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Thursday 8 December 2016
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Test Drive: 2016 Cadillac CT6 Review

Test Drive: 2016 Cadillac CT6 Review

This week we take a look at Cadillac’s new flagship sedan, the 2016 CT6. 

For those people who like the ride and drive of a large, rear-wheel drive car, this may be the one for you.  It is hard to believe, but this is the first rear-wheel drive Cadillac since the 1996 Fleetwood. 

Although rear-wheel drive is standard on the CT6, the majority of them are built with all-wheel drive, like the one I have this week. 


The CT6 is slightly larger than the current front-wheel drive XTS, has a substantially larger interior, and is much lighter.  Size-wise, this car falls between the BMW 5 and 7 series models, which sort of seems to be the target of this Cadillac.  I see cues of Audi A8 in this car as well.

You get three engine choices with the CT6: a 2-liter 4-cylinder with a turbo, a new 3-liter 6-cylinder twin-turbo putting out 404-horses, and then right in the middle is the engine I am testing, a 3.6-liter naturally aspirated 6-cylinder that puts out 335-horses.  The 3.6 has historically been a very proven engine over time.  No matter which engine you choose, it will come with an 8-speed automatic transmission.

Cadillac put a lot of thought and effort into the exterior looks of this luxury sport sedan.  It looks athletic, has a low stance, and the long vertical front lights let you know a Cadillac is headed your way.  20” machined aluminum wheels look great, as do the integrated rear spoiler and rear quad exhaust. 

So let’s talk trim levels for a minute.  They vary based on your engine choice, but with this 3.6-liter, you have the base, the Luxury, the Premium Luxury, and the top of the line Platinum.  This Dark Adriatic blue sedan is the Premium Luxury package, which is next to the top-of-the-line.

As you open the doors, you see a very luxurious and well laid out interior, with a ton of room in the front and back.  The seats are comfortable and you will notice hand-stitching everywhere along with very high-end materials throughout.  Real wood and carbon fiber flow across the dash, and the arched dash configuration in front of the driver gives good view to the configurable gauges and provides shade from the sun.

The power-adjusting steering wheel has controls for the instrumentation, and it is heated.  The center console is large and well laid out, and I love the gear shifter on this car.  There is also a slot for your cell phone and it will charge it wirelessly.

Next to that, you can change the drive mode from Touring, to Sport, or to ice and snow.  There is also an Auto Hold button that I love.  When you come to a stop, you don’t have to leave your foot on the brake.  When you touch the gas pedal, it releases.  There is a touchpad there also that works with the CUE system if you don’t want to touch the screen.

Speaking of the Cadillac User Experience, there is a vibrant 10.2” color screen that lets you operate all the audio, navigation, real-time apps, Apple Car Play, and hands-free texting.  With an SD card, you can turn the touchscreen into a dash cam with recording capability.

This is a true luxury car so just about everything you can think of comes standard including power trunk release and closer, a dual-pane power moon roof, heads up display in the windshield, blind spot monitoring, rear camera, forward collision warning, and lane keeping assist.  It has a power rear sunshade and manual side sunshades for the back passengers.  It will even parallel park itself.

This car has almost $13,000 in options.  They are the $4380 Driver Assist Package which gives you front and rear automatic braking, adaptive cruise control, and night vision. 

It also has a $3700 Bose Panaray sound system that gives you – get this – 34 speakers, and the sound is amazing.  One speaker rises from the dash when you start the car. 

It has the $3300 Active Chassis package, which would be a must-have option for me, because you get magnetic ride control, active rear steering, and the 20” wheels. The blue metallic paint is $495.

Last is the Comfort Package, which is $900 and gives you heated rear seats, and air conditioned front seats.

One cool thing I have never seen before is the rearview mirror.  A simple lever turns the mirror into a rearview camera that gives you 300% more vision from behind.  It takes some getting used to because everything is smaller, but it works really well during daylight.

The CT6 handles great especially going into hard curves when you are in sport mode.  The active rear steering seems to have a big impact on that, and this car is incredibly quiet inside, and offers up a ton of safety features.

Fuel economy is good for a car this size.  EPA ratings are 18 city and 27 highway, and so far, it is doing slightly better.

Base price on the 2016 CT6 is $53,495 for the base model with the 4-cylinder turbo, but you can run these cars up to almost $90,000.  This particular car has an MSRP of $77,340 and for me that is OK because the base price of a BMW 7-series is $81,300 and an Audi A8 is $81,500, neither equipped nearly as well as this car.

Expect an even larger Cadillac than this down the road, but for now this is an exceptional luxury sedan, and the most enjoyable Cadillac I have ever been in.  I was unsure which direction Cadillac was heading a year ago, but if they continue to produce cars like the CT6, they will become a big player in the luxury segment.

  • What I liked best:  The looks, the features, and the price.
  • What I would change:  Truly nothing.         
  • MSRP: Base price $63,570 as equipped $77,340.
  • Fuel Economy: 18 City, 27 Highway, 22 Combined.
  • Fuel Tank: 19.5 gallons with filler on the passenger side.
  • Dimensions: 204” long/74”wide/57.9” high.
  • Weight: 3700 Pounds.
  • Miles When Tested: 710 miles.
  • Trailer Towing:  N/A
  • Final Assembly Point: Detroit, Michigan
  • 2016 Cadillac CT6 in a few words: Best. Cadillac. EVER.
  • Warranty:  4-year/50,000 mile bumper-to-bumper with free maintenance, 6-ear/70,000 mile powertrain with roadside assistance and courtesy transportation.
  • Manufacturers website: Cadillac
Photo Credit: Cadillac