Ride Report: 2008 Cadillac CTS

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Old May 27, 08, 1:06 pm
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Join Date: May 2008
Location: YYZ
Programs: Avis CHM, Hertz Plat, National EE, SPG Plat, Hyatt Diamond, Le Club Plat, CX Gold
Posts: 365
Ride Report: 2008 Cadillac CTS

Just had a 3 day weekend rental with a brand new 2008 Cadillac CTS. Requested it as a CHM and had the newest one in town brought over without any questions. Avis considers this an X-Class vehicle, which usually commands a good premium.

Powertrain:

The rental was equipped with the base V6 engine (3.6L w/ 263hp and 253lbs of torque) and the optional 6-speed automatic. More than adequate for a car that sized, especially with such a smooth shifting transmission. You have the option of putting the car into either Automatic, Sport or Manual modes. In standard drive mode the car tends to cushion shifts for a nice smooth ride. Sport mode shifts are much more abrupt and the car actually shifts down gears when you break/decelerate so power is always available. The manumatic mode was fun around town but I found that sport mode was more than capable of taking care of all the shifts.

Cadillac also lets you have a bit of fun with the Stabilitrack program on the car. The Stabilitrack button on the dash controls both the TCS and Active yaw control. Press it once to disable traction control, tap it twice in rapid succession to enable 'Competitive Driving Mode' (TCS off and AYC set to 80%, enough to get the back wheels out for a split second before the computer kicking in) and holding down the button for 5 seconds shuts off both systems completely.

Tires were Michelin Pilot's, copious amounts of cornering grip.

Interior:

Fit and finish were very impressive, right up there with BMW 3 and 5 series I had driven before. The entry level Bose audio system left me wanting more bass and fidelity. I've heard much better, even after extensive tweaking. The driving position was rather awkward. Any more than half way back and I had to stretch to reach the steering wheel. (I'm 6'6") Dash controls were also a bit hard to get at with the seat back.

My least favorite thing about the interior was the gear indicator LED when you had the car in manual mode. Seemed chinsy and very last-minute of Cadillac.

Seats were supportive and comfortable, definitely suited for long drives.

Exterior:

The front end is drop dead gorgeous, one of the best looking on the road right now. All my friends thought it was really stunning. Definitely a head turner around town too.

Overall:

I thoroughly enjoyed the weekend with the CTS. Definitely on my preferred list of sporty rentals in the future. 9/10

Pros:
Powertrain, even with the base V6... this thing moves.
Exterior styling
Fit and finish

Cons:
Really thought the entry level Bose audio system needed a kick in the pants
Driving position was a bit awkward with the seat back. Felt like I was reaching for the wheel.
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