A detailed look at the 2011 Cadillac Ciel Concept Car

Since its launch in 1902 (from the remains of the Henry Ford Company), Cadillac has continuously strived to establish itself as the top luxury car brand in the automotive market. We don’t need to tell you how that turned out, because Cadillac is now synonymous with extravagance and top performance.


However, if not all of Cadillac’s production cars are enough evidence to file a claim with the top automakers, the company has also produced several concept cars that it can use to bolster this claim. These concept cars were intended to showcase the American brand’s initiatives to design innovative solutions for the future. Among them, the Escala, the Elmiraj and the Ciel stand out as some of the most luxurious, drop-dead gorgeous concept cars the world has ever seen from Cadillac.

“We made a Cadillac that lets you touch the sky,” said Gael Buzyn, chief interior designer at Cadillac, when describing the Ciel. That statement stated the name which translates to “sky” in French (pronounced “CL”).

The vehicle aims to reach the atmosphere in a four-seat convertible that exudes luxury. Well it probably still is shoutbecause it had the sad destiny of never going out into the streets. Nevertheless, one can never really lose hope that such a promising concept car will one day make it to the production plant.

Big, authentic and with cutting edge technology for its time, the 2011 Cadillac Ciel is still worth remembering. Let’s take a closer look at the luxurious styling.

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The 2011 Cadillac Ciel Concept Car: a touring car with modern style, finished in a rich red wine color

The 2011 Cadillac Ciel Concept Car parked on a lawn.
Via: GM Media

The 2011 Cadillac Ciel was all about styling, just like any other concept car. In an effort to demonstrate the luxury potential of its division, General Motors ensured that this open-air touring car was designed with the utmost care. That is why the Ciel was given a classic yet modern body, which combines the best of both worlds.

The first notable feature of the 2011 Cadillac Ciel Concept Car was its long wheelbase. Then there were French style front and rear doors to reveal the exceptional interior and add to the first positive impression you get when looking at the tourer. In addition, the nickel-plated lines ran all along the sides of the car to complement the already super soft and smooth design.

Essentially, everything about this car was polished to perfection, from wheels and rims to the vintage-looking grille. Even the painting is done with care. The Ciel had a special color called Cabernet to evoke the feeling of looking at the best red wine in the sunlight.

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The Cadillac Ciel’s cab is designed for the ultimate driving experience

The interior of the 2011 Cadillac Ciel Concept Car.
Via: GM Media

Over the years we have become accustomed to seeing alien concept cars. Most brands typically go overboard with designing the concept vehicles, sometimes making them even less attractive than intended. However, this did not happen with the 2021 Cadillac Ciel Concept Car.

One look at the interior of the Ciel and you’ll see that everything is sleek, smooth and balanced. It is clear that Cadillac wanted to create an authentic yet simple and spacious interior that would provide a comfortable experience for the driver and passengers. The project was successful.

The interior of the Ciel uses all first-class materials but speaks no-nonsense. All functions, buttons and components are intuitive, so you don’t have to hesitate when you’re on the go. In addition, the interior features all the top materials and components to ensure that you feel in luxury when you are outside.

The Italian olive wood continues through the doors, instrument panel, console and front doors, making the interior breathtaking. But there’s also premium leather in the seats and other components, as well as a handful of features to improve ride quality, including the cooling and warming seat functions and mood lighting.

As we said before, the Ciel would further establish Cadillac as a forward-looking and luxurious brand, but in the end it achieved more. It talked about the customer experience, not just extravagance in styling.

A closer look at the 2011 Cadillac Ciel powertrain that never saw action

The 2011 Cadillac Ciel Concept Car under the sun.
Via: GM Media

Still, after all that talk about the Cadillac Ciel design, you might think that this vehicle is nothing more than its aesthetic appeal. Fortunately, the specs tell a different story. General Motors planned to equip the Cadillac Ciel with a 3-liter V6 twin-turbocharged engine. As a result, this great touring car would have been a joy to drive, with outputs of up to 425 hp. It’s no wonder so many car enthusiasts had high hopes for the Cadillac Ciel. It would have been great to drive this powerful car in the open air.

Ultimately, one had to get caught up in every aspect of the 2011 Cadillac Ciel Concept Car, as the vehicle wasn’t just designed for admiration from afar. General Motors wanted to offer its customers a high-performing, beautiful and enjoyable touring car. It was about the whole experience, not just bits and pieces, which is why it’s a shame the project never progressed further. The production version of the 2011 Cadillac Ciel Concept Car would have been something special indeed.

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