Don't get me wrong, the Chevrolet Camaro makes a great-looking Gen3 Supercar. It really is a stunning machine, in large part thanks to the Chevrolet design team creating a brilliant blend of retro and contemporary elements on the road car.
But I don't want to see it in Supercars racing after the 2024 season. The bow tie brand announced earlier in 2023 that the final Camaros will roll off the production line in January 2024, bringing the curtain down on the V8-powered muscle car.
The Camaro was already making a mockery of Supercars claims of more ‘production car relevancy' by not being sold in Australia, but without a production car anywhere in the world it simply doesn't make sense to be racing it. If you're going to race a car that isn't on sale in Australia or even being built as a substitute for the Holden Commodore, why not just race the Holden Commodore…
Obviously you wouldn't because it would be a bad look for the sport to be racing what is, in effect, a historic vehicle. And that's what the Camaro will soon be, a car consigned to history. Supercars cannot afford to be mistaken for Touring Car Masters, it needs contemporary models racing to ensure it remains true to its core ethos.
Which is where Cadillac enters the picture.
The American luxury brand is expected to return to Australian shores in the near-future, with General Motors Speciality Vehicles (GMSV) adding it to its local portfolio, alongside the factory-produced Chevrolet Corvette and locally-converted Chevrolet Silverados. As we've already reported, Cadillac's return is expected to be spearheaded by factory-built right-hand drive electric models, most likely the Lyriq SUV.
This is the brand's compact sports sedan, an American rival to the likes of the BMW M3 Competition and Mercedes-AMG C63. It's also the kind of car that will appeal to the Supercars audience, with strong connections to the once-popular Holden Special Vehicles Commodores that spun off the back of the Holden Racing Team's on-track success.
The CT4 is Cadillac's mid-size sedan, available with a range of powertrains, all the way up to the supercharged 6.2-litre V8 in the track-focused V-Series Blackwing variant. Importantly, though, it must be noted that it's highly unlikely to be offered by GMSV in Australia, with Cadillac instead prioritising its electric future.
But here's the key – GMSV doesn't really need any help selling Corvettes and Silverados, it basically sells every one it can get its hands on in right-hand drive.
Cadillac, on the other hand, is a new brand to Australia with unproven products. Sure, it's a very famous brand with a long history, but it's not an entirely positive heritage. The brand has had its ups and downs and will need to work hard to convince Australian luxury car buyers to take a chance on it. Which is where a high-profile motor racing program could help. Having the Cadillac name win the Bathurst 1000 would be a major publicity boost.
The CT4 would make a great looking race car thanks to its angular design and its dimensions aren't too much bigger than a Camaro; the CT4 is only a few centimetres shorter, is actually slightly wider and has an almost identical wheelbase.
Crucially, the CT4 will be in production for the next few years, even if production isn't confirmed beyond 2026 (when it's likely to get replaced by an all-new electric sedan). Who knows what the Supercars and automotive landscape will look like by then? There may be an obvious solution to replace the Camaro/CT4? Or Supercars may have collapsed if Ford departs? Who knows, the future is hard to predict.
Is introducing the Cadillac CT4 a perfect solution? No. But, given Supercars narrow-minded focus on the GM v Ford dynamic, it arguably represents a better solution than racing the increasingly irrelevant Camaro for years to come.
Switching from the Camaro to the sport would get a fresh injection of interest from a new brand (even if it falls under the GMSV umbrella), GM would be more motivated to spend advertising dollars on the sport and it would add a more relevant model to the contest. And, as an added bonus, it would give Supercars a chance to refresh parity once again, perhaps do it properly this time with a windtunnel to end the arguments that have plagued this season…
What do you think – is Stephen onto something with Cadillac? Or should Chevrolet stick around? Let us know which brands you'd like to see in Supercars in the comments or on our social media pages