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Cadillac Club : Cadillac Catera

Cadillac Catera

THE CADILLAC CATERA… Nice Car, Poor Marketing?

2001 cadillac cateraFirst marketed in 1997 as an entry-level Cadillac for those younger buyers, receiving good reviews from car experts, sales were limited and as a result. The short lived Cadillac Catera left the manufacturing world only four years after it’s debut. The car was much smaller than traditional Cadillac’s and lacked the luster that set Cadillac’s apart.

Marketing strategies in the late nineties were often aimed toward younger consumers that were shopping for compact cars in the foreign market, as a strategy to join the competitors. Cadillac introduced the Catera on this premise. In all reality, however, the Cadillac Catera was in fact a reborn 1994 Opal, which was a car designed by a subsidiary of General Motors in Europe.

Overall, the Catera was not that bad a car, it offered buyers a chance to own a great Cadillac at a fraction of the cost of other Cadillac’s. Furthermore, it was competitive in price to other small compact cars in its class. However, the overall look of the Catera was not suitable to the target audience that Cadillac was trying to sell too.

For example, there were large front bumper guards on the car, it was a 4-door sedan, as well the driving room was cramped. While rear seats were more spacious, it was obvious this was a small family sedan, at least obvious to most, well except the Cadillac marketing teams.

Perhaps the only feature that the Cadillac Catera had that was targeted to younger drivers was the awesome audio system, a Bose stereo system. Otherwise, this advertised “sports sedan” was a smaller version of a European knock-off. Thankfully, their next endeavor, the Cadillac Escalade, was a much needed success, especially marketing to younger drivers.

However, one point of success for the Cadillac Catera, it was the first Cadillac to meet low-emission standards in 1999, however, not even this feat could withstand the car wars. The last Cadillac Catera rolled out of production in 2001 and will probably go down in history as one of a few Cadillac mishaps.

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