Cadillac has an image problem. It’s considered a luxury brand and it sometimes acts like a really snobby luxury brand, but it consistently falls short of its European competition on a number of levels. New Cadillac president Johan de Nysschen is trying so hard to shake that pseudo-luxury disposition that the word “boutique” was used multiple times in reference to Cadillac’s new dealership network model.
Cadillac currently has approximately 900 dealerships across the U.S, which is about 2.5 times as many as Mercedes-Benz and BMW. More locations means better access to dealerships for consumers, but it also diminishes the exclusivity associated with luxury car buying.
Rather than reduce the quantity, Cadillac plans to increase the quality of its dealership network, especially the 700 that share a location with non-luxury GM brands. These are the dealerships that will manifest the new “boutique store” showrooms, which promise specialized, highly-trained staff and cutting-edge technology.
While Cadillac is sure to avoid using certain terms like “will” in its press release, we can gather an outline of the brand’s vision from this statement — “Virtual Showroom systems could enable shoppers to quickly configure and envision multiple models, color and interior choices using interactive digital displays, or potentially even holograms.”
Oh…holograms. We’ll see.
The new boutique-style showrooms will be helped by an expected influx of new vehicles over the course of the next few years, led by the upcoming Cadillac CT6, which will debut on March 31.
Despite the douchey nature of “boutique stores,” it’s good to see Cadillac working to distinguish its brand from Chevy and other GM brands. While the weight of Cadillac’s rebranding efforts will likely fall on the quality of its vehicles, a new brand image at the dealership level should have a positive impact on prospective buyers.