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2008-2013 Cadillac CTS General Discussion Discussion, Potential owner needing help in Cadillac CTS Second Generation Forum - 2008-2013; Greetings, I currently drive an 06 Acura TL manual and I am seriously considering a 2009+ CTS AWD as my ...
  1. #1
    jungy4's Avatar
    jungy4 is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    Potential owner needing help

    Greetings,

    I currently drive an 06 Acura TL manual and I am seriously considering a 2009+ CTS AWD as my next car. I am not new to GM, as my parents have owned a Buick and an Oldsmobile and I have owned a 2002 Grand AM.

    I have been looking at these cars for a while to learn about them and I have a few questions.

    How reliable are these cars? How about cost of maintenance? I was thinking about Audi or BMW because they offer AWD with manual transmission but being a recent college graduate, I don't think I am ready to own a car that can potentially burn my wallet to get running.

    I am a little confused about trim levels. HID headlights is a must, so I should look for either Performance or Premium correct? Was there a sport suspension option?

    Is there a huge difference between 3.0 and 3.6L? How can you tell which one is which? I have seen some pictures on Autotrader, and the engine covers look the same.

    I would prefer to purchase mine as Certified pre-owned. Does Cadillac have good warranty coverage?

    Thanks for helping this newb out.

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  3. #2
    99flhr is online now Cadillac Owners Enthusiast
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    Re: Potential owner needing help

    Quote Originally Posted by jungy4 View Post
    I was thinking about Audi or BMW because they offer AWD with manual transmission but being a recent college graduate, I don't think I am ready to own a car that can potentially burn my wallet to get running. .
    "Statistically" FWIW Asian cars report the fewest issues, Domestics are second and Euros are third. This is of course "painting with a broad brush". However, in general the farther up market and the more "content" one buys, the more potential for expensive repairs exists. We all balance budget, desire and risk according to our own comfort zone. In other words, I believe a Cadillac has lower running costs than a BMW, but higher than a Toyota.

    It is of course possible to have problems with a Camry, and a 100 yrs ago I had an MGB that NEVER failed to start.
    ( what are the odds of that ? LOL) Again, anything can happen with any brand or model.
    On higher end cars, my opinion is always buy the lowest mileage your budget will permit. In the end it comes down to:
    " You pays your money and takes your chances"

  4. #3
    00 ss is offline Cadillac Owners Fanatic
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    Re: Potential owner needing help

    Basically I agree. I would add that proper maintenance will go a long way toward increasing your odds of sucess with any car. don't ignore the little things and they are not likely to become big things.

    Yes, GM CPO warranties are decent. Not b-b, but covers most of the big stuff including most of the electronics. I agree with you, I would NEVER own a BMW or Audi without a warranty.

    Any car can have any problem you can think of, but GM has improved quality tremendously ad I have had no real issues with mine. It's been completely reliable. I will be putting in a new battery this summer. It's not dead, but it will be 6 years old in August. I want to replace it when I want to, not when it dies. That's what I mean by proper maintenance and paying attention to the little things.

    The performance model has the "sport suspension". Not sure if the FE3 suspension is standard on the Premium or not in the years you're looking at. Other may know.

    The simplest way to know which engine it has is to look at the trunk lid. Otherwise, if you know the engine RPO codes, the build sitcker is on the underside of the spare tire well cover in the trunk. The 3.6 DI is code LLY or LLT depending on year.

  5. #4
    tinman's Avatar
    tinman is offline Cadillac Owners Connoisseur
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    Re: Potential owner needing help

    AWD has more issues than RWD. Engine are both pretty solid. 3.6 definitely has more balls. Awd mpg can really be poor...and that is just hit or miss. No rationale for that.

    Cars can be fickle. My A6 Quattro...2006...has been rock solid, a great car. My MGB was also a great car (let's not dwell on Lucas electronics). My 67000 miles have been pretty good on my Performance CTS wagon...other than a new transmission at 52000 under warranty.

  6. #5
    HurstGN is offline Cadillac Owners Enthusiast
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    Re: Potential owner needing help

    Engine can also be identified by VIN #. Easier when internet shopping for a car.

  7. #6
    928S is online now Cadillac Owners Connoisseur
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    Re: Potential owner needing help

    Quote Originally Posted by HurstGN View Post
    Engine can also be identified by VIN #. Easier when internet shopping for a car.


    To decode VIN, go here: https://service.gm.com/dealerworld/vincards/, select and click model year (8th digit of VIN designates engine type, scroll down page to alphanumeric legend).

  8. #7
    99flhr is online now Cadillac Owners Enthusiast
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    Re: Potential owner needing help

    [QUOTE=tinman;

    Cars can be fickle. My 67000 miles have been pretty good on my Performance CTS wagon...other than a new transmission at 52000 under warranty.[/QUOTE]

    I don`t recall you using the word "fickle" during your triple transmission tribulations. LOL.
    tinman likes this.

  9. #8
    tinman's Avatar
    tinman is offline Cadillac Owners Connoisseur
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    Re: Potential owner needing help

    Quote Originally Posted by 99flhr View Post
    I don`t recall you using the word "fickle" during your triple transmission tribulations. LOL.
    Women are definitely fickle, but I still love 'em.
    wcthunder likes this.

  10. #9
    leroy_ctscoupe is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    Re: Potential owner needing help

    Hey - I just switched from an Infiniti. I feel like the Cadi was made with quality made in USA products. Haven't had any maintenance issues yet.. but I'd imagine it would cost less for parts.

  11. #10
    HurstGN is offline Cadillac Owners Enthusiast
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    Re: Potential owner needing help

    Quote Originally Posted by 99flhr View Post
    I don`t recall you using the word "fickle" during your triple transmission tribulations. LOL.
    99flhr, you misheard him. I believe he used a word beginning with f, but it wasn't fickle....wasn't fffuuuuuuudge either.
    99flhr likes this.

  12. #11
    jungy4's Avatar
    jungy4 is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    Re: Potential owner needing help

    Thanks for responses.

    It seems like 3.6 is harder to come buy. I see a ton of Luxury's with 3.0. Does that 30 HP difference significant?

    I may opt for the coupe if the price is right but it seems like the rear tire size is very rare? Tirerack brought up only one option and that was a summer tire.

  13. #12
    99flhr is online now Cadillac Owners Enthusiast
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    Re: Potential owner needing help

    Quote Originally Posted by jungy4 View Post
    Thanks for responses.

    It seems like 3.6 is harder to come buy. I see a ton of Luxury's with 3.0. Does that 30 HP difference significant?
    The saying goes:" people buy horsepower but they drive torque"
    That said, the lower torque of the 3.0 in a heavy car means you have to spin it faster.
    I have the 3.0 (like it just fine) and have driven the 3.6, more is always better but neither is "fast" .
    The CTS is a sport SEDAN, not a SPORT sedan.
    I don`t think the engine choice (assuming non V models) alters the basic nature of this car
    JMO

  14. #13
    Acdcpsp is offline Cadillac Owners Fanatic
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    Re: Potential owner needing help

    What are some of the issues wight AWD?
    Quote Originally Posted by tinman View Post
    AWD has more issues than RWD. Engine are both pretty solid. 3.6 definitely has more balls. Awd mpg can really be poor...and that is just hit or miss. No rationale for that.

    Cars can be fickle. My A6 Quattro...2006...has been rock solid, a great car. My MGB was also a great car (let's not dwell on Lucas electronics). My 67000 miles have been pretty good on my Performance CTS wagon...other than a new transmission at 52000 under warranty.

  15. #14
    gohawks63's Avatar
    gohawks63 is offline Cadillac Owners Connoisseur
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    Quote Originally Posted by jungy4
    Thanks for responses. It seems like 3.6 is harder to come buy. I see a ton of Luxury's with 3.0. Does that 30 HP difference significant? I may opt for the coupe if the price is right but it seems like the rear tire size is very rare? Tirerack brought up only one option and that was a summer tire.
    I owned Acuras for nearly 20 years before trading my 2006 RL for a new 2012 Premium AWD coupe two years ago. I drove that car for 1.5 years and 22K miles before trading it in for a Certified Pre-Owned 2012 CTS-V coupe with only 9,800 miles last October. I had three warranty repairs on my 3.6 coupe. At 4000 miles they replaced a seatbelt buckle that would indicate I wasn't belted when in fact I was. Horrible dealership experience on that (long story), but the repair was minor.

    The second occurred at 14K miles when in for an oil change they found the front engine cover had an oil leak. All addressed under warranty with no issues, but it was a big job as it took them 2-3 days. Make sure to check that out if you're buying used.

    Last issue was a squeaky sunshade at 21K miles. It was minor and in retrospect I should have left it alone as the dealership workmanship was terrible and made it worse. In the end the dealership experience was the issue for am as I was used to excellent service from Acura dealers. I was keeping a spreadsheet tracking dealership visits of my coupe compared to my RL, and up to the 22K miles, my CTS had less dealership visits than my RL had with the same mileage. Would have been interesting to know how it would have worked out in the long run.

    For my V I am using a different dealer and I have only had to make one visit for a bad O2 sensor. It was addressed with no drama and they took me in on short notice. Keep in mind that if you want a coupe, they started in 2011 and all of them have the 3.6. I have driven TLs, I had a 2001 and I drove your version as loaners and my brother still has his 2006. I personally feel that you should go with the 3.6 if you can find one and can swing it. The 3.6 is more comparable to what you're used to. The 3.0 will feel and will be slower than what you have now. I believe 0-60 for the 3.6 has been around 6.1 with the AWD maybe being a tick or two slower. The 3.0s I believe were in the 7 second range. Good luck.
    99flhr likes this.

  16. #15
    J Bubba is offline Cadillac Owners Fanatic
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    Re: Potential owner needing help

    I like the certified pre-owned as well. Have have bought an SRX and my 08 CTS this way. Reason being I have access to the complete service record of the car and can ask them to print it and inspect it. At least my dealership did. So not just a car proof report, but a complete history including oil changes if they used the dealer. Second, if it's out of warranty you get 3 months of warranty with the certified pre-owned. Just got my 08 4 weeks ago and the front suspension on the left has developed a clunk. Not concerned, in northern Ontario my city is overcome with potholes this time of year. I'll get it fixed under warranty before my 3 months is up. You hear some bad dealership experiences above. Well.... that is dealer dependent. My current dealer is ok... Their sales team are excellent, but service is hit and miss. Sometimes they are good other times outright annoying.

    Sad thing is, there use to be another Caddy dealer who I dealt with who was fantastic. These guys had the best service Centre of any brand. And low and behold, when shit hit the fan and GM almost went under before the gov. Bailouts, the dealership I loved was one of the victims of restructuring. Can't understand how they got sold but this other dealership who didn't even sell the Caddy brand at the time stayed alive. In fact I kept bringing my 03 CTS to the old dealer even though they became a Mitsubishi dealer. The service guys were still the same. But now with the SRX and 08 cts I go to the caddy dealer who's closer to home and am not thrilled. Too bad.

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