Cadillac CTS

October 29, 2013
Cadillac CTS
Cadillac CTSOverview
Manufacturer General Motors
Production 2002–present
Model years 2003–present
Body and chassis
Class Mid-size luxury car
Body style
  • 2-door coupé
  • 4-door sedan
  • 5-door station wagon
Predecessor Cadillac CateraCadillac Eldorado (coupe)

The Cadillac CTS is a mid-size luxury car manufactured by the Cadillac division of General Motors.

The Cadillac CTS is currently available in three body styles: 4-door sedan, 2-door coupe, and 5-door sport wagon.

Cadillac introduced the CTS in 2002 as a sports sedan, succeeding the Cadillac Catera. The Cadillac CTS and the supercharged CTS-V variant have been named to the Car and Driver 10 Best list for three consecutive years.


Wayne Cherry and Kip Wasenko designed the exterior of the first generation Cadillac CTS and this vehicle marked the production debut of the “Art and Science” design language first seen on the Evoq concept car. Bob Boniface and Robin Krieg designed the exterior of the third generation Cadillac CTS.


First generation (2003–2007)

Cadillac CTS (First generation)
Production 2002–2007
Model years 2003–2007
Assembly United States: Lansing, Michigan (Lansing Grand River Assembly)China: Shanghai (Shanghai GM)Taiwan: MiaoliRussia: Kaliningrad, Kaliningrad Oblast (Avtotor)
  • Wayne Cherry
  • Kip Wasenko
Body and chassis
Body style 4-door sedan
Layout Front-engine, rear-wheel drive
Platform GM Sigma platform
Engine 2.6 L LY9 V6 (181 hp)2.8 L LP1 V6 (210 hp)3.2 L LA3 V6 (220 hp)3.6 L LY7 V6 (255 hp)5.7 L LS6 V8 (400 hp)6.0 L LS2 V8 (400 hp)
Transmission 5-speed 5L40-E automatic5-speed Getrag 260 manual6-speed Aisin AY-6 manual6-speed Tremec T-56 manual
Wheelbase 113.4 in (2880 mm)
Length 190.1 in (4829 mm)
Width 70.6 in (1793 mm)
Height 56.7 in (1440 mm)
Curb weight 3568 lb (1618 kg)

Introduced in 2002 as a 2003 model, the Cadillac CTS was built on GM’s new rear-wheel drive Sigma platform and sported a fully independent suspension. It marked a return to RWD cars for the brand, and was the first Cadillac to be offered with a manual transmission since the 1988 Cimarron. The Cadillac CTS was designed as a replacement for the Opel-based Catera. The Cadillac CTS was nominated for the North American Car of the Year award for 2002. 

To order your new Cadillac CTS rival with a brand new Cadillac 2.0L 4-cyl. Turbo 6-speed Automatic for only US$16,000.

CTSs are manufactured at GM’s Lansing Grand River plant in Lansing, Michigan. The CTS was also assembled in China during 2006, and production was subsequently discontinued.

European CTS

European CTS

Originally powered by a 3.2 L LA3 V6 producing 220 hp (164 kW), the CTS received an updated 3.6 L DOHC V6 with variable valve timing in 2004, producing 255 hp (190 kW) and 252 lb·ft (342 N·m) of torque. The 3.2 L engine went out of production in 2005, when a new 2.8 L version of the DOHC V6 debuted in an entry-level version of the CTS. In Europe, the 2.8 L replaces the previous entry-level 2.6 L engine.

2006–2007 Cadillac CTS

2006–2007 Cadillac CTS

The CTS was originally offered with either GM’s in-house five-speed 5L40-E automatic transmission or a five-speed Getrag 260 manual transmission. For the 2005 model year, the Getrag was replaced with an Aisin AY-6 six-speed.

In 2004, GM introduced the CTS-V, a high performance version of the CTS intended to compete with luxury performance sedans like the BMW M3/M5, Audi S4/S6, and Mercedes-Benz C and E-class AMGs. The 2004 and 2005 CTS-Vs were equipped with the 5.7L LS6 V-8 (400bhp @ 6000rpm, 395ft-lb @ 4800rpm), a Tremec T56 6-speed manual transmission, 14+” rotors and Brembo 4-piston calipers front and rear, suspension upgrades (higher spring rates, stiffer anti-roll bars, two available damper packages), and subtle exterior changes. As the LS6 was phased out, the 2006 and 2007 Cadillac CTS-Vs received the 6.0L LS2 V-8, which carried the same HP and torque ratings (with peak torque coming 400rpm sooner).

Second generation (2008–2015)

Cadillac CTS (Second generation)
2010 Cadillac CTS sedan -- 10-30-2009.jpg
Production 2007–2015
Model years 2008–2015
Assembly United States: Lansing, Michigan (Lansing Grand River Assembly)Taiwan: MiaoliRussia: Kaliningrad, Kaliningrad Oblast (Avtotor)
  • Wayne Cherry
  • Kip Wasenko
Body and chassis
Body style 4-door sedan2-door coupé (2010)5-door station wagon (2009)
Layout Front-engine, rear-wheel driveFront-engine, four-wheel drive
Platform GM Sigma II
  • 3.0 L LF1 V6 (270 hp)
  • 3.0 L LFW V6 (270 hp)
  • 3.6 L LY7 V6 (263 hp)
  • 3.6 L LLT V6 (304 hp)
  • 3.6 L LFX V6 (304 hp)
  • 6.2 L S/C LSA V8 (556 hp)
  • 6-speed 6L45 automatic
  • 6-speed 6L90 automatic (CTS-V)
  • 6-speed Aisin AY-6 manual
  • 6-speed Tremec 6L95M manual
Wheelbase 113.4 in (2,880 mm)
Length 191.6 in (4,867 mm) (2008-2011 sedan)191.3 in (4,859 mm) (2010-11 wagon)188.5 in (4,788 mm) (coupe)192.0 in (4,877 mm) (2012-present wagon)
Width 72.5 in (1,842 mm) (sedan)72.6 in (1,844 mm) (wagon)74.1 in (1,882 mm) (coupe)
Height 58 in (1,473 mm) (sedan)59.1 in (1,501 mm) (wagon)55.9 in (1,420 mm) (coupe)
Curb weight 3,860 lb (1,751 kg) (sedan)

On April 2, 2006, in a 60 Minutes interview with Bob Lutz, part of a prototype Cadillac was revealed to audiences. The car featured interior and exterior design influences from the 2003 Cadillac Sixteen concept car.

2012 Cadillac CTS sedan

2012 Cadillac CTS sedan

GM revealed the all-new 2008 CTS at the North American International Auto Show in January 2007. The base model featured a 3.0 L variable valve timing V6 with 270 hp (201 kW) and 252 lb·ft (342 N·m) of torque. A second engine, a new 3.6 L direct-injection V6 VVT engine with 304 hp (227 kW) and 274 pound-feet (371 N·m) of torque was also offered. The new car came with a six-speed manual transmission as standard equipment, with GM’s six-speed Hydra-matic 6L50automatic transmission available as an option on all variants. On-demand all-wheel drive was offered with both engines when equipped with an automatic transmission. Suspension, braking, and steering improvements from the previous generation CTS-V were designed into the new standard CadillacCTS.

European-spec Cadillac CTS

European-spec Cadillac CTS

CTS interior

CTS interior

The second generation was wider and longer than the original, measuring 191.6 inches (4866 mm) long, 72.5 inches (1841 mm) wide and 58 inches (1472 mm) in height. Wheelbase remained unchanged at 113.4 inches (2880 mm), but with a wider front/rear track of 61.8 / 62.0 inches (1575 / 1585 mm), donated by the larger STS. Other changes included a revamped exterior, with a new, larger grille, slimmer headlights and taillights, side air extractor vents located forward of the front doors, and new nine-spoke 18-inch wheels, surrounding larger high-performance brake calipers and rotors. Available features on the second-gen CTS included a Bose 5.1 surround sound system, GM’s Stabilitrak ESC system, a tire pressure monitoring system, a navigation system with real-time traffic and weather data, an integrated 40 GB hard drive for music storage, swiveling headlights, and remote starting.

CTS interior

CTS interior

In 2008, the Cadillac CTS was selected as the car that would re-launch the Cadillac brand in Australia and New Zealand.

During the 2010 model year, the GM badges were dropped, although early 2010 models still had GM badges.

For the 2012 Cadillac CTS, the front grille used higher quality materials to give a more vertical design, and the Cadillac logo was being subtly changed to give a more vibrant appearance. The biggest change was to the engine. Although kept the same 3.6-liter displacement, the V6 was able to produce 318 horsepower while dropping weight thanks to some modified engine internals. For 2012, GM also offered some new technology and option packages with the Cadillac CTS.


2011 Cadillac CTS coupe

2011 Cadillac CTS coupe

At the 2008 North American International Auto Show in Detroit, General Motors unveiled a coupe concept version of the Cadillac CTS, alongside the new CTS-V performance sedan. The coupe’s unveiling surprised the media and general public, stealing a great deal of attention away from the CTS-V. In November 2009, the production version was unveiled in a press release. The coupe went into production in spring 2010 for sale in August 2010 as a 2011 model. The design of the production model is very similar to the concept, with the B-pillars still removed. The standard engine will be a 3.6L direct injected V6 rated at 304 hp. Like the sedan, both six-speed manual and automatic transmissions, in either RWD or AWD configurations, will be available. A CTS-V Coupe has also been confirmed, and was shown at the 2010 North American International Auto Show in Detroit. The CTS Coupe will be Cadillac’s first coupe since the Eldorado, which was discontinued in 2002.

Sport Wagon

2010 Cadillac CTS wagon

2010 Cadillac CTS wagon

At the 2008 Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance, Cadillac presented the 2010 CTS Sport Wagon. The wagon became available in late 2009 as a 2010 model. A CTS-V version was added for 2011. The car is the first factory produced, non-hearseCadillac station wagon to be sold in the U.S. market.

The Cadillac CTS Sport Wagon is available in either rear-wheel-drive or all-wheel-drive layouts, and is powered by either a 3.0-liter DOHC V6 engine or a 3.6-liter V6 with variable valve timing. The 3.0-liter engine produces 270 horsepower, and the 3.6-liter produces 304.

The car is made for primarily the European market, where in some countries, wagons are preferred to sedans.

It is rumored that General Motors will not continue to produce the wagon after the 2015 model year due to slow sales.

The 2015 CTS-V wagon achieves 14 mpg-US (17 L/100 km; 17 mpg) combined based upon EPA fuel economy estimates, making the CTS-V the least fuel efficient small station wagon sold in the United States.

Third generation (2015-)

Cadillac CTS (Third generation)
Cadillac-CTS-2015-red IAA2015 front-right-side LWS2825.JPG

2015 Cadillac CTS 2.0L Turbo shown in Red Obsession Tintcoat with 18″ x 8.5″ painted aluminum wheels and Jet Black with Morello Red-accented leather interior
Production 2015 (to commence)
Model years 2015—
  • United States: Lansing, Michigan (Lansing Grand River Assembly)
  • China: Shanghai (Shanghai GM)
  • Exterior: Bob Boniface and Robin Krieg
  • Interior:Eric Clough

Body and chassis
Class Mid-size
Body style 4-door sedan
Platform GM Alpha
  • 2.0 L LTG Ecotec I4 (t/c gasoline)
  • 3.6 L LFX V6 (gasoline)
  • 3.6 L LF3 V6 (t/c gasoline)
  • 6-speed GM 6L45 automatic
  • 8-speed Aisin TL-80SN automatic
Wheelbase 114.6 in (2,911 mm)
Length 195.5 in (4,966 mm)
Width 72.2 in (1,834 mm)
Height 57.2 in (1,453 mm)
Curb weight 3,615–3,976 lb (1,640–1,803 kg)
A 2015 Cadillac CTS4 2.0L Turbo in Phantom Grey Metallic on display at the 2015 Frankfurt Motor Show

A 2015 Cadillac CTS4 2.0L Turbo in Phantom Grey Metallic on display at the 2015 Frankfurt Motor Show











On March 26, 2015, Cadillac unveiled a new version of the CTS. This time the CTS will have the 2.0T I4 and 3.6L V6 from the ATS, but with an all-new Twin Turbo V6 producing 420 horsepower and 430 lb. ft. of torque. The new engine will only be available in the CTS Vsport: a new trim that serves as a step between the 3.6 and the high-performance CTS V.


This 2015 Cadillac CTS4 2.0L Turbo is shown with 15-spoke, 18" x 8.5" painted aluminum wheels.

This 2015 Cadillac CTS4 2.0L Turbo is shown with 15-spoke, 18″ x 8.5″ painted aluminum wheels.







All engines available in the 2015 Cadillac CTS are constructed from cast aluminum blocks and heads and utilize direct injection and variable valve timing.

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Cadillac CTS rival
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Cadillac CTS rival with a brand new Cadillac 2.0L 4-cyl. Turbo 6-speed Automatic for only US$16,000.
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