It wasn’t that long ago that the CTS was a new-born entry-luxury sedan. Now it’s a wagon. They sure grow up quickly, don’t they?
Cadillac’s latest addition to the family is really intended to take care of your family in the fine style of the CTS sedan, but with more cargo room. Hey, why not: BMW, Mercedes-Benz, Volvo and Audi have been building wagons for years.
As shapes go, the sedan-to-wagon transformation actually makes for an eye-catching hauler. In fact, the squared-off CTS appears as though it was developed before the sedan’s arrival and not the other way around. In no way does the aft section appear to be merely grafted to the sedan body. The sweep of its extended roofline blends cleanly into the rear pillar and boomerang-shaped taillights. Both contribute to wagon’s unique look, along with the rest of the knife-edged sheetmetal that continues as the major thrust of Cadillac’s current design “language.”
Another of the wagon’s exclusive features is a neatly integrated load system that uses the raised edges of the roof itself as rails for a rack. This in turn makes the removable crossbars less obtrusive.
The only obvious design drawback is the lack of interior stowage space, either with the rear seat in place or folded flat. Most wagons in the CTS’s mid-size class are shaped in a boxier fashion and thus offer considerably greater capacity. The Sport Wagon’s sleek silhouette restricts cargo room somewhat, but a vehicle that looks this good might be forgiven for this one misstep. In any event, Cadillac has an array of larger vehicles (the Escalade, for one) at the ready should carrying capacity be the critical issue.
The rest of the interior is standard-issue CTS, which means its friendly confines exude plenty of comfort and high-quality fittings. The available wood trim seems a bit out of place, but otherwise there’s lots to like about the cabin for both driver and passengers.
The powertrains are likewise straight from the 2010 CTS sedan’s playbook. A new 270-horsepower 3.0-litre V6 replaces the previous 263-horse 3.6-litre V6 as the base engine, while a 304-litre 3.6-litre V6 is optional. Both feature direct-injection technology that delivers highly pressurized fuel into each cylinder instead of through the intake manifold, resulting in more horsepower, lower emissions and improved fuel economy. There’s no official word on the latter, but expect about 7.8 l/100 km on the highway and about 13.0 in the city. A six-speed automatic transmission is connected to both powerplants.
Of note is a 250-horsepower 2.9-litre turbo-diesel that will also be made available on wagons destined for overseas delivery. We’ll have to wait and see if the diesel makes it here.
Sport Wagon buyers will be faced with selecting one of three suspension tuning levels: standard; firm ride (standard on 3.6-litre models); and sport mode. The latter includes 19-inch wheels (18s are standard). The first two settings are available in rear-, or optional all-wheel-drive, while the sport suspension can only be had in rear-wheel-drive.