Cadillac to Use the ’XT’ Designation for its SUV Lineup
There are a handful of ways a car can rebrand. It can follow a similar path Jaguar and Volvo have taken by introducing new-generation models or it could it do what Infiniti did by renaming its models. The latter appears to be the route Cadillac is taking, and the latest renaming strategy deals with its new crossovers and SUVs.
Forbes is reporting that the American automaker is set to introduce a new “XT” designation for its big models to complement the already-announced “CT” designation for its new cars. The only exception would be the Escalade, which isn’t going to have a name change anytime soon.
Cadillac plans to differentiate its models by adding a number following the XT designation to signify the size of the model relative to other SUVs in the lineup. With this line of thinking, the XT1 will probably the smallest of the bunch followed by the XT2, XT3, and so on and so forth.
Cadillac’s objective in changing its model’s nomenclature is grounded on clearing up any kind of potential confusion surrounding its current lineup of model names. In other words, Caddy finally realized that the ATS, the CTS, and the XTS do sound similar to each other save for the first letter of those names.
Then there’s the matter of firmly entrenching itself into the same level as its main competitors: BMW, Audi, and Mercedes-Benz.
All three German brands use different derivatives of alphanumeric names, making it easier for people to distinguish one model from the other. That’s what Cadillac is shooting for now that it’s beginning the first step towards overhauling its lineup.
The question now is how long it’ll take Cadillac to fill out the XT lineup seeing as it only has the SRX and the Escalade in its current crossover and SUV lineup.
Click past the jump to read more about Cadillac’s new naming scheme.
Why it matters
In the short term, I don’t expect this planned name change to have much affect on Cadillac’s business. But in the long term, these changes should bode well for a company that’s seeking to build a new identity as America’s answer to its German rivals.
At the very least, customers shouldn’t have to worry about confusing the ATS with the CTS, or even the XTS. There’s going to be a hierarchy in that segment that will clearly differentiate one model from the other, much the same way Audi does it with its A1, A2, A3, A4, A5, A6, A7, and A8 models.
Cadillac actually gave us a hint of things to come when it announced in September 2014 that its new flagship sedan would be called the CT6. That follows in the same rationale as the Forbes report, especially with the ‘6’ designation signifying a premium model that will compete against the likes of the BMW 7 Series and the Audi A8.
As far as the car itself is concerned, Cadillac is preparing the CT6 as a premium luxury sedan that will reportedly be inspired by the Elmiraj Coupe Concept that we first saw at the 2013 Pebble Beach Concours d’ Elegance.
Official details surrounding the CT6 have yet to be unveiled, but Cadillac did tip us off when it said that the sedan will use “advanced lightweight materials and new body construction” to help improve its fuel economy.
That’s as much information as we have on the CT6, although that hasn’t stopped us from guessing what kind of engine it’s going to have under its hood. With the power of perceived foresight, we’re estimating that the CT6 will carry somewhere along the lines of a 3.6-liter, V-6 engine that produces more than 300 horsepower.