Transportation is a hot topic in the tech industry, whether we are looking at moving things, food or people. This week, we sat down with Nadim Ghrayeb, Regional Sales and Marketing Manager, Cadillac Middle East, to talk about Cadillac’s commitment to the driving experience in all its forms and how incremental innovation is at the heart of the iconic brand’s product evolution.
- What can you tell us about Cadillac’s role in supporting innovation?
Cadillac’s history dates back over a century and, as the first premium car brand, we’ve always thought of ourselves as innovators. Over the years we’ve developed so many automotive technologies that were industry firsts, such as the self-starting engine, climate control, the V8 and V16 engine, magnetic ride control… and the list goes on. The new era of Cadillac is no different. We continue to develop our own innovations and to support others to innovate.
- With autonomous cars on the horizon, how does Cadillac see the future of car ownership?
The shift to autonomous driving will not be an overnight change, but we will see the continued advancement and adoption of driver assistance technologies that will pave the way for self-driving vehicles.
As an automaker, we’re working to be at the forefront of future mobility solutions, so we’re not only thinking about the features in our vehicles, but also, how people get around and the growth of the sharing economy. In the US, if you’re not necessarily able to own a car, you can use a Cadillac model for as long as you like, then give it back, using our MAVEN mobility app to reserve, unlock and pay for the vehicle.
- Today, there are so many ways to get from A to B. How does Cadillac view the driving experience, and do you think it will persevere though changing automotive technology?
Until fully autonomous vehicles have well and truly become the norm, I think there will always be some people who will have an appreciation for the driving experience. That’s why we pay such attention to perfecting the driving dynamics in our Cadillacs. Each Cadillac has its own driving personality to suit its driver, whether it is the refined, super-smooth feeling you get behind the wheel of the CT6 prestige sedan, or the super-responsive dynamics of the V-Series performance range, and everything in-between.
- A lot has been written and said about ‘Incremental Innovation’ – as an automotive brand, how does this fit into your strategy and what does the future look like?
Incremental innovation is central to our strategy at Cadillac. With continuous improvement, development of new technologies and ways of thinking, it’s amazing to see how vehicles have developed over the last 100+ years to the sophisticated, connected, advanced, stylish parts of our lives that they are today.
- Do you have any examples of innovation that have come about as a result of local knowledge or needs?
I think that the term ‘innovation’ can take many forms: it can be a different way of creating, thinking, interacting. We saw how Dubai has been changing and how people are looking to be a part of their community. There’s a demand for human connectedness, authenticity and to celebrate creativity. This is why Cadillac created a community space in Dubai’s Khazzan Park called Khazzan X Cadillac. It includes multipurpose buildings, with an on-site café that hosts a constant stream of activities. These include everything from art installations to yoga classes, from markets to meetings, from guest speakers to craft classes. Creating a community space is not traditionally the kind of thing an automaker would do, but we see it as an innovative way to address a need we saw and to be a part of Dubai.