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Is The Cadillac CT5 Coming To Australia?

Is The Cadillac CT5 Coming To Australia?

Back in August, a white 2020 Cadillac CT5 was spotted in Australia in full production regalia, sparking rumors that Caddy’s fresh four-door may be a ripe replacement for the market’s current Holden Commodore, which will soon be discontinued entirely.

The CT5 was captured on camera by Australian publication WhichCar as it was being offloaded from a plane in Melbourne. The model in question is a brand-new 2020 Cadillac CT5 in the Premium Luxury trim level with all-wheel-drive.

For those who may be unaware, Cadillac’s parent company, General Motors, just sold its European business to the French multinational PSA Group, which owns Peugeot, Citroën, DS and now – Opel and Vauxhall. As such, that made the future of the Australian market Holden Commodore – which is made at the now PSA-owned plant – very uncertain.

2020 Cadillac CT5 Premium Luxury AWD in Australia. Photo credit: WhichCar

That said, a new Commodore based on the Cadillac CT5 may be the right choice going forward. In fact, the top brass at GM seem on board with the idea.

“It’s up to Dave [Buttner, the Holden Director who recently left the company] but we’re certainly capable of doing that [introducing Cadillac to Australia],” said GM President Mark Reuss in an interview with WhichCar. “It could be an opportunity for us.”

Interestingly, this isn’t the first time the Cadillac brand was looking to make inroads in Australia. Back in 2008, the premium U.S. brand had an Aussie invasion planned, but ended up rolling back those plans as the global financial crisis loomed.

According to WhichCar, the Cadillac CT5 is currently testing at Holden’s Lang Lang proving ground in Victoria.

2020 Cadillac CT5 Premium Luxury AWD in Australia. Photo credit: WhichCar

Making its debut at the 2019 New York International Auto Show, the 2020 Cadillac CT5 slots into the Cadillac lineup as the latest premium D-segment sedan to take on the BMW 3 Series and Mercedes-Benz C-Class. As such, it’s an indirect replacement for the Cadillac ATS. In the U.S., engine options include the standard turbocharged 2.0L four-cylinder (production code LSY) producing 237 horsepower and 258 pound-feet of torque as well as an optional twin-turbo 3.0L V6 (production code LGY) that doles out 335 horsepower and 400 pound-feet of torque. All drivetrains are mated to a 10-speed automatic transmission. Rear-wheel-drive is standard while all-wheel-drive is optional in the U.S. market.

All told, the CT5 could be the perfect replacement for the Commodore, especially when equipped with the optional twin-turbo V6.  For reference, the current Holden Commodore RS-V and VXR are are powered by a naturally-aspirated 3.6L V6 producing 310 horsepower and 282 pound-feet of torque. Lesser models come with a choice of two turbo-charged 2.0L engines powered by either gasoline or diesel. The current model has a front-drive-based layout, with all-available all-wheel-drive, while the last-gen model was based on a rear-drive platform.

The Cadillac Society Take

We think one of two things is taking place here. The first (and simpler) explanation for the presence of the CT5 in Australia is testing purposes. After all, Caddy’s parent company, GM, is a global company and the CT5 is a car that will be sold in various worldwide markets. Therefore, the automaker could simply be utilizing the development resources in Autralia to finalize validation and/or testing of the CT5’s suspension.

The second possibility is far more complex, and it involves Cadillac making a full-fledged entry into Australia. The move would fully support the luxury brand’s plans for global expansion, which has been in the works for the past few years. However, to do so, Cadillac will have to offer the CT5 (along with other models) in right-hand-drive, a configuration that the new sedan that is currently not available on any current Cadillac vehicle. Coincidentally, right-hand-drive versions would also give Cadillac proper entires into other not-insignificant RHD markets – the United Kingdom and Japan.

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Source: WhichCar

Written by
Jonathan is an automotive journalist based out of Southern California. He loves anything and everything on four wheels.

5 Comments

  1. Not sure I’d read too much into this car being in Australia. There have been 2 or 3 CT6’s flown “Down-Under” and photographed.

    That being said, Mr. Reuss’s comment is interesting. But would it be better received in the Australian Market as a Holden Commodore? It would have to be “rebaged” to a degree. Front and rear facias, maybe some changes to the interior.

    Reply
  2. After seeing photos of the CT5, I decided to replace my 2017 CTS with a 2020 CT6 Luxury V-6 AWD. This car is dynamite. Its big and comfortable and it rides like a dream. I think discontinuing the CT6 will be a huge mistake. This car is a real Cadillac, similar in size to an S-Class Mercedes for E-Class money or less. If promoted properly, this car would have been a big seller, because it is an EXCELLENT VALUE!!!!Cadillac has missed a big opportunity to compete with the Germans, just it did with the CTS, which was also and excellent value.

    Reply
  3. The Large Luxury Market is not about “Value”. It’s about Brand. This is where Cadillac has fallen well behind. Perception. If it were all about product alone Cadillac would be faring much better.

    Also, the market for cars like the CT6 is falling fast. The CT6 itself is off 50% from only 2 years ago. The S Class is flat. The BMW 7 is off about 30% in 2 years. Sales of the Audi A8 are almost invisible now. The Lexus LS is down substantially too. The only reason these cars are still offered here is because of what I’ve posted recently in other threads. These foreign competitors build their large Flagship cars in one factory that supplies the whole world. To avoid tariffs selling in China, Cadillac was obliged to build there. There is practically no market for the CT6 in North America. Sales will be about 6K in 2019. All the marketing on Earth can not overcome the trend to SUV’s. I don’t see how Cadillac can afford to continue building and selling so few. Alpha is a costly platform. To move production to another plant would cost many millions, money that GM would never recoup.
    Also, have you noticed the resale value of CT6’s? About -50% in 48 Months. I saw a 2017, Well equipped, First Class CPO example yesterday for $35K. Apparently the Second-Hand market doesn’t want them either. That is also a reflection of the discounting being done to sell them when new. That also has a bad effect on resale value.

    Reply
    • Ooops. I meant to say Omega is a costly platform.

      Reply
      • Also, I meant to write that resale of the CT6 is -50% over 24 months. Again, my bad.

        Reply

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