Last week, Cadillac (NYSE:GM) pulled the wraps off its Elmiraj concept concept car, an ultra-elegant “grand coupe” that has the industry buzzing about the luxury brand’s next step. If the Elmiraj did indeed make it to production, it would represent the determination of General Motors to break into Mercedes Benz (DDAIF.PK) territory — and it may include a new Cadillac logo along with it.
Cadillac’s design team was strictly in showoff mode when it showcased the car in Carmel, California, last week. At 1 inch more than 17 feet in length, the coupe is heavy on style while retaining the brawn of a performance car. It sports a 4.5-liter twin turbo V8 that can churn approximately 500 horsepower on 500 pound-feet torque, and it brings Cadillac back to its rear-wheel drive roots. On top of that, the logo got a taste of modern style, as well. Several observers were wondering if that logo would stick, as noted by a USA Today report.
Gone are the laurel leaves that surrounded the Cadillac logo since its 1980 update, the signature of its cars for at least two generations. The new logo is wider, with a futuristic element that reminds one slightly of the original “Transformers” franchise in its color combination, outline, and layering. (If the concept sounds outrageous, recall that GM produced a Chevy Camaro Transformer Special Edition in 2009.)
What the logo suggest is elegance and spaciousness, two signatures of the Cadillac brand, and a hint at the company’s direction forward. The emblem is considerably wider that the current one, which is flanked by the laurel leaves. Of course, there is no guarantee this concept car will make it to market, as proven by the Ciel of 2011. That car, a stylish convertible that recalled the classic California-inspired Cadillacs of the 1950s and 1960s, was taken off the program earlier this year.
Now that Cadillac has reestablished itself as a force to be reckoned with, there is a chance this car might make it to the production line — unlike the gorgeous Ciel. However, Cadillac made it clear at the grand unveiling of its concept coupe that experimentation was the real goal behind the Elmiraj.
“A concept provides not only an opportunity to explore new design ideas, but to pursue new techniques for elegant craftsmanship and materials,” Gael Buzyn, Cadillac’s lead interior designer, said in a company statement. Whether this concept makes it to the assembly line — and is sporting a new badge when it does — remains to be seen.