General Motors is set to introduce the upcoming large size CT6 sedan during the New York Auto Show this week and while the model is bringing a new name and numerous advanced systems, including a semi-automated feature, its impact on the company’s products might be higher than anticipated.
The CT6 will have its official global premiere just ahead of the April 3-12 New York motor show (an upcoming rival, the new Lincoln Continental is taking the same ahead of time approach) and will become the new company flagship (until an even larger model arrives, that is) – boosting the brand image and, hopefully, also sales. But besides having such features as semi-autonomous highway cruising, the CT6 also represents the start of a new approach at developing and producing cars for the entire group. GM’s upcoming models will follow CT6’s lead in the company’s new large-scale application of using an array of metals, such as high-strength steel and aluminum, as well as other lightweight materials.
That would enable GM to construct vehicles that are lighter and thus more efficient – seeking to comply with upcoming tougher fuel consumption and emissions mandates – but also have them large enough to appeal to customers seeking more spacious rides. According to Travis Hester, CT6’s chief engineer, GM is aiming to deliver variations of the new model’s “Omega” architecture and multi-material construction in at least four other upcoming vehicle architectures. Automakers are under pressure in the US, China and Europe to meet stringent fuel efficiency increases, but as global oil prices continue to drop the customers have rekindled their love for larger, less efficient models, such as SUVs, crossovers and pickup trucks.