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January 27, 2006

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Kitty

As a woman in the 35-44 age category, I have to say that Cadillac is barely on my radar at all, except for the painful twinge I used to feel every time I heard Led Zeppelin's "Rock and Roll" in their last ad campaign. I think of Cadillacs as the sort of car my grandparents might have bought, had they not been Oldsmobile fans. As for the Escalade - it's the SUV, right? - my only impression is that it's just another enormous, overpriced gas-guzzler.

I have previously owned a BMW and an older Porsche, but although I enjoyed the power and handling of both cars, I learned that I'm not really a "luxury car" kind of person. I'm uncomfortable with the conspicuous consumption that the category represents. In fact, I now drive a gas/electric hybrid, both to save money and to have a more positive impact on the environment.

jodene

As another woman in the 35-44 category I second Kitty's comments. I too couldn't immediately recall if the Escalade was the SUV or that monstrously ugly sedan introduced last year. When I honed in on the SUV, my next thought was of hip hop, gangsta rap and the NBA - about as far from my demographic as you can get.

I've never owned a luxury car, although I can afford one. For me, it's a waste of financial resources. Given the chance, I choose mass transit over driving (I'd much rather read then steer myself through a congested commute.) When I was doing a 50 mile daily commute by car, I just couldn't bring myself to spend a big chunk of money on a new one once I'd paid off my trusty and economical Nissan.

The luxury cars that turn my head are elegant, sleek, well designed cars like the Infiniti G35. To me, luxury is about comfort and design, not about making an ostentatious statement of consumption. That's where the current line of Cadallac vehicles shows up on my radar. I can't imagine ever choosing an American luxury car over a Japanese or German brand. Design and a reputation for solid craftmanship are what sell me.

Kevin Wahaus

Don't just ask women 35-44, set your sights a little further into the future. You should be talking to women 18-24, that's where the future of Cadillac will live or die. Why? Because my 17 year old daughter LOVES the CTS and absolutely hates the Escalade. Research shows that most automotive preferences are set in the teen years. Having come of age in the late seventies, when GM was producing some real junk, I was convinced that they could not be trusted with my automotive dollar. Now, when they are finally getting it right, it's too late.

Candy

I have a Cadillac Catera, my second one, and it's my third Cadillac overall. Admittedly, I do have a positive bias towards Cadillac and GM cars in particular, since my father worked for them, but I have found my Caddys to be good, all-around cars, and I enjoy driving them. I don't buy them because of the name, but because of the features I can get on them, and how well they drive. I don't particularly care for the Escalade, but I do like the CTS and the SRX. I'm 46, and I anticipate that I'll be keeping my Catera for some years longer, and my next car will be a Cadillac as well. I've had other luxury cars, but none of them have measured up to this one.

Robert

My sister owns an Escalade (45-54), and she hates it (not her primary vehicle). She feels that it's too large and impractical for everyday use. While she acknowledges that it's quite comfortable, it's also a big old beast that handles relatively poorly. She also feels a bit guilty driving it; it's reserved for when she needs the space, or for long drives.

I also have a wife (35-44) and a friend (45-54) who have differing opinions on the Escalade. Both are familiar with the model and have driven it. My wife feels that it's just too large, even though she appreciates its luxury and utility. She has no negative feelings about it, but would prefer the smaller SRX if she were looking at a Cadillac SUV. My friend, on the other hand, loves the Escalade. She has the opportunity to drive my sister's Escalade often, and will take it every oporunity that she has. She likes the up high seating position, the luxury, and the space.

ALM

My wife is 40 and has owned 3 luxury vehicles in the last 16 years (1 BMW, 2 Lexus). She is a Lexus freak and will probably never own anything else. She and her mother both commented last night on Cadallac's Superbowl commercial: they concluded that Cadallac is trying to sell some "Ghetto Image". My wife said something to the effect that her RX330 may not make a statement, but she has never seen another vehicle so thoughtfully designed for women (she has had the RX for nearly 3-years now).

From my perspective, it doesn't hurt that when she takes her vehicle in for routine maintenance at Lexus she walks away feeling like a valued customer rather than having been taken advantage of.

Laura

I am 38. I own a Mercedes SUV (ML320), so I guess I am squarely in your demographic.

I can't remember if the Escalade was on the market when I bought my ML, but even if I was in the market for an SUV now I would not buy one. American cars mean poor quality to me. Cadillac means poor quality cars for old people, although I am getting the impression that newer models are less for old people and more for an upscale urban market (I live on the rural edge of the burbs). My interpretation of the Escalade is that it is a really big, shiny, puffy SUV without much actual utility. A showy bling car.

I freely admit that the Mercedes is also big and without much utility, and its reliability hasn't been great. I actually surprised myself my buying one because my feelings about Mercedes weren't much better than those of american cars (Mercedes: for rich, arrogant old people). I bought the Mercedes because it felt good to drive (both just sitting in it -- nice interior, and driving it (handling)), because it was realatively affordable, and because despite the obnoxious and old reputation mercedes also had a reasonable reputation for quality. I felt I was getting Mercedes quality and luxury for a decent price. (note that I would not buy the ML320 again, however -- the quality has been subpar and I am looking more toward wagons and hatchbacks for my next car. I've found I really don't need that big a car and gas prices of course are an issue).

I should point out that despite my anti-american bias my husband owns a big fancy GMC truck (sierra C3) and it is quite comfortable and pretty much reliable. But its still a truck -- we still haul stuff in it. To me the escalade is just too big and fancy to be any use except to show off to your friends.


David

My wife drive a 1991 Mercedes station wagon, she love its AWD and seven-seat capability. It has 180,000 happy miles on it and I begged her to look at a Cadillac SRX - AWD, 7-seat capacity. She drove it the same day she looked at a Volvo XC90 V8. Other than Cadillac's smoother engine (the Volvo's V8 is coarse and loud.) She thought the Cadillac had too much plastic and the interior was just plain cheap. Just days later, She pointed out to me as we traveled down the road behind a SRX and watched the bumper cover vibrate over the irregular surfaces. That shut me up for good. There will be no Cadillac in our future any time soon.

We'll be getting a replacement Mercedes wagon at almost twice the price of the SRX.

The Mercedes brand obviously has a strong pull. I don't see Cadillac out there converting women customers. Look at the hip-hop audience they're courting with the Escalade. That's a long way from 35+ year-old women.

here

The Cadillac Escalade is way too big for me. Too big for anyone, really!

What motivates me to buy a luxury car?

I drive a Honda Hybrid. I can afford a much higher end car, but I'm trying to be a role model to the kids in how to use their money to support their beliefs. Monster cars like the Escalade pollute the air, and burn huge amounts of fuel, fuel that we have to get from dictatorships. I can't support that. Is Cadillac planning any kind of hybrid option? If so, I would definitely look at it.

My age range is 45-54.

Mary Schmidt

They still make cadillacs? Okay, I know they do, but they're just not on my radar screen at all.

When I've noticed the Escalade, my reaction was "Well, that's stupid." Why didn't they spend the dollars doing something really different? Aren't we all getting tired of cars that all look the same? I also think we've got way too many SUVs these days (full disclosure: I own a Jeep Cherokee Sport, which in comparison to many on the road is a tiny baby SUV. I also would not buy another SUV - I'm focused on alternative energy for my next car.)

I'm 47 (48 next month) and I concur with one of the above comments; I don't see American brand cars as a quality choice or - perhaps more importantly - "cool."

Personally, I'm lusting after the mini-Cooper these days. And, that little Honda box has grown on me. If I were in the market for luxury, I'd be looking at Mercedes, Porsche, BMW. Maybe a Lexus.

LauraPosey

I'm a 35-44 year old in the market for a luxury car. I'm getting a BMW convertible for a bunch of reasons. I like small, highly manueverable cars and I want to feel the wind in my hair. BWM screams "hey, I'm getting older but I'm still cool" ot me.
Cadillac, on the other hand, says "I drive my grandmother's car" to me. The Escalade looks like a refrigerator box on wheels to me. I don't care how much cool music they put in the ads I would never, ever in a million years even think about setting foot on a Caddy lot. For that matter I'd never consider an American made car. They just don't have the image I want. They have such a bad rep for reliability problems and they seem cheap and clunky inside. Compared to the sleek, functional, modern look of the imports (Japanese or European) they just don't compare in my book.
I don't think any of my friends would ever consider a caddy either. We all are still trying to be cool, feel like we're doing well and have a little fun. There is nothing in any Caddy that says that to me.

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Garri Azz

As the de facto administrator of the Security Fix blog, I've spent many an hour deleting spammy links left in the comments section -
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Garri Azz

As the de facto administrator of the Security Fix blog, I've spent many an hour deleting spammy links left in the comments section -
- comments that usually lead back to the same kinds of Web sites you most commonly see advertised in junk e-mail.

Ceil

I am Female,43, in Chicago and currently in the market for a new car. 2 cadillacs are on the table. I love the 08 cts but will have to wait to buy used in a couple of years . The SRX is on my consideration list. I love the look of the cadillacs. The styling, the dashboard oh the comfort of a cadillac as well! Also looking at the Mercedes ML350, BMW X3/5 and Acura MDX/RDX. I need room for stuff, good power and pick up-response!

Ms. Lou

I drive a Red Cadillac CTS. It's comfortable and fast. They do attract men. I notice they stare when I pull up in a gas station, parking lot, etc. they look at the car then they look at me; back & forth. Maybe they think I'm a racketeer. Trying to figure out what I'm into. But, that's not why I have it. I like the performance and it makes me feel safe. On the highway at nite that CTS passing like a bullet.

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Corte Madera Infiniti

I am 33, is that ok?? I also work in the automotive industry so I have lots of knowledge about cars! Cadillac is not on my radar on luxury cars to buy and I LOVE luxury cars. I admit it; I like conspicuous consumption, the more the better. I am a TOTAL luxury car kind of person. A realistic luxury car that I can afford is the E350 or the E-Coupe by Benz or the 5-series. I like to buy the most expensive trim I can afford; I don't want a 3-series or C-Class. Right now I drive a CLK320 (which is different from C-class btw) and I paid cash for it. If money were no object I would buy a SL 55 or 65 AMG. I am not afraid of expensive cars and a lot of power. I love it!!!!

Other cars I also like include the Bentley Continental, Jaguar XJ and anything Aston Martin. I admit I like Benz because it's a bit snobby. :)

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Stelle Courney

The Cadillac is like a love me or hate me type of car. Not everybody appreciates its beauty. This is quite an interesting set of feedback you have here. I wonder how the market research would turn out. =)

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Diky

treehugger do you realize that the Caddy you are taiknlg about gets the same gas milage as a small 4 cylinder Toyota truck it is one of the most efficient vehicles on the road when you compare as cargo and people capacity vs mpg. I know people who have much smaller Honda 4cyl CRV's that can't get 21 mpg on the road and that is what the tull size v8 Caddy is getting and I've heard 30mpg in large Caddys. My full size V8 caprice got a easy 26mpg with my whole family (4) and a full trunk that held 21cu ft . A Prius in PA is getting 26mpg in the winter months in PA. Put 4 people and luggage in a Prius and watch the MPG drop to below what many V8 s will easily do. Ignorance is bliss I think you need to get a clue. And yes the earth has been cooling for the last 2 years global warming is a Hoax.

Kristel

You are proving the efeestivenfcs of going from protesting on a political basis to advocating on an economic basis. It hurts your brand to be associated with (xyz) show. Corporations and people respond to their reputations being hurt. Corporations relate the 'hurt brand' with potential lost revenue. Individuals relate it to personal ego. Groups relate it to their ability to achieve their goals and grow their groups. All of this is more effective that simply attacking on a political basis. Yes, Glenn Beck is a wackjob. But attacking him directly does nothing. Pointing out the injury to his economic supporters, advertisers, that they are doing to themselves is ten times more effective. I like to point out that Beck's demographic isn't one that most companies would consider desirable and that the advertiser could spend their ad dollars more effectively elsewhere.

Ranai

You're gonna pay around $35,000-$40,000+ give or take dndnepieg on options and milage.If you want something honestly just as nice, but cheaper check out a Yukon SLT (not the Denali). You can get a one in that year range for $25,000 or less and it's seriously just as nice, just doesn't stand out as much.

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