Cadillac optimistic for 2012, Lincoln still struggling

Tracy Samilton Jan 3, 2012

Stacey Vanek Smith: Next week, carmakers unveil new models at the North American International Auto Show. Cadillac hopes to make a strong showing in the luxury category. It’s a different story for Ford’s struggling Lincoln brand, though, as Michigan Radio’s Tracy Samilton reports.

Tracy Samilton: Cadillac is well on the road to reinventing itself, at least in the U.S. After the success of its CTS model, Cadillac will unveil the ATS, which aims to compete head to head with the Mercedes Benz C-Class and the BMW 3 Series. Aaron Bragman is with IHS Automotive. He says the ATS is Cadillac’s push into the global market.


Aaron Bragman: Look at us, we’re serious, we’re a serious competitor for the established German brands, and here is the proof of it.

Still, making Cadillac a global brand won’t be easy. It has only a small foothold in China and virtually none in Europe. But Lincoln should have such problems. Michelle Krebs is an analyst with She says Lincoln suffered from Ford’s habit of buying other luxury brands.

Michelle Krebs: They owned Jaguar, Land Rover, Volvo, Aston Martin. So they put money into those brands, transforming them, and Lincoln basically got ignored.

Now, Ford is investing a billion dollars in Lincoln and the brand has its own design studio. But executives admit the reinvention of Lincoln could take a decade. In Detroit, I’m Tracy Samilton for Marketplace.

We’re here to help you navigate this changed world and economy.

Our mission at Marketplace is to raise the economic intelligence of the country. It’s a tough task, but it’s never been more important.

In the past year, we’ve seen record unemployment, stimulus bills, and reddit users influencing the stock market. Marketplace helps you understand it all, will fact-based, approachable, and unbiased reporting.

Generous support from listeners and readers is what powers our nonprofit news—and your donation today will help provide this essential service. For just $5/month, you can sustain independent journalism that keeps you and thousands of others informed.