China is proving to be such an important market for premium automakers that Cadillac believes it could soon overtake the United States as its largest market.
In 2016, sales of Cadillac models in the U.S. dropped by 3 per cent whereas deliveries in China skyrocketed by 46 per cent to 116,406 units, about 53,000 behind U.S. figures. Consequently, company president Johan de Nysschen recently told Automotive News that China could become the firm’s largest market within three years.
“We are moving Cadillac from having this very strong U.S.-centric focus to having a global focus. The time will come when we will sell more Cadillacs in China than here,” he said.
Despite rising sales in China, not everything is perfect for Cadillac.
The brand won’t launch any significantly new models in the next 18 months, causing some concern among U.S. dealers. Additionally, sales of the luxurious CT6 are unlikely to swell beyond the 1,200 units that were sold monthly in the second half of 2016.
Cadillac also has just a single crossover on sale, the XT5, despite this segment of the industry exploding in popularity in the last 18 months.
According to reports, Cadillac is developing three new crossovers as an answer to this demand but de Nysschen confirmed that they won’t launch in the immediate future.
“The majority of our portfolio is exposed to downdraft, while we can’t really capitalize adequately on all the opportunities that exist with the swing of demand into crossovers. Now, this will be remedied, of course, over time as we expand our portfolio, but in the meantime it is our reality,” he said.