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Cadillac’s world-challenger CT8 flagship sedan has been canceled

At this point, I should save this phrase in a word document so I can just copy/paste into every other article: Everyone wants a crossover right now and it’s changing the automotive marketplace.

There, with that out of the way, let’s look at the implications of that reality in Cadillac’s world. It was clear that the XT5 model would be critically important for the luxury automaker, as would the other rumored crossovers to be added in the next few years. However, it wasn’t clear that Cadillac would rescind plans to introduce a BMW 7 Series/Mercedes-Benz S-Class rival to bring more utility vehicles into the lineup first.

That news broke yesterday when Road & Track reported that the CT8 sedan had been canceled. The key word here is “cancelled,” not “delayed” or “postponed.” We’ve obviously seen similar behavior from other luxury marques in a mad dash to give the people what they want, but most still offer sedans alongside crossover options.

Cadillac President Johan de Nysschen had previously stated that the CT8 would directly challenge the best luxury sedans on the market, and considering the S-Class and 7 Series are selling very well these days, it’s a bit of a surprise that Cadillac would cut the project altogether. Nothing has been made official, but it’s a fair bet that the CT8 resources have now been applied to a sub-XT5 crossover and perhaps even a BMW X7 competitor.

Before the CT8 was yesterday’s news, it was expected to use an all-new V8 engine and ride on an extended form of the new Omega platform that underpins the CT6. If the news proves true, it’s even less likely that the rumors of a Cadillac-badged Rolls Royce rival due sometime next decade have any substance.

Though the CT6 doesn’t directly challenge German automaker full-size models, it can still be optioned to a very luxurious spec, so Cadillac will likely continue to push the CT6 as a lighter, cheaper alternative to other brands.