The unveiling of the 2010 Cadillac CTS Coupe has topped a busy month for both the car, and the brand.
The 227kW/370Nm 3.6-litre V6 will be officially revealed at the Los Angeles Motor Show next month before a mid-2010 release in the US.
It comes around three weeks after Cadillac announced six finalists in its high profile search for an agency to handle its national creative account.
Cadillac will hold meetings with the agencies in Detroit before they make their final pitch in January.
But Cadillac’s vice chairman of marketing and communications, Bob Lutz, has been doing a reasonable job of marketing the brand himself.
The 77-year-old laid down the challenge to owners of four-door sedans to beat his time of 2:56.321 around a wet Monticello Motor Club track set in his US$62,020 CTS-V.
Eight were chosen, and in the end a 21-year-old in a BMW M3 recorded the fastest time – a 2:50.424 – but winning on the track was almost irrelevant to Lutz.
“There’s enormous attention being paid to this, and if you compare this cost-wise and effectiveness-wise to, say, making a bunch of TV commercials, this is a highly effective way to get the word out about how good the car is.
“If we sell 50 or 100 of the CTS-V off this, we’d consider it a success,” he said.
The brand is aiming to attract a younger demographic of buyers through its “May the best car win” campaign, and it is having some success.
Most if not all of the challengers were under 50 and the majority of the non-journalist entrants heard about the race through blogs and YouTube.
And Lutz and Cadillac need something, with GM sales down 36 per cent year-to-date over the first three-quarters of 2009.
But Lutz remains confident there is a place for cars like the CTS-V and the Coupe:
“There will always be people who pay more for high performance cars.
“The technology will change, but the desire of people to own a specialty car that is capable and potent will not.”
by Tim Beissmann