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GM to splurge with $12 billion to add new Cadillac models

A worker prepares the Cadillac booth on Jan.

A worker prepares the Cadillac booth on Jan. 10, 2015, for the North American International Automobile Show in Detroit. Credit: Getty Images / Jewel Samad

General Motors Co., working to revive its slumping Cadillac luxury brand, plans to spend $12 billion to develop eight new models by 2020 and two more in the next decade, the brand’s chief said.

Cadillac will focus on the so-called crossover sport utility vehicle segment, Johan de Nysschen said Monday at the start of the Detroit auto show. Cadillac currently has just one, the SRX, while rival BMW has five and Audi has three in its lineup. De Nysschen said GM will add three SUVs as part of the expansion.

GM is spending on the brand to fund a new-car renaissance at Cadillac, whose U.S. sales fell 6.5 percent last year. The brand does about half of what rivals BMW AG and Mercedes-Benz sell in the U.S. Luxury SUVs is one area where Cadillac is lagging, de Nysschen said.

Cadillac will add two SUVs below the size of the SRX and one above it. GM, based in Detroit, is also planning a flagship car for Cadillac. There is no immediate plan for a new ELR, which is a plug-in hybrid that runs using an electric drive system similar to the Chevrolet Volt. Cadillac would also like an all-electric car, but nothing is planned yet.

In an interview in November, de Nysschen said the next few years will require heavy investment in Cadillac, which will dilute GM’s financial results.

GM has been trying to revive Cadillac for more than a decade. The brand had momentum in the early 2000s on the strength of the Escalade full-size SUV and the first CTS sedan. As GM got closer to its 2009 bankruptcy, many new models were delayed or canceled. The company is now making up for it.

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