One sunny Tuesday morning we found ourselves gripping the wheel of a 2011 Cadillac CTS Coupe, about to enter a blind turn on a narrow two lane road. Figuring 60 mph might be just a little hot for this corner, we hit the brakes, making the smart six speed automatic transmission decide a gear change down to second was in order.
As the tach needle swung around to brush the 7,000 rpm redline, the engine sounded off with a strained growl, sounding as if someone were putting a beehive through a bandsaw, not one of the best engine notes we've heard. The wheel felt lifeless as we turned into the corner, its power mechanism tuned more for comfort than track days. But the front end of the car pointed where we wanted, and our still considerable speed in the turn made the summer tires start to slide.
But the wide track of the car, 2 inches greater than that of the CTS sedan, and the grippy tires kept the CTS Coupe under control. Well, mostly under control. From behind the wheel we felt we had a tiger by the tail, the car on the verge of going over the side. The suspension stayed loose, letting it get a little unsettled. Although not the kind of precision handling supplied by a BMW, we enjoyed it.
Concept to production Based on the CTS sedan, the CTS Coupe uses a dramatic design. Cadillac did more than just strip the rear doors from the sedan. The CTS Coupe is 2 inches shorter in length and 2 inches shorter in height, yet has a 2 inch wider rear track. The back glass, nestled in the angular rear of the car, seems almost horizontal. With the Coupe's design, the rear pillars are particularly wide, which Cadillac says leads to greater rigidity than the sedan. … Read more