Reviewers love the 2014 Cadillac CTS. GM's next challenge: Getting German-brand loyalists to pay attention. Photo credit: General Motors.

General Motors (NYSE:GM) CEO Dan Akerson has made no secret of his goal with Cadillac: He wants GM's old luxury brand to be the equal -- at least -- of the German brands that dominate the global luxury-car market.

That's a tall order. BMW (NASDAQOTH:BAMXF), Audi, and Mercedes-Benz have spent decades honing their engineering and building their brands. It's no accident that their vehicles are chosen by well-heeled buyers around the world.

Cadillac was once in that league, but that was a long time ago. The Standard of the World fell on hard times as GM spent too many years cutting costs, but its latest models have begun a remarkable turnaround. Reviewers, and the customers who have tried them, have been deeply impressed by Cadillac's new ATS and CTS sedans, pronouncing them the equal of Germany's best -- and in some ways, arguably even better. 

But it's one thing to build the cars, another thing to build the brand -- and Cadillac needs to become an exceptional brand if it's going to charge BMW-sized prices (and get BMW-sized profits). In this video, Fool contributor John Rosevear explains the challenge now facing GM with Cadillac -- and at what GM must do next to continue Cadillac's push up the global luxury ladder.