A textbook example of form follows function.

Let’s be honest here, transit wheels are nothing new. Automakers that are worried about scuffing a fresh set of rims use them to ensure your pride and joy arrives unscathed. However, a keen photographer has recently discovered a set of stark red transit wheels on a new Cadillac CT5.

According to a recent article in Cadillac Society, the wheels are such a bright color to ensure that the owner doesn’t accidentally drive off with them. When a dealer places an order, the new vehicle is fitted with the placeholder rims that allow it to be transported with the correct alignment. Once at the dealership, mechanics will strip the tires from the ruby rims and transfer them to whichever hoops the customer ordered.

2021 Cadillac Escalade/CT5 On Transport Wheels

Following removal, the transit wheels are then shipped back to the manufacturer for continued use. As such we’d be remiss not to mention that things are a bit different for enthusiasts of a brand that starts with D and ends with odge who tend to roll out of the dealership with the front-splitter shipping guards still in place.

Before we start World War 3 in the comments, this practice of attaching temporary wheels isn’t just limited to road vehicles; more commonly seen in open-wheel motorsport, they are often much narrower than the standard versions to ensure easy loading and unloading of whatever race car they are fitted to – often a funny sight, but a textbook example of the form follows function ethos of motorsport.

Semantics aside, keen Formula 1 fans will likely have seen a similar principle applied with the cooling systems fitted to the cars when sitting in the garage. These facilities are such stark colors to ensure that mechanics don’t forget to remove them – search Jenson Button Monaco 2010 if you’re still curious. Cadillac’s red wheel solution is obviously less sophisticated, but still wishful thinking.