Cadillac, the luxury brand of General Motors, is reportedly planning to make a comeback in the Australian market after a decade of absence. However, instead of selling its vehicles through conventional dealerships, Cadillac will set up boutique showrooms in shopping malls across the country.
According to a report from CarExpert, General Motors is planning to sell Cadillac models through boutique showrooms in Australian shopping malls instead of typical dealerships. Doing so will allow for a more luxury-focused shopping experience, and also help to differentiate Cadillac vehicles from the Australian-market Chevy Silverado and C8 Corvette, which are currently sold on General Motors Specialty Vehicles (GMSV) showroom floors.
The report claims that General Motors has been working for several months to secure spaces at shopping centers in anticipation of an upcoming launch. The boutique showrooms will be similar to those used by Tesla and Hyundai’s Genesis brand, which aim to attract customers with a modern and interactive environment.
Cadillac To Focus On Electric Vehicles
While General Motors has not confirmed which models will be sold in Australia, it is likely that Cadillac will focus on its electric vehicle (EV) lineup. The Detroit-based automaker has applied to trademark the Lyriq nameplate Down Under, along with the Optiq and Escalade IQ. These are expected to be the EV versions of the popular Escalade SUV and the upcoming Optiq crossover.
The Lyriq is Cadillac’s first EV, which is based on the modular Ultium platform and EV architecture that offer greater flexibility in vehicle configurations. The Lyriq boasts a range of over 480 km on a single charge, a 33-inch LED display, and a host of advanced features such as Super Cruise, wireless charging, and augmented reality head-up display.
Cadillac To Face Stiff Competition
Cadillac’s return to Australia will not be without challenges, as the luxury market is dominated by established brands such as Mercedes-Benz, BMW, Audi, and Lexus. Moreover, Cadillac will have to overcome its previous reputation of offering unreliable and outdated vehicles that failed to appeal to Australian buyers.
Cadillac last attempted to enter the Australian market in 2009, but the plan was scrapped due to the global financial crisis. The only model that was offered was the CTS sedan, which was imported from the US in limited numbers and sold at a high price. The CTS received mixed reviews from critics and consumers alike, and was discontinued in 2011.
Cadillac will also have to contend with the changing preferences of Australian consumers, who are increasingly opting for SUVs and EVs over sedans and petrol-powered vehicles. According to the Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries (FCAI), SUVs accounted for 52.5% of new vehicle sales in Australia in 2022, while EVs saw a 149% increase from 2021.
Cadillac has not announced an exact date for its launch in Australia, but it is expected to happen sometime in 2023 or 2024. The brand will likely start with a small number of boutique showrooms in major cities such as Sydney, Melbourne, and Brisbane, before expanding to other regions.