There’s no denying that the new CTS-V is a force to be reckoned with, but if you don’t need a supercharged V8, Cadillac has a few alternatives. For 2015, the mid-level offering is the CTS Vsport which has the twin turbo 3.6-liter V6 from the ATS-V tuned to 420 hp. Below that is a naturally aspirated version at 321 hp, and for the entry level they offer a 272 hp 2.0-liter turbo four with 295 lb-ft of torque. Last year our friends at Motor Trend named it their Car of the Year, and it’s easy to see why.
While we wait our turn to test the new V, Cadillac sent us a 2015 Cadillac CTS 2.0 Turbo Luxury Collection with every possible option. At first glance, it looks like a custom paint job. The amount of metal flake in the clear coat makes for a brilliant display in sunlight, with very little orange peel to be found.
Moving to the smaller Alpha chassis, we expected the interior to be similar to GM’s other sedans. This isn’t the case, as the quality of materials and careful styling sets the CTS apart from its stable mates. The center console is dominated by the familiar CUE system. You either love it or hate it, but Cadillac says it’s here to stay. The instrument cluster is now an HD screen with multiple display modes. In contrast to the angular exterior, most interior features have flowing lines and curved contours.
On the road, the CTS is as quiet and composed as other premium sedans we have tested. In our urban test loop the front Brembo brakes performed flawlessly and the optional sport suspension offered more grip than we were expecting. The only major issue with the CTS in 2.0 Turbo trim is power availability. We knew it wasn’t going to be a C63 AMG killer, but the procedure to stay in the powerband is rather involved.
With the optional 3.45 differential, first gear is over in about 10 feet, causing an almost immediate shift to second gear. The computer bleeds off boost during the shift, and the party is over. Yes, the 2.0 Turbo CTS will burn rubber, for a limited time only. Adequate power is available at wide open throttle, but almost underwhelming in traffic. To generate passing power, multiple downshifts of the six speed automatic push the engine speed high enough to spin the turbo, but the car feels restrained by the weight of all the luxuries it provides.
For 2016, all CTS models will have the new eight speed automatic, which will help acceleration and fuel mileage across the board. Pricing will remain constant, with Luxury Collection 2.0 Turbo models retailing for $53,860. Stay tuned to Autofluence for more reviews and Cadillac News.
(Image Source: Cadillac)