditch their sedans and go to the CUV as a preference for ease of getting in and out.

 

I can see the S class as well as all other sedans loosing ground the the CUV and in it's place a new flagship that is based on the CUV or SUV.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I still think that Cadillac can relive the legend, reclaim the glory, return as the Standard of the World. If they are able to do it so easily in terms of performance or true audacity, it makes one scratch their head when they consider what Cadillac is doing.

 

The CTS, VSport, V and Escalade are examples of knowing exactly what the car needs to be. 

 

What I mean to say is that if Cadillac wants to build it's own kind of cars - like the tweeners...they certainly can be the likes of say a Brougham equivalent today, something definitely above S-Class, but sensible enough to be near ultra-luxury - which would be purely branding, nothing else being removed from the experience of a Rolls-Royce or Bentley.

 

I'd like to think that's what the CT8 was going to be. But I do say, as much engineering there is that goes into these kinds of cars, having a low curb weigh becomes less important, and even efficiency considerations are thrown out the window because there is a certain prestige to be maintained. And electric vehicles are also massively heavy regardless of how much weight you take out of the body - ask Tesla, they use aluminum as part of their mixed material construction.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

• The peak may certainly have been reached in large lux sedans, but that certainly does not mean the segment should be abandoned. Still development work there to do for the market.

Convertibles were once 100% of the market, but they still make 'em here & there.

 

• Weight IS important. It filters into nearly every aspect of movement a car performs: handling, stopping, steering, ride, acceleration. Pulling a door handle out, holding it out and directly wiggling it up & down top see if it moves, is the 'same area in need of improvement' type of thing when you allow your sedan to reach nearly 5000 lbs (when half of it is plastic/aluminum). However, in this example, 1 is only experienced for a single second (unless you're making a point to prolong such), and the other is experienced every time the car moves. What's more important; your spine or your fingernail?

 

• I LOVE the fact that Cadillac has placed the CT6 the way it has. They could've started it at $60K even to stifle the whiners, but the fact that it's sized the way it is has sent many other critics into a tailspin. Love that. Now, Cadillac specifically stated the CT6 is not meant to compete against the s-class, but here is one of many published/ discussion comparisons. The OEM can tell you one thing, but the market is going to figure it out on their own. But where this sets Cadillac up neatly is; if the s-class comparison comes up often enough, to where it's a commonplace scenario in consumers minds… EVEN IF the CT6 regularly comes out as "inferior" in numerous categories…. it sets up Cadillac in a sweet spot to bring out a CT8 like a sledgehammer to the segment.

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think a good way to sum up this review is "you get what you pay for."  The CT6 has a lot of features, 400 hp, etc for $89k.  The S550 at $118k has better quality, better stereo, more power, etc.  The more expensive car is better, not really surprising.

 

Should Cadillac decide to do a CT8, they'd have to go way above Escalade Platinum in terms of luxury, technology, power, etc. and basically at a similar price point around $100k.  I just don't see them making the investment into what would be a low volume car.  Even on it's best years the S-class could sell 90k units globally but on a down year it might only be 50-60,000.  And that is the #1 seller.   If you look at a car like the Audi A8, in Europe and USA combined they sell about 12,000 cars a year, not a lot of volume to be had in this segment.

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The way they were optioned for the test, the Cadillac was 89k and the Mercedes was 116k.

 

Overall, if you've got cash money to burn, the S-class is the superior vechicle in almost every measure that is traditionally desired in a large luxo sedan.  The Cadillac simply could not hold it's own in interior materials. Styling a subjective thing - I like the way the CT6 looks on the outside, but rear-end looks fat in some angles, the S-Class read-end drooping makes it appear smaller. And the rear seat legroom is not the same. And yes, the S-Class feels just that bit more airy, and relaxed than the Cadillac.

 

Cadillac CT6 is the best value right now under $100k. But the interior, the cheapness of some of parts used, it's there.

 

 

Missing your point.  $27,000 should make the S-Class a car so much greater than the CT6 the comparison would have stopped at the letter G in "Go."

 

Also I think the word "cheapness" is relative. Cheapness compared to the $119K S-Class.. or cheapness compared to an $89K 7series or A8??? 

 

Lastly.. the only real deficiency in the materials I can tell is the use of a hard plastic at the bottom of the door panels. It bewilders me because even in a CTS the material is soft leather.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think a good way to sum up this review is "you get what you pay for."  The CT6 has a lot of features, 400 hp, etc for $89k.  The S550 at $118k has better quality, better stereo, more power, etc.  The more expensive car is better, not really surprising.

 

Should Cadillac decide to do a CT8, they'd have to go way above Escalade Platinum in terms of luxury, technology, power, etc. and basically at a similar price point around $100k.  I just don't see them making the investment into what would be a low volume car.  Even on it's best years the S-class could sell 90k units globally but on a down year it might only be 50-60,000.  And that is the #1 seller.   If you look at a car like the Audi A8, in Europe and USA combined they sell about 12,000 cars a year, not a lot of volume to be had in this segment.

Funny how you can't see an investment in a car like that for Cadillac but have no problem coming up with an excuse for why it's okay for Mercedes to do the same thing with the E Class (i.e. Low volume niche car with no plausible or reasonable gain).

Funny.

  • Downvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think a good way to sum up this review is "you get what you pay for."  The CT6 has a lot of features, 400 hp, etc for $89k.  The S550 at $118k has better quality, better stereo, more power, etc.  The more expensive car is better, not really surprising.

 

Should Cadillac decide to do a CT8, they'd have to go way above Escalade Platinum in terms of luxury, technology, power, etc. and basically at a similar price point around $100k.  I just don't see them making the investment into what would be a low volume car.  Even on it's best years the S-class could sell 90k units globally but on a down year it might only be 50-60,000.  And that is the #1 seller.   If you look at a car like the Audi A8, in Europe and USA combined they sell about 12,000 cars a year, not a lot of volume to be had in this segment.

 

 

S-Class gets a lot of its sales.. ironically from FLEET in other countries. chew-toy on that a bit Brah. Even here the 1500 sales might just be duplicated and beat by Caddy. . Furthermore.. this review proves that Cadillac really doesn't need a CT8.. they just need to go ahead and add some more features and details to the CT6

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Your content will need to be approved by a moderator

Guest
You are commenting as a guest. If you have an account, please sign in.
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoticons maximum are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.