Cadillac's chief global marketing officer Uwe Ellinghaus stopped by yesterday to hang out with the Jalopnik commentariat and talk about how the luxury brand wants to take the fight to its German rivals. Before he split, I had one question for him.
It was about the new Audi A3, and the Mercedes-Benz CLA. Both those brands now have small, entry-level, front- and all-wheel drive sedans priced just below $30,000. And guess what? They're selling well, both of them. Buyers can't get enough of them.
And BMW will follow suit with a front-wheel drive 1-Series sedan in the near future, aimed at competing with both those cars. Sign of the apocalypse? Probably.
So I asked Ellinghaus if Cadillac might follow suit. Could they launch a smaller, entry-level sedan that could slot in below even the ATS?
"I could envisage a sub-ATS car," he told me. But here's what he would do: keep it rear-wheel drive.
"Hopefully it would not be front-wheel drive," he said. "From the branding point-of-view, I would want consistency throughout the lineup... I would love to be the only car in that segment that happens to be rear-wheel drive."
I didn't take that as a confirmation of anything General Motors is working on; I certainly haven't heard as much. The long-rumored LTS flagship sedan and more crossovers are likely the priority.
But a smaller, rear-wheel drive Cadillac that starts under $30,000? I like the way this man thinks.