So, the Northstar is finished. Unless I’m mistaken, Cadillacs in 2010 will have the very last Northstar engines. Cadillac says its because of CAFE – but I’m having some trouble believing that. By 2020, automobile companies must have their average gas consumption for all vehicles at 35 miles per gallon. If a company has too many gas guzzling engines, they’ll never meet that mark.
However – how is that a problem if most of the vehicles being sold have four and six cylinder engines? If Cadillac wants their old slogan back (“Standard of the World”), they need things like a proprietary platform and super-refined engine. The Northstar was powerful, smooth and quiet – all characteristics of a power-plant that belongs in a luxury vehicle.
At GM, what else technically needs a v8 engine besides a Cadillac? Okay, the Corvette. Understood! Maybe the Camaro. Heck, we lived without the Camaro just fine for a few years. And in these days of crazy gasoline restrictions (remember the 70s?), who needs a Camaro anyway? “Trucks and SUVs!”, you say! They don’t need v8s either! Not unless they’re Cadillac trucks and SUVs.
Instead of putting noisy, unbalanced and unrefined twin turbo v6s in Cadillacs – why not put them in the Suburbans, Yukon Denalis and Chevy/Pontiac sports cars? The trucks will have plenty of power to haul the family around and even enough to tow – and the sports cars will have plenty of “get up and go”. Need MORE towing capability? Than spring the nickel and buy the Cadillac Escalade… Nobody cares if their Chevy Impala SS is as quiet as a Lexus LS.
So there you have it – it’s no problem at all for Cadillac to keep the Northstar Ultra program on track. Or, is Cadillac just using CAFE as an excuse? Who knows?