No significant changes for 2019
Part of the third CTS generation introduced for 2014
You won’t go wrong with the CTS in Luxury trim. It has decent performance with the optional 3.6-liter V6 engine and, compared to the base trim, the Luxury trim adds numerous features to enhance the CTS’ luxury status. But considering this is likely the last year of production for the CTS, we say go out with a bang and spring for a CTS V-Sport with its powerful twin-turbo V6 and upgraded brakes and suspension. It’s almost a CTS-V, but for less money.
Although a lot of car shoppers are gravitating more toward crossovers these days, luxury sedans remain essential vehicles for many manufacturers. The 2019 Cadillac CTS is indicative of that, and it features traits Cadillac wants to be known for: unmistakable design, sporty driving characteristics and modern in-car technology. It all comes together to create a compelling driver’s vehicle that can compete with luxury sedans from overseas.
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Like the competition, the CTS is available with multiple engine options. You can prioritize fuel efficiency with the standard turbocharged four-cylinder engine or get smooth performance with a more powerful V6. Want even more? Opt for the CTS V-Sport to get a twin-turbo V6 that produces 420 horsepower and pulls hard no matter your speed.
There are a few minor downsides to the CTS. While we like the CTS’ sport-oriented handling, it can come at the cost of having an overly firm ride quality. This isn’t a pillow-ride Caddy of old. Also, the CTS is one of the older designs in the midsize sedan class, so you might find its interior styling to be a little dated and the infotainment system’s touch interface distracting to use. On the whole, though, we think there’s a lot to like about the 2019 Cadillac CTS.
2019 Cadillac CTS configurations
The 2019 Cadillac CTS luxury sport sedan is available in five trims. Cadillac ensured even the base CTS comes well-equipped. But to get the 3.6-liter V6, you’ll have to opt for the Luxury trim. The Premium Luxury adds the Magnetic Ride Control suspension and more safety equipment. The CTS V-Sport and V-Sport Premium Luxury are only available with the top-spec twin-turbo V6, Magnetic Ride Control and rear-wheel drive.
The base CTS trim comes with a turbocharged four-cylinder engine (268 horsepower, 295 pound-feet of torque), an eight-speed automatic transmission, 17-inch wheels, Brembo front brakes, rear parking sensors, a rearview camera, keyless ignition and entry, dual-zone automatic climate control, power-adjustable front seats, driver-seat memory settings, simulated-leather upholstery, and fixed rear seats with a trunk pass-through.
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Technology features include OnStar telematics (with 4G data connectivity and Wi-Fi capability), wireless smartphone charging, Bluetooth, the Cadillac User Experience (CUE) infotainment system (without navigation), an 8-inch touchscreen interface, voice controls, three USB inputs, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, and an 11-speaker Bose surround-sound system with satellite radio.
For this base CTS, buyers can add a Seating package that includes leather upholstery, heated and ventilated front seats, split-folding rear seatbacks, a power-adjustable and heated steering wheel, and LED interior ambient lighting.
The Luxury offers the option of a 3.6-liter V6 (335 hp, 285 lb-ft) plus adaptive xenon headlights with auto high beams, a panoramic sunroof, a navigation system, and a 13-speaker Bose sound system. It also packs a variety of driver safety aids, including automatic wipers, lane departure warning and intervention, forward collision alert, blind-spot monitoring and rear cross-traffic alert. The optional seating package from the base CTS is included in the Luxury.
An optional V-Sport package (not to be confused with the V-Sport trim level) bundles 18-inch wheels, high-performance brakes and tires, and a sport-tuned suspension with adaptive dampers.
The Premium Luxury fits the CTS with the adaptive suspension dampers, 18-inch wheels, a self-parking system (both parallel and perpendicular), three-zone automatic climate control, heated rear seats, a rear camera mirror, a head-up display, a top-down parking camera system, a power rear sunshade (rear side-window shades are manual), and illuminated door handles and front doorsill plates.
There’s an optional Driver Assist package for the Premium Luxury trim that adds adaptive cruise control and a collision mitigation system with automatic braking. Other options include 20-way-adjustable front sport seats and a configurable digital gauge cluster.
The CTS V-Sport comes with a turbocharged 3.6-liter V6 engine (420 hp, 430 lb-ft) and starts with the Luxury trim level’s standard features (minus the sunroof). The V-Sport adds the self-parking system, 18-inch wheels with summer tires, upgraded brakes, a sport-tuned suspension and steering system, a driver-selectable Track mode for high-performance driving, an electronic limited-slip rear differential, and an upgraded cooling system. All-wheel drive is not available.
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At the top of the range is the CTS V-Sport Premium Luxury that adds just about all of the standard and optional features of the Premium Luxury trim, including the sunroof.
Each vehicle typically comes in multiple versions that are fundamentally similar. The ratings in this review are based on our full test of the Cadillac CTS V-Sport Premium Sedan (turbo 3.6L V6 | 8-speed automatic | RWD).