Legacy automakers must prioritize electrification on all levels in order to succeed.
This week, Cadillac reached out via video to its 800 dealers in the U.S. with a new requirement. Every dealer must invest a minimum of $200,000 on electric car chargers, in addition to training and tooling. This is, as long as they plan to sell Cadillac vehicles beyond 2022.
This comes as big news not only for Cadillac, but also the future of EVs. Other OEMs that aren't putting a huge emphasis on such plans are destined to fail all over again. One of the biggest factors that sets Tesla apart from legacy automakers moving forward with electric cars is its charging network.
In addition, being that Tesla only makes EVs and doesn't follow the traditional dealership model, there aren't concerns with having dealers that don't want to sell its cars or having no training or experience with the new tech. Not to mention a complete lack of interest in future products.
Cadillac will launch its first pure EV – the Lyriq – prior to the end of 2022, which is still relatively far off. However, it will take time and money to get everything else in place to help the Lyriq have a successful launch and generate sales. Cadillac's vice president of sales, service, and marketing Rory Harvey told Automotive News:
"Now's really the time to start engaging with our dealers in preparation for that. here's a lot of planning that has to be put in place to make sure they're absolutely ready."
While charging infrastructure is the top priority, and the "entry ticket" for Cadillac dealers that plan to stay on board, many other considerations are key as well. Cadillac says high-volume dealerships may have to invest more than $200,000 for extra chargers and tooling. At the same time, some dealers may simply not agree with Cadillac's future vision for an EV-only lineup by the end of the decade, though the automaker believes most will follow suit. The current agreement expires on November 1, 2020.