2014 CTS VSPORT HAS CADILLAC’S FIRST TWIN TURBO ENGINE
By Tom Crosby
Cadillacs just seem to get better and better and that evolution shows up once again this year with the all-new CTS sedan’s predatory appearance in a longer, lighter, sleeker car propelled by the company’s first twin-turbo V-6 engine powerful enough to catch most anything it chases.
The automatic 8-speed transmission is Cadillac’s first and the chrome steering-wheel-mounted manual paddles rev up the rpm’s for ear-thumping sound and neck-snapping acceleration.
The CTS quickly addicts a driver with precise handling and a refined ride with lightning-fast Magnetic Ride Control that justifies the narrower and lower profile highlighted by the aggressive front fascia with recessed headlights under metallic eyebrows, oversized chrome grille and pushed-out fender arches.
This is the third generation rear-wheel drive CTS and it garnered Car of the Year from Motor Trend Magazine and was named one of 2014’s 10 Best Cars by Car and Driver Magazine – heady plaudits for the five-passenger mid-size luxury sedan.
We drove the VSport (V models exhibit the highest performance traits in Cadillac’s models) Premium, top-of-the-line. There are also base, Luxury and Performance Collection versions with different engine choices. All use CUE (Cadillac User Experience) to provide voice activated infotainment, the best driving choice. Premium uses a 8-inch screen above a smooth black dashboard with chrome strips for manually manipulating controls.
Manual use can tempt eyes-off-the-road if you don’t study it first, although on-screen icons are huge and configurable. Gauges are huge and a heads-up display shows your speed and legal speed.
Interior fit and finish would please any driver with OCD – everything in our VSport was posh, with red semi-aniline leather trim ($1,650 extra) complimenting black leather seats, chrome accents and upscale materials. Bolstered front seats were comfortable for long drives but rear seating – due to a two-inch slice off previous width – is tight for three adults, acceptable for two. Rear window visibility is tight.
VSport shed 250 pounds and glides on 18-inch run-flat tires with Brembo’s popular grab/hold brakes providing stopping confidence. The sport-tuned suspension makes the CTS VSport racecar worthy. Drivers choose among four driving modes – track, sport, snow and tour.
Trunk space is average with no spare tire and knick-knack space is minimal. The CTS VSport has top federal crash ratings, a vibrating seat safety alert for blind spot or collision and automatic seat belt tightening. The navigation system displays are top-notch, with excellent side street detail.
LIKES: Looks, power, luxury, handling, ride, quiet
DISLIKES: Rear visibility, seat space
BOTTOM LINE: Pricey and addictive to drive; it deserves its awards and then some
- Base price w/destination charge $69,995
- Vehicle curb weight 3,616 lbs
- Wheelbase 114.6 inches
- Length 195.5inches
- Width 72.2 inches
- Engine specs 3.6-liter, V6, DOHC, twin-turbo
- Horsepower 420 hp at 5,750 rpm
- Torque 430 ft-lbs at 3,500-4,500 rpm
- Transmission 8-speed automatic w/manual paddles
- EPA Rating 16 mpg city and 24 mpg highway
- Range 19-gallon tank, premium unleaded
- Performance 0 to 60 seconds in under 5 seconds
- EPA Rating 24 mpg city and 33 mpg highway
- Range 14.5-gallon tank, premium fuel
- Performance 0-60 in just under 6 seconds