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Turbo-Charged 4-cyl CTS?

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GM: Turbocharged four for the CTS? Only if customers want it.
Jul 30th 2008 3:58PM
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"We're ready. When (customers) want it (the option of smaller engines) - we'll do it." That's a (somewhat mangled) quote from Thomas G. Stephens, GM's executive veep for global powertrain and quality, speaking at the inauguration of the General's Powertrain Engineering Development Center last Friday. What Stephens is referring to is the possibility of equipping Cadillacs with smaller, turbocharged engines – specifically fitting the 260-hp (or more) 2.0-liter, turbocharged four in the CTS sedan.

Sounds like a Hell of an idea, but how – exactly – is GM going to determine when consumers are ready for it? How about now?

Prices at the pump may have peaked (for now), but consumers are still craving fuel-efficient rides that don't skimp on power and poise. GM is already making V8 levels of output with its direct-injected 3.6-liter V6 (see: Camaro) and that, coupled with Stephens' quote, means that GM isn't totally oblivious to the idea of offering smaller engines that balance fuel economy and thrust in packages that might benefit from them. But again, how will the market tell GM when it's open to the idea of fewer cylinders making just as much power? Ford is already ramping up to release its line of direct injected, turbocharged EcoBoost engines, BMW has proven that turbocharged sixes are the bee's knees and practically every other automaker is looking into forced induction as a means to a lighter, more powerful, more fuel efficient end. So why is GM stalling? If the General has the capabilities, it needs to step up and let the market embrace it. It will. If GM doesn't, it risks its own extinction.
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GM: Turbocharged four for the CTS? Only if customers want it.

Jul 30th 2008 3:58PM

Link to topic on Autoblog

"We're ready. When (customers) want it (the option of smaller engines) - we'll do it." That's a (somewhat mangled) quote from Thomas G. Stephens, GM's executive veep for global powertrain and quality, speaking at the inauguration of the General's Powertrain Engineering Development Center last Friday. What Stephens is referring to is the possibility of equipping Cadillacs with smaller, turbocharged engines – specifically fitting the 260-hp (or more) 2.0-liter, turbocharged four in the CTS sedan.

Sounds like a Hell of an idea, but how – exactly – is GM going to determine when consumers are ready for it? How about now?

Prices at the pump may have peaked (for now), but consumers are still craving fuel-efficient rides that don't skimp on power and poise. GM is already making V8 levels of output with its direct-injected 3.6-liter V6 (see: Camaro) and that, coupled with Stephens' quote, means that GM isn't totally oblivious to the idea of offering smaller engines that balance fuel economy and thrust in packages that might benefit from them. But again, how will the market tell GM when it's open to the idea of fewer cylinders making just as much power? Ford is already ramping up to release its line of direct injected, turbocharged EcoBoost engines, BMW has proven that turbocharged sixes are the bee's knees and practically every other automaker is looking into forced induction as a means to a lighter, more powerful, more fuel efficient end. So why is GM stalling? If the General has the capabilities, it needs to step up and let the market embrace it. It will. If GM doesn't, it risks its own extinction.

God, I hate :deadhorse: but WHEN is GM going to wake up and be pro-active instead of re-active?

Stephens sounds like an idiot when he makes statements like that above. Correction: like a clueless idiot. Like is said above....people are ALREADY showing their interest in greater fuel economy by trading in their SUVs and buying smaller, more fuel-efficient cars.

I think a turbocharged L4 in a lower-level CTS could make a really compelling entry in the marketplace. Yet GM doesn't have the balls to step up to the plate and do something innovative to combat the market.

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Cadillac was the first brand in the world to do a 4-cylinder in 1905

or was it 1906... ? anyway something like that, subsequently they

were the first to do a V8... although Pierce Arrow, Packard and a

few others beat them in the V12 (twin-6) race Cadillac got the last

laugh w/ the V16, I think they just managed to edge out Marmon,

although Marmon had been fiddling wiht his own double-8 since

1927, Cadillac managed to beat him in terms of production.

I guess my point is, as much as I hate compromise & in a perfect

world top of the line Cadillacs would have 16 cylinders & economy

models would have V8s and V12s... the reality of 2008 gas prices

is that a I4-t powered Cadillac CTS is a great one.

It would get Cadillac more sales & hopefully if tunned for economy

& not just all out performance it might help w/ CAFE considerably.

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It'd be a great idea, but would it even be worth it seeing as the CTS is a hefty vehicle?

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uhm the Turbo-4 has roughly the same torque curve as the 3.6vvt that the original CTS had. I think it'd do fine.

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I hate when GM "studies the market" or says "we could do it now, if consumers are ready." They are mostly talk and no action. Have they looked at Honda's sales this year, or noticed that VW is now #3 in the world after passing up Ford. Smaller cars are doing well.

I don't like the turbo-4 in the CTS because the CTS is overweight. If Cadillac had a 3-series size car, the turbo-4 would be a good base engine.

The Sky redline gets 19/26 mpg, and is just under 3000 pounds. In the CTS that engine won't be as efficient, even if it only loses 1 mpg, 18/25 is no better than the 17/26 the CTS DI gets now.

Edit:

The 09 ratings for the Sky redline changed, it is 19/27 mpg now, but the annual fuel cost is $2935, same as the base engine automatic in the CTS.

Edited by smk4565
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smk, your incoherent arguments are making my trigger finger twitch.

the turbo-4 has just about the same torque curve as the base 3.6HF.

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While I agree with a 4 cylinder for now, as long as it's turbocharged,

I will AGAIN say that the future for luxury cars will be (should be) in

MINI-displacement motors of large cylinder counts.

Answer me this:

WHY, can Cadillac not have a production version of the Sixteen, but

with a baby-cylinder, BOP 215 style motor?

What horrible things would happen if Cadillac's upper-end models

all had a 5.0 liter V16 option?

Talk about silky smooth and 30 mpg highway EASY!!!

With d.o.d. & a 1:1 final drive the CAFE argument would go RIGHT

out the window!!!

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What about noise/vibrations? I mean, can a 4-cylinder be as smooth/quiet as a 6? Would many sacrifice that with a luxury brand?

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Read the post above yours, Paolino! :spin:

Although, to be fair, plenty of Audi A4 1.8-turbos

have been purchased in the past 10 years by

upper-middle class Gen-Xers for $32K +.

And I used to have a manager at Chevrolet of

Lowell who traded his Civic for a MB C280 like

three days after a big raise and he LOVED that

car like it was a AMG CL63. So a 4-cyl. is not

absurd in a $28K-$34K Cadillac IMHO.

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BMW sells a 170hp 4-cylinder 520i here. I think Cadillac could easily replicate such an engine lineup to boost sales in Europe, but I dont know if it's a money issue, inertia, or a combination of both.

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Imagine if they could take the 9-3's excellent twin-turbo, 180 PS, 1.9L TTiD, rotate it 90 degrees, and squeeze it into the CTS... Cobalt fuel economy with Cadillac luxury and design.

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So...

If the CTS is "ready" for a Turbo 4, then why the hell aren't the G8 and Camaro ready for it?

True dat!

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I wonder what a turbocharged 4 would do in a Chevrolet Traverse in terms of performance & fuel economy?

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Weight is the real problem with many GM vehicles, if they had smaller or lighter vehicles, they could use a smaller engine, then you are saving gas from less weight, plus less engine. A turbo 4 in a heavy car isn't the answer, the Acura RDX and Mazda CX-7 have turbo-4s they don't post any great mileage numbers. The Saab 9-3 2.8 turbo gets 15/24 mpg, there are V8s that get better than that.

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I would say no to the CTS, G8 and Camaro. But I wouldn't mind seeing that motor pop up in eh Malibu, G5, G6 new small FWD Caddy/Buick.

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This is GM's problem--waiting for someone else to do it first. Just put in the turbo 4 (gas and diesel) already!

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This is another stupid step backwards. Save the 4 cylinder turbo for the BLS or the upcoming small Caddy. The CTS needs to be at least 300 hp to keep it competitive. As a current first generation Cadillac CTS owner I feel the cts could use a little more power.

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Audi released US pricing and specs for the 2009 A4. The 211 hp, 258 lb-ft 2.0-liter TFSI will get 23 mpg city, 30 mpg highway and do 0-60 in 6.5 seconds. The 265 hp, 243 lb-ft 3.2-liter FSI will get 17 mpg city, 26 mpg highway (same as the CTS) and do 0-60 in 6.3 seconds.

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What about noise/vibrations? I mean, can a 4-cylinder be as smooth/quiet as a 6? Would many sacrifice that with a luxury brand?

Paulie, you are just used to typical GM 4-cylinder engines (of the past.) There are many modern L4 engines that are as smooth as silk.

In fact, my A4 2.0T is just as smooth as the V6 in my CTS.....the only drawback, if you can call it that, is that it sounds (quietly) like a 4-cylinder whereas the 3.6L sounds like it should....like a V6.

Malibu has been lauded for the extremely low levels of NHV in the L4 version....so if Chevy can build one that gets accolades from the press, Cadillac should be able to also....

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My mom has an 07 A4, one of her complaints is how the engine vibrates and is noisy, but it gets good mileage. If you sit in the car at a traffic light, you can feel a slight vibration in the seats, and it idle or low speeds you can hear engine rattle. It isn't as good as the CTS 3.6 at idle or low speeds. Although the CTS engine when revved up sounds a little harsh and whiny; under acceleration the 2.0T and 3.6 are comparable. Neither can touch the Aurora V8 in refinement though. I drove a BMW 530i a month ago, and thought the inline six was smoother and more refined than my V8.

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