2011 Cadillac CTS Coupe Day 2

This week I’m testing a 2011 Cadillac CTS Performance Coupe provide by Crest Cadillac of Plano.

You can find my short summary after pickup here.

Cadillac CTS Coupe Console

Cadillac CTS Coupe Console

The test car is a Cadillac CTS Performance Coupe with the luxury and navigation package, so it has all the extras and the pop-up nav system.  I prefer a couple of stations on XM radio, including Watercolors Jazz (71); I was pleased to find that the test car had XM turned on, so that I could enjoy my music during the test.  Thanks XM!

For my next Cadillac I am shopping for a 2010 Cadillac CTS Sedan — the 4-door version of the CTS as opposed to the test model, which is the 2-door Coupe.  The Coupe has some beautiful styling touches, and I only *need* 2 doors most days.  So a Coupe could fit for my current empty nest lifestyle.  However, the Coupe started production in 2011, and the budget I care to spend on my next Cadillac only stretches to a 2010 model.

So how does the CTS Coupe drive in real life?  It is a marvelous car.  Beautiful, stylish exterior, with plentiful acceleration, and an amazing 6 speed automatic.  My 2005 CTS has a Corsa aftermarket exhaust, and so is louder, but the new CTS is much more refined in general as well.  I would prefer a bit more exhaust note, but I appreciate the work Cadillac has done in refining noise, vibration, and harshness.

The 304 hp LLT 3.6L V6 is an ideal power-plant for this car especially if you are the one buying the gas.  Now, that said, I do recall that during my CTS-V test drive I wrote that any gas that car needed served its purpose, due to the high level of fun the V generates.   At my house the difference between a Sedan budget and a V budget is significant, so I’m focused on the sedan or coupe.  If the V ever comes within reach, then I’ll figure out how to pay for the gas too perhaps.

The view out the back of the Coupe is supplemented by a rear-view camera that displays on the navigation system screen.  I find that this is useful for an initial review of what is behind the Coupe before moving, but then prefer to look directly out the back window while backing.  The Rear quarter windows are smaller in the Coupe, and I have to lean forward to peer to the rear quarters, but that is probably a familiarity thing that would become natural with use.

The CTS Coupe makes a perfectly delightful daily driver.  I love the Crystal Red Tint-coat on this car and highly recommend it.


The Surprising Result of Test Drives

Recently I have done weekend test drives of the Cadillac CTS-V, the Cadillac CTS Sport Wagon, the Cadillac Escalade ESV, and the Cadillac SRX 3L.  You can find all of my test drives under the ‘Test Drive‘ tag.

I have enjoyed each vehicle.  A part of testing each vehicle is trying to understand that individual design, what the Design Team had in mind, who the target audience for the vehicle is.    With the Cadillac CTS-V, I fit within the demographic that the team is targeting.   People who want maximum sport, with all the luxury appointments of a Cadillac.   That one was easy for me to ‘get’ and to understand.

The Cadillac Escalade ESV offers amazing space and storage ability, along with 3 rows of seating.  It is a terrific vehicle for when you need to tow, or carry a large family, or frequently carry large items.  It drives well, and is extremely well mannered regardless of size, but especially for a large vehicle.

The Cadillac Sport Wagon offers the feel of the sedan — lower weight, lower center of gravity, more sporty handling — while providing easy access storage space and utility.  The Cadillac Team has carefully engineered the cargo storage and seat configurations with actual uses of the Sport Wagon in mind.

The Cadillac SRX was a real surprise to me.  The inherent goodness of this vehicle is very high.  The package as a whole is delightful.   Integration of a digital display in the dash, along with thoughtful features like folding mirrors and predictive pathing on the back up camera display push this Cadillac very high on my list of desirable vehicles.  Before I drove one, I was pleased that the SRX was selling well for Cadillac, but would never consider it as a daily driver.  After driving one, I not only appreciate why they sell so well, but would consider purchasing one.

And therein lies the interesting side-effect of my test drives.  My palate is expanding.  I have come to appreciate an even wider variety of Cadillac designs and choices.  While I am fond of pointing out that “every Cadillac does not have to be a CTS-V”, now I feel that more than ever.

I have been shopping for a low-mile 2008 Cadillac STS-V as my next vehicle.   Now I plan to consider a low-mile 2009 Cadillac CTS Premium Model as well until the 2009 Cadillac CTS-V prices come down to my budget.  Before I valued the V-series packaging and absolute acceleration/braking/cornering; now I appreciate the balanced packaging of the current Cadillac line.

2010 Cadillac SRX Test Drive — Luxuriant Space, Efficiently Used

I have a 2010 Cadillac SRX 3.0L Premium Crossover from Crest Cadillac in Plano for a weekend test drive review.  You can find all of my Test Drive reports tagged Test Drive.  All articles regarding the SRX can be found in the SRX category.

The SRX is a larger Crossover inside than you might judge from the outside.  It gets great gas mileage and is a very good size for getting around or parking; it is about the perfect size for a daily driver.  It has plentiful seating room for 4 or 5, and has good space behind the rear seats for groceries, baggage, whatever.

2010 Cadillac SRX inviting front seat room

The interior styling is well done, and consistent with the exterior styling.   My Wife and I both found the seats comfortable.  My Brother had good space in the rear seats, and this makes a good vehicle to carry 4 or 5 adults.

The steering wheel has tilt and telescope, and the gas/brake pedals are adjustable for height.

2010 Cadillac SRX rear seats offer lots of room

The rear seats are very comfortable.  The test car also has the rear entertainment system, which adds video screens on the back of each front seat.  The Premium model has 3-zone climate control, so that the rear passengers get their own climate control options.

Here is a view down from the open Ultraview (double size) sunroof, to give an impression of the plentiful head room:

2010 Cadillac SRX UltraView Looking in

I also shot a couple of pictures with me in the frame (which I try to avoid!) to show fit.  With the driver’s seat adjusted as I normally would without regard for head room, I have about a hand-span of room left in the SRX, so 3-4 inches of extra space.  I am 6’2″ tall, but since proportions differ by individual please use as a general suggestion that there is lots of head room.

2010 Cadillac SRX Headroom Shot

Shoulder space — I have to completely extend my elbow to reach the passenger seat.  So again, I would say there is a lot of shoulder space in the SRX.  We have got to get better models for this type of shot!

2010 Cadillac SRX Shoulder Space

Quick grocery trip — I know this is not a week’s worth of stuff, but you get the idea of the space:

SRX rear cargo space

I love the electric rear lift gate.  As in the Sport Wagon, it is selectable to 3/4 or full height.  In the SRX you can also ‘program’ it to a custom height by showing it the height you need it to open to then storing that height.  Luckily I have no physical problem opening or closing but certainly I prefer opening the rear gate from the remote, or from the door, and simply pressing a button again to have it glide closed.

Also as in the Sport Wagon in this shot you can see the fully adjustable cargo anchor rail system in the floor of the cargo area.  Cadillac has carefully thought this vehicle out so that it has the utility you need.

One feature of the Premium Model SRX is heated and ventilated seats.

2010 Cadillac SRX Ventilated Seat Control

The upper right button controls seat heating, and the lower right button controls seat ventilation.  Each are selectable in 3 settings, low, medium, and high.   The small lights illuminate to show which setting is currently selected.

My Host for this test drive is Crest Cadillac of Plano, Texas.  They are located at 2701 North Central Expressway, Plano, Texas.  You can contact them by phone Toll-free at 1-866-697-9144 or locally at (972)578-7511, or on Twitter or Facebook .  Please let them know you read about the SRX here on CaddyInfo!