CADILLAC CTS- THE MARQUE
The Cadillac CTS, first introduced in 2002 as the 2003 model marked the return of the then GM badged car to a rear wheel drive platform and was the first Cadillac to offer a manual transmission. There hadn’t been a manual transmission Cadillac since 1988 when it was offered in the Catera, General Motors’ unlamented, ill-advised, attempt to take on the likes of BMW and the more sportive MBs.
Actually, it was a bit more than that. GM had noticed that BMW and Mercedes Benz were both offering entry-level sedans and coupes [coop, if you are American, coo-pay, if you are not], for the rising young executive with the aim of instilling brand loyalty for when they [the fast track youngsters] finally got their key to the senior executive washroom and were looking to upgrade their vehicular status symbol. All of which led to the hitherto unknown, some might have said unthinkable, mid-size Cadillac, the CTS.
Since that model year the CTS has grown, as Americans do, in size, girth, performance, although, it must be said, not irrationally. The increase in performance has been achieved with a smaller, lighter, more efficient engine in the 2010 CTS line. The first generation CTS [2002-2007] were powered with engines that ranged from 2.6 liter V6s to the 6.0 liter V8s with horse power outputs that went from 181 to 400 bhp. The second generation [2008 – present], does better with lighter engines and higher horsepower outputs – 270 bhp V6s to the 556 bhp V8.
Wheelbase remains the same for both generations of the marque. The second generation has grown longer, wider and taller, than their older siblings. Presumably to rectify some of the ergonomic niggles that beset the first generation of Cadillac CTS’. Other changes, aside from small details of grill size and head and tail light shapes and the like, are in the up gradation of the mechanical go-fast and stop-safely departments, resulting in a Cadillac that can elicit phrases like ‘crisp handling’ from drivers.Just as well, really, given the competition, AudiA4; BMW 3 Series; Mercedes C-class, crisp handlers all.