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The Cadillac Professional Vehicles and GM team got all decked out for the big debut of the 2013 Cadillac XTS sedan, the successor to the DTS. Operators could sit in two XTS sedans at the International LCT Show.
LAS VEGAS, Nev. — The 2012 International LCT Show, considered the largest global limousine industry trade show worldwide, has scored its highest number of attendees, revenue, and vendor sales activity since the Show in March 2008, just before the onset of the Great Recession.
LCT does not release exact attendance and reveue figures, but attendance is likely to be up by mid-teen percentages compared to last year while the vendor count was up about 40%. The sold-out Show floor had 104 exhibitors.
A more robust market for chauffeured vehicles and the most diverse vehicle selection in industry history propelled attendance and enthusiasm in the first calendar year without a model Lincoln Town Car Executive L sedan or a Cadillac DTS sedan. Some operators have bought up the last remaining 2011 Executive L sedans in bulk to give them as much time as possible to evaluate fleet choices.
Into the breach has stepped an array of choices for operators, including the debuting Cadillac XTS sedan and the perfected 2013 Lincoln MKT Town Car. The heavily traveled trade floor of the Show, held Feb. 13-15 at the MGM Grand Hotel and Casino, offered the most vehicles since 2008, and the widest selection of vehicle builders.
New to the Show floor were BMW, Rolls-Royce, Hyundai, and Chrysler. In fact, Chrysler surprised the industry in January with its announcement that it would offer the 2012 Chrysler 300 Limited sedan as an alternative to Lincoln. General Manager Bill Cunningham of Acton Fleet Sales reported Wednesday that he had taken orders for 30 300s from operators during the Show. The vehicle is priced at $32,400. The new 300 is markedly upgraded from the previous version of the Chrysler 300 that was modified by Accubuilt and discontinued in 2010.
The 2013 Cadillac XTS sedan was the big debut vehicle at the 2012 International LCT Show in Las Vegas.
But the most visited exhibit on the floor was that of Cadillac, which for the first time offered its livery edition of the next generation XTS sedan. Two showstopper XTS sedans, one white and one black, were thoroughly sampled and sat in by operators moving in and out of the backseats as the formally dressed Cadillac Professional Vehicles team hosted a champagne-and-pianist reception on the opening day. Pricing for the XTS will be released next month, and the order bank will open some time during the second quarter. CPV's Ray Bush estimates the XTS will be priced between $40,000 and $50,000.
The sheer variety of vehicle options — including a variety of mini-buses, mid-coaches and motorcoaches — portends an anticipated vehicle buying binge over the next several years as chauffeured transportation fleets have to be upgraded and diversified to meet changing and widening client tastes. If the 2012 ILCT Show opened a year operators and vehicle suppliers flirt and check either out, then the 2013 ILCT Show will likely mark the year when there is some serious “hooking up” on purchases.
Overall, the manufacturers and coachbuilders who were present at the International LCT Show constitute the highest-quality, most innovative vehicle segment of the chauffeured transportation industry that appeals to corporate and luxury retail consumer tastes.