For the 2005 model year, a 210-horsepower, 2.8-liter V-6 replaces the 220-hp, 3.2-liter V-6 in the entry-luxury CTS (Cadillac Touring Sedan). A new six-speed manual is the standard transmission, but a five-speed automatic is available.
The instrument cluster is also new, and the 16-inch wheels are restyled.
Launched as an early 2003 model, the CTS was built on a new rear-wheel-drive platform and featured square-edge styling. Suspension revisions and interior changes for 2004 were intended to soften the ride and reduce noise. A high-performance CTS-V sedan debuted during the 2004 season.
(Skip to details on the: CTS-V)
Styling themes for the CTS are rooted in Cadillac's Evoq concept car. Cadillac touted the CTS as "the first 100 percent application of Cadillac's art and science approach to passenger-car design."
Cadillac described the CTS body as bold and chiseled, incorporating "sharp edges and crisp intersecting lines" and a short front overhang. Measuring 190.1 inches long overall, the CTS rides a 113.4-inch wheelbase. Integrated, traditionally styled vertical headlights and taillights are installed. The large, shield-shaped, louvered eggcrate grille is reminiscent of Cadillacs dating back to the 1930s. Cadillac's wreath-and-crest symbol is incorporated into the grille.
Cast-aluminum wheels hold 16-inch tires. An optional Sport Package includes Cadillac's StabiliTrak electronic stability system, a sport-tuned suspension, a load-leveling rear suspension and 17-inch wheels.
Five people fit inside the CTS sedan. Wood is used only in areas where it will come in contact with occupants: on the three-spoke steering wheel, gearshift knob and door pulls. The seats have leather seating surfaces, and heated front seats are optional. General Motors' OnStar communication system is standard, and XM Satellite Radio is available. Trunk capacity measures 12.8 cubic feet.
Under the Hood
Cadillac's 3.6-liter V-6 produces 255 hp, and the new 2.8-liter V-6 generates 210 hp. Both engines work with a new Aisin six-speed-manual transmission, and a five-speed automatic is optional. A button for the automatic selects Sport, Winter and Economy modes.
Six airbags are installed: dual-stage front airbags, seat-mounted side-thorax airbags and roof-mounted side curtain-type airbags. Antilock brakes and all-speed traction control are standard.
Controversial CTS styling might be considered either alluring or alarming, but there's less to argue about when it comes to this Cadillac's excellent driving characteristics. Subtle but bountiful performance is helped by an excellent, quick-shifting automatic transmission.
For the most part, drivers can expect the feel of a European sport sedan, but the CTS isn't quite as refined as an Audi or BMW. The CTS is exceptionally stable on the road and easy to drive around town. Steering response is on the sporty side. The performance-packed CTS-V behaves as promised, accelerating with energetic haste.
Cadillac launched a performance offshoot of the CTS during the 2004 model year. Called the CTS-V, it ranks as the most powerful automobile in the company's history. Rather than the relatively mild-mannered V-6 engines that go into regular CTS sedans, the CTS-V gets a 5.7-liter V-8 — which was borrowed from the 2004 Chevrolet Corvette Z06 and whips up 400 hp and 395 pounds-feet of torque. The CTS-V accelerates from zero to 60 mph in 4.6 seconds. Only a Tremec six-speed-manual gearbox is offered.
Competitors include the BMW M3 and Mercedes-Benz C32 AMG. The CTS-V is the first of several planned V-series models, which are developed by GM's new Performance Division. Differences between the CTS-V and the regular CTS include a unique front fascia and a tightened suspension. Performance-tuned shocks, springs and stabilizer bars are installed on the CTS-V, and Brembo brakes use 14-inch rotors. Back to top
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