The dramatically styled Cadillac CTS, a luxury sports saloon with a European driving feel, is spearheading Cadillac’s commitment to become a global premium brand.

The CTS builds on Cadillac’s century-long tradition of technological innovation and pioneering design. Characteristic design cues include vertical headlamps and tail lamps, a refinement of a Cadillac tradition that first appeared in 1965.

Styled in a modern interpretation of the cars that made Cadillac famous, the CTS is every inch a true eye-catching Cadillac. What other car could be the star of the Hollywood blockbuster movie Matrix Reloaded?

The Cadillac CTS is offered with a choice of two smooth-running six-cylinder engines. The 2.8-litre CTS saloon develops 158 kW (215 hp) and is complemented by an all-new 3.6 litre V6 with 189 kW (257 hp). Both include fully variable valve timing of the intake and exhaust valves and a dual-stage variable intake manifold to deliver outstanding flexibility, fuel economy and emissions control. Both engines are mated to a five-speed automatic transmission. On sale now, the on-the-road prices for the highly specified and equipped CTS luxury sports saloon begin at £24,850.

The fact that the engineering and development team, who carried out the chassis and suspension work, chose to do so at Germany’s famed Nürburgring is an indication of how serious Cadillac is about this new direction for the brand. The Cadillac CTS uses a StabiliTrak stability control system adapted from the one developed for the Corvette. The system is highly responsive and can adjust braking at any of the four wheels to maintain vehicle control in the most demanding conditions.

A European style of driving with sporty, agile handling, was the guiding principle for the CTS designers, who created a sophisticated rear-wheel drive chassis with near-perfectly balanced weight distribution – 53 % front, 47 % rear. Specially designed for European requirements, the suspension guarantees good ride comfort, even on poor-quality surfaces and with the car fully loaded.

All CTS models are factory-fitted with the Nivomat self-levelling rear suspension system from the German company Sachs Automotive. The StabiliTrak stability control system is fitted as standard. It increases driving safety and control in high-speed swerves or sudden avoidance manoeuvres, maintaining the stability of the car through precise application of the brakes on individual wheels and if necessary retarding the engine timing.

The CTS’s Sigma platform is the first time ultra high-strength steel has become an integral part of a GM product. Ultra high-strength steel permits the use of thinner, lighter steel, which reduces mass yet still allows proper energy absorption and reduces intrusion into the passenger compartment in an accident.

The distinctive styling cues of the Cadillac CTS are also reflected in the interior design, the new instrument cluster and a three-spoke steering wheel with V-shaped airbag cover. The centre console features displays for the sound system, climate control and the optional navigation unit, all ergonomically arranged within the driver’s view. A leather interior is standard on the Sports Luxury models.

The Cadillac CTS is distinguished by generous interior space for a performance saloon, comfortably accommodating five people. The cabin measures a generous 1075 by 940 mm, while front shoulder room is also exemplary at 1438 mm. The boot has a VDA cargo rating of 420 litres while fold-down 60/40-split rear seats means the cargo capacity can be further increased with ease.

Standard equipment includes six of the latest technology airbags. The two dual-stage front airbags inflate according to crash severity to avoid unnecessary injuries during minor collisions. Side-on impacts trigger front seat-mounted side airbags and roof-mounted curtain bags which inflate between the A- and C-pillars to ensure that all occupants are protected. Because they inflate over a large area, the air cushions also protect the heads of smaller passengers.

The Cadillac CTS is built at the General Motors Lansing Grand River assembly plant in Lansing, Michigan, alongside the 400hp V8 powered CTS-V (the most powerful Cadillac production car ever), SRX luxury crossover vehicle and STS luxury saloon. The plant is one of the most advanced, state-of-the-art assembly plants in the world. It was awarded the prestigious Gold Plant Award as a leader in initial vehicle quality among luxury nameplates, following the 2004 J.D. Power and Associates Initial Quality Study.

The On-the-Road Prices for the highly specified and equipped CTS are:

Cadillac CTS 2.8 V6 Elegance: £24,850
Cadillac CTS 2.8 V6 Sports Luxury: £27,350
Cadillac CTS 3.6 V6 Sports Luxury: £29,850