The Great Winnowing

GM’s announcement the other day that it will no longer make cars – or rather, just a few – follows Ford’s previous announcement along the same lines.

Chevy will lose more than half of its currently available passenger car models, including the full-size Impala sedan, the mid-size Cruze and the compact Sonic. Plus the functionally viable Volt electric car, which gets the noose for probably just that reason (separate rant; see here for more about that).

Ford has already shed its entire Mercury division and GM its Oldsmobile, Pontiac and Saturn divisions.

More will inevitably follow.

Because how many different ways can GM re-sell the same relative handful of closely related crossovers and trucks? And how long will GM (or anyone else) be able to sell trucks and SUVs at all, given the anvil descending of a mandatory minimum 50 MPG federal fatwa? General Motors: A Ph... Davis, Michael W. R. Best Price: $5.79 Buy New $11.00 (as of 04:30 EST - Details)

Cadillac, GM’s luxury division, is probably living on borrowed time.

Its cars were different from Chevy and Buick’s cars because Cadillac’s cars – models like the ATS and CT6 – were almost all based on a rear-drive layout, while almost everything sold by the lesser divisions – excepting specialty cars like the Camaro and Corvette, which survive, for now – was built on an FWD layout.

But GM is kiboshing the ATS and CT6 and possibly the not-yet-here (and may never get here) 2019 CT8 sedan.

If these go away, Cadillac is left with its re-badged and heavily upsold Chevy Tahoe – aka, the “Cadillac” Escalade –  and rebadged/upsold GMC Acadias (the “Cadillac” XT5) and rebadged/upsold GMC Terrains (“Cadillac” XT4) which are also rebadged Chevy Equinoxes.

Given the Chevy and GMC progenitors of these “Cadillacs” offer almost everything you can get in the Cadillac-badged versions – but for a lot less money – why bother with the Cadillac versions?

This is a general problem, not just Cadillac’s.

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