Standard of the World
Those of you of a historic bent will recognize “Standard of the World” as the slogan once used by Cadillac.
This notion goes back to the early days of the company, when in 1908 Cadillac received the Dewar Trophy, which is an award that acknowledges automotive excellence.
In the case of Cadillac, there were three Model Ks that were completely disassembled. The parts were then mixed. And then the mechanics set to reassembling three Model Ks.
It was a remarkable feat that at the end of the exercise there were three operating motor cars.
While we take interchangeability of parts for granted today, back then it was a gob-smacking accomplishment.
Which is a round-about way of getting to Cadillac’s sales performance on a global scale, or at least the most important non-U.S. market for Cadillac (and seemingly every other luxury marque on the planet): China.
In the U.S. in July Cadillac delivered 14,341 vehicles. That was good because it represents a 1.3% improvement over the number of vehicles sold in July 2015. For the year-to-date, however, things aren’t going particularly well for Cadillac in the U.S., as its sales of 87,572 vehicles puts it off by 7.9% compared with 2015.
(Arguably the availability of the new XT5 crossover is going to help boost Cadillac’s fortunes in the U.S. going forward, given the laser-hot nature of that segment.)
Meanwhile, in China in July, Cadillac sold 8,757 vehicles. It has sold 54,575 vehicles year-to-date.
Which might lead you to wonder about the aforementioned importance of China.
After all, Cadillac has moved more metal in the U.S. market than over there.
However, it needs to be pointed out that the July sales represent an 89.7% increase over July 2015. And for the year, Cadillac sales are up 23.9% in China, not down 7.9% as they are in the U.S.
Should China sales keep tracking the way they are for Cadillac, it is not just conceivable that China will be REALLY important for Cadillac.
For conducting business in the U.S. market, Toyota has historically had several separate business entities: a sales and distribution company headquartered in California (Toyota Motor Sales, USA); manufacturing operations (Toyota Motor Manufacturing North America); a racing subsidiary (Toyota Racing Development, USA); the Toyota Technical Center for R&D in Ann Arbor; and a design facility in California (Calty Design Research, Inc.). On April 1, 2006, Toyota merged its R&D operations and its manufacturing operations into a single company.
Back in 2012 Audi bought Italian motorcycle manufacturer extraordinaire Ducati for €860-million which, at the time, probably seemed like a good idea.
The common wisdom seems to be that midsize cars have pretty much had it in the U.S. new car market.