The Cadillac STS saloon is the flagship of the Cadillac UK range. Following the introduction of the 2008 STS, all Cadillac saloons are now right hand drive. With its Cadillac-signature styling and choice of powerful V6 or V8 engines, the STS is the product of unwavering attention to detail, resulting in refined performance, sophisticated luxury and purposeful innovation.
The exterior of STS declares that it is every inch a contemporary Cadillac. Design cues include vertically stacked headlamps and light-emitting diode (LED) tail lamps, LED high-mounted centre brake light, horizontal ‘spline lines’ and the dihedral-shaped bonnet. With an overall length of almost five metres and a wheelbase of almost three metres, the STS has an imposing road-presence and a premium appointed interior that can accommodate five adults in luxurious comfort.
The Cadillac STS is the largest saloon built on GM’s Sigma platform which also forms the foundation of the Cadillac CTS luxury sports saloon, CTS V-Series high-performance saloon and SRX luxury performance crossover.
For 2008, Cadillac STS prices start at £33,995 (on-the-road) and there is a single equipment/trim level called ‘Sport Luxury’. Premium quality materials, fixtures and fittings are used throughout. African Sapele Pommele wood accents are featured on the steering wheel, gear selector, centre console, instrument panel and door trims. Dual-firmness foam, leather covered seats are specially tanned for a softer feel. Natural grained surfaces on the doors and instrument panel ensure an inviting, tactile feel, as do the headliner and interior pillar trims, which are soft backed and covered with Monaco woven fabric.
Legendary Cadillac power and performance
In the UK, the Cadillac STS is available with a choice of powerful quad-cam V6 or V8 petrol engines incorporating variable valve timing (VVT), which brings increased efficiency, with benefits in fuel economy, reduced emissions and engine flexibility. These powerunits are mated to Cadillac’s widely acclaimed Hydra-Matic six-speed automatic transmission as standard.
Thanks to its compact design and excellent power-to-weight ratio, Cadillac’s Northstar all-aluminium engine family has acquired legendary status. The 4.6-litre capacity, 90-degree V8 unit fitted under the bonnet of the £39,995 STS punches out 330 ps at 6400 rpm and 427 Nm of torque at 4400 rpm. This abundance of power and torque translates into an exhilarating driving experience, with the charge to 60 mph completed in just 6.2 seconds. The STS’s top speed is electronically limited to 155 mph.
The £33,995 STS comes with one of the world’s most advanced V6 engines. In its latest form, this 3.6-litre SIDI direct injection unit generates more power and delivers more performance while also achieving greater fuel economy with reduced C02 emissions.
Maximum power is now up to 315 ps at 6500 rpm with 374 Nm of torque at 5200 rpm to deliver a powerful, typically Cadillac performance. A driver-friendly 90% of the peak torque is available across a broad operating range from 1600 rpm to 5800 rpm. In addition, an electronic throttle control (ETC) effectively ensures a crisp response to driver inputs. With the V6 engine, STS reaches 60 mph in 6.9 seconds and can attain a top speed of 149 mph.
Cadillac’s Hydra-Matic electronically controlled automatic transmission incorporates Driver Shift Control (DSC). This system gives drivers a choice of fully automatic operation or in DSC mode, sequential manual selection of gears by a quick tap on the selector lever.
For maximum traction, every Cadillac STS is equipped with an electronic traction control system (TCS) – which uses the ABS system to apply the brake on a spinning rear wheel – and a limited-slip differential in the rear axle, which operates automatically, full-time, and limits wheel spin.
‘Real time’ damping for optimum ride and handling
The STS rides on a fully independent suspension system which features aluminium double-wishbones at the front (to reduce unsprung weight) and sub frame-mounted multi links (some in aluminium) at the rear. These integrated chassis technologies are optimised to combine high dynamic performance and a comfortable ride without sacrificing a rewarding driving experience.
While the front shock absorbers are high-performance dampers from German specialist Sachs, at the rear all STS models are fitted with Nivomat self-levelling dampers. These units automatically adapt to different loads and road conditions to maintain a constant ride height, ensuring consistent handling characteristics – regardless of load.
The V8-powered STS model also features the award-winning Magnetic Ride Control (MRC) system. The STS driver can select ‘Performance’ or ‘Touring’ mode for electronic control of the world’s fastest-reacting real-time ‘active’ suspension system. A set of sensors continuously monitors and adjusts the stiffness of the dampers (up to 1000 times per second) to reduce roll when cornering and squatting during braking, while also providing exceptionally responsive handling and the smoothest of rides.
Precise steering, immensely capable brakes and ESP
Both STS models are fitted with ZF Servotronic 2 variable power assistance. This speed-sensitive system reduces the level of assistance as vehicle speed increases, for easy low-effort parking without loss of steering feel or precision at high speed.
To meet the demands of a luxury high-performance saloon, the STS is equipped with immensely capable Brembo ventilated disc brakes, 355 mm at the front and 365 mm at the rear. As well as ABS, the braking system incorporates dynamic rear brake proportioning (which takes account of how lightly or heavily laden the car is to regulate pressure to the rear brakes), and emergency brake assist (EBA) which reduces stopping distances by boosting braking power when it detects an emergency.
Both STS models are fitted with Cadillac’s StabiliTrak electronic stability system. In critical driving situations this full-time, automatic ESP-type system assists the driver by correcting understeer and oversteer, through precise application of the brake on individual wheels, to ensure that the vehicle follows the intended course.
Luxuriously specified as standard
As befits a prestige Cadillac saloon, both the STS models are highly specified as standard and come with a single equipment/trim level – Sport Luxury.
Standard equipment includes: full leather upholstery in a choice of three colours, eight-way power seat adjustments for the driver and front passenger (including a memory package which provides presets for two drivers and automatically adjusts the outside rear-view mirrors, power tilt and telescoping steering wheel position). The heated and ventilated driver and front passenger seats also feature four-way power lumbar adjustment. The outer seating positions of the rear seats also have heated cushions and there are folding centre armrests, front and rear.
The heated steering wheel has rake and reach power adjustment, plus ‘easy exit’ which raises the wheel to facilitate exit and entry to the car. All four electric windows have express up/down, the climate control air-conditioning has dual front zones and there is a remote power release for the boot.
Both STS models come with an ‘EasyKey’ keyless entry system, a push button engine start and a Thatcham Category 1 security system.
The 2008 STS models are equipped with a top-of-the-range infotainment system, with a 15-speaker Bose® 5.1 Surround Sound system and an integrated six-disc CD/DVD changer, a 203 mm (eight inch) VGA quality touch screen, Bluetooth capability, advanced voice recognition and an advanced DVD navigation system.
Optimised for maximum ‘active’ and ‘passive’ safety
In addition to providing the highest level of ‘active’ safety through its precise steering, agile handling and powerful braking, the STS is packed with comprehensive ‘passive’ safety technology.
The bodyshell, which employs ultra-high strength and dual-phase steel, is extremely robust and features octagonal section engine chassis rails at the front and a special two-piece magnesium under-floor cross member, to maximise frontal and side impact crash performance.
Three-point seat belts and head restraints are provided for all five occupants, with pre-tensioners on the outer front and rear belts. The rear seat is fitted with anchorage points for two child safety seats.
The cabin is fitted with a total of six airbags, including twin dual-stage front airbags, front seat-mounted side airbags and roof rail-mounted full length curtain airbags offering head protection to both front and rear seat occupants.
The STS also has a tyre pressure monitoring system and rear parking assist, which includes a rear-view LED display and audible warning, and heated windscreen washer nozzles. With the same focus on safety and functionality, an advanced microphone can be used to give voice commands to the DVD-based navigation and entertainment system.
Broad choice of exterior and interior colours
In the UK, the right-hand drive Cadillac STS is available in a choice of 10 exterior colours, with full leather upholstery in Light Gray, Ebony or Cashmere. The generosity of the standard specification ensures that the options list for STS is remarkably short – just metallic paint for £650 and a powered glass sunroof at £1,050.
The Cadillac STS is built alongside its CTS, CTS-V and SRX stablemates at GM’s state-of-the-art Lansing Grand River assembly centre in Michigan, USA. This facility, which is one of the most advanced assembly plants in the world, has won numerous awards for consistent high quality and high productivity since it opened in 2001.