Cadillac Super Cruise hands-free system rollout slow, but automaker is optimistic

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By that time, development of the XT4 and XT6, two crossovers that arrived at dealerships in the past year, was too far along for the system to be available at the time of their introduction. Cadillac, which GM also is positioning as its lead electrification brand, now is rushing to add Super Cruise to those and other vehicles over the next two years, Carlisle and Rory Harvey, Cadillac’s vice president of sales, service and marketing, said in an interview last week.

The slow rollout of Super Cruise has been fodder for critics of Cadillac, including dealers who already had waited years for the brand to update the sedan-heavy lineup that was costing them sales at a time when crossovers and SUVs became far more popular.

Still, executives say Cadillac is on the right path to growth and that progress will become more apparent in the brand’s performance during the second half of the year.
In the first half, Cadillac had 7.4 percent of the U.S. luxury market, essentially flat with the same period in 2018, according to the Automotive News Data Center. Cadillac has prioritized growing into new categories over share growth, Deborah Wahl, who was Cadillac’s chief marketing officer until a promotion last week to GM’s global chief marketing officer, said in a separate interview. Wahl spoke with Automotive News on Wednesday, Sept. 4, a day before her job change was announced. (See story, Page 8.)

“Often in automotive, we’re locked in market share battles, which is a core part of the business, but over the long term, does it really … get you to the next level?” she said.

Launching in new categories such as electric vehicles, subscription programs and automated driving leads to more growth and value, Wahl said.

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