Not since Cadillac canceled the DTS sedan in 2011 has it had a flagship model. The Cadillac CT6 goes beyond those earlier sedans by offering standard rear-wheel drive, available all-wheel drive, and a host of engineering and technology features not seen before.
Although larger than any other Cadillac sedan, the new CT6 is considered a midsize model. Cadillac points out that the sedan’s interior room matches at least one full-size luxury model’s standard wheelbase offering. The roomy 2017 CT6 seats five.
What's New for 2017
As the CT6 arrived late in the 2016 model year, the changes for 2017 are modest. Two new color choices are available and an updated wash feature is added to the rearview camera system.
Later in the model year, a plug-in hybrid electric vehicle variant will be released. It represents the first PHEV for Cadillac and it most certainly will not be the last one.
Choosing Your Cadillac CT6
Four trim levels are available with the 2017 Cadillac CT6: CT6 (base), Luxury, Premium Luxury, and Platinum. Rear-wheel drive is the standard and all-wheel drive is available across the model line.
A long list of standard and available features are found in the Cadillac CT6. All models are equipped with OnStar 4G LTE with Wi-Fi hotspot and wireless phone charging. Cadillac CUE telematics, navigation, Apple Car Play and Android Auto compatibility, a premium Bose audio system, and a handcrafted cut-and-sewn interior are among the many features offered.
Three engine choices are available:
A 2-liter, turbocharged four-cylinder engine making 265 horsepower and 295 pound-feet of torque is standard. This engine comes with rear-wheel drive models only.
A 3.6-liter, V6 engine making 335 horsepower and 284 pound-feet of torque is available.
Also available is a 3-liter, twin-turbo V6 engine making 404 horsepower and 400 pound-feet of torque.
Both V6s are found in all-wheel drive models only. All three engines are paired with an eight-speed automatic transmission.
Fuel economy for the base engine comes in at an EPA-rated 22 mpg in the city and 30 mpg on the highway. The 3.6-liter V6 is EPA-rated at 18 mpg in the city and 27 mpg on the highway. The turbo V6 is EPA-rated at 18 mpg in the city and 26 mpg on the highway. Both turbos require premium gasoline. The standard V6 takes regular grade. All models are equipped with a 19.5-gallon fuel tank.
Only models equipped with the 3.6-liter, V6 engine are rated for towing. This sedan pulls a modest 1,000 pounds.
As with other luxury models, there is overlap between trim levels. Your best bet is to prioritize your powertrain and drivetrain requirements, and work your way from there. The 3.6-liter, V6 will suit most buyers and it comes with standard all-wheel drive. The Premium Luxury edition offers most of the top features. Choosing the Platinum edition automatically adds $20,000 to your final price.
The Cadillac CT6 is the all-new flagship for GM’s luxury brand. Presenting a level of engineering and technology not seen before in a Cadillac product, the CT6 offers a compelling alternative to Europe’s finest luxury models.
Pricing and Equipment
The 2017 Cadillac CT6 is available in CT6 (Base), Luxury, Premium Luxury, and Platinum trims. Rear-wheel drive is standard; all-wheel drive is available.
Three engine choices are available. A turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine making 265 horsepower and 295 pound-feet of torque is standard on base and Luxury rear-wheel drive models. A 3.6-liter V6 engine producing 335 horsepower and 284 pound-feet of torque is standard across the entire all-wheel drive range.
Also available with the Luxury, Premium Luxury, and Platinum models is a twin-turbo 3.0-liter V6 engine making 404 horsepower and 400 pound-feet of torque. All three engines are paired with an eight-speed automatic transmission.
Introduced in late 2016, the 2017 model arrives unchanged except for a pair of new exterior color choices. A plug-in hybrid variant arrives later in the model year.
The standard rear-wheel drive 2017 CT6 starts at $54,490. Choose all-wheel drive and your price rises to $56,490. This model makes an EPA-estimated 22 mpg in the city and 30 mpg on the highway.
The Luxury model starts at $61,390. This vehicle makes an EPA-estimated 18 mpg in the city and 27 mpg on the highway. Cadillac prices the Premium Luxury model from $64,590 and the Platinum edition from $84,490.
Choose the available twin-turbo V6 and that’s a $4,000 upgrade where available. Equipped models make an EPA-estimated 18 mpg in the city and 26 mpg on the highway.
Various upgrades, including packages, are available depending on the trim. The $2,950 Driver Awareness and Convenience package brings in features like front pedestrian detection, blind spot monitoring, rear cross-traffic alert, a panoramic power sunroof, navigation, and heated front seats. The Active Chassis package adds magnetic ride control and 20-inch wheels. (Prices do not reflect a $995 destination charge.)
Who needs a V8 when you have access to a twin-turbo V6 producing outrageous power? We knew the new engine was potent, but that’s not all: because of Cadillac’s weight-reducing efforts, it has barely over two tons of mass to move. We don't think you'll wish for a V8 when you get behind the wheel of this twin-turbo model.
Our reviewers sang praises over the CT6’s “grippy” handling, especially in models powered by the turbo four. At the same time, they realize more power is needed and say the rear-steer system is helpful with the larger engines.
In a bid to offer something for everyone, the turbo four-cylinder engine found in the compact ATS is the base engine for the CT6. While we certainly can understand providing an efficient base engine, we think most customers will instead set their eyes on either V6 in an effort to find power better matched to this large sedan.
Tall people will find the CT6 roomy, front and back. Further, our reviewers noted that two rear passengers will find more room back there than up front up.
The trunk measures 15.3 cubic feet, which is smaller than the XTS. Yet, there is enough room to hold sufficient luggage for four for a long weekend getaway. And when you need to carry a long item, such as a lamp, a pass through to the cabin is present.
The available rear camera mirror takes some getting used to, but once you do, you’ll appreciate the expanded vantage point it provides.
Created exclusively for the Cadillac CT6, the 34-speaker Bose Panaray audio system, which is standard in the Platinum trim, should appeal to audiophiles. It supplies a level of clarity and precision that other top-shelf systems provide.
We like the fit and finish of the CT6’s interior. We also think Cadillac could have gone for the wow factor regularly offered by competitors such as Audi and Mercedes-Benz. In short, our reviewers thought the aesthetics could have been warmer.
The Most Pleasant Surprise
Although not quite the size of the flagships presented by its top competitors, the CT6 offers a very reasonable starting price. Not many models in this segment begin in the $50,000 range and offer what you will discover in the CT6.
The Least Pleasant Surprise
The latest version of the CUE (Cadillac User Experience) infotainment system is present, but we’re still not keen on what is offered. Like us, you may find yourself using Android Auto or Apple Car Play instead.
The Bottom Line
In the CT6, Cadillac has thrown down the gauntlet, serving notice to Mercedes-Benz, BMW, Audi, and Lexus that it intends to go after the same customers these automakers prize. Quite easily, the CT6 is the best Cadillac we’ve seen in decades, a model offered with multiple powertrain and drivetrain choices in an effort to reach a variety of luxury sedan shoppers.