2024 Cadillac Celestiq: it’s official…

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First, I think the new Cadillac Celestiq looks fantastic. At least to me. A truly ultra-modern and gutsy design from GM. And, they kept it so close to the teaser “concept” (why even bother with that concept in the first place??

This is just an extraordinary shape that I cannot wait to see in person. Almost like a Syd Mead-designed car that had finally come to life.

Things start going a bit downhill with the specs. 600 HP is plenty. But actually much less than most versions of the Lucid Air. And 300 miles of range is actually quite disappointing. Especially since it is lower and probably much more aerodynamic than the Lyriq rated at 312 miles.

Sure, the RWD Lyriq only produces 340HP, but the Lucid Air Touring gets a 406 miles range while producing 620HP. The Dream Edition can travel up to 520 miles on a charge, with 933HP.

All this shows that while GM has very good specs, they’re not the best in the business by a long shot.

And things finally come crashing down when you find out that the Cadillac Celestiq will start at $300 000. Yes, $300 000!!!

To put this in perspective, the Lucid Air Touring mentioned above starts at $107 000. Almost exactly a third of the Celestiq base price. The crazy Dream Edition is still “just” $169 000. And the Lucid Air also looks great inside and out. Surely not half as good as the Celestiq.

The Celestiq is also much more expensive than the Bentley Flying Spur at $203 000. And quite amazingly, it’s not that much less than the $340 000 Rolls Royce Ghost! A Rolls!

In my opinion, no car is worth $300 000. But a $300 000 Cadillac is like the $80 000 Hyundai Equus or the VW Phaeton. What are they thinking???

It seems Cadillac’s history repeats itself. Back in 2013, Cadillac came up with another cool-looking car, the ELR Coupe. It also looked a lot like the concept Cadillac had shown earlier. It was based on the 1st generation Chevrolet Volt, but looked 10 times better, inside and out. But for some unexplained reason, GM priced it at $75 000. More than twice as much as the Volt. That pricing instantly killed the new Cadillac. The ELR never recovered and fewer than 3000 were ever produced.

I’m afraid the crazy $300 000 asking price of the Celestiq will actually kill it. Unless they have such low expectations. If they only want to sell a few hundred, it could work. Apparently, this will be hand built in “extremely low numbers”. I’m not sure “hand built” has as much cachet as “name brand” in the super high-end market.

Such an amazing-looking machine should have been given a chance. A chance to compete with the Lucid Air, Tesla Model S, Mercedes EQS, and others coming up. Just like a real car, not some eccentric billionaire toy. It would have been the best. Instead, it’s a car very few humans will actually get to see.

Which is a shame…

Conversation 18 comments

  1. I have to agree with Anthony who posted before me. I honestly do not understand how you Vince of all people think this looks stunning, or the Lyric. The shape is great but the rear end is fussy and unresolved to me.

  2. You guys are missing the point of this if you are comparing it to mass produced cars. They are only building just over ONE of these vehicles per day in one of GM’s factories in Detroit. Production is probably going to be less than 500 per year with each one different from the others. This is a fully bespoke vehicle – it sounds like even more customizable than Rolls and Bentleys. I absolutely love the design of this car both inside and out (ok, maybe the taillights look a little funky, but still super cool). I do think one misstep that Cadillac is doing is not giving it 500+ mile range and 1000 HP. Mostly meaningless numbers for this kind of vehicle since no one is going to push it that hard, but something so over-the-top that it would attract headlines.

  3. The car will go down in history as the sequel to the Allante because the price and production volume will make it irrelevant. The price is absurd. This is not on the level of Bentley, and Cadillac shouldn’t need to charge 300k before producing a car that can legitimately pass as a luxury vehicle. These luxury shiny bits are impressive, but are intrinsically worthless mass market gimmicks. And this level of design and most of these features should be part of all Cadillac vehicles.

  4. It is definitely an interesting design, but the Celestiq will be a huge sales flop if the specs and $$ cost hold true. To my eye, this looks more like I would expect a 2nd gen Kia Stinger EV to evolve toward.

  5. Cadillac will market this rolling fever dream with as much verve as their Blackwing (their what? Exactly). Then after 18 months or so of dismal sales Cadillac will pull the plug, citing nobody wants sedans anymore, and replace the Celestiq with a Chevrolet Equinox-based crossover.

  6. I’m thankful to find I’m not the only one to find this unattractive. GM can’t seem to handle styling details without going too far into the fussy/mullet realm, and this car is an illustration of that problem. Some wonderful work with general shapes and themes, but ruined by the details.

  7. So Cadillac built a $300K EV Cimarron/ELR Station Wagon? Meaning it’s over priced for what it is. For $300K it should be north of 1,000hp and north of 300 miles range. Regardless of this being bespoke, the specs are very disappointing.

  8. “Back in 2023, Cadillac came up with another cool-looking car, the ELR Coupe.”


  9. Ok so I actually the styling of the car and it is very unique. However the pricing and the specs already killed this vehicle before it even got off the ground. One more thing, having owned a Cadillac in the last 6 years I have to say the dealer experience is nowhere near that of “lesser expensive” brands such as Mercedes or BMW. I say “lesser” because I can’t remember what models Mercedes or BMW are selling for $300,000.
    Cadillac not only has to lower the price and improve the specs but also significantly upgrade its dealerships.

  10. This car is absolutely gorgeous, unless you’ve grown used to the bloated or overly busy ‘styling’ of many modern cars.

    Vince is right to reference Syd Mead. The Celestiq is hugely ostentatious on the one hand (the size, the overhangs, its presence) but wonderfully restrained in its treatment of surfaces and edges. Great skill has been exercised here.

    You may think it ridiculously expensive, but consider: how many people over the past few decades have bemoaned the fall of Cadillac from what was once ‘the standard of the world’ to a brand that tried to sell the Cimarron and other horrors? It’s only in relatively recent years that they’ve returned to making credible vehicles.

    More than anything else, the Celestiq is a statement of intent. Cadillac wants to be taken seriously as a maker of upper-echelon automobiles, and such a statement is absolutely necessary.

    They will sell them. Not in large numbers, but they will be made and sold to people with the resources and taste to acquire a highly-personalised car of this type. People who’ve already owned bespoke Rollers and Bentleys and the like.

    So…I think it’s great. Kudos to Cadillac for being so bold.

  11. Hey Lenny Kravitz had something to do with interior. If he’s involved, I’m BUYING!!!!! Go to Caddy’s web page, they made a video that’s cringe.

  12. This car accomplishes something important for Cadillac. SEH got it right.
    The Celestiq isn’t really meant to be a Lucid Air competitor. At $300k, this is a halo development in few numbers, meant to take advantage of the shift to EV, to accomplish something different: a repositioning of Cadillac cars and introduction of a benchmark manufacturing. Consider, the designs are somewhat of a throwback even in the modern interpretations. The bespoke nature and pricing are meant to shift towards targets like Bentley, who will be vulnerable in the new marketplace. And, like the styling or not, it sends a signal that FINALLY separates Cadillac from much of the other GM products. HP and range are meaningless here. This is meant to be rolling art, that you can (well, not YOU…but someone) can drive every day. Its meant to push Cadillac away from “let’s steal BMW sales” to “this is fashion”. An entirely different business approach…. and I like it. IF they succeed, they hope it will cast Cadillac in a different light. that’s what a halo product does.

  13. PS> Forgot to add- This could benefit from a Volt like range extender option, but probably wont be offered. Pushing up against Aston, Bentley, Rolls (which just previewed its own Spectre), or even a MB S-class, it MUST look different if you consider the question that all auto makers are scrambling to answer: what is luxury in 2023 when even a KIA has leather, heated seats. When you can get a great stereo in an Acura. When everything looks is the same SUV-version of the same car from Toyota to Lexus. When Audis, Hyundai’s… all have digital instruments. What is luxury? It seems Cadillac is saying ‘its none of that anymore. Here’s something unique.’

  14. I think the biggest problem coul dbe what “MAVV” mentioned: dealer experience.
    This is actually more than a Bentley, and a little bit less than a Rolls. There is no way any Cadillac dealership experience can match what Bentley and Rolls probably offer.
    Unless the Celestiq is a direct sale model only? And they just pick up the car for service etc.. Something, where you’d never actually see the dealership?

    This will be a much bigger problem than range. Since I really don’t think these will be taken on road trips.
    The new Rolls EV has even less at around 260 miles.

  15. When I was shopping for my former Cadillac a few years ago I went to a nearby dealer. It was a Chevy/Cadillac shared dealer.

    Imagine rolling up to the service department in your $300,000 Celestiq only to be surrounded by Malibus and other Chevy products with most likely Chevy service to boot…

    The other Caddy dealer in the area has not been updated in years. The customer lounge is a sad site and not much fun to be in.

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