A better V-6 makes a better CTS.
Cadillac
 

Cadillac Forums | Help Us Help You | Advertise | Cadillac Parts | Cadillac News | Cadillac Classifieds / (Old System)

Cadillac Technical Archive | Cadillac Dealers | Cadillac Reviews | Cadillac Dealer Reviews | Cadillac Vendors

CadillacForums.com is the premier Cadillac Forum on the internet. Registered Users do not see the above ads.
+ Reply to Thread
Results 1 to 7 of 7
Cadillac CTS First Generation Forum - 2003 - 2007 Discussion, A better V-6 makes a better CTS. in Cadillac CTS Coupe, Sport Sedan and Sport Wagon Forums; ...
  1. #1
    HotRodSaint's Avatar
    HotRodSaint is offline Cadillac Owners Master
    Automobile(s): 1996 Fleetwood Brougham
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    SoCal
    Age
    51
    Posts
    7,234

    Post A better V-6 makes a better CTS.

    A better V-6 makes a better CTS.
    by Robert Ahl 6/2/2003


    Cadillacís gamble with the CTS has paid off. Launching the car was perilous for the division after its previous two attempts to crack the contemporary luxury market had failed so ignominiously. Perhaps you recall the simply boring Catera from the Nineties, or have bitter memories of the disastrously awful Cimarron of the Eighties?

    But during its first year on sale as a 2003 model, the CTS sold better than even Caddyís own most optimistic projections ó a full 37,976 units when they thought theyíd ship only 30,000. Yep, itís time for Cadillac to relax and rest on its laurels.

    Displaying a restlessness for which itís never before been known, Cadillac is upgrading the CTS significantly for 2004 ó first by offering a new V-6 engine for the regular CTS and second by building the 405-horsepower, V-8-powered CTSv that promises to be the quickest and will be the most powerful Cadillac ever. As this is written no one outside GM has driven the CTSv, so the subject here is the CTS with the new heart, not the souped-up Barney Clark model.

    Look, weíd have really rather driven the CTSv too, but they wouldnít let us, okay? Take what you can get.

    Fixing what needed fixing

    The rear-drive CTS isnít a small sedan. At 113.4 inches its wheelbase is less than an inch shorter than the original í76 Sevilleís, and its 190.1-inch overall length means itís just two-tenths of an inch shorter than a current Mercedes E-Class. And itís not a light car either, weighing in at 3694 pounds when equipped with an automatic transmission. Thatís just a pound less than V-6-powered Mercedes E320.

    Not-small cars are more pleasant to drive when powered by not-small engines. The 54-degree, 3.2-liter, DOHC, 24-valve V-6 with which powered all the first-year CTS is a refugee from the Catera parts bin: smooth but uninspiring in both character and its modest (but competitive) 220-horsepower output.

    The new engine is better in virtually every way andÖitís less small. Called the Global V-6 by GM, the CTSí new 3.6-liter engine is overstuffed with buzzworthy technostuff. A full 60 degrees of space lies between the two banks of cylinders. The block is cast in aluminum. The DOHC cylinder heads use chain-driven camshafts to control four valves per cylinder and each cam is controlled by a continuously variable phasing system resulting in variable valve timing. Feeding those heads is a plastic intake manifold with a two-stage variable-volume plenum, and the throttle is electronically controlled. Throw in a bunch of other tweaks and the result is 255 horsepower at 6200 rpm and 250 pound-feet of peak torque at 2800 rpm.

    The Global V-6 wonít only be crammed into CTS. Cadillacís SRX ďluxury activity vehicleĒ thatís coming for 2004 will use it as its base engine and the 2004 Buick Rendezvous Ultra will feature it in a transverse-mounted configuration. The Globalís displacement can vary between 2.8 and 3.6 liters and turbocharged and direct injection variations are under development for use in European sourced vehicles (Saabs and/or Opels). Chances are this new V-6 will be a fixture in the GM lineup for decades to come.

    Transmission of power

    Unfortunately (if you prefer manual transmissions) the new V-6 comes lashed only to GMís 5L40-E five-speed automatic, the same transmission used with the 3.2-liter V-6 last year. The automatic is a good transmission; it holds gears long enough to give excellent performance, and its manual-shifting scheme is effective, but itís still an automatic and that takes a toll on ultimate performance. A five-speed manual transmission is still available, but it comes hooked up to the old 3.2. At this point the automatic and 3.6 combination is vastly more attractive. Hereís hoping Cadillac upgrades to a six-speed when they bolt the new engine up to a manual trans. In fact, donít be surprised if the 5L40-E is soon replaced by a six-speed automatic as new transmissions enter the GM bloodstream.

    The Globalís torque supply is abundant; the curve under which it lives is flat. The engine doesnít make much noise, but it pulls hard from just off idle and through every shift. Itís a much better match to the automatic than the 3.2 ever could be but, inferentially speaking, itíll be more fun with a manual.

    Compared to the competition from Mercedes and BMW, the Caddy 3.6 feels much more like an easygoing Mercedes V-6 than a chomping-at-the-bit BMW straight six ó only the Cadillac six is more powerful than the Mercedes (the 3.2-liter version of which is rated at 221 horsepower) and feels like it revs more quickly. Using a finely calibrated butt-based accelerometer, the guess here is that the new engine puts the CTS automaticís 0-60 mph time somewhere in the 6.8- to 7.1-second range, with the quarter-mile going by in the low 15-second range. But there may be more accurate butts out there. Any volunteers?

    Slight tweaks otherwise

    Beyond the engine transplant, other changes to the 2004 CTS merely finagle the carís rougher edges. The base suspension has been retuned with new shocks and new shock mounts that together provide, Cadillac says, ďsmooth road feel without sacrificing performance.Ē If thatís true itís almost impossible to discern without a back-to-back comparison with a 2K3 CTS. That said, the car does ride well on its P225/55HR16 Goodyear Eagle RS-A tires with modest cornering limits.

    The Sport suspension system, which includes the StabiliTrak system (which evolves into a less intrusive and more effective everyday partner every year) performance brake linings, variable-assist steering and rear load-leveling, is now available across the line and gets new 17-inch wheels inside its P225/50VR17 Goodyear Eagle RS-A tires. The result is, by far and in every way, the best handling, braking and steering a Cadillac sedan ever has offered. The steering doesnít have quite the precision of a BMW system, but itís very composed. The braking is effective, easy to modulate, the ABS system sophisticated and fade seems to come only after serious abuse of the four large diameter (11.9 inches in front, 11.7 inches out back) discs. No matter which suspension system is aboard, the ride is composed and body roll is well controlled. If Cadillacís not quite up to the standards of its German competitors, itís closer than it ever has been.

    The interior has been treated to some new textures and additional chrome that helps break up its somewhat austere and harshly angular interior. It could use a little more wood. The seats are comfortably shaped, the leather is nicely soft and precisely stitched, the driver can chill while the passenger fries thanks to the dual-zone ventilation system, loads of airbags are set to explode at any moment, and the DVD-based navigation system is a waste of money. Some of the interior switches are cheesy and the graphics on some of the dash buttons look cheap, but itís not a bad place to spend a commute.

    The ďart and scienceĒ sharply creased exterior will polarize opinion, but considering its pricing (the 2003 version starts at $29,900 and the 2004 version shouldnít be much more expensive) and overall competence itís one of the best values in luxury cars today. And if Cadillac keeps this up, itíll be even better in 2005.

    Now bring on the CTSv!

    2004 Cadillac CTS
    Base Price: $30,000 (est.)
    Engine: 3.6-liter V-6, 255 hp
    Transmission: Five-speed automatic with manual mode, rear-wheel drive
    Length x width x height: 190.1 x 70.6 x 56.7 in
    Wheelbase: 113.4 in
    Curb weight: 3694 lb
    EPA City/Hwy: 18/26 mpg
    Safety equipment: Front airbags, head airbags, anti-lock brakes, traction control, StabiliTrak
    Major standard equipment: Leather upholstery, tilt/telescope steering wheel, A/C, power windows, remote control power door locks, heated mirrors, loads of cup holders and plenty of Cadillac logos
    Warranty: Four years/50,000 miles


    Copyright © 2003 by the Car Connection TM. All Rights Reserved.
    The Car Connection is a Trademark of DA Acquisitions, Inc.

  2. Remove Advertisements
    CadillacForums.com
    Advertisements
     

  3. #2
    elwesso's Avatar
    elwesso is offline Cadillac Owners Master
    Automobile(s): 2005 CTS-V, 1994 Infiniti Q45
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Indiana
    Posts
    7,668
    When I first saw the CTS, i didnt think it would sell too good either, but it does look like cadillac is trying to do better, hopefully they wont go overboard!! (although how can you go overboard in a cadillac )

  4. #3
    Spike is offline Cadillac Owners Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    St. Louis, MO USA
    Age
    46
    Posts
    35
    I'm going to wait until the massive unsold fleets of '04 CTS 3.2 liter 5speeds completely pack the Caddy dealers across this country... Soon after they'll offer up $10,000 rebates just to dump the lame ducks, thats when I'll swoop in and get a honey of a deal and probably 0% financing too... :-)

    Why does caddy even bother building manuals in '04? hahahaha, its a joke, right? VERY FUNNY GUYS!!

  5. #4
    catbert's Avatar
    catbert is offline Cadillac Owners Fanatic
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    Tempe, Home of the Sun Devils
    Posts
    145

    Re: A better V-6 makes a better CTS.

    Quote Originally Posted by Spike
    I'm going to wait until the massive unsold fleets of '04 CTS 3.2 liter 5speeds completely pack the Caddy dealers across this country... Soon after they'll offer up $10,000 rebates just to dump the lame ducks, thats when I'll swoop in and get a honey of a deal and probably 0% financing too... :-)

    Why does caddy even bother building manuals in '04? hahahaha, its a joke, right? VERY FUNNY GUYS!!
    For 2004, I can't see dealers ordering the 3.2 and manual transmission - seems to me you would have to order one. I don't remember seeing any 2003s around here, except for the one stripper that the dealers can advertise for $31k - out the door.

  6. #5
    c5 rv's Avatar
    c5 rv is offline Cadillac Owners Connoisseur
    Automobile(s): 91 Allante (gone), 06 SRX (gone)
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Location
    Michigan
    Posts
    4,398
    Have any of you current CTS owners driven an '04 yet? If so, what do you think. I drove an '03 last fall but didn't buy it because I wanted more engine and a different interior.

  7. #6
    Bigoz is offline Cadillac Owners Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Location
    Illinios
    Posts
    12

    Re: A better V-6 makes a better CTS.

    [QUOTE=HotRodSaint]A better V-6 makes a better CTS.
    by Robert Ahl 6/2/2003






    Compared to the competition from Mercedes and BMW, the Caddy 3.6 feels much more like an easygoing Mercedes V-6 than a chomping-at-the-bit BMW straight six ó only the Cadillac six is more powerful than the Mercedes (the 3.2-liter version of which is rated at 221 horsepower) and feels like it revs more quickly. Using a finely calibrated butt-based accelerometer, the guess here is that the new engine puts the CTS automaticís 0-60 mph time somewhere in the 6.8- to 7.1-second range, with the quarter-mile going by in the low 15-second range. But there may be more accurate butts out there. Any volunteers?

    Slight tweaks otherwise



    It should be faster than that Motor trend clocked a 220 non sprt CTS
    0-60 in 6.9 sec

  8. #7
    b4z
    b4z is offline Cadillac Owners Connoisseur
    Automobile(s): 2014 Standard SrX grey/black
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    Chas. SC
    Age
    52
    Posts
    1,717
    It felt like 6.7-6.8 secs to me.

Quick Reply Quick Reply

Register Now

Please enter the name by which you would like to log-in and be known on this site.
If you do not want to register, fill this field only and the name will be used as user name for your post.

Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.

Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Log-in

Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.



Bookmarks

Cadillac Posting Rules

  • You may post new threads
  • You may post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
Read about Lincoln | Buick | Kia Forte Forum
Need products for your Cadillac? Check out your options at the links below:

custom floor mats | Cadillac Chrome and Black Chrome Wheels | window tinting