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2013 Cadillac XTS combines new tech, old luxury

June 30, 2012 12:00:00 AM PDT
In recent years, Cadillac has enjoyed success with its mid-size CTS sedan. But at the large end of the size scale, the carmaker had not had a new car in more than a dozen years. That's now changing with the 2013 XTS.

"We are able to do in this vehicle the things that are part of our DNA, a large, luxurious, spacious, comfortable vehicle, but we've definitely modernized the formula," said Don Butler, Cadillac's vice-president.

With a base price of $44,995, the XTS wears Cadillac's current angular, chiseled look, but tones it down a bit. You can tell right off the bat that it's a modern Caddy. Underneath, new technology abounds. For example, the suspension is controlled magnetically for changing conditions.

Under the hood is General Motors' workhorse 3.6-liter V6. Sorry, no V8. But Cadillac isn't apologizing. Fuel efficiency is the way of the future, and the company points out that this engine's 304 horsepower is way more than their most state-of-the-art V8 produced 20 years ago.

"We don't have a V8 in the all new XTS, but we don't need a V8 in the all-new XTS," Butler said.

The XTS is a balancing act for Cadillac. On the one hand, they like traditional Cadillac buyers to be attracted to it who are looking for ride, comfort and luxury. But younger buyers, the ones who may be attracted to an Audi, a BMW or a Lexus, want technology.

The XTS debuts a new touch screen system called CUE for Cadillac user experience. Its screen provides haptic feedback to pulse back at your finger. It's similar to the screen on many smartphones and tablets.

The XTS is an appealing combination of old school luxury and new-think technology, carrying the Cadillac crest traditionally and non-traditionally at the same time.


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