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Pick-up truck a 'waste of an entry' for Cadillac: Don't expect a rebirth of Escalade EXT or luxury version of the Chevrolet Silverado from American brand

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Render of ute based on Cadillac Lyriq. (Image: Midjourney AI)
Render of ute based on Cadillac Lyriq. (Image: Midjourney AI)

“No, we would not do a pick-up at Cadillac,” is Senior Vice President of Global Design Michael Simcoe’s refreshingly blunt answer.

“That'd be a waste of an entry. You'd spend that sort of capital and that sort of showroom spot on something much more exciting and more appropriate to Cadillac,” he explained. 

Instead, a Cadillac hypercar – electric or plug-in hybrid – is a much smarter play for the performance-oriented brand. A smaller SUV to play against the Audi Q4 e-tron and BMW iX1 could be clever, too. Yet there’s no update on either of those possibilities today. 

Simcoe’s robust response didn’t stop us having a brainstorm of what a Cadillac ute might look like – the top example is a modern rebirth of the Escalade EXT based on the latest Lyriq electric large SUV from Cadillac (top image). 

The Lyriq lends itself well to becoming a ute. Its bluff, square front end with menacing front mask runs up to a black A-pillar to a chunky sloped C-pillar that blends into the long tray. 

Of course, if Cadillac were to do a ute it could also take Chevrolet’s existing Silverado frame and add some luxury tinsel on the top (below image). It would be unlikely any pick-up would really suit the Cadillac image, according to Simcoe. Still, the imagination has some swagger.  

Simcoe expands on whether he’s brought any information from his time at Holden back to the US regarding Australian utes, “everything's still an emotional purchase”, he said.

Cadillac style Chevrolet Silverado ute. (Image: Midjourney AI)
Cadillac style Chevrolet Silverado ute. (Image: Midjourney AI)

“[GM has utes] that are all about sport and performance, be it off-road or rock climbing and we have ones that are better suited to being on road as very, very high level luxury vehicles. A truck’s not a tool of the trade necessarily anymore,” he continued. 

It certainly wouldn’t be the first time a luxury brand had entertained the idea of creating a ute for lifestyle customers – Genesis, BMW and others all admitted to the thought. One brand actually did it, and the result didn’t go well. 

Cadillac Escalade EXT. (Image: Edmunds)
Cadillac Escalade EXT. (Image: Edmunds)

The Mercedes X-Class was a Nissan Navara-based luxury ute that lived a very short life. It was produced from 2018 to 2020, surviving just two years before it was axed due to slow sales. 

Anecdotally, buyers don’t want 'fancy' utes. If they’re after sheer opulence or imposition on the road, a sedan or large SUV – like Celestiq or Lyriq – delivers that just fine. 

The Ford Ranger Raptor and Ram 1500 TRX are so expensive not because of interior fit-out or infinite ambient lighting but because of their Fox racing shocks and bombastic engines. That is what sells high-end utes and Cadillac won’t be getting into that game. 

John Law
Deputy News Editor
Born in Sydney’s Inner West, John wasn’t treated to the usual suite of Aussie-built family cars growing up, with his parents choosing quirky (often chevroned) French motors that shaped his love of cars. The call of motoring journalism was too strong to deny and in 2019 John kickstarted his career at Chasing Cars. A move to WhichCar and Wheels magazine exposed him to a different side of the industry and the glossy pages of physical magazines. John is back on the digital side of things at CarsGuide, where he’s taken up a role as Deputy News Editor spinning yarns about the latest happenings in the automotive industry. When he isn’t working, John can be found tooling around in either his 2002 Renault Clio Sport 172 or 1983 Alfasud Gold Cloverleaf.  
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