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    Review: 2017 Cadillac CT6 Platinum 3.0TT


    • A Cinderella story for Cadillac's flagship sedan

    There has been a common theme for most of the Cadillac vehicles I have reviewed over the past few years. They are always so close to being up there with the best, but there is one thing or trait that knocks them down. Such examples include interior appointments that don’t match up with the price being asked, confusing infotainment systems, and engines that don’t quite match up with the image being portrayed. This was floating around in the back of my head when a 2017 Cadillac CT6 Platinum rolled up onto my driveway. This is an important model for Cadillac as it is taking on the likes of the BMW 7-Series and Mercedes-Benz S-Class. The little things can make or break a sedan in the class.

    Seeing the Cadillac CT6 for the first time at Detroit Auto Show a few years ago, I wasn’t too impressed. The toned-down Art & Science design made me feel that the CT6 blended in with other luxury sedans. But after spending a bit of time with this CT6, I grew to like the design. Yes, the design language has lost some edge found on other Cadillacs, but there is still some sharpness with hard angles and bold lines. The Platinum adds some touches that really bring out the CT6’s shape. A chrome grille helps give the model a more imposing front end and a set of optional 20-inch wheels finished in ‘Midnight Silver’ do an excellent job of filling in the wheel wells. 

    If there has been a consistent weak point to Cadillac’s recent models, it has to be interior. On first glance, it seems they have it nailed down with a modern design and quality materials. But when you sit inside and begin to take a closer look, that illusion begins to go away. A fair amount of the materials used doesn't quite match up the luxury aura being presented such as the sheet piano black trim used for touch-sensitive controls on a number of Cadillac models. But the brand is improving as we noted in our XT5 review, and the CT6 is much the same. There is a noticeable step-up in terms of materials such as fine leather, carbon fiber accents, and wood trim. This comes wrapped in a handsomely-designed dashboard. There are some areas Cadillac still needs to do some work on such as the plasticity controls for the climate control system. 

    The front seats are a treat to sit in thanks to the right amount of cushioning and support. The Platinum trim gets 20-way power seats for both the driver and passenger to help dial in the right position. Those sitting in the back will be pleased to find generous head and legroom. As added bonus, you can order heated and ventilated seats, power adjustments, and a rear entertainment system to make the back more luxurious. The only downside to sitting in the back is that the CT6 isn’t long enough to take full advantage of the power adjustments. I felt somewhat cramped when I had the back seat fully reclined and my legs touching the back of the front seat. A few more inches in the wheelbase would fix this issue.

    Cadillac’s CUE system has undergone some changes for the CT6. Most of the touch-sensitive buttons have either been dropped or replaced with actual, physical buttons. Being able to press a button or flick a switch to change a setting is a welcome change and less frustrating than the touch-sensitive controls. It would have been nice if Cadillac swapped the touch-sensitive volume strip for an actual knob, but at least you can adjust it via the steering wheel controls. Cadillac also added a touchpad controller (think Lexus’ Remote Touch system) for CUE. It is a nice idea on paper, but the execution shows Cadillac needs to do a bit more work. The touchpad is hypersensitive and tends to overshoot from where you want the cursor. You’re better off using the touchscreen. As for CUE itself, the system comes with a faster processor, some tweaks to the interface, and Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility. These changes make CUE less frustrating to use on a daily basis.

    There are three engines on offer for the CT6. The base is a turbocharged 2.0L four-cylinder, followed by a 3.6L V6. Our Platinum tester featured the big dog; a twin-turbo 3.0L V6 offering 404 horsepower and 400 pound-feet of torque (@ 2,500 - 5,100 rpm)  Power goes to all four wheels via an eight-speed automatic. Performance for the twin-turbo six may not have same exuberance as V8s found in competitors, but it isn’t a slouch. This engine rockets the CT6 at a surprising rate of speed. Those who have timed the vehicle say it will hit 60 mph in around five seconds and we would believe it. Torque is abundant throughout rev range, meaning you should have no issue trying to merge on the freeway or make a pass. The eight-speed automatic has the right characteristics you want in a flagship sedan, smooth and unobtrusive shifts.

    EPA fuel economy figures for the CT6 3.0TT stand at 18 City/26 Highway/21 Combined. Our average for the week landed around 22 mpg in mostly city driving.

    Describing a sedan that measures 204 inches in overall length as ‘agile’ seems very disingenuous. But the CT6 is that. Drive it around a turn and the CT6 feels like a smaller sedan with nimble manners and well-controlled body motions. Some credit has to go Active Chassis package that comes standard on the Platinum and comes with the excellent Magnetic Ride Control system and rear-wheel steering. 

    But most buyers who tend to buy a sedan of this caliber don’t really care about handling. Ride quality is king here and that’s where the CT6 begins to falter. When equipped with the Magnetic Ride Control system, the ride is just a touch too firm. You will feel more bumps in this than some of the CT6’s competition. It would be nice if Cadillac could offer an air suspension for those who want comfort. On the upside, road and wind noise are kept to near silent levels.

    It seems somewhat surprising to call the CT6 Platinum a great value, but it actually is. The Platinum 3.0TT begins at $87,495 and our test car with a few options (20-inch wheels, white paint, and spoiler) comes in at $91,580. Considering you have to spend a fair amount more on competitors to match the level of equipment on offer, the CT6 Platinum is quite the steal.

    Most of Cadillac’s vehicles have fallen into the cliche of ‘being so close, yet so far’ due to some odd or boneheaded decision. But the CT6 is the first Cadillac that has avoided this. It feels like Cadillac is starting to feel comfortable in this new identity that it has been putting out there since the mid-2000s, a legitimate competitor to the Germans. The CT6 stands out for a number of reasons; excellent driving dynamics, impressive interior, punchy V6, and being quite the value. There are some niggling issues such as a firm ride and questionable materials, but these can and should be addressed down the road. Whether the CT6 can draw people away from the usual suspects remains to be seen. 

    If Cadillac can take what they have learned from the CT6 and implement them into future models, then we can say something that hasn’t been used in a long time, ‘Standard of the World’.

    Disclaimer: Cadillac Provided the CT6, Insurance, and One Tank of Gas

    Year: 2017
    Make: Cadillac
    Model: CT6
    Trim: Platinum
    Engine: Twin-Turbo 3.0L DI DOHC with VVT V6
    Driveline: Eight-Speed Automatic, All-Wheel Drive
    Horsepower @ RPM: 404 @ 5,700
    Torque @ RPM: 400 @ 2,500 - 5,100
    Fuel Economy: City/Highway/Combined - 18/26/21
    Curb Weight: 4,085 lbs
    Location of Manufacture: Detroit, MI
    Base Price: $87,495
    As Tested Price: $91,580 (Includes $995.00 Destination Charge)

    Options:
    20" Midnight Silver Wheels - $2,095.00
    Crystal White Tricoat - $500.00
    Spoiler Kit - $495.00

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    2 hours ago, dfelt said:

    Awesome write up, very enjoyable to read. I suspect the usual suspects will nit pick this apart as it still is not a german sedan.

    And we care not about them, as they will always nitpick anything that doesn't come from das fuhrer lol! The CT6 is a solid triple, just short of a home run, with the 3.0L. The CUE system keeps it at third base but it is ready to steal home with the right update.

    I will say this though. These comparisons to the S Class need to stop. It was never meant to compete with the S Class, yet people keep insisting on bringing it up in every CT6 article. It's clearly not in the same price bracket and is not equipped the same (not to mention the size). That spot is reserved for the upcoming CT8, which I do think will be a true S Class fighter and rightfully so.

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    Solid review. I want to see the CT6 taken further with the long rumored new V8 in development and teased in concepts.

    I disagree on one count, because every Cadillac review seems to repeat the same "finally no more excuses" theme. Besides the questionable CUE system, both the CTS and Escalade are already no-excuses excellent products. Their interiors are very well executed with leather,  suede, and wood trim. I'm particularly smitten with Cadillac's brown leather options.

    Cadillac has been building great cars for a while, and the CT6's greatest weakness IMO is the way Cadillac's rapid evolution and stunning concept cars set expectations so high that the warmed over Art & Science sheetmetal and simplified interior were underwhelming.

    2015-Cadillac-CTS-cockpit.jpg

    2015-Cadillac-Escalade-Platinum-cockpit.

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    9 minutes ago, cp-the-nerd said:

    Solid review. I want to see the CT6 taken further with the long rumored new V8 in development and teased in concepts.

    I disagree on one count, because every Cadillac review seems to repeat the same "finally no more excuses" theme. Besides the questionable CUE system, both the CTS and Escalade are already no-excuses excellent products. Their interiors are very well executed with leather,  suede, and wood trim. I'm particularly smitten with Cadillac's brown leather options.

    Cadillac has been building great cars for a while, and the CT6's greatest weakness IMO is the way Cadillac's rapid evolution and stunning concept cars set expectations so high that the warmed over Art & Science sheetmetal and simplified interior were underwhelming.

    2015-Cadillac-CTS-cockpit.jpg

    2015-Cadillac-Escalade-Platinum-cockpit.

    Totally agree, that I love their warm brown interiors.

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    Given the average age demographic of the 7-series and S-class buyer, the handling aspect of the CT6 may be a benefit in an often overlooked category.  The ability to park these larger cars is a common concern of that age group and 4-wheel steering makes parking the CT6 a breeze. You can maneuver the CT6 around the Piggly Wiggly parking lot as if it were a CTS while still having your fullsize comfort.  

    Turning radii:

    CT6 - 18.5 Feet (only with 4-wheel steering) 20 feet without.

    7-series - 21 feet

    S-Class - 20 feet

    A8 - 20.85 feet

     

     

     

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    5 hours ago, surreal1272 said:

    And we care not about them, as they will always nitpick anything that doesn't come from das fuhrer lol! The CT6 is a solid triple, just short of a home run, with the 3.0L. The CUE system keeps it at third base but it is ready to steal home with the right update.

    I will say this though. These comparisons to the S Class need to stop. It was never meant to compete with the S Class, yet people keep insisting on bringing it up in every CT6 article. It's clearly not in the same price bracket and is not equipped the same (not to mention the size). That spot is reserved for the upcoming CT8, which I do think will be a true S Class fighter and rightfully so.

    I agree it is not an S-class competitor, they aren't even close on the inside or in power or in price.  The Genesis cars and Continental and Kia K900 aren't S-class competitors either, even if they are full size cars. 

    I think the CT6 is more of an E-class competitor based on price, and I think the CT6 interior lags behind the E-class, maybe it is on par with the 5-series and A6, but the A6 is old.  I think Cadillac should have done more with the interior of the CT6 since they didn't bring a lot of horsepower to the table.  They aren't selling M5 performance for their $91k, so that interior better be world class.    

    Really if they took the CT6 and cut 10 inches of length out of it, they would have a CTS that would be competitive with the mid-size segment.  If they do a CT8, and that is a big IF, they better aim way high.

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    4 hours ago, Drew Dowdell said:

    Given the average age demographic of the 7-series and S-class buyer, the handling aspect of the CT6 may be a benefit in an often overlooked category.  The ability to park these larger cars is a common concern of that age group and 4-wheel steering makes parking the CT6 a breeze. You can maneuver the CT6 around the Piggly Wiggly parking lot as if it were a CTS while still having your fullsize comfort.  

    Turning radii:

    CT6 - 18.5 Feet (only with 4-wheel steering) 20 feet without.

    7-series - 21 feet

    S-Class - 20 feet

    A8 - 20.85 feet

     

     

     

    The S-class and 7-series park themselves though, the 7-series does perpendicular parking too, not sure if the S-class does now, I assume it will on the 2018 update it it doesn't already because the E-class can.  I think the 5-series has the same self-park as the 7.

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    1 hour ago, smk4565 said:

    The S-class and 7-series park themselves though, the 7-series does perpendicular parking too, not sure if the S-class does now, I assume it will on the 2018 update it it doesn't already because the E-class can.  I think the 5-series has the same self-park as the 7.

    Optional - Minimum price, $100k. 

    The CT6 does have self-park and can do it perpendicularly. 

    The 2010 MKS had self-park, so ease off that high horse there mister. 

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    7 hours ago, surreal1272 said:

    I will say this though. These comparisons to the S Class need to stop. It was never meant to compete with the S Class, yet people keep insisting on bringing it up in every CT6 article. It's clearly not in the same price bracket and is not equipped the same (not to mention the size). That spot is reserved for the upcoming CT8, which I do think will be a true S Class fighter and rightfully so.

    3

     

    1 hour ago, smk4565 said:

    I agree it is not an S-class competitor, they aren't even close on the inside or in power or in price.  The Genesis cars and Continental and Kia K900 aren't S-class competitors either, even if they are full size cars. 

    I think the CT6 is more of an E-class competitor based on price, and I think the CT6 interior lags behind the E-class, maybe it is on par with the 5-series and A6, but the A6 is old.  I think Cadillac should have done more with the interior of the CT6 since they didn't bring a lot of horsepower to the table.  They aren't selling M5 performance for their $91k, so that interior better be world class.    

    Really if they took the CT6 and cut 10 inches of length out of it, they would have a CTS that would be competitive with the mid-size segment.  If they do a CT8, and that is a big IF, they better aim way high.

    1

    I would ask then is what you would compare this specific model with? If we were talking about 2.0T or 3.6, then I would compare it to the likes of 5-Series, E-Class, S90, etc. But this is 3.0TT Platinum with a starting price of $87,495. I think if we're talking price, then the S-Class, 7-Series, A8 comparisons are fair.

    But, the size of CT6 is where I think the comparison becomes tougher. The CT6 is smaller than a full-size flagship, but bigger than a midsize (i.e. CTS). We go back to the issue of the last-generation CTS - what class does it compete in? Compact or midsize?

    I think that's where a lot of us, myself included, find ourselves scratching our heads as to where to put it.

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    55 minutes ago, Drew Dowdell said:

    Optional - Minimum price, $100k. 

    The CT6 does have self-park and can do it perpendicularly. 

    The 2010 MKS had self-park, so ease off that high horse there mister. 

    It isn't a high horse, you stated that ease of parking was an advantage of buying the CT6 over the other big sedans, but they all self park.  So it is a non issue really.  No V8 in the CT6, and a base 4 cylinder, so they aren't going for performance.  I think they should have done more with the interior so they had something that stands out against the competition.

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    1 hour ago, William Maley said:

     

    I would ask then is what you would compare this specific model with? If we were talking about 2.0T or 3.6, then I would compare it to the likes of 5-Series, E-Class, S90, etc. But this is 3.0TT Platinum with a starting price of $87,495. I think if we're talking price, then the S-Class, 7-Series, A8 comparisons are fair.

    But, the size of CT6 is where I think the comparison becomes tougher. The CT6 is smaller than a full-size flagship, but bigger than a midsize (i.e. CTS). We go back to the issue of the last-generation CTS - what class does it compete in? Compact or midsize?

    I think that's where a lot of us, myself included, find ourselves scratching our heads as to where to put it.

    Might leave buyers scratching their heads too.   I still think it more of a 5-series, E-class competitor, because the CT6 is the same size as a 90s STS and Cadillac wanted that to be a 5-series/E-class competitor, with full size at mid-size price.

    If you take an E43 it starts at $72k, but with premium 3 package, metallic paint and heated/cooled seats as the only options added, the price hits $81,795 and you could get it to $87k with the rest of the options.  If you take an S550 4Matic with premium package as the only option it is $105,025.  However, if you check all the option boxes except for the refrigerator and dealer accessories I was able to option an S550 up to $156,765.   And that is with the base engine in the S-class, we aren't even to the V12 or the AMG yet.  This is why I think CT6 is more E-class competition

    Edited by smk4565

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    17 minutes ago, smk4565 said:

    It isn't a high horse, you stated that ease of parking was an advantage of buying the CT6 over the other big sedans, but they all self park.  So it is a non issue really.  No V8 in the CT6, and a base 4 cylinder, so they aren't going for performance.  I think they should have done more with the interior so they had something that stands out against the competition.

    SMK complain all you want, fact is the CT6 interior is every bit a competent interior and very competitive to the E-class interior.

    2017 E-Class

    2017-EclassInterior.jpg

    2017 CT6

    2017-CT6Interior.jpg 

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    I think the E is better after sitting in both, but CT6 is competitive in the segment for sure.  But the CTS is also supposed to be competing in the midsize segment.  What Cadillac should do is put the CT6 interior in the CTS, the CTS interior in the ATS and upgrade CT6 to something above Escalade Platinum interior.   This will make all 3 of their sedans more competitive.

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    1 hour ago, smk4565 said:

    It isn't a high horse, you stated that ease of parking was an advantage of buying the CT6 over the other big sedans, but they all self park.  So it is a non issue really.  No V8 in the CT6, and a base 4 cylinder, so they aren't going for performance.  I think they should have done more with the interior so they had something that stands out against the competition.

    No, they don't all self park. It's an option on cars already $10k higher in price than the Cadillac. On the S class, it's part of a $4,500 option package. What you're trying to do is discount the fact that the CT6 Platinum is more manageable to drive.

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    5 hours ago, smk4565 said:

    the E-class, maybe it is on par with the 5-series and A6, but the A6 is old.  I think Cadillac should have done more with the interior of the CT6 since they didn't bring a lot of horsepower to the table.

    In order to match the CT6 with the A6, you have to bump up to the S6, where 2 more cylinders & a full litre more displacement gets you 16 more HP than the 3.0TT CT6.

    In order to match the CT6 with the e-class, you have to bump up to the V8TT, where 2 more cylinders & 1.6 litres more displacement gets you 2 less HP than the 3.0TT CT6.

    Cylinder to cylinders & litres to litres, its the Germans that didn't bring a lot of HP to the table (unless you pay and pay and pay).

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    Are we actually proud for self-parking cars?

    We are discussing which cars have park assist and which of these park themselves better?

    Ill be impressed when self-parking cars park like this!  (And a feature that I will use ONLY if they actually park like that!)

    10e3eaffc3f3e23451a8565680103e8b91e1695c

     

    I bet you these kids will NEVER use park assist in their lives!!!

    image?id=816005867774&t=44&plc=WEB&tkn=*

    kid-shows-how-to-parallel-park-o.gif

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Edited by oldshurst442
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    14 hours ago, William Maley said:

     

    I would ask then is what you would compare this specific model with? If we were talking about 2.0T or 3.6, then I would compare it to the likes of 5-Series, E-Class, S90, etc. But this is 3.0TT Platinum with a starting price of $87,495. I think if we're talking price, then the S-Class, 7-Series, A8 comparisons are fair.

    But, the size of CT6 is where I think the comparison becomes tougher. The CT6 is smaller than a full-size flagship, but bigger than a midsize (i.e. CTS). We go back to the issue of the last-generation CTS - what class does it compete in? Compact or midsize?

    I think that's where a lot of us, myself included, find ourselves scratching our heads as to where to put it.

    The A8 and 7 Series are more apt here. The S Class, when you start to option it out (never mind the higher base price), shoots into another stratosphere price wise that makes comparing a much cheaper Cadillac kind of pointless. That's just my opinion, mind you, but I feel it is a valid opinion. I do get that the CT6 is a "tweener" size but just further makes my point in regards to any comparison to a bigger and much more expensive S Class. That all changes when the CT8 comes out.

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    14 hours ago, smk4565 said:

    It isn't a high horse, you stated that ease of parking was an advantage of buying the CT6 over the other big sedans, but they all self park.  So it is a non issue really.  No V8 in the CT6, and a base 4 cylinder, so they aren't going for performance.  I think they should have done more with the interior so they had something that stands out against the competition.

    Its not just about parking.. the CT6 has a better turning radius.. thus allowing it to maneuver better. U are just hell bent on trying to praise Benz.. which is curious.. because if the CT6 had the V8 options that the S-Class has... the all important to U 0-60 times would most likely see Caddy a victor again. Did I mention FUCK BENZ??? 

    1 hour ago, surreal1272 said:

    The A8 and 7 Series are more apt here. The S Class, when you start to option it out (never mind the higher base price), shoots into another stratosphere price wise that makes comparing a much cheaper Cadillac kind of pointless. That's just my opinion, mind you, but I feel it is a valid opinion. I do get that the CT6 is a "tweener" size but just further makes my point in regards to any comparison to a bigger and much more expensive S Class. That all changes when the CT8 comes out.

    Not just that.. the CT6 is quite frankly on par directly with the two "alternative Germans" and currently beats the LS460 and XJ... and IT'S NOT EVEN CALLED FLAGSHIP. The CT8 is simply gonna roast these bitches if it follows the same trend set forth by the CTS and now CT6

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    What I really want to see is the Omega chassis used on the next CTS(5?). There would be more meat in that market.  It could end up 600lbs lighter than an E-Class.

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    25 minutes ago, Cmicasa the Great said:

    Its not just about parking.. the CT6 has a better turning radius.. thus allowing it to maneuver better. U are just hell bent on trying to praise Benz.. which is curious.. because if the CT6 had the V8 options that the S-Class has... the all important to U 0-60 times would most likely see Caddy a victor again. Did I mention FUCK BENZ??? 

    Not just that.. the CT6 is quite frankly on par directly with the two "alternative Germans" and currently beats the LS460 and XJ... and IT'S NOT EVEN CALLED FLAGSHIP. The CT8 is simply gonna roast these bitches if it follows the same trend set forth by the CTS and now CT6

    Check out this V roasting on the Autobahn. At 11min is where you see him hit the no limit zone and run up to 292kph. Pretty sweet and stable run.

     

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