Despite sales that have been lackluster at best, there are rumors that the European Cadillac BLS might make an American debut in 2010 as a 2011 model. Currently, Cadillac as affirmed speculations that they will begin producing a 4-cylinder car for the North American market in 2010, but the finer details are still under heavy debate. The primary source of contention surrounding the mystery small car: whether or not to offer an optional V-6 upgrade. Part of Cadillac’s design team believes future government fuel economy regulations and the growing small car trend mean that Cadillac must break tradition, even if only slightly, in order to stay relevant as a competitor in the market. To them, this means it’s 4-cyl small, or nothing. Cadillac’s general manager Jim Taylor isn’t quite as sold on the idea. According to Automotive News, Taylor said, “There is a big debate as to whether it is four only. I think that is a bridge too far.” Taylor’s reluctance stems from the anticipated resistance from U.S. buyers. Even if the U.S.-bound BLS is fitted with a turbocharger for its 4-cylinder engine, Taylor isn’t certain buyers will be receptive of such bland performance. “[Americans] still want power,” Taylor reasoned, “We still have big open roads. People do not want to stop enjoying driving.”
So if we here in American wind up staring down the grill of a modified BLS, exactly how much performance will we be sacrificing? According to specs, the 2009 BLS isn’t quite as uninspiring as Taylor makes it out to be. Drawing very heavily from the Saab 9-3, the 2009 BLS is offered in Europe as either a sedan or a wagon with 3 engine options: a 2.0L 4-cyl turbo, 2.8L V6, or 1.9L diesel. The interior is stock Cadillac luxury – leather, DVD, nav – and the price is typical Caddy too, starting around £21,500 [about $40,000]. Bottom line: We advise Taylor to offer the V-6, he seems to have a pretty good grasp on exactly how much change we Americans will tolerate before we put our collective foot down.
[Source: Automotive News]