Cadillac has spent over 100 years building its reputation for quality and performance in luxury vehicles. Going back to the founding of Cadillac in 1902 by Henry Martin Leland, the brand has always been at the forefront of automotive innovation and luxury details—setting it apart from other vehicle brands. Folks have always known that when they buy a Cadillac, they are getting a car that is a status symbol—proof that they have finally “arrived.” Even older models are aspirational, which you can experience for yourself at a used Cadillac dealership.
Because of their quality and dependability, a Cadillac will hold its value better than most other brands of automobiles. This means that buying a used Cadillac is an excellent investment that will pay dividends in the future. Whether you are buying an SUV like a used Escalade or a performance sedan like the CT5, you’ll be impressed by the attention to detail and enjoyable driving experience afforded you with a Cadillac. Also, buying a used Cadillac is an affordable way to step into the luxury world of this popular brand. No wonder so many musical artists have recorded songs about this beloved brand—like “Cadillac Ranch” by Bruce Springsteen, “Pink Cadillac” by Natalie Cole, and “Brand New Cadillac” by The Clash.
A 100-Year-Old Tradition
An interesting fact about Cadillac is that it emerged out of the ashes of Henry Ford’s second attempt at starting a car company. In 1902, Henry Martin Leland convinced the former board of directors of Ford to give him a shot at overseeing a new project. He didn’t disappoint, developing a model one year later using a body designed by Ford but a powertrain that was all Cadillac. As for the brand, Leland decided to honor the founder of Detroit, Antoine de la Mothe Cadillac, with a car worthy of the name.
In 1908, Cadillac became the first automotive company to use standardized parts, making vehicles more efficient to produce and easier to repair. One year later, Leland sold his company to General Motors in a deal engineered by automobile pioneer William Durant. Cadillac soon took its place as the top luxury model sub-brand by General Motors, a rank it holds to this day.
Over the years, Cadillac has staked out its claim as the most innovative cars around. For example, in 1912, the Cadillac Model 30 became the first production vehicle to feature an electrical self-starter and electrical lighting. Three years later, Cadillac became the first to offer a V8 gas engine. This was refined in 1949, with the first modern V8 engine offered on any production car. Cadillac even premiered electronic fuel injection in 1975.
Many luxury features were also introduced for or became standard features on Cadillac cars before other manufacturers. For example, Cadillac started a big trend in the 50s by adding tail fins to the Sixty Special model in 1948. Cars were now entering the Jet Age! Cadillac was also the first automaker to make power steering standard on all models in 1954, as well as thermostatically regulated heating, air conditioning, and ventilation in 1964. Such other luxury features as seat warmers and stereo radios followed just two years later. While these are all luxury features that most drivers take for granted today, the fact is that Cadillac was the first to introduce them and make them standard features.
Not all of Cadillac’s innovations were designed for vehicle performance or passenger comfort; Cadillac has also been a pioneer in passenger safety. Cadillac began offering a form of antilock brakes on the rear wheels in 1971, with safety belts becoming standard on all Cadillac models just a year later. The company also became the first to feature a front-wheel drive vehicle with electronic traction control, the 1990 Cadillac Allante. This dedication to keeping you and your passengers safe has continued with the introduction of the Cadillac Smart System of active driver assistance features—standard on all 2022 Cadillac models.
Luxury and Innovation in Today’s Cadillacs
The current Cadillac lineup includes two sedans and five different SUVs. Their sedans are the 2022 CT4 compact and CT5 midsize, with each featuring special editions known as the V and the V Blackwing. As a result, you get six different models to choose from. Each features luxury styling and roomy interiors for up to 5 passengers—delivering comfort that’s synonymous with the Cadillac brand.
The key differences between the CT4, the CT4-V, and the CT4-V Blackwing are that the latter two models have sports-tuned suspensions and more powerful engines—so much so that the Blackwing model is considered track-capable. The same goes when comparing the CT5 with the CT5-V and CT5-V Blackwing.
When it comes to luxury SUVs, no other automaker can match the quality and styling of Cadillac. The 2022 Cadillac XT4 is a crossover that is not just sexy, but can actually tow up to 3,500 lbs. As you can see, this is not like your ordinary crossover. The 2022 XT5 is a two-row, midsize SUV that comes with your choice of two powerful engines: a 2.0-L Turbo I-4 and a 3.6-L V6. For those who want the space to carry up to 7 passengers, Cadillac offers the three-row, midsize 2022 XT6. This also features the same engine options as the XT5.
The flagship of the Cadillac lineup is the 2022 Escalade. This full-size SUV has every luxury feature you can imagine, from a plush interior featuring supple fabric and trim choices to a fully equipped infotainment system with an incredible audio system. The Escalade is also the first Cadillac to feature the curved OLED display that encompasses a breathtaking 38” of total display space. This includes the driver information cluster, odometer, and hi-tech infotainment system.
For those who love to supersize things, choose the 2022 Cadillac ESV. Those three letters stand for Escalade Stretch Vehicle, which adds an extra 15” to the wheelbase on the Escalade. As a result, you get an incredible 142.8 cu.ft. of maximum cargo space.
Cadillac continues to be on the cutting edge of technology with the rollout of its Super Cruise hands-free driving technology. Already available on the Escalade and Escalade ESV, the 2022 CT4 and CT5 models are the latest to earn this feature. This allows for semi-autonomous driving throughout 200,000 miles of pre-mapped highways across America. This reduces driver fatigue, allowing you to take your hands off the wheel when on these roads. It should also lead to safer driving, as the Super Cruise feature incorporates the other smart technology in the standard Smart System suite of driver assistance features.
What’s Next for Cadillac?
The folks at Cadillac are not content to rest on their laurels. The newest model to join the Cadillac fleet is the Lyriq. This all-electric SUV is set for release with the 2023 model year, and will offer drivers an estimated 312-mile range on a single charge—thanks to its lithium-ion battery. The 2023 Lyriq also has a very sleek and aerodynamic styling that gives you a glimpse of the future. Also on the way is the 2023 Escalade-V, the latest in Cadillac’s V-Series of high performance vehicles. Imagine taking an Escalade and giving it the track capabilities of a CT4-V or CT5-V, and you’ll have an idea of what’s next for this full-size SUV.
As always, Cadillac continues to leverage its technological capabilities, staying ahead of the curve and its competitors. Cadillac has done so over the years without skimping on the luxury features and styling that made the brand one of the most popular choices for drivers.
Immortalized in Song…and Forever in the Hearts of Discerning Drivers
Cadillac continues to inspire songwriters and drivers across America. This is why Billy Joel was “trading in his Chevy for a Cadillac” in “Moving Out.” This is also why drivers continue to aspire to take home a new or used Cadillac. It’s overall one of the most beloved auto brands, and will continue to hold a special place in the industry at large.