By on January 31, 2017

2017 Cadillac CT6 Stellar Black - Image: © Timothy Cain/The Truth About Cars

2017 Cadillac CT6 3.0TT Luxury

3.0-liter V6, twin-turbo, DOHC, (404 horsepower @ 5,700 rpm; 400 lb-ft @ 2,500 rpm)

Eight-speed automatic, all-wheel drive

18 city / 26 highway / 21 combined (EPA Rating, MPG)

13.0 city/ 9.1 highway/ 11.2 combined (NRCan Rating, L/100km)

18.8 mpg [12.5 L/100 km] (Observed)

Base Price: $54,790 (U.S) / $61,915 (Canada)

As Tested: $75,310 (U.S.) / $87,115 (Canada)

Prices include $995 destination charge in the United States and $2,050 for freight, PDI, and A/C tax in Canada.

Whether the 2017 Cadillac CT6 is the Cadillac you want, surely the CT6 is what you want Cadillac to be.

It’s not unreasonable to consider yourself a candidate for the Cadillac you can most easily afford: the ATS. But what does the ATS say about Cadillac; what image does it present?

Odds are the SRX-replacing Cadillac XT5 is the Cadillac you’re most likely to buy, the Cadillac that will earn more than one-third of the brand’s U.S. sales, but the XT5 is already popular enough to be decidedly mainstream. Cadillac sold more XT5s in the final six weeks of 2016 than the CT6 managed in nine months.

There’s always the Escalade, the upper-echelon Cadillac that’s far more likely in this SUV-crazed world to capture the well-heeled Cadillac buyer’s attention — but shouldn’t a big Cadillac have a properly big back seat? Shouldn’t it be properly long, low, and wide? Shouldn’t it have the streetside presence of a much more costly car, rather than the silhouette of its $49,000 Chevrolet sibling? And don’t you want to have a barrel of fun hustling your big Cadillac down your favourite Nürburgring-impersonating road?

There’s the rub, of course. You may not want, need, or expect your 17-foot-long Cadillac sedan to be enjoyable to drive — not just to be in, but to drive. Moreover, even if that’s what you want, it may not be possible for the CT6’s endearing on-road behavior to counteract a number of Cadillac idiosyncrasies.

Before we deal with the 2017 Cadillac CT6’s perks and peculiarities, understanding the CT6 we’re testing is vital. A basic, $54,790 rear-wheel-drive Cadillac CT6 with a 265 horsepower, 2.0-liter, turbocharged four-cylinder isn’t going to feel like the all-wheel-drive 3.0-liter, twin-turbocharged, 404 horsepower car we tested, and not just because of the 139-horse difference and extra set of driven wheels. (In between, there’s a $57,490 335-horsepower 3.6-liter V6 that comes standard with AWD.)

2017 Cadillac CT6 3.0TT - Image: © Timothy Cain/The Truth About Cars

Our CT6 3.0TT AWD Luxury test specimen was equipped with Cadillac’s Active Chassis Package: magnetic ride control, 20-inch wheels (rather than the base car’s 18s), and active rear steering. The final element turns the rear wheels in the same direction as the front pair for greater agility at higher speed; in the opposite direction for a tighter turning circle at low speeds.

The Active Chassis Package was by no means the only addition to the CT6 with which we spent a late-January week, but it was key, along with the mighty engine, to transforming the way the CT6 makes its way down the road.

BLESSINGS & BENEFITS
And oh me oh my does it ever make its way down the road. Credit the twin-turbo V6 for providing torque all across the rev range, causing lag to be an unknown property, and crafting a refined but enthusiastic sound — essentially the only sound that makes its way inside — that prods you to accelerate longer than you legally ought to.

It’s not quite the accelerative force you’ll experience in the smaller CTS Vsport, a car that’ll make its way from rest to 60 mph half a second quicker. But the CT6’s power deficit (16 fewer horsepower than the Vsport, 30 fewer pound-feet of torque) is marginal, and its weight disadvantage (the CT6 3.0TT AWD is only 161 pounds heavier than a V6 AWD CTS) is minor. The eight-speed automatic that seems unfinished at low speeds and light-throttle applications comes into its own under a heavier right foot, swiftly shuffling through gears with the zeal and refinement you wish to encounter across the rev range.

2017 Cadillac CT6 rear - Image: © Timothy Cain/The Truth About Cars

While Cadillac’s new flagship sedan is a meaningful 8.5-inches longer than the CTS, building a bigger car seems to have had no deleterious effect on dynamics. Though lacking the CTS’s sharper, more communicative steering, the Cadillac CT6 is a shockingly effective corner carver for a car of such size. Forget the size, these are vibrant responses regardless of the dimensions. Body roll is held in check, sudden directional shifts are shrugged off, and the CT6 3.0TT blasts out of corners with real aggression.

Brake feel could be better. More importantly, particularly in Sport mode that makes the most of throttle response and properly weights the steering, ride quality becomes too stiff, exacerbated by the low-profile tires on 20-inch wheels. The rear end is prone to harsh impacts unbecoming a car in this category. Ideally, Cadillac would allow a driver to choose Tour and Sport settings separately for the steering, powertrain, and suspension, as many other likeminded systems do.

2017 Cadillac CT6 interior - Image: © Timothy Cain/The Truth About Cars

QUIRKS & QUARKS
The CT6 3.0TT all but nails the driving experience, but the driving environment is another matter.

Yes, there’s enough luxury equipment to go around. Sure, rear seat space – massive center tunnel aside – is expansive. The trunk, let down by a slim opening and an odd shape, still swallows 15.3 cubic feet of snitches, I mean squealers, I mean cargo. Road and wind noise don’t merit discussion. Bose’s 34-speaker Panaray sound system produces the same clarity at a wake-the-neighbors level as it does at a put-the-baby-to-sleep setting. Front seat comfort, bolstered by Mercedes-aping controls on the door, exhibits a new Cadillac seating standard.

In a flagship luxury car, however, stuff, space, and silence isn’t just expected. It’s assumed.

Also assumed, at least in 2017, is an intuitive and speedy infotainment unit and an interior free from obvious miscues.

The mode button that switches the CT6 out of Tour and into Sport or Snow settings responded. Sometimes.

Selections made in the gauge cluster, via steering wheel controls, are met with the timely response of your iPhone. 3G.

The capacitive touch buttons still responsible for some climate functions may complete the task you demand. If you ask nicely.

Cadillac’s favored volume slider is unnecessary, the Home button is a bizarrely long reach for the driver, and the touchpad — not the wheel/knob setup that accompanies superior systems — isn’t the answer for a driver who doesn’t want to take his eyes off the road to survey the screen for accuracy.

Build and material quality does not appear to be the issue (apart from a driver’s door that didn’t like to remain in its detents). The metal shift paddles feel more expensive than a whole Chevrolet Spark. The Panaray’s central speaker rises out of the dashtop with nary a peep.

But the CT6 is a finicky place to spend time. Flagship Cadillacs should always infuse relaxation and never incite frustration.

2017 Cadillac CT6 interior detail - Image: © Timothy Cain/The Truth About Cars

CASH & COMPETITORS
This is not the DeVille your aunt’s building manager drives for a late-night airport limo service. Don’t be offended. I’m not criticizing Aunt Mabel, her super, late nights, limo services, or airports.

But the bridge our minds cross from DeVille, DTS, and XTS across to the 2017 Cadillac CT6 3.0TT AWD Luxury is a bridge that shouldn’t have been built.

This CT6 costs $75,310.

The Advanced Chassis Package we mentioned earlier? $3,300. Bose’s 34-speaker Panaray audio? Brace yourself: $3,700. The Enhanced Vision & Comfort Package (rearview camera mirror, two sunroofs, ventilated front seats, heated rear seats) is $2,025. This particular paint selection, Stellar Black, is $595.

Recognize that this is no mere replacement for Jack Klompus’ Fleetwood. Cadillac’s CT6 aspirations include Mercedes-Benz E-Class-like pricing with S-Class dimensions, an Audi A8 back seat with an Audi A6 payment, a BMW 7 Series for the price of a 5 Series. Prices for the S-Class, A8, and 7 Series, start at $97,525, $83,450, and $82,495, respectively.

CT6 pricing doesn’t begin to enter that territory until you’ve slathered the 3.0TT Premium Luxury with every option or chosen the $89,785 CT6 Platinum.

2017 Cadillac CT6 front - Image: © Timothy Cain/The Truth About Cars

In 2017, Cadillac is not The Standard Of The World. Place blame at the feet of downmarket dealer environments, or rough resale values, or a brand image harmed by generations who are more likely to link big Cadillac sedans to Morty Seinfeld’s Del Boca Vista than Uwe Ellinghaus’ Brooklyn backdrops.

Regardless, the CT6 doesn’t belong in the same conversation as the German leaders, even if it is quieter and drives better.

Imperfect but appealing, flawed but desirable, the 2017 Cadillac CT6 is the car that could begin to change all that. In exchange for your early adoption, Cadillac gives you full-size stature for mid-size money. With top-notch handling thrown in as a bonus, that’s not a bad deal.

[Images: © 2017 Timothy Cain]

Timothy Cain is the founder of GoodCarBadCar.net, which obsesses over the free and frequent publication of U.S. and Canadian auto sales figures. Follow on Twitter @goodcarbadcar and on Facebook.

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154 Comments on “2017 Cadillac CT6 3.0TT Review – Big Car, Big Money, Big Power...”


  • avatar
    RedRocket

    Damn, that is a sexy-looking thing. Nice car.

  • avatar
    OldManPants

    Those clown-tears LEDs ruin the front end. Rear end is slick.

  • avatar
    FreedMike

    Personally, I think the CTS has a better interior (and better interior materials), and that touchpad deal feels like an afterthought. Still, I’d love to drive one of these.

  • avatar
    28-Cars-Later

    Patiently awaiting the Deadweight…

    • 0 avatar
      30-mile fetch

      It’s like the distant thrum of helicopter blades. You feel it before you hear it. You hear it before you see it. Ever closer, it approaches…

    • 0 avatar
      Chets Jalopy

      The old Deadweight was fired. Or there was a labor dispute. The new one doesn’t have the acerbic wit of the old.

    • 0 avatar
      VoGo

      That picture of the CT6 in front of a painting of a woman drinking coffee may just trigger a response.

      • 0 avatar
        30-mile fetch

        That she’s far more interested in her latte doesn’t speak well to the appeal of Cadillac’s new executive sedan.

        • 0 avatar
          TMA1

          That’s because a Cadillac is now an accessory for NYC 30-something with 6-figure jobs and a million dollar trust funds. It’s as disposable as her designer purse and heels.

          Mind you, this is by design. Melody wants Cadillac to be a lifestyle brand. Purchased because it’s cool and stylish, not because it’s the best.

          • 0 avatar
            FreedMike

            “That’s because a *Mercedes, or BMW, or Lexus, or Audi* is now an accessory for NYC 30-something with 6-figure jobs and a million dollar trust funds. It’s as disposable as her designer purse and heels.”

            There, fixed it for you.

            When it comes to luxury cars, lifestyle sells. Lord knows it sells Escalades. It’s part of the game in that segment.

  • avatar
    SCE to AUX

    “Bose’s 34-speaker Panaray sound system”

    I wouldn’t touch this car unless it had 35 speakers.

  • avatar
    seth1065

    “Also assumed, at least in 2017, is an intuitive and speedy infotainment unit and an interior free from obvious miscues.”

    That would be a nice assumption but sadly not the case, no one does a good system , in a lux car, not MB, Audi, BMW none of the germans , I have not driven a Jag , or newer Lexus but have heard they also have issues, the best system belongs to FCA but they have other issues.

    • 0 avatar
      derekson

      I’ve never had any serious complaints with the forms of Audi’s MMI that I’ve used.

    • 0 avatar
      Featherston

      @ seth1065 – I’m a terrible person to judge these things–I prefer a circa 1990 dashboard augmented by some combination of AUX, USB, and extra power plugs to accommodate my passengers’ whims–but I agree on at least two of your points.

      1. I haven’t used Uconnect, but many times I’ve seen reviewers praise it despite being loath to give FCA credit for anything else. It stands to reason it’s the industry leader. Reviewers sure don’t idly praise FCA.
      2. Lexus’ touchpad is a downgrade from its joystick. Predictably, most reviews prefer the touchpad, because newer is always better . . . even when it’s actually worse.

  • avatar

    I would still drive this BECAUSE its not any of the Deutsche Trei Grosser.

  • avatar
    GeneralMalaise

    Great write-up! Especially enjoyed this tidbit: “The trunk, let down by a slim opening and an odd shape, still swallows 15.3 cubic feet of snitches, I mean squealers, I mean cargo.”

    And check for wires! Good stuff!

  • avatar
    28-Cars-Later

    My thoughts…

    “But what does the ATS say about Cadillac;”

    It speaks volumes.

    “A basic, $54,790 rear-wheel-drive Cadillac CT6 with a 265 horsepower, 2.0-liter, turbocharged four-cylinder isn’t going to feel like the all-wheel-drive 3.0-liter”

    Depending on how quickly these fall, I see these as ideal swap candidates for real motors.

    “Our CT6 3.0TT AWD Luxury test specimen was equipped with Cadillac’s Active Chassis Package: magnetic ride control, 20-inch wheels (rather than the base car’s 18s)”

    The wheels shown look horrible, I hope the base car’s are an improvement.

    “It’s not quite the accelerative force you’ll experience in the smaller CTS Vsport, a car that’ll make its way from rest to 60 mph half a second quicker”

    Wait, shouldn’t the $89,000 CT6 be better? No magic tune to at least equalize them?

    “This is not the DeVille your aunt’s building manager drives for a late-night airport limo service. Don’t be offended.”

    Oh a Rat-illac? Chances are the Deville was discarded from fleet at 100K, this ain’t a Panther we’re talkin’ ’bout.

    “But the bridge our minds cross from DeVille, DTS, and XTS across to the 2017 Cadillac CT6 3.0TT AWD Luxury is a bridge that shouldn’t have been built.”

    Barring comments on the cosmetic only difference between G-body Deville and DTS, the reason XTS was spun up was because people wanted that in a Cadillac and the then-existing model lineup could not fill the niche. The Alpha platform models are the ones which should not have been built. This CT6 thing is precisely what people want from a Cadillac car, the flaws being exotic throwaway construction and motors.

    “In 2017, Cadillac is not The Standard Of The World. Place blame at the feet of downmarket dealer environments, or rough resale values, or a brand image harmed by generations who are more likely to link big Cadillac sedans to Morty Seinfeld’s Del Boca Vista than Uwe Ellinghaus’ Brooklyn backdrops.”

    [insert cheap shot at Johann]

    Well seriously, this is a marque which has been mismanaged since 1970 and had been dying since the mid-80s. The brand brand brand approach is indicative of the moot (or even desperate) situation the division is in, when have you known a BRAND to fully succeed without PRODUCT?

    Just look at Cadillac since 1980, its throwing darts at the wall. Big 6.0 RWD with computerz -> Ok back to carb 6.0 RWD -> Oooh newww aluminum V8 with computerz and no power -> Ok its melting -> Ok now FWD with aluminum V8 and computerz with no power and 17mpg! -> New for the 80s, drive your very own Cadillac Cavalier -> Ok we fixed that, now new 4.5 motor and look Italian styled but Detroit assembled Allante -> What? We never sold a Cavalier you must be mistaken -> Ok we finally figured out this aluminum engine thing and look Euro inspired models -> New aluminum motor with cams overhead like Japan and Germany, monster power -> Wait its leaking… but look vrroomm for the 90s -> Look we have a Suburban and a German car now! -> What do you mean its still leaking? -> Wait what do you mean the Catera motor eats itself -> You liked that German car so much here’s another like an F117 which you remember from CNN’s coverage of Gulf War! -> Ok we fixed the leaky motor, we think -> oooo here is a pickup which transforms into an SUV, hey it runs good at least -> Well since nobody wants the F117 here’s the Deville again -> Yes, keep buying our Suburbans, and here’s a German station wagon we mean SUV -> Ok we are super serial now, here is a Saab fake SUV thing we know you’ll love -> Like our gen 2 F117 eh? Just bring that timing chain in for regular service -> Ok new for the 10s drive your very own Cadillac BMW, no you don’t need a backseat and don’t ask about the dash -> Our cars are number fourrr we mean one -> Sure yup we got the Suburban for you -> OMG you guys come look at the CT6 its like our old aluminum motor was reshaped into a model, we’re super serial this time.

    • 0 avatar
      VoGo

      Wow. Please don’t take this as a defense of Johann, but given 28CL’s last paragraph, it makes you wonder how anyone could be successful in resurrecting the Cadillac brand.

      Maybe just rename the Escalade a Buick and start digging a grave next to Oldsmobile?

      • 0 avatar
        28-Cars-Later

        Snark aside its a fairly accurate historical record of the marque since 1980.

        Since 1970, Cadillac along with its parent has pursued volume over exclusivity (and in some cases profits). The Cadillac dealer network was built for such a purpose and ironically the German competition is engaging in the same volume uber alles behavior. In my view however, Cadillac cannot and will not succeed in a continued volume quest because the marque really has little to no cachet in today’s market. There are people who will buy a anything if it was sold as a Mercedes, there are precious few who will buy anything because it is a Cadillac. Therefore cheapened volume intended models are less likely to sell in great numbers, I seem to recall about 60K units of both ATS and CTS selling in MY15 or just over 25% of the whole brand (ATS being the cheap volume model), whereas SRX made up 50% of all sales by itself.

        Personally I don’t think Cadillac as-is can be salvaged, I would go one of two routes: low volume high profit ultra lux (which also means lower revenues and is hard to do with 900+ dealers) OR accept the fact you’re a barely a notch above Honda and Toyota and sell semi-premium for a hair or two over the Japanese competition. Cadillac is not a luxury brand, it is at best the RWD mirror of Buick. Repeat it is not BMW, it is not Mercedes, it is not Lexus, it might barely be Acura. Accept it if you want to keep your 933 dealer network intact and the factories humming, because you can’t be a volume dealer and charge ultra luxury pricing without cachet or demand. Johann could sell a rebadged Lex RX or LS and still lose, just too many decades of fail to add up.

        • 0 avatar
          VoGo

          28CL,
          I meant my comment with respect. You encapsulated 30 years of failure quite well.

        • 0 avatar
          jalop1991

          “it might barely be Acura”

          now now, it’s not nearly THAT bad.

          Acura might barely be Buick, frankly.

          I expect Acura to go away within the next 5 years.

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            “I expect Acura to go away within the next 5 years.”

            I don’t for the same reasons Buick-GMC won’t go away short of bankruptcy. If not for One Ford, I’d wager Mercury would still be with us as well.

          • 0 avatar
            PrincipalDan

            @28-cars,

            Absolutely, I predict that from a long term financial standpoint Acura, Lincoln, and Buick will be more profitable for their parent companies than Cadillac.

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            I agree. I know this is hard to believe but I think Cadillac is living on borrowed time. I could see a scenario where RWD Opels are brought in as Cadillacs and Buick stops using them as rebadges but instead experiments with Chinese market models.

          • 0 avatar
            Adam Tonge

            Lincoln already is profitable. The MKC, MKX, MKZ, and Navigator all justify their existence. Hopefully the Continental does too.

    • 0 avatar
      FreedMike

      So, 28, if the alpha platform cars “should not have been built,” what should have been – more LaCrosse clones like the XTS?

      • 0 avatar
        VoGo

        I think the marketplace has spoken: Cadillac buyers are only interested in utility vehicles. If Benz can have 7 utility vehicles, why can’t Cadillac? Let the cars die on the vine and do not replace.

        • 0 avatar
          FreedMike

          “I think the marketplace has spoken: *luxury* buyers are only interested in utility vehicles.”

          There, fixed it for you.

          Go to Tim’s site, and look at the sales of any of the sedans in this class – Audi, BMW, Mercedes, Lexus, whatever – and you’ll find they’re most likely down substantially, no matter who makes them.

          • 0 avatar
            VoGo

            Fair point. The difference is that BMW, Audi and M-B have a global presence, which allows them the volume to offer cars in the US, even though sales are dwindling. Cadillac is essentially US/Canada only, so they don’t have the volume to justify a bespoke car platform.

            I would not be surprised if 5 years from now the Cadillac lineup consisted of: XT1; XT2 (coupe XT1); XT3; XT4 (coupe XT3); XT5; XT7; Escalade and Escalade XL.

      • 0 avatar
        ajla

        I honestly don’t think a Cruzillac, Regallac, and Impallac would have done any worse.

        VoGo is pretty much correct. Keep the XTS and CT6, kill the Alphas, and then go all CUV/SUV all the time.

      • 0 avatar
        28-Cars-Later

        @Freed

        Correct. Cadillac XTS sells in the low 20000s year after year, and is cheap to spin up because it is a shared platform. If there is a market for it, and it can be produced profitably, go for it.

        http://gmauthority.com/blog/gm/cadillac/xts/cadillac-xts-sales-numbers/

        @VoGo

        Mercedes is a full line automaker, I don’t think Cadillac with its 933 dealers will survive on gas SUV/CUVs alone. Cater to as many markets as you can while remaining profitable and moving units without putting them on clearance right off the bat.

        • 0 avatar
          DeadWeight

          Uncle with the new MY 2014 CTS 3.6 with the oil leak that dealer techs couldn’t fix (4 attempts, still leaking), driver’s side door handle that fell off, strange driveshaft vibration at highway speeds between 78 and 85 mph, and worst of all, transmission that was locking out in 3rd gear finally had enough, and dumped it.

          He picked up a used, one-owner, like brand new 2014 XTS with 19,000 miles for $25,400 from a friend of his who owns Jim Riehl’s Friendly Cadillac off of Romeo Plank in Clinton Township, Michigan.

          I told him to break away from GM but he is a diehard loyalist for some reason beyond my understanding.

          He’s loaded but old school, and laughed and laughed and laughed some more when seeing the sticker prices on the CT6.

          • 0 avatar
            runs_on_h8raide

            “…strange driveshaft vibration at highway speeds between 78 and 85 mph…”

            I’m sure the service advisors told him they couldn’t replicate the problem. I am sure your Uncle said did you go up to the speed at which it vibrates. I am sure the service advisor then explained they can only go the posted speed limit and on the highway it’s 55 or 65mph.

            “Sir, we advise you to maintain speeds at the posted limits. If there’s any reason you cannot give us all 10s on this survey, please let us know.”

        • 0 avatar
          FreedMike

          @28:

          Well, then the haters will whine about how Cadillac is just “badge engineering” all its’ stuff, which is pretty much Ford’s plan with Lincoln.

          And speaking of the XTS, I sure see a lot of one-year-old ones on Cars.com at steep discounts. Guess where they spent their first year of life? Avis. I’d be interested in knowing the numbers, but I bet this car is a fleet queen. It also racks up big sales to folks like funeral directors, livery services, etc. Twenty bucks says Continental begins owning that market very soon, if it already doesn’t.

          I’d say the winning idea for Cadillac is to continually update the sedans, and introduce more CUVs. A small one, ala MKC/X3, is apparently on its’ way and can’t arrive a minute too soon.

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            I like the fact Cadillac attempted to do something besides badge engineering, but the problem is what they did kinda sucks and they are paying for it big time.

            I think the marque would have enjoyed moderate success with a CT6 which doesn’t have a semi-aluminium body and doesn’t employ the same motor as the Malibu in any configuration. GM did what is has been doing since at least the mid 80s, they do all of the experimental stuff in the Cadillac (and the then Olds) line and force the customers to be your beta testers. Successful features or designs end up in lowered tiered GM or are simply forgotten. In my mind, this is penny wise and pound foolish at least at this point. CT6 should just work and not cost and arm and a leg. GM has one of the best gas powerplants on the planet, yet…

            I agree in CUV and I was calling for an Alpha CUV at least two years ago, but a CUV isn’t going to turn it around.

          • 0 avatar
            FreedMike

            You’re right, 28, but higher quality materials and better designed interiors are a lot cheaper to do than platform redesigns.

            If I were Cadillac, I’d kidnap the children of whoever designed the C-class interior and demand he or she come to work for me. THAT’S how you do a luxury car interior.

          • 0 avatar
            jalop1991

            ” “badge engineering” all its’ stuff, which is pretty much Ford’s plan with Lincoln.”

            You misspelled “Honda” and “Acura” there.

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            @Freed

            I agree to the first point, but I think the last thing needed at Soho is more Germans :D

          • 0 avatar
            05lgt

            They can’t waste time worrying about whining haters. If they were making profitable sales they could laugh all the way to the bank.

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            I suspect the division is not as successful as one might think. I can’t imagine the Alpha has been very profitable for them, or the ELR, or soon to be the CT6.

          • 0 avatar
            DeadWeight

            Acura can lick the sweat off of my ball sack.

            Fruckaroo, Acura!

    • 0 avatar
      Firestorm 500

      28-Cars-Later: Be sure to save that post and update it from time to time.

      Classic.

    • 0 avatar
      John-95_Taurus_3.0_AX4N

      Oh 28, they broke the mold when they made you. Geeze I don’t know how, but you brightened an otherwise absolutely awful day.

      I love the synopsis of Cadillac, that was awesome. I thought I was the only one who thought the first SRX was more station wagon than CUV. Even the (admittedly ugly and undesirable) Taurus X looked more like a decent SUV knockoff. The new Kia Sedona looks more SUVish.

  • avatar
    ajla

    The Germans and Koreans will at least still allow you a V8 car when you spend $75K. I guess Infiniti will too. For now.

    You can’t even really point to fuel economy because this gets the same ratings as the S6 and A8 4.0T. It does beat the 450hp S550 4Matic by one MPG I guess.

    I know there is supposed to be some whiz-bang DOHC V8 for the CT6 at some point, but with Cadillac’s current pricing that will probably start at $95K.

    • 0 avatar
      FreedMike

      True, but a) those $75,000 German cars with V-8s are a lot smaller, and b) a Genesis is still a freakin’ Hyundai.

      • 0 avatar
        ajla

        Can’t get a V8 in the smaller Cadillacs for $75K either.

        And according to the EPA the ATS-V gets the same fuel economy as a C63 S and a CTS vSport RWD gets the same as a Charger SRT (LAWL).

        These GM turbo V6s need some more time in the oven to justify their existence..

        • 0 avatar
          FreedMike

          True, but again…are the V-8 versions of the 5-series and E-class the ones you see around most commonly? No. The ones that sell in volume are the six-cylinder models.

          As long as a six is well executed, I think it largely obviates the need for a V-8. BMW and Audi, in particular, do a great job with their sixes. That 535 I reviewed a few years back was a no-excuses, kick-a** car, V-8 or not. I sure as hell didn’t wish for a V-8 in it.

          I’ve long said one of Cadillac’s main problems is that its’ engines aren’t brand exclusive. They’re competent enough, but at the end of the day, motors like the 3.6 or 2.0T are exactly the same as the ones used in any number of lesser GM cars. At a minimum, they should be using the basic engine design but massaging it or upgrading it so thoroughly that it’s truly an exclusive, Cadillac-only engine.

          So, fine, if you want to have a 2.0 turbo standard in the ATS and CTS, do it…but make it twin-turbocharged, or maybe even supercharged. Use the naturally aspirated 3.6, but trick it out.

          And there’s no way that someone looking at a $50,000 ATS should be looking at the same engine that you can get in a freakin’ Malibu.

          If they want to sell performance sedans, then maybe the key is to add more performance, y’know?

          • 0 avatar
            tonycd

            “There’s no way that someone looking at a $50,000 ATS should be looking at the same engine that you can get in a freakin’ Malibu.”

            Thoroughly agree, Freed. And to me, that’s even truer of a $54,000 full-sizer that’s supposed to be the brand’s flagship sedan. Why dilute the brand with a 2.0 four-banger for $54,000 when the V6 is only $3k more? Nobody with half a brain would buy one, and the price difference isn’t going to generate showroom traffic. Unless they’re playing EPA games, it’s pointless and counterproductive.

          • 0 avatar
            derekson

            As much as people like to crap on VWAG, this is one thing they get right. Audi gets the latest and most advanced developments of each engine, and then they seem to trickle down a generation later to VW, Skoda, Seat, etc.

          • 0 avatar
            bunkie

            “are the V-8 versions of the 5-series and E-class the ones you see around most commonly? No. The ones that sell in volume are the six-cylinder models.”

            For the 5-series, the volume model is the 2-litre 4. MB was the holdout with the E, with a V6 standard, but that has changed with the new model, expect the volume model to be the four as well. Four is the new six…

          • 0 avatar
            FreedMike

            Kinda speaks to my point, Bunkie. V-8s aren’t the thing in this class anymore.

          • 0 avatar
            Corey Lewis

            If you don’t admit it, then it’s not true!

          • 0 avatar
            John-95_Taurus_3.0_AX4N

            “I’ve long said one of Cadillac’s main problems is that its’ engines aren’t brand exclusive.”

            When they do that, like Lincoln did with its 3.0L TT, everyone will complain about how it won’t be reliable and bla bla bla.

            Face it, NOTHING Lincoln or Cadillac can do will ever be good enough for people who have decided to hate them.

            They could build a car that out runs a Ferrari, makes an S-Class look like a Forte on feature content, gets Prius MPG, and costs less than an A4 and it would *still* be all wrong and terrible and awful and with no hope whatsoever.

  • avatar
    mike978

    Maybe I misread but I don`t know Tim’s conclusion. He says :

    “Regardless, the CT6 doesn’t belong in the same conversation as the German leaders, even if it is quieter and drives better.”

    But then goes onto say :
    “Imperfect but appealing, flawed but desirable, the 2017 Cadillac CT6 is the car that could begin to change all that. In exchange for your early adoption, Cadillac gives you full-size stature for mid-size money. With top-notch handling thrown in as a bonus, that’s not a bad deal.”

    So what is it – does it compete and stand up to the Germans in the class or is it a near miss like say the Continental etc?

    • 0 avatar
      DeadWeight

      It has cheaper plastics and leather, worse fit and finish, and most importantly, way worse ride quality than any German (or Japanese) large sedans that sticker for anywhere near 75k (let alone 85k).

      The ride quality issue is a big problem for Cadillac, since not only have they abandoned traditional Cadillac cush, but they now have vehicles that ride far more harshly than German and Japanese (and now, Korean) competitors.

      Ride quality used to be a defining DNA trait of Cadillac, yet they just threw it completely out the window, like a baby with the bath water.

      F*CKING IDIOTS.

  • avatar

    My test drive of the CT6 is far less positive than the OP. I didn’t like how cramped it felt, the rough ride, or the bizarrely placed centre vents.

    If this is supposed to compete with the S-Klasses and 7 Series of the world…well, it doesn’t.

  • avatar
    jonnyanalog

    If Cadillac wants to be the ‘Standard of the World’ it needs to get back to its roots of unapologetic American luxury. The 16 would have been a good start.
    These current cars are trying too hard to be European and its not working; never has.

    The CT6, while nice, doesn’t know what it needs to be as described in the article.
    The front end is pretty bold while the rest of the car is flat out boring. The interior is safe as well.

  • avatar
    DeadWeight

    This was already reviewed by Tim Cain, in short-wheelbase form, back in 2014:

    https://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2014/08/capsule-review-2014-cadillac-cts-v-sport/

    How many has Cadillac sold since then, and at what prices (hint: not many, and massive discounting
    ensued, with end-of-world type depreciation).

    The CT6 has ONE THING to show for the 12 billion dollar blank check Johan got from Mary Buggin’ Barra: A LARGER REAR SEAT (Cadillac, pay me a couple million a year and I’ll give you an even larger rear seat, A BETTER 102-SPEAKER STEREO SYSTEM, AND SUPREMELY COMFORTABLE, S-CLASS COMPETITIVE RIDE QUALITY, for $0 of additional investment).

    So, let’s review:

    It has roughly as much horsepower as the competition, if one springs for the twin-turbo V6.

    It has a cheaper cut interior than the CTS V-Sport Tim Cain reviewed 2 1/2 years ago.

    It has a relatively atrocious ride – worse than the CTS V-Sport Tim Cain reviewed 2 1/2 years ago, the XTS, or base CTS (read the many reviews that speak about this, and in every trim, and with suspension mode set in every setting, including cars equipped with MRC).

    It has overly and unnecessarily complex chassis fabrication that will prove to be an absolute nightmare in terms of durability or repair.

    It’s priced in the near $70k to $80k territory decently equipped.

    It has CUE.

    It’s made by GM, and serviced by GM dealers.

    So, Johan finally rectified 1 out of approximately 100 deficits relative to the competition, at great complexity and even greater cost, to wit, the 12 billion dollar larger rear seat, in a car with a uniquely harsh, unrefined ride quality, unbecoming anny 75k-80kish luxury sedan, with cheap plastics throughout, sure-to-be reliability on par or far worse than the worst of zeee Germans, and at a time when….

    “…Cadillac sold more XT5s in the final six weeks of 2016 than the CT6 managed in nine months.”

    #JohanBroughtLargerRearSeatToParty

    #OnlyCost12BillionUSD

    #MCRQGNAA (Make Cadillac Ride Quality Great, Not Atrocious, Again)

    #BSEB2B0DWIYDGABT (Buy super-extended bumper to bumper $0 deductible warranty if you dare greatly and buy this)

    #TrifectaTune

  • avatar
    Corey Lewis

    Looks pretty good! I’m so impressed that I’d go spend my identical money on the LS460 AWD instead.

  • avatar
    sportyaccordy

    Thing that kills me is Caddy’s fixes are pretty easy. Maybe really really easy actually.

    LT-1 the ATS-V. If LT is good for the more expensive CTS-V why not the little ATS? Continuity please.

    Admit defeat and throw CUE into the deepest chasm you can find. There is no fathomable reason why a $17K Chevy Sonic should have a more intuitive and better designed infotainment interface than your luxury brand’s flagship. NONE!!!!!

    People who want American luxury are not looking for staid modesty. Deliver on the promise of style your concept cars keep making.

    Back seats for the love of God.

    You know this whole fiasco could have been avoided if they had just styled the XTS better and offered it with a short wheelbase. I did a quick PS experiment where I chopped about 5-6″ of length out of the rear door… it looks really good. Give it a Kamm back, offer the 2.0T as the base engine, call it the Seville.

  • avatar
    PrincipalDan

    “refined but enthusiastic sound”

    Well that’s something that has long given encouragement to the male of the species.

  • avatar
    dwford

    But how does it compare to the Lincoln Continental?

    • 0 avatar
      FreedMike

      That’s an excellent question. The reviews of the Continental I’ve read indicate it’s a solid driver but not quite fully baked. Decent chassis but not so grat ride quality. Plus, lots of interior cheapness in the one I sat in. It’s a looker, though.

      • 0 avatar
        dal20402

        The biggest red flags for me are 1) the old six-speed transmission, which was never very brainy, and 2) the fact that you have to step all the way up to Black Label with options at 65k+ (70k+ with 3.0T) to get the proper seats and interior pieces.

        • 0 avatar
          FreedMike

          …and not all Lincoln dealers can even sell Black Label. There isn’t one here in Denver.

          Admittedly, my “experience” with the Continental was a few minutes checking one out on a dealer lot, but honestly, the materials inside didn’t impress me much, and the model I looked at was pretty close to top of the line…$67,000 sticker. The CT6 isn’t particularly impressive inside either, but apparently it’s a blast to drive, so there’s that.

          All in all, I think I’d skip both and go for a loaded up Mercedes E-Class.

  • avatar
    Geekcarlover

    I’m lousy at converting SAE to metric. As to trunk space, how many dead hookers equal a snitch?

  • avatar
    ponchoman49

    Never have two luxury sedans caused more parity than the new CT6 and Continental in me and some fellow car guys eyes. This review just double confirms that. This Cadillac looks stately and elegant whereas the Lincoln looks dowdy, frumpier and less distinctive. The Lincoln counters with a more upscale and comfort oriented interior if that is your bag. And it offers more interior color choices than the tiresome black tan and grey done to death at nausea Millennia. Both have 400 HP twin turbo V6’s that perform well but the Lincoln is using an older 6 speed vs the newer GM 8 speed unit. This gives the large Caddy better MPG figures too but the 2.0T is not really appropriate in a car of this calibre unless it’s a hybrid which is currently not available on either. The Lincoln’s gimmicky exterior door handles are not liked by any of us and we all agreed the Cadillac’s normal gear selector is better for day to day use than the Lincoln’s push buttons. Neither has a trunk befitting a luxury full sizer. Can’t wait to drive both and draw more comparisons.

  • avatar
    Drzhivago138

    “[Active rear steering] turns the rear wheels in the same direction as the front pair for greater agility at higher speed; in the opposite direction for a tighter turning circle at low speeds.”

    Quadrasteer’s back, baby!

    • 0 avatar
      JMII

      A Honda Prelude from 1987 did this too.

      I’ve been on track in CTS-V (with a 6sp manual to boot!) and that thing can MOVE. I honestly thought it was the previous model with the supercharger, but no it was the twin turbo. It had tons of fancy do-dads in the center display that I can only assume carried over from the ‘Vette since it had G-force, lap timer (with video overlay from a built in dash cam!), oil temp, etc. It was an impressive car but the capacitive touch buttons on the dash seemed like a gimmick.

  • avatar
    redliner

    I was VERY interested in the CT6 as a Gen 1 Volt replacement. Until I found out that magnetic ride control, Super Cruise and the Panaray sound system are not available on the plug-in. Without the headline options, what’s the point? I totally lost interest in the CT6. Now I’m looking into a Volvo S90 T8 plug-in.

    • 0 avatar
      sportyaccordy

      I hope you are buying or generating clean power.

      • 0 avatar
        redliner

        It’s mostly nuclear with a bit of solar thrown in. I drive electric because I like the feel of smooth quite power and the general principle of being more efficient than an ICE. Environmental benefits are welcome, but even if it was equally dirty as gasoline I would still choose electric.

  • avatar
    whitworth

    It’s probably the best looking big sedan right now, but the price is outrageous. And the quality touches are concerning.

    Those 20″ rims look so aftermarket. I hate big rims in general, such a silly styling trend with so many downsides.

    • 0 avatar
      PrincipalDan

      Yeah I wonder if the 18s would fit or if they put bigger brakes on the twin turbo? MORE SIDEWALL, FOR THE LOVE OF GOD, MORE SIDEWALL.

      Looking at many reviews I still feel like the Continental is the better long term bet.

    • 0 avatar
      jkross22

      Yep, by the time you load this up with the ‘gotta have’ options, the price is nonsensical.

      All the seats are really comfortable and it’s a nice size, good looking car, but what was GM thinking putting a 4 pot in their top shelf sedan?

      Ze Germans are doing that to their mid sizers , but they have their reputations and badges to help sell their tarted up Camry wannabes with 4 cylinder engines. Cadillac has the….. Cimarron.

  • avatar
    Mandalorian

    It’s a nice car but simply too expensive. The Germans and Jaguar can get away with this kind of pricing, but not Cadillac. $75k is Escalade money, or a Yukon Denali and a vacation.

    For every one CTS I see in the wild, I probably see 75 Escalades and 50 SRXs.

  • avatar
    Dan R

    No.

  • avatar
    RedRocket

    These comments all read like they are from a bunch of guys saving up for a new fart-can muffler and “No Fear” windshield band for their ’94 Civic.

  • avatar
    dal20402

    I love the way this looks.

    I love the space-to-weight ratio. This thing is an honest quarter-ton lighter than most of the competition.

    I’m concerned about what multiple reviews are saying about the ride.

    I’ll test drive one at some point out of curiosity, although my next car is not likely to be a full-size sedan.

    I don’t think this was strategically the right move. If I could develop one flagship product at great expense for Cadillac, it would be an SUV without the Tahoe bones that can truly compete with the Range Rover. The Escalade is good for its buyers but it comes across as way too cheap and unrefined to build the brand, between its ride quality, its sound, and its Impala-grade interior.

  • avatar
    SMIA1948

    So, the biggest Cadillac sedan has a 15.3 cubic foot trunk. No thanks.

  • avatar
    runs_on_h8raide

    While we are on the subject of Cadillac…a quick off shoot….can someone explain to me why Buick still exists as well…at least here in the US? I know, I know…”muh China market”

    • 0 avatar
      Corey Lewis

      Well, the Buick brand would lack American “mystique” or whatever you want to call it if it were not sold here, and thus be less attractive to Chinese customers.

      A secondary reason is they need Buick to sell rebadged Opel crap.

      Similar example, think of how many fewer Range Rovers they’d sell if they weren’t the representation of upper-crust Britishness.

    • 0 avatar
      28-Cars-Later

      Several reasons:

      -There is a Buick-GMC distro channel with at least several hundred dealers which require product.
      -Buick has become an additional place for Chevrolet and misc foreign product (Opel) to be sold at higher margins in USDM.
      -Buick, in my view, has become the FWD part of the GM semi-premium diad (Cadillac RWD/Buick FWD).
      -Lutz stated a dead Buick in the US hurts Buick in China (or something to this effect).

    • 0 avatar
      RedRocket

      Buick is a better-trimmed, quieter, and (to some) more prestigious Chevy.

      Encore = Trax
      Verano (RIP) = Cruze
      Regal = Malibu
      Lacrosse = Impala
      Enclave = Traverse

      The Envision, the mid-sized Chinese SUV, and the Cascada convertible, are the only unique Buick products at the moment.

      I’m not sure the Buick attributes are worth the price premium right now, though Buicks are arguably better-styled than the equivalent Chevys.

      But I do think GM needs something between Chevy and Cadillac, especially given Cadillac’s attempt to move upmarket, for those people who perceive Chevy as cheap.

  • avatar
    Johnster

    This CT6 kind of seems like a more grown-up STS. It still needs a long-wheelbase version and a V-8 though. Personally, I wouldn’t mind having a Corvette V-8 option like is available on the CTS-V. You really need a V-8 (even if only as an option) to be taken seriously as a world-wide competitor.

  • avatar
    baggins

    I was attracted to this, because I thought you get a 1/2 size bigger car than the Eclass for similar money. Plus I’d love to have a Cadillac vs the Audi/BMW/Benz that are so common. I also like the distinctive looks, its sharp in appearance and masculine I think.

    I am 6’4. Car felt super cramped. The console, the low roof. Forget it. I realize that 6’4 is above the 95th percentile, but I dont think it would feel spacious to a six footer either.

    I tried an E class as well. Same problem.

    Everyone wants to be low and sleek, but that’s not the only type of luxury.

    I think a subaru forester is more luxurious in some ways becuase i have some room over my head, room for my knees, and I can see out of it.

  • avatar
    Frylock350

    Meh. I’ll take a Hellcat.

  • avatar
    Edsel Maserati

    After a week in a CT6 I turned it in with reluctance. I really liked that baby. I’m 6-foot-1 and it fit me well.

    Years ago I had some time in a CTS V-Sport which was cool in a lot of respects (knife-edge responses being the most impressive) but which lost me for being too harsh on bumpy back roads. I could see that the CTS Sport would be a winning car on fast, well-paved mountain roads in Arizona, let’s say. But in the northeast? Nah. It was just too taut.

    I took the CT6 over the same gnarly back roads and it went with aplomb. I simply do not understand the comments above about it being too harsh. Did they actually drive the CT6? I had the full Platinum 3.0 TT like the OP’s tester. Calling on the power was a beautiful thing — a lovely rush of acceleration that came on strong. I mean, it was no Bentley Continental GT, or even an AMG Mercedes, but it did feel nice and strong. It gave me pause just one time — from a stop sign I was turning hard left and accelerating angrily and it went into a momentary “HEY STOP THAT”pause. Then it went. Still, I had to wonder what the hell all that was about.

    Gave a ride to some folks one night and they RAVED about that back seat. It is a charming space back there. It’s pretty shocking how many sedans and crossovers give the rear passengers insultingly thin seats.

    Anyone who demands bigger can wait for the coming CT8.

    I understand the way Cadillac positioned this — somewhere between a Mercedes E Class and an S class. Works for me. I don’t believe the test above makes enough of the way aluminum was used to make it all lighter. (And yes, I’m aware that the aluminum might entail difficulties if extensive repairs are needed. Audi and Jaguar also face this.) It’s a biggish car, and does NOT feel like a tank. An Audi A8L feels grander, and has a much better dash — but costs way more. If you don’t need the sumptuous rear seats then … hm… an Audi A6 comes into view.

    The CT6 is more extroverted. Besides the price, the most serious reservation I would have is the CUE system. It’s better than previous iterations. But once you drive an Audi, you wonder why Cadillac and Jaguar still stick with their foolish systems. (Oh, they want to reach the smart-phone addicts. Is that it? Build a dashboard system that works like a cell phone? And requires you take your eyes off the road for seconds at a time?) For all that I dug the hell out of the CT6 and would love to run one across the country. I’d look for back roads, too.

  • avatar
    Middle-Aged Miata Man

    This honestly looks like a great car, possibly an excellent one, but… I just can’t imagine how the Cadillac name will ever again be seen as desirable to most HNW individuals.

    The brand is forever tarnished by literal decades of blunders, and that’s just too much baggage to ever overcome. Even recent efforts like this and the XT5 haven’t come close to making a dent in that.

  • avatar
    Wodehouse

    I drove one of these depressingly black things on a 4 day trip. The thing that bothered me most was having to look at it! The styling and design, inside and out, is just wrong. Not ugly, but, wrong. The outside looks like some sort of Chinese knockoff Audi and it isn’t the least bit forward looking or distinctive. Does anyone really want their Cadillac to resemble an Audi?

    The interior is messy, fussy and has a whiff of “cheap ‘n’ cheesy” about it’s shapes and layout. Trying too hard, maybe? It doesn’t seem quite “finished”.

    The drive was impressively sharp and buttoned down, though. The ride is good in that modern, slightly brittle fashion that is the current yardstick of a good ride.

  • avatar
    Spartan

    I like the CT6, but I would much prefer it without a forced induction motor, preferably a NA V8. Why can’t they offer this with a the 6.2L LT1?

    The character of this car would be different, in a good way, if it had a NA V8. It would feel like a Cadillac. It would sound like a Cadillac.

    The Escalade is the only way to get a true Cadillac. Everything else just seems disconnected from the brand.

  • avatar
    Tomsriv

    I really want to like Cadillacs. I have a V16. But after seeing the amazing concept cars of the last few years and then seeing what they actually produce I am angry and disappointed. This car has zero presence. It doesn’t say “class” when I look at it. It’s another miss.


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