2018 Cadillac CT6 Pros and Cons

Cadillac’s latest flagship sedan is headlining the brand’s return to the forefront of the American luxury segment and spearheading its success in the global market. 

GM engineers gave it the lightest chassis in class, a medley of engine choices ranging from frugal to downright fast, and Super Cruise, the industry’s first fully autonomous hands-free highway driving system.

But does that mean you should run out and get one? Here’s a quick look at a few of the CT6’s biggest pros and cons.

Pros

Floats Like a Butterfly, Stings Like a Bee:

When equipped with the top-shelf 3.0L twin-turbo V6 the CT6 becomes a terrible enabler and a grinning assassin, offering you 404-hp and 400-lb. ft of torque which are made available through a fantastically broad rev range. Complimenting the motor is one of the most technologically advanced platforms on the market, using complex laser welding processes to join materials like magnesium and aluminum, helping to slash mass and make the CT6 unrivaled in apex eating prowess in class.

“Anyone who respects fine machinery will need to add the optional Active Chassis Package; bringing 20-inch polished aluminum wheels, MagneRide suspension, and an absurdly good Rear Wheel Steer system that works against the front wheels for maneuverability in tight places, and with them for more stability when putting the car through its paces,” wrote GM Inside News Editor Michael Accardi in his review of the 3.0TT CT6.

Plug It In if You Want: 

Launched in North America six months ago, Cadillac is now offering a Plug-In Hybrid version of the CT6 which uses a 2.0-liter four-cylinder gasoline engine coupled with an 18.4-kWh lithium-ion battery and two electric motors. The system produces 335 total horsepower and an impressive 432 lb-ft. On a full tank, the CT6 PHEV should travel in excess of 400 miles.

The car was designed primarily for the Chinese market and as a result, it will be imported to North America from the People’s Republic in small quantities.

Super Cruise: 

Cadillac’s latest groundbreaking technology is the company’s new hands and feet-free self-driving highway technology called Super Cruise. Using a mix of LIDAR map-data and GPS technology, Super Cruise is capable of traveling some 210,000 miles on limited-access, divided roadways in the U.S. and Canada.

AutoGuide.com’s Detroit Bureau Editor, Craig Cole, recently spent 1,200 miles behind the wheel of a Super Cruise equipped CT6. “Except for certain challenging situations, you can drive for hours at a stretch and never touch the steering wheel. If conditions are favorable and you’re paying attention, it’s an absolutely seamless and nearly effortless experience.”

Sex Appeal: 

The CT6 is a genuinely gorgeous saloon car with a distinct 17-foot long presence. GM Inside News Editor Michael Accardi wrote that the big Cadillac “looks like it was carved from a solid block of sex appeal. Soft enough to be alluring, yet sharp enough to stab you through the heart; its sleek three box shape and razor cut edges unmistakably belong to Cadillac’s unique Art and Science design ethos.” It’s a car that stands out amongst the derivative designs of its German rivals.

Cons

Interior Materials:

For a high-end luxury car, the interior of the CT6 can sure manage to get on your nerves. The dash features a faux pas blend of bronze brushed carbon fiber mingling with glossy wood and leather, while the seats are wide expanses of boring blandness with only basic adjustability–no changeable bolstering, tilting headrest, or thigh support like other upscale saloons. Some of the switches come from GM’s big parts bin; the car is started with the same black plastic button as a Chevrolet hatchback and the window switches were borrowed from Buick.

Pet Peevish Technology:

The little laptop style infotainment trackpad is infuriating to use, steering wheel commands and console mounted button presses can lag in response time. Cadillac’s revolutionary new Rearview Camera feature suffers from blinding lens flare at night, and forces your eyes to recalibrate each and everytime you check behind you.

AutoGuide’s Editor in Chief Jodi Lai summed it up best when she compared the CT6 with the Genesis G90. “What kills me about the CT6, however, are the little things that add up to be really annoying. There are a lot of gimmicky features that just take away from the whole experience and a lot of them just don’t work that well.”

Herky Jerky Transmission:

Unfortunately, the only thing that lets the CT6’s fantastic drivetrain down is GM’s ubiquitous 8-speed transmission, which has been the subject of numerous online complaints over the years. The ‘box is great when maximizing the engine’s potential, but at slow speeds, in particular, it can let you down.

“In certain situations, the standard eight-speed transmission’s shift quality leaves much to be desired. Sure, it’s as smooth and refined as any other cutting-edge automatic while climbing through the ratio stack, but when you’re rolling to a stop, the downshifts are absolutely ragged, nearly to the point of causing whiplash injuries,” wrote AutoGuide’s Detroit Bureau Editor Craig Cole. “This is probably an issue that can be corrected with tuning, but it’s an inconceivable misstep given how dialed in the rest of this car is.”

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