BMW and Audi took a big hit in 2008 when Cadillac brought out their second generation CTS sedan. The award-winning 2012 CTS Sedan blends stunning design, driving dynamics and technology in a way that satisfies enthusiasts and luxury-seekers alike. Inside the carefully crafted cabin, it's all about details, with hand-cut and-sewn accents and available ambient lighting, Sapele wood trim like that used in the finest guitars, and heated and ventilated seats. What's more, you can tailor the CTS Sedan to your personal taste by selecting either the available Luxury, Performance or Premium Collection.
And when it comes to performance, CTS delivers. The performance-oriented rear- or available All-Wheel Drive is complemented by a suspension tuned on Germany's famed Nürburgring racetrack to help ensure precise handling. Power comes from a 270 HP 3.0L direct injection V6 engine, or available 318 HP 3.6L direct injection V6. Both offer more power with reduced emissions compared to engines without direct injection technology. A 6-speed manual or available 6-speed automatic transmission emphasizes performance driving. Luxury, technology and performance come together.
For 2012, the only major update for the exterior is a new grille. It has received premium finishes that highlight the intricacies of a new frame and mesh combination. The Wreath & Crest logo also has sharper colors and raised ridges between those colors to give it a three-dimensional quality.
Customers will also receive a Touring Package that will include an exclusive grille with a dark finish, metal pedals, dark Sapele wood interior trim and sueded seat inserts, steering whee,l and shift knob.
The Wagon version will receive chrome door handles. The 3.6L version will come with 19" polished wheels and Recaro 14-way adjustable performance seats, while the 3.0L version will have 18" wheels with a pearl-nickel finish. All models will be offered with standard Bluetooth phone integration.
The current CTS is offered with a choice of two engines: a 3.0 liter V6 that delivers a total of 270 HP and a 3.6 liter V6 with an output of 304 HP. In 2012, things will be a little bit different as the 3.6 version will be replaced by a new, upgraded V-6 engine that delivers an extra 14 HP.
The new engine features a lighter, more efficient design and delivers a total of 318 HP and 275 lb.-ft. of torque, while delivering the same EPA fuel economy as the engine it replaces: 18 city/27 highway mpg.
The new V6 will also get cylinder heads that have larger intake valves and an improved intake port design than the previous engine, as well as a longer-duration intake camshaft to boost power and efficiency. Also, thanks to an integrated cylinder head/exhaust manifold design, the weight has been reduced by about 13 lbs.
When it comes to competitors for the Cadillac CTS, the list is rather long. That being said, we’ll stick with the BMW 3-Series and the Audi A4 as the stiffest competition.
On the US market, the 335i is the only BMW 3-Series that gets close to the CTS in terms of power. It is powered by a 3.0-liter, inline 6-cylinder engine with 300 HP, but that also comes with a $42,050 price tag. We may not know how much the 2012 CTS, but the 2011 model sold for a starting price of $35,165.
The Audi A4, on the other hand, comes with a 2.0 TFSI engine that delivers a total of 211 HP. The Audi’s $32,300 price tag may be cheaper, but it isn’t going to cut it in the power department. If you want more power you should get the S4, and for about $47,100 you will get a 3.0 liter engine with 333 HP.
Engine TypeGas V6 3.6L
Engine Fuel InductionDirect Injection
Engine Horsepower318 @ 6800
Engine Torque275 @ 4900
Front BrakesABS, Disc
Rear BrakesABS, Disc
Turning Radius35.4 ft.
Front Tire SizeP235/50R18
Rear Tire SizeP265/45R18
HeadroomFront: 36.9 in., Rear: 34.6 in.
LegroomFront: 42.4 in., Rear: 35.0 in.
Shoulder RoomFront: 56.0 in., Rear: 50.9 in.
Vehicle Length188.5 in.
Vehicle Width74.1 in.
Vehicle Height56.0 in.
4 years/50,000 Miles
5 years/100,000 Miles
4 years/50,000 Miles