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Driven: Cadillac CTS Sport Luxury


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The 4,828mm long CTS is not a car for wall flowers. Every inch of its imposing bodywork feels purposeful and full of self-importance; its sharp-angled grille bears down on traffic and demands to be let through.

Surprisingly, this American hulk feels European to drive. If you expect a wallowy, impassive experience, you’re in for a shock.

The 3.6 V6 glides smoothly through the gears, while the rear-wheel drive chassis and suspension copes admirably with the UK’s twisty, less-than-perfect road surfaces.

Most impressive of all is the reaction when you put your foot hard to the floor – the V6 reacts immediately and manages to raise a smile after even the longest day at the office. It appeals as a chauffeur’s car: drive the boss smoothly and efficiently to the required destination, then foot down fun on the way back.

The interior is OK, but there is rather too much plastic around. In our car, the interior was pale, and we’ve yet to find any plastic work that looks good in a cream/beige tone. The steering wheel adjusts incredibly easily for rake (although it doesn’t adjust for reach), while the front seats have eight-way power adjust to cater for any driver.

There is, as you’d expect from a car of this size, plenty of space for five adults, without them having to get too personally acquainted. There’s also a mass of room in the boot.

Standard equipment is generous, including: leather trim; cruise control; xenon headlamps; navigation; dual zone climate control; heated front seats; and in-dash six-CD changer with a Bose eight-speaker system.

Options bump the reasonable price up, however. DVD sat-nav comes in at £2,050; leather interior at £1,050; metallic paint £600; while a power sunroof costs £900.

The CTS is a rarity on our roads, which is a shame. That said, our nearest dealer (to Peterborough) is Luton, which could explain it. Outlets near to home, in Leicester and Northampton, are due before the end of the year.

CTS sales are 300 since launch, but Cadillac does not have any projected sales until year end, or for next year.

Price: £29,895
Engine: 3.6 V6, 253bhp@ 6,200rpm, 250lb ft @ 3,200rpm
Performance: 0-62mph 7.0sec, top speed 145mph
Transmission: Five-speed automatic
Efficiency: 24.4mpg (combined), 237g/km CO2
CAP 3yr/30k: £10,650 (36%)

Also driven: Cadillac BLS Wagon

The 1.9-litre turbodiesel is both quiet and smooth, and the premium positioning of the car is enhanced by an excellent Bose speaker system and comfy leather interior as standard.

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