The Cadillac CT6: a car for Europe?

  • AFP
  • Updated: Mar 16, 2015 10:00 IST

After catching up with the BMW M3 and the M5, Cadillac is daring to take on the Mercedes-Benz S Class.

At the New York auto show in April, Cadillac will be officially unveiling its next-generation flagship model, the CT6, which promises to offer a tantalizing blend of luxury, technology and driving dynamics.

And although specific details are being kept firmly under wraps, like the car itself, it did make a blurred cameo appearance in the company's big Super Bowl ad, 'the daring'. It conculdes with the strapline "only those who dare drive the world forward." Cadillac's President Johan de Nysschen has now confirmed that the car will be offered with a choice of V6, hybrid and twin-turbo V8 engines and has described the new flagship as a "technological masterpiece."

He has also made no secret of the company's desire to truly compete with the crème de la crème when it comes to executive luxury sedans -- in other words, the Mercedes-Benz S Class.

Equaling the finest that Mercedes has to offer is a tall order for any carmaker and, in years gone by, reports of an upcoming Cadillac reveal wouldn't have made it into the pages of European motoring publications -- partly because it was actually quite difficult to buy a Cadillac outside North America, but also because they were seen as inferior vehicles to those offered by European marques.

However, that is changing very quickly. In 2014 at the Detroit auto show, Cadillac took the wraps off the ATS, a compact luxury car in coupe or sedan form that really could compete with BMW, Audi or even Mercedes in terms of comfort, ride and in-car technology.

Then Cadillac followed up with an incredibly sporty version, the ATS-V, which is faster than a BMW M4 or M3 or an Audi Quattro and offers the same dynamic handling European drivers take for granted.

And while the new V-badged Cadillacs are insanely fast, de Nysschen has also made it clear that the company is in no rush to conquer the premium end of the European car market. He has set a date of 2020 for that eventuality when he believes the brand will have a range of models -- sedans, coupes, SUVs and crossovers, that will truly appeal. However, it will all start with the CT6 in April.

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