Cadillac SLA

GM is taking the care and feeding of its growing business in China very seriously. Case in point: The 2007 Cadillac SLS, which will make its public debut at Auto China (the Beijing Motor Show) next week. The SLS is essentially an STS lengthened an additional 100mm (~4 inches) to give backseat passengers additional room to stretch out. In the press release accompanying the above photo, GM states that in China, luxury cars are usually chauffeur-driven, and as such, the cabin has been designed to meet the "specific needs" of the market. We take that to mean that the aft section of the compartment is equipped with more creature comforts than you'd find on a regular STS. Unfortunately, we don't have any photos of the interior to share.

The car will be built in Shanghai, with three engines -- the 2.8L V6, the 3.6L V6, and the Northstar V8 -- available to choose from. News of the long-wheelbase Caddy comes on the heels of BMW's announcement that the 5-Series is getting a similar treatment in China, as automakers scramble to take advantage of every opportunity the growing Chinese market presents to them.

(Press release after the jump)

[Source:GM]



PRESS RELEASE:
Cadillac showcases new SLS at Auto China 2006

* Shanghai GM continues to fuel record sales with new models for China
* Cadillac introduces all-new SLS model for Chinese market
* Cadillac Escalade is due to go on sale later this month

Detroit -The General Motors China Group recently reported another sales record for the first nine months of 2006 (645,680 vehicles). These record sales are driven by Buick (+ 27.8 percent), Chevrolet (+51.0 percent), Cadillac (+27.1 percent) and Wuling (+38.7 percent), China's number one brand of mini-vehicles. At "Auto China 2006", this year's international motor show in Beijing, Shanghai GM is showcasing new models such as the Cadillac SLS and Escalade. In addition, an important new offering from the Wuling brand is to be premiered. Furthermore, GM concept cars such as the Saab Aero-X, Buick Enclave and Chevrolet WTCC Ultra will make their public debuts in China.

GM's luxury brand, Cadillac has enjoyed remarkable success since its introduction to the China luxury market in 2004. The Cadillac China portfolio, consisting of the CTS sedan, the XLR roadster and the SRX crossover, will now be complimented with the all-new SLS and the Escalade SUV. Based on the STS sport sedan, the SLS has been lengthened by 100mm to add rear seat legroom. The interior is designed to meet specific local needs in this primarily chauffeur-driven luxury segment. Three engine options will be available which include the 2.8L V6, a 3.6L V6 and the top-level Northstar 4.6L V8 with 239kW/320hp. The new SLS will be built at the Shanghai GM plant for the Chinese market.

"The Cadillac SLS is a very important addition to our line-up in China as it meets very specific market needs," said Jim Taylor, general manager of Cadillac. "Cadillac reacts to country specific requirements and is proud to offer the SLS to Chinese luxury customers who demand extra space in the rear and other features." Earlier this year, Cadillac introduced the new BLS sedan in Europe and other international markets to satisfy the need for a smaller Cadillac model and a turbodiesel engine option.

"The Cadillac SLS is a strategic addition for the Cadillac brand in China, which will enable Cadillac to strengthen its presence in the luxury sedan market," said Mr. Ding Lei, president of Shanghai GM.

"The new Cadillac SLS and Escalade as well as the new offering from Wuling will strengthen our position as the market leader in China. GM's multi-brand approach in China enables us to successfully compete in all important segments of the fastest growing market in the world. I am looking forward to finishing 2006 as another year of record growth for GM in China," said Kevin Wale, president and managing director of the GM China Group.