6 Things to Know About the 2017 Cadillac CT6

Craig Cole
by Craig Cole

The CT6 is Cadillac’s newest flagship four-door. Breaking Cadillac tradition, chiefly its long-established three-letter nomenclature, this crown-jewel sedan pushes boundaries in plenty of ways.

Aside from the addition of a number to its name, this car destroys the notion that GM can’t build world-class products, silencing critics that claim Caddy isn’t capable of beating the Germans at their own game. It offers class-exclusive technology, ample luxury and more advanced engineering than a 21st century fighter jet.

Sized to compete with short-wheelbase versions of cars like the BMW 7 Series and Audi’s A8, the CT6 is nonetheless lighter than rivals. An entry-level, rear-wheel-drive model with the 2.0-liter engine clocks in at a featherweight 3,657 pounds, just five more than its noticeably smaller sibling, the CTS. Compared to a Mercedes-Benz S550 4Matic, this example is more than half a ton lighter.

But that’s enough numbers; the CT6 offers plenty of emotion, appealing to your right brain as well as it does to the complimentary and often times drearily pedantic left hemisphere. Here are six things you need to know about Cadillac’s latest offering.

6. It’s Roomy

The CT6 is a certifiably large car, something its cabin can attest to. From a space standpoint, even the huskiest of drivers will find little to complain about; this Cadillac’s front accommodations are impressively comfortable, but its back seat is even nicer. Lanky riders have ample sprawling room in all major directions. Just make certain to limit occupancy because the enormous floor tunnel makes the center seat as inhospitable as the peak of Everest.

Matching its cabin, the trunk of this sedan is also large. Measuring more than 15 cubic feet, you’ll probably be hard pressed to fill it in normal usage.

ALSO SEE: 2016 Cadillac CT6 Review

5. The Interior is Beautifully Crafted

The CT6’s interior is nicely done, though perhaps not quite as over-the-top luxurious as what you get in an S-Class. Still, the materials are high quality and the overall design is pleasantly clean.

I particularly like the simplicity; there are no gimmicks or added design flourishes thrown in for the sake of looking fancy. This car’s interior is sensibly laid out and easy to use.

Upping the style factor, our test example had cinnamon-hued leather splashed across its seats and armrests. This creamy-soft material is lickably delicious, contrasting beautifully with darker colored pieces. The addition of carbon-fiber is a nice touch, but this material shouldn’t be wasted on trim; save it for structural components where its weight-saving abilities can be put to better use.

4. It’s FAST!

When equipped with its range-topping engine, the CT6 is seriously fast. Offering 3.0-liters of maximum cylinder capacity along with twin turbochargers and direct fuel injection, this V6 delivers 404 SAE-certified horses along with 400 lb-ft of torque.

That capable motor catapults this sedan to extra-legal velocities in short enough order to make you chortle like a village idiot; the sprint to 60 feels like it takes place in the brisk low five-second range. Aside from impressive performance, this engine is also incredibly refined, quiet and free from unwanted vibration.

For greater confidence, all-wheel drive is standard with this powerplant, ditto with the mid-range 3.6-liter V6. Base CT6s, ones hauled around by the 2.0-liter turbo, are exclusively rear-drive.

3. A Brusque Transmission

Regrettably, not everything is perfect with this car’s drivetrain. 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. 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.

SEE ALSO: 2017 Cadillac XT5 Review

Oh well, at least this gearbox helps make the CT6 quite efficient. Despite having all-wheel drive and more than 400 horsepower, it stickers at 18 miles per gallon city, 26 highway and 21 mpg combined.

2. A Tech-Offensive

If owning the latest and greatest electronic gadgets is your thing, this Cadillac is sure to please. It’s loaded with plenty of advanced technology befitting a luxury flagship.

One of the first things you’ll notice is the customizable, 12-inch, full-color display that serves as the instrument cluster. It allows you to tailor the look and feel to your preference.

Beyond this, the latest version of the company’s CUE infotainment system is simple to figure out and unexpectedly alert, responding to inputs without any stutters or lag. In keeping with current trends, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are also included, as is 4G LTE connectivity.

Park assist, automatic high-beams, emergency braking and adaptive cruise control are but a handful of the other niceties this car was equipped with. Our test model also featured the 34-speaker Bose Panaray sound system, a $3,700 option. You read that right, 34 SPEAKERS!

One of the CT6’s most useful items is the rearview camera mirror. Engineers have fitted the standard aft-facing mirror with a full-color display. You can toggle it on or off to show a video feed from the backup camera, which increases your sternward visibility by more than 200 percent. It’s super convenient but does take a little getting used to as the screen’s frame rate results in unnaturally crisp images as things move through the field of view.

1. It Drives Small

The CT6 is a roomy rocketship with enough tech to keep even a millennial entertained, but it’s also surprisingly entertaining to drive, feeling more like an ATS than an Escalade.

Our test car was equipped with optional Magnetic Ride Control, part of the $3,300 Active Chassis Package, a system that works just as brilliantly in other models as it does in this Cadillac. It allows you to customize how the suspension feels, from stiff and sporty to boulevard smooth.

The car’s steering is dialed in, the brakes confidence inspiring and the light curb weight makes the CT6 feel ready to dance.

As for pricing, our Premium Luxury trim model stickered for a ritzy $81,840, including $995 in delivery fees, a price that was inflated by more than $13,000 in options. Skip some of the fancy features and you can get a high-end CT6 for less than $70k, which is a more than fair price, especially compared to its primary rivals.

Watch our video review of the Cadillac CT6 below:

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Craig Cole
Craig Cole

Born and raised in metro Detroit, Craig was steeped in mechanics from childhood. He feels as much at home with a wrench or welding gun in his hand as he does behind the wheel or in front of a camera. Putting his Bachelor's Degree in Journalism to good use, he's always pumping out videos, reviews, and features for AutoGuide.com. When the workday is over, he can be found out driving his fully restored 1936 Ford V8 sedan. Craig has covered the automotive industry full time for more than 10 years and is a member of the Automotive Press Association (APA) and Midwest Automotive Media Association (MAMA).

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5 of 8 comments
  • Johnls39 . Johnls39 . on Jul 20, 2016

    Cadillac did an excellent job of the CT6. I had seen two on the streets so far and the car stands out in traffic. Also, in spite of few plastics here and there, the car has excellent fit and finish with superb technology.

    • See 2 previous
    • Johnls39 . Johnls39 . on Jul 21, 2016

      Anyone who thinks the CTS is bland does not know any better about automotive design and can't be taken seriously. Good day to you, getoffme.

  • Paul Franken Paul Franken on Jul 21, 2016

    I owned 2 Sedan Devilles back in the '80s - I'm impressed.