Cadillac CEO Talks About The Company’s Future
Johan de Nysschen has been at the helm of Cadillac for a handful of weeks now, and he is already well on his way to making some major changes. The company is splitting from GM when it comes to financial reporting and tracking; the HQ is being moved to New York; there is a new flagship car coming; and every new or redesigned model in the future shall wear a new name.
Yeah, he moves quickly. Recently, Automobile was able to catch Johan standing still for just long enough to get an interview done. I can tell you from experience that Johan is a great guy to talk to, and he never really holds back. He is honest and forward about anything you ask him, and so this interview is full of lots great information.
From the piece we learned that Cadillac is getting a whole new family of modular engines; there is the potential for two flagships above the new CT6 sedan; there will be “sports cars that you buy for emotional reasons;” and it seems like many of the engines and technologies that are being developed going forward will be exclusive to Cadillac, rather than generic GM portfolio items.
All of this big news, and hopefully it points to a much more exciting and interesting Cadillac over the next few years. If all these changes seem drastic and crazy, they are, and it probably means that Cadillac doesn’t want to sell you any cars anyway. In the interview Johan is quick to point out that he wants to move the brand to a younger, more interesting and hip brand. He recognizes that if he can catch the eyes of Millenials, they will be the largest premium car buyer in the next decade or so. This is a man who has the future in mind, and I love it. If you are old and hate it, I am sorry; get over it.
You can read the whole interview at the source link.
Click past the jump to read more about Cadillac’s future.
Why it matters
Johan de Nysschen caught a lot of flack for his time at Infiniti. He barged in, moved the HQ and changed all the cars’ names, a lot like he is doing with Cadillac. It is important to remember though, Johan spent decades at Audi learning his craft. Audi moved from one of these up-and-coming brands to a true premium-market powerhouse. Johan has also never done anything but premium market cars. He doesn’t have any bad habits about watching budgets and worrying about the thin margins that come with volume cars.
The most important thing, however, is that he appears to have a plan. None of these moves are changes for the sake of change; each one has a purpose. The move to New York is to give everyone a dose of something different, and to drop them in the center of one of the trendiest and most forward-thinking cities in the United States. The market for luxury car buyers in Detroit is not quite the same as the SoHo neighborhood of Manhattan.
This also applies to the plans for new engines and car models. Cadillac needs to move the brand higher in the market if it wants to woo buyers from brands like Mercedes. New and exclusive engines add prestige to the brand, and also allow for Cadillac to up prices and increase revenue. Smaller and sportier cars will act as brand enhancers to increase mind share among the buying public.
You may not agree with his plans and ideas, but at least there does seem to some method to his madness.
I wish you the best of luck, Johan. Make sure that when Cadillac gets that sports car project done that I get on the docket for the first drive. Thanks.
The Cadillac CT6 is the first new car in a wave of massive changes across the Cadillac range. This new car will be a flagship sedan that is going to positioned against competition like the Mercedes S-Class. Despite this positioning in technology and refinement, Cadillac’s new boss Johan de Nysschen has said that the CT6 will actually be a smaller car than the S-Class.
Expect this machine to carry a price of well over $80k, feature a V-8 powerplant, and be rear-wheel drive (as all luxury sedans should be).
The car should start production toward the end of 2015.