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Five Reasons to Buy: 2011 Cadillac CTS

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author photo by Autotrader May 2011

Now in its second generation, the Cadillac CTS has been a welcome bright spot for General Motors during its recent corporate struggles. Cadillac’s engineers understood that the luxury-vehicle winds were blowing toward Europe, and they responded with a genuine luxury-sport offering that competes well against European and Japanese rivals.

The original CTS clearly heralded Cadillac’s departure from its land-yacht past, boasting edgy styling and a sporty character; however, it was let down by subpar interior quality and an exterior shape that wasn’t fully resolved. The current CTS has grabbed the baton and made the original model’s flaws a distant memory while adding two new body-styles–a wagon and a coupe.

Here are AutoTrader’s five reasons to buy the 2011 Cadillac CTS:

  1. Unique Styling: Cadillac has applied its angular design language to almost every vehicle in its lineup, but only the CTS pulls it off with such resounding success. Marrying classic Cadillac styling cues (like tall, narrow taillights) with thoroughly modern creases and proportions, the CTS’s is one of the most attractive and distinctive sedans on the market. Notably, the rakish new wagon model gives up nothing stylistically to the sedan. The coupe is the only slight disappointment here–unless you’re like Sir Mix-a-Lot and like a certain sized rear end.
  2. Satisfying 3.6-liter V6: We appreciate Cadillac’s effort to keep costs down and fuel economy up with the CTS’s base 3.0-liter V6, but the 3.6-liter V6 is where it’s at. You get 306 horsepower, 273 pound-feet of torque, and combined fuel economy of 21 miles per gallon, just 1 mpg behind the smaller V6. This is a proper luxury-car motor–strong and sweet, with just the right amount of menace in its growl. The base Camaro is very fortunate that the CTS decided to share as it uses the same V6.
  3. Upscale Interior: Check out the sleek curves of the dashboard, and how the infotainment screen motors up out of the center stack and then retracts when not in use, with the top inch or so serving as the stereo display by default. Materials quality is significantly improved as well. The interior doesn’t quite set a world standard, but it’s definitely nothing to be ashamed of at the CTS’s price point.
  4. Sophisticated Drive: Lots of automakers these days talk about how their performance models were tuned on the Nurburgring, a notoriously challenging racetrack in rural Germany, but oftentimes the real-world character of these models turns out to be disappointing. Fortunately, Cadillac nailed it with the Nurburgring-tuned CTS. There’s a flavor here for every driver: the FE1 package is soft and smooth, FE2 is Euro-supple, and FE3 is taut and reactive, while the latter two offer impressive back-road composure. Moreover, the steering is reassuringly substantial and precise across the lineup.
  5. V is for “Wunderbar”: Suppose you’ve got more money to play with, and that 306-horsepower rating doesn’t impress you much. That’s where the CTS-V comes in. Long story short, Cadillac let its go-fast specialists loose on every aspect of the CTS for the V treatment, and the result is a re-engineered vehicle with subtle exterior styling differences, sports-car-like handling, and a supercharged, 556-horsepower V8. You can get the CTS-V in any of the three body styles, too, which gives Cadillac the honor of being the sole current purveyor of a 500-plus-horsepower wagon in the United States. A manual transmission is also available with every V model.
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Used 2011 Cadillac CTS Luxury Sedan
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Used 2011 Cadillac CTS V
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Used 2011 Cadillac CTS Premium AWD Sedan
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Used 2011 Cadillac CTS Performance
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This image is a stock photo and is not an exact representation of any vehicle offered for sale. Advertised vehicles of this model may have styling, trim levels, colors and optional equipment that differ from the stock photo.
Five Reasons to Buy: 2011 Cadillac CTS - Autotrader