Five-Point Inspection: 2014 Cadillac CTS 3.6L

Five-Point Inspection: 2014 Cadillac CTS 3.6L

2. The Power of Choice

Choice: it’s a good thing. Cadillac offers three different engines in this car so just about every customer is covered.

Serving as the base powerplant is 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder, a configuration that’s becoming ever more popular in the luxury segment with brands including BMW, Audi, Lincoln and even Mercedes offer force-fed bangers. The CTS’s engine puts out a stout 272 ponies with 295 lb-ft of torque.

The mid-range offering is a tried-and-true 3.6-liter naturally aspirated V6. A staple of GM’s entire lineup, this engine works well in everything from the Buick Enclave crossover to the Chevy Camaro. In this wreath-and-crest application it puts out 321 hp and 275 lb-ft of torque.

Finally, the alpha-offering is a twin-turbocharged V6. Clocking in at 3.6-liters it writes a check for 420 SAE-certified horses and 430 lb-ft of twist. All engines in the CTS lineup feature advanced technologies including variable valve timing and direct fuel injection.

Depending on whether you opt for rear- or all-wheel drive, the engines are matched to either a six-speed automatic transmission or a self-shifter with eight forward gears. Like Goldilocks our rear-drive test model was comfortably centered. It featured the mid-range V6 and the eight-speed transmission. It was also dressed in performance trim, which nestled it neatly between entry-level luxury models and range-topping premium cars.

On the economy front… fuel economy, that is, rear-wheel-drive CTS 3.6 models sticker at 18 MPG city and an impressive 29 on the highway. The combined score is a not-unreasonable 22 MPG.