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The all-new Cadillac Escalade will be the first vehicle to hit the ground in Europe as the American luxo-marque initiates stage two of its European invasion. It'll appear in showrooms at the end of the year, joined by the all-wheel-drive STS, which will be offered for the first time. Also in '06, the Cadillac BLS gets a 6-speed manual and the automatic is given a sport mode.

After the ball drops in Times Square, Q1 2007 will see the arrival of the SRX with its spiffy new interior and a rear-wheel-drive version. The rear-driver supplements the AWD version that is currently available on the Continent. The product blitz concludes with an attack by Cadillac's V-Series cruise missiles. The 448-horse, wind-in-your-hair XLR-V comes first, followed by the even more potent STS-V (476 hp) shortly thereafter.

Why is Cadillac throwing down the gauntlet with a bunch of V8-powered machines in Europe, where smaller cars and diesel power dominate the roads? Well, their stated goal of producing vehicles that equal or surpass the quality of their European competition is no secret. For them to do that, they're going to have to go play in the competition's backyard.

Besides, no one says a peep about the European automakers' vehicles that Cadillac is competing against, many of which are available with thirsty gasoline V8s of their own. For Cadillac to make progress on the other side of the Atlantic, they have to bring their best, which is precisely what they're doing. We'll keep an eye on how things go.

(Cadillac press release after the jump)

[Source: Cadillac via Inside Line]


Cadillac Into Second Phase of Renaissance in Europe

* SRX with new interior and rear-wheel drive
* Escalade on sale end of 2006
* BLS with six-speed manual transmission
* STS available with all-wheel drive
* STS-V and XLR-V due in 2007

The 2007 model year marks an important milestone in Cadillac's efforts to strengthen its position among the world's luxury brands. The new Escalade luxury SUV aims to extend Cadillac's leadership in that category. The SRX crossover boasts a luxurious new interior and the Cadillac V-Series cars (XLR-V, STS-V) will tap into the potential of the division's performance, luxury and exclusivity.

This new phase of the division's renaissance aims to continue Cadillac's noteworthy progress in dramatic designs and enhanced performance. "Phase two" also adds a renewed emphasis on more elegantly detailed products.

For example, the new interiors of the SRX crossover, as well as the STS-V and XLR-V, feature interior components cut, sewn and wrapped by hand, bringing extreme accuracy and attention to detail. The supercharged Northstar V-8 engine powering the STS-V and XLR-V is hand-assembled to exacting standards at GM's Performance Build Center in Wixom , Mich. Each engine is built from start to finish by a single expert craftsman. The new Escalade features a completely distinct and luxurious new interior, with high technology features such as power release second-row seats and a rearview camera system.

2007 Cadillac product highlights

SRX: The SRX luxury crossover enters the 2007 model year with a redesigned interior. The all-new cockpit is more luxurious and spacious, featuring a new instrument panel, hand-wrapped upper trim, console, center stack, door trim, wood trim, analog clock and steering wheel.

The instrument panel and door trim use Cadillac's new cut-and-sew interior process. The vehicle's new cockpit is hand-built, in the same painstaking fashion Cadillac applies to the STS-V and XLR-V models, bringing elite craftsmanship into the heart of the luxury marketplace.

New for 2007 is the 6L50 Hydra-Matic six-speed transmission that provides increased performance and fuel efficiency. First introduced on Cadillac's acclaimed STS-V and XLR-V Series, the new transmission is now standard for rear-wheel-drive and all-wheel-drive V-8 models. While the SRX has so far been offered in Europe with all-wheel drive only, a rear-wheel-drive version will be added to the 2007 product lineup and will hit the market beginning of 2007.

Escalade: The all-new 2007 Cadillac Escalade, the next generation of the iconic luxury SUV, establishes a new level of power, style and elegance and introduces the next step in Cadillac's ongoing renaissance.

Based on General Motors' all-new full-size SUV architecture, the '07 Escalade features new powertrain, chassis, safety and interior systems. These integrated systems deliver the most powerful, efficient luxury SUV in the segment, led by a new 6.2L all-aluminum V-8 engine with variable valve timing technology delivering 409 horsepower/PS (301 kW) and 565 Nm of torque.

The Escalade has a sleeker, cleaner and more athletic form with improved aerodynamics, while appearing smaller in stature than its predecessor. It is instantly identifiable and incorporates styling cues from Cadillac's landmark Sixteen concept vehicle, including a more detailed signature grille, front fender vent ports and layers of chrome accents.

An all-new interior is a cornerstone of the new Escalade and sets a new standard for refinement. The warm and inviting interior is complemented with premium materials.

Cadillac Escalade will be in European dealer showrooms in late 2006.

BLS: The 2007 model year of the Cadillac BLS comes with a few refinements. All BLS manual transmission models will have six speeds. For the versions equipped with an automatic transmission and either the gasoline or diesel engine, a new, standard Sport Mode feature allows the driver to press a button to select a sportier transmission shift pattern. Sales of the new gearbox begin following the Paris Motor Show.

STS: The STS luxury performance sedan delivers sophisticated luxury in a contemporary package. For 2007, Cadillac is making all-wheel drive available on STS to meet the growing demand for this technology.

New for 2007 is the 6L50 Hydra-Matic six speed automatic transmission that provides increased performance and fuel efficiency. The transmission, first introduced on Cadillac's acclaimed STS-V and XLR-V, is standard on AWD and RWD V-8-equipped models. The new transmission features a generous 6.04:1 overall ratio that delivers strong launch acceleration yet provides "tall" overdrive ratios that decrease engine rpm to enhance fuel economy and reduce noise levels while cruising at highway speeds. Estimates by GM engineers have shown nearly 7 percent improvement in 0-to-100km/h times and up to a 5 percent improvement in fuel efficiency. The STS with all-wheel drive will be available in Europe in the fourth quarter of 2006.

STS-V: The supercharged 2007 Cadillac STS-V is General Motors' most intense expression of Cadillac power and performance yet. It has the sophistication of its STS sibling, yet elevates the performance and luxury attributes of the brand's growing V-Series lineup. The STS-V debuted in late 2005 in North America , representing an historic combination of performance technology and hand-crafted elegance.

The 476 horsepower STS-V is the most powerful Cadillac ever. It is capable of exceptional performance for an automobile of its size. Each 4.4-liter Supercharged Northstar V-8 engine is hand-assembled to exacting standards at GM's Performance Build Center in Wixom , Mich. , and is built from start to finish by a single expert craftsman.

The 2007 STS-V also marks the initial phase of Cadillac's cut-and-sew approach to interiors, with extensive use of leather-wrapped interior surfaces created by craftsmen who cut, wrap and sew leather components individually. The STS-V is expected in Europe in March 2007.

XLR-V: The 2007 Cadillac XLR-V is a landmark car in Cadillac's long history. XLR-V elevates the performance and luxury attributes of the brand's growing V-Series lineup to the fullest extent.

XLR-V is the quickest, most agile and most exclusive Cadillac ever offered. Launched in early 2006, the supercharged XLR-V also adopts Cadillac's cut-and-sew philosophy.

The 448 horsepower supercharged Northstar V-8 engine powering the XLR-V is hand assembled to exacting standards at GM's Performance Build Center in Wixom , Mich. Like with STS-V, each engine is built from start to finish by a single expert craftsman. The XLR-V series will be on sale in Europe in the first quarter of 2007.

General Motors Corp. (NYSE: GM), the world's largest automaker, has been the global industry sales leader for 75 years. Founded in 1908, GM today employs about 327,000 people around the world. With global headquarters in Detroit , GM manufactures its cars and trucks in 33 countries . In 2005, 9.17 million GM cars and trucks were sold globally under the following brands: Buick, Cadillac, Chevrolet, GMC, GM Daewoo, Holden, HUMMER, Opel, Pontiac, Saab, Saturn and Vauxhall. GM operates one of the world's leading finance companies, GMAC Financial Services, which offers automotive, residential and commercial financing and insurance. GM's OnStar subsidiary is the industry leader in vehicle safety, security and information services. More information on GM can be found at www.gm.com.

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 8 Years Ago
      You know what the best part about being in Europe for 3 weeks was??

      NO SUVs!!!!

      It was fantastic. Not one instance of road rage in the three weeks of driving I did there.
      • 8 Years Ago
      Yeah, that's true, here the 3.0 diesel one (base model for 39950¢) it's on par with the volvo s80 d5, and it's cheaper than a 530d BMW (base mode: 48500¢) but the thing it's that, to most buyers it doesn't make up for its quality shortcomings. At this price range the details are important. I really like the whole 300c package, but when the time came to buy a car my brother ( and I think many more people like him) went conservative and bought a 5 Series BMW.

      The 300c is cheaper but also looks cheaper inside as well. Some brads have a "something" extra (volvo-safety, lexus-refinement...) that Chrysler doesn't have yet. And you have to take into account that most buyers don't have the time (or don't like to) look at the market as closely as the people that read autoblog, for instance.
      • 8 Years Ago
      #11/Kid, once you've crated that 'Chromed Up Wheelie Bin' to Europe, it's not exactly cheap. You can load it up with as many cup holders as you like and it still won't cut it over here.
      • 8 Years Ago
      Thanks to "The other Bob,
      You are exactly right, Caddy is as good as their best and will soon be the best.

      Hey Danny go take a dump, something is clouding your prespective, and your opinion stinks.
      • 8 Years Ago
      Johnny-come-lately Toyota buyers posing as car enthusiasts. In my Autoblog experience, those guys know the LEAST about automotive history.
      Why do you guys come in here anyway? You're not enthusiasts--ggo away.
      The new Camry is out. Shut up until the next model appears.
      • 8 Years Ago
      The only people that'll buy that hump of crap in Europe are drug dealers and DJ's.

      No Style, no real presence and no quality.
      • 8 Years Ago
      I have high hopes for Caddy. Lord knows the General needs the help. But I really don't see a spectacular increase in European popularity. The new Escalade is an absolutely gorgeous vehicle with a lot of nice features (I love gadgets). I think the argument for continental loyalty is trash. Look at the US. The most popular passenger car in the US is built by a foreign manufacturer (bah!). I think Caddy could do quite nicely overseas. It's a nice option for those of us who can't afford $90,000 Range Rovers and $70,000 X5s.
      • 8 Years Ago
      Yes, there may be 600 people who can buy such chromed monstrosities, but that's about it. And all american cars in Europe still are cheap, because they are built cheap. The interior plastics, my god. And Lexus is just about THE luxury brand not made in Europe, because I don't know any other.

      "Kings, Queens, and head of state always chose Cadillac. there was a reason that Cadillac was called the "Standard of the World"."
      Knowing that american understanding of 'the world' ends with the states, then maybe yes. Chiraque has a C6, Blaire has an XJ, the Queen has a Phantom and an Arnage. So, where are your kings and queens?
      • 8 Years Ago
      oh, and Cadillac's BLS has a diesel version too. I don't know where you get your facts, JMa.
      • 8 Years Ago
      All the "value" it offers? The current european specs with 6 litre engine (think taxes) and € 67.000 price tag ($84,875) you can buy an X5 AND a range rover. Not to mention a $140 fill-up.
      • 8 Years Ago
      Lexus isn't successful in Europe because it isn't an established brand there, Cadillac is the same boat but with the added problem of terrible quality. So if Lexus fails with one negative, Cadillac will totally die in Europe.
      • 8 Years Ago

      who says lexus doesn't have diesels?


      Plus..I can't really think of one non-European luxury car brand that has done well in Europe...can anyone else? If you can't, I wouldn't bother hating on Lexus OR Cadillac and I'd have to agree with "AR" that this may be due to the fact that MB and BMW have a certain prestige (which is not to be confused with quality!).
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