October 10, 2014

Horse 1771 - What's In A Name? Cadillac CT6?

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The Cadillac CT6 takes a new approach to prestige luxury. This top-of-range sedan emphasizes a dynamic driving experience and advanced technology. So ready your imagination as we prepare to reveal what’s around the corner.
- Cadillac Website as at 9th Oct 2014.

No, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, NO!
What're'y'doin' man?

Cadillac has had an image problem for a while now. The brand is perceived as either being driven by old people or by people who think that the terms "SUV" and "bling" are things worth pursuing.
Their current model line-up apart from the Escalade, has the model names of (and I'm seriously not making this up): ATS, ELR, CTS, XTS and SRX. Cadillac appears to be suffering some sort of TLA (Three Letter Acronym) disease. They may as well have introduced such model names as KFC, BBQ, ATM or LOL.
Cadillac in their wisdom have decided to head down the path taken by Audi and simply call all their cars CT-something, where the something gets bigger with the size of the car.
That's fine I suppose but is it and should it be a Cadillac thing?

If you look at that golden period of American motoring, for a time Cadillac outshone even Rolls-Royce and it did so, not by being the best built or the best engineered but by employing style and utter gaudiness.
Cadillac built its reputation with models like the Eldorado and Seville. Names like this exude a big brash sort of class; the sort of class that you can just sort of feel oozing out of the seats - either that or I can feel my pen leaking.

Companies like Audi, BMW and Mercedes-Benz can get away with naming cars A5, 320 and S320 because we all know that deep down, these cars are made by technocrats and engineers, boffins and accountants.
When Volkswagen Group took over Lamborghini for instance, they improved the reliability of Lamborghini's cars no end but they also polished out all the rawness. The Gallardo and Murciélago aren't actively trying to kill you at every opportunity and that's what's so hideously wrong with them. Lamborghini's identity should be one of borderline-insanity and the same goes with Cadillac. Cadillac should be ostentatious and garish. Cadillac should be rock and roll, jazz and yes I will admit, the "bling" crowd have it so very very right.

More generally, people in the real world want style, panache and aplomb. They want to drive cars named Amarillo, Commodore, Super Snipe, Hammerhead Eagle i-Thrust and Geoff because these names evoke something.
A car after all is a only mechanical box that goes from one place to another. You can choose to take all the romance out of it if you like, but I still want a car with a name like "Tiger Slashmaster XX500" because it's fun to say and people instantly know what it is. A "Les Blue Somptueux" would evoke the mental image of Gitanes wrapped in a Gauloises inside an éclair, somewhere near Saint-Tropez and complaining about l'actualité la bête found in Le Monde.

Cadillac needs names that yell "I am American, look at me". Cadillac should be the automotive embodiment of Stars and Stripes, Eagles and 1776 displayed on four wheels.
There needs to be a Cadillac San Clemente or Cadillac Manhattan. Name them after warships and have a Cadillac Enterprise or a Cadillac Independence; a Cadillac  Lapis Lazuli wouldn't be out of place either.
I'm sorry but the names "Croque-monsieur" or "Prima Colazione" sound far classier than "CT6"

"CT6" sounds like the model number for a particular brand of CT-scanning machine; not a flagship luxury car brand.

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