Cadillac’s sharp, wedgy “art and science” design theme has fully matured on the latest CTS, and an aluminum, dual-overhead-cam V-6 with variable valve timing and direct fuel-injection finally brings the marque’s engine room onto the same high-tech plane as the styling department.
The 304-hp direct-injection V-6 gets all the attention for now while the automotive community eagerly awaits the appearance of the supercharged V-8–powered CTS-V. Meanwhile, the 258-hp base engine is basically a carry-over from the previous-generation CTS, in which it was the optional V-6. A six of equal size to the direct-injection engine—3.6 liters with port fuel injection and variable valve timing—the now-base mill checks in $2300 cheaper than the higher-tech (and higher-power) engine.
Down 46 horses and 20 pound-feet on the DI engine, the indirectly injected base mill still brings a hearty portion of power with 258 horsepower and 253 pound-feet of torque. With the test gear strapped on, our six-speed automatic CTS managed a 7.0-second 0-to-60-mph romp en route to a 15.4-second quarter-mile at 91 mph. The more powerful uplevel engine (with a six-speed manual) achieves the same marks in 5.8 and 14.6 seconds at 97 mph.