- Distinctive exterior styling
- Excellent handling and braking
- Top tech features, including Bluetooth
- World-class quality levels
- Class-topping weight impedes performance
- Busy interior design
- Notchy manual transmission
The 2009 Cadillac CTS continues to compete with the best from Mercedes and BMW with a distinctly American approach, boasting some of the top tech features in its class.
After a redesign for 2008 that included a completely new interior, the mid-size CTS returns with only minor changes for 2009.
The CTS sport sedan is Cadillac’s entry-level vehicle in the United States, and takes on compact to mid-size sport sedans from Europe and Japan—such as the BMW 3 Series and Infiniti G37.
What helps the CTS stand out among rivals is its styling; sharp edges and a chunky appearance on the outside are met inside with smooth, flowing contours of the instrument panel. Better materials were used inside beginning with the redesign last year, and now the interior boasts high-quality upholstery and trim a step better than those usually found in this class. In front, firm sport seats give good support, while the backseat is rather snug but good for two adults. The CTS’s ride is firm but smooth, and handling is quite capable and entertaining even with the base setup.
Available on the 2009 Cadillac CTS is a direct-injected, 3.6-liter V-6 hitting 304 horsepower, with base models getting a 263-hp version of the engine. All-wheel drive is offered with either, but a six-speed manual is only available with the 263-hp engine. A six-speed automatic does the shifting for the rest of the model lineup.
Options include an advanced infotainment system with the ability to rip CDs or record and play back radio broadcasts, new for 2009 Bluetooth connectivity, and an advanced navigation system that incorporates the XM NavTraffic feature.