First introduced in 1982, the Cadillac Cimarron was produced by General Motors. Built as a compact car, the Cimarron was an attempt by Cadillac to economize it’s luxury vehicles. It was not a successful attempt by Cadillac and the Cimarron proved to be the shortest lived vehicle that Cadillac has had to date.
Several items factored into the failure of the Cimarron, however ironically none of them had anything to due with the performance of the actual vehicle. Because Cadillac was in a head to head competition with Mercedes and BMW for a portion of the the small luxury car market and under pressure from newly implemented federal fuel regulations, the Cimarron which had been slated for release several years later, was rushed to production. The result of this rush was an abysmal failure.
The first Cimarrons had uncharacteristically small engines. A four cylinder I4 engine was the first engine for the Cimarron. Not since 1914, had a Cadillac had a four cylinder engine. It also came with a four speed manual transmission. Also a first for the Cadillac line since automatic transmissions came into existence. Though the standard equipment level was fairly high, the price Cadillac was asking for the vehicle was not warranted conidering the engine and standard transmission on the vehicle. The base price was $12,181.00 v, when adjusted for inflation, that price would be $30,279.96 in today’s money. The car just didn’t offer enough premium features considering the asking price.
A 2.8 Liter L 60 V6 engine was added as an option for the later year vehicles. The Cimarron would see one more engine added as well, a 2.0 Liter OHV I4 engine. Other expected features for Cadillacs would be added later in order to boost sales however the Cimarron would never live up to the expectations that Cadillac owners had come to expect. The Cimarron would not attract new buyers to the Cadillac market because no one would pay twice as much for what they could get in a well equipped Cavalier.