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GM Working On Rear Drive Chevy Sport Sedan

Cadillac Xts Platinum Concept

GM’s next-generation Zeta RWD platform will be heavily updated and will benefit from lots of high-strength steel in order to reduce the weight. This will be possible thanks to the price point of the cars that will benefit from this updated platform. An example of a model is a new Chevrolet sport sedan – which will be like a 4-door Camaro.

General Motors is still working very hard on a flagship for the brand, a Sixteen-inspired low-volume model, with a small-block V8 power unit, created in order to bring Cadillac street reputation in Asia and Europe as the resurgent Standard of the World.

Cadillac Xts Platinum Concept

According to some sources, GM is preparing a large Cadillac based on the Zeta platform. The price tag for this model is expected to be somewhere around $125,000 – $140,000, pretty close to a Bentley Continental and way more affordable than a Maybach or a Rolls Royce.

This new flagship will support the Cadillac lineup which will also include a new Zeta sedan and the 2014 CTS. The next generation of the Zeta platform will be considerably lighter in comparison to the one available on the Chevrolet Camaro, the Pontiac G8 and the big Holdens. Thanks to the fact that this platform will be designed for premium models, General Motors will be able to use a lot of high-strength steel for the new line which will include the new generation of the Holden Statesman.

Cadillac Xts Platinum Concept

The current version of the Commodore platform which is mostly available for large rear-wheel drive Holdens, will be ditched in favor of the Epsilon II platform while the aforementioned Statesman and the more expensive Commodore models will benefit from the new Zeta platform. The rear-drive Commodore and the Chevy sedan will run on the shorter of two Zeta wheelbases. The long wheelbase will be used for the Holden Statesman, Cadillac and probably a Chinese-market Buick.

We’ll let you know once more info is revealed about the new Zeta platform.

Source: MotorTrend.com

Review – 2011 Cadillac CTS-V Coupe

2011 Cadillac CTS-V Coupe

Cadillac has never made something similar to the 2011 CTS-V Coupe, a $63,000 monster that is half a hot rod and half hedonist. This is the first time that Cadillac offers a car in this segment which should make it quite interesting.

Let’s start from the front of the car where we find a power bulge that is set among the creases carved by a stiletto and angling downwards into the stacked headlights. The angled, jutting shield of the grille points down at the bumper’s central thrust which spears its way into the future and ends with a lipped skirt that drops very low. The CTS-V Coupe is as angled as it is muscular, or vice versa.

2011 Cadillac CTS-V Coupe

From the side you don’t get that same exciting look as the front offers you but its purpose is to perfectly blend the front with the back in a continuous and sporty line. The back with its highly raked rear glass means that the shoulder rises much lighter, and compared to the sedan version, the coupe is two inches lopped off the rear.

Under the hood, the 2011 Cadillac CTS-V Coupe is fitted with a powerful 6.2-liter LSA V8 that churns 556 hp and a respectable 551 pound-feet of torque. With the GM’s ionized handling innovations, the CTS-V Coupe handles just as good as the Corvette, although it packs some extra weight. The car pictured rolls on 19-inch rims covered by Michelin Sport 2 tires, offering plenty of grip in all road conditions. The 15-inch rotors in the front do a very good job at stopping this car, as they should.

2011 Cadillac CTS-V Coupe

The interior of the car is not as great as the hardware power due the quality of the materials which is not that great, comparable to the interior quality of a car that is worth half the money. However, Cadillac promised that in two years, the interiors will be thoroughly upgraded, we are eager to see what the modifications will be. The leather on the steering wheel doesn’t feel like real leather and the Recaro seats look like leather but they fell like wood which can’t be comfortable.

2011 Cadillac CTS-V Coupe

Those of you interested in this car should avoid the optional 6-speed automatic transmission and get the standard 6-speed manual gearbox. We can fully understand why Cadillac offers an automatic gearbox but the one available for the CTS-V Coupe doesn’t live up to the rest of the car’s hardware specifications. Most likely, people that can spend $65k for this car have been in other fast cars and they will certainly feel that something is missing which is why until Cadillac offers a new automatic gearbox, it would be best to get the standard manual transmission – better safe than sorry.

Not as good as the BMW 3-Series or the 5-Series, the 2011 Cadillac CTS-V Coupe is not in the top segment but gets really close to the bimmers and other similar cars.  It still is a great coupe, capable of combining lots of power with borderline prefect grip, wrapped in a very cool exterior design. What do you get for your money? You get a Nissan GT-R that has a Cadillac badge which sounds very good in my opinion. The CTS-V Coupe is a powerful sign of improvement coming from Cadillac and we should expect some great cars from the manufacturer in the years to come.

Source: AutoBlog.com

Quick Look – 2011 Cadillac Escalade

2011 Cadillac Escalade Hybrid

Cadillac Escalade, the most stolen vehicle in the United States, is back for the 2011 model in many flavors: standard, ESV, EXT, Platinum and Hybrid. The most powerful engine available for the car is a 6.2-liter V8 all-aluminum engine that is capable of delivering 403 hp and 417 lb.-ft of torque. The standard and ESV versions are available in both all-wheel drive and rear-wheel drive configurations. The EXT is available exclusively with the full-time AWD system.

From the long list of features, we have to mention the side blind zone alert, the rear vision camera system, automatic headlamps, power liftgate, adaptive remote start, heated and cooled seats, magnetic ride control and others as well. With the new model, Cadillac has made several changes, like introducing new noise reduction components: modified row door weather strip, laminated front windshield and front row side glass. For a limited period of time, the Escalade is offered with two special colors: Blue Frost and Evolution Green Metallic.

The 2011 Cadillac Escalade ESV comes as standard with a 8-inch touchscreen navigation system, Bose 5.1 digital surround sound system and XM Satellite Radio along with CD audio/video and MP3 support. The EXT offers the Escalade a SUT – Sport Utility Truck body style, while at the same time giving it a part-SUV, part-pickup profile. The car sports a Midgate panel which allows the owner of the Escalade to convert the car from a 5-passenger sport utility vehicle into a 2-passenger pickup, offering 8 ft of protected and secured storage. The midgate is placed behind the rear seat and can be folded into the cabin. Doing so, it will enable the cargo area to expand from 5 ft. to 8 ft, reaching a respectable total of 101 cubic ft.

2011 Cadillac Escalade Hybrid

The Hybrid version of the Escalade will do 20 mpg in the city, according to EPA ratings, which is a considerable 33% improvement over the regular model. The rear wheel drive models have a towing capacity of 5,800 pounds while the 4WD can tow 5,600 pounds. In the city, at low speeds, the car will use only the electric power and once the vehicle reaches 0 mph, the conventional power unit will automatically shut down, conserving fuel and protecting the environment.

The car is fitted with a 300-volt electrically driven air-conditioning compressor which reduces the vibrations and permits the HVAC system to cool the passenger compartment, including the periods when the gas engine is not running. The car features a tri-zone climate control system. The 2011 Cadillac Escalade Hybrid Platinum has a unique front fascia with unique upper and lower grilles. In addition, it has exclusive 22-inch rims as well as LED headlamps. Another feature available only on this model is the full Aniline leather for the first and second row seats.

The energy storage system as well as the hybrid drive line and the emission control system are offered with a warranty for 8 years or 100,000 miles. The energy storage system which cools the system’s internal fan was designed to be quite when the car is running at low speeds.

Top 10 Releases In 2010 Part 1

Without any doubt, 2010 was a good idea for the automotive market, with many important new releases and significant updates of cars already launched. Making a top 10 of the most important cars of the year can be a little subjective, but many of you will agree at least with half of them and others are free to suggest other cars that they consider to be worth introducing in our top, either by making it longer or by replacing other models. Without further ado, here are the 10 most important car releases of the year:

Volkswagen Golf GTI

Volkswagen Golf GTI

Back for its 6th generation in 2010, the Golf GTI is a little bit more powerful and larger, but keeping the same spirit as the original variant which was launched back in 1976, a car that brought a new term to the automotive market – hot hatch. Why did it make our top? Simple, it is a relatively affordable car, offering a lot of practicality while at the same time it is very fun to drive, powered by a 200 hp turbocharged inline 4-cylinder engine which is not only smooth, but also quite responsive. The engine can be linked to either a 6-speed manual transmission or a 6-speed dual-clutch automated manual. The base price for the Golf GTI is $24,189. Fuel economy is 21-24 mpg city / 31-32 mpg, according to EPA raitings.

Porsche Boxster / Cayman

Porsche Boxster

Porsche Cayman

With the new models, the power went up by 10 hp for the Boxster and 20 hp for the Cayman, while the “S” siblings got extra 15 / 25 hp. Both offer some of the best driving pleasures in a car, making them even more rewarding than the much expensive and iconic 911 model. Both cars are really fun to drive with the manual gearbox and if you don’t want to do the entire job yourself, for extra money you could get the dual-clutch PDK transmission. Not only they are fast, but at the same time they provide a high level of luxury inside the cockpit, offering plenty of cargo rooms for two people thanks to the two trunks available.  The base price for the Boxster is $48,550 while the Cayman can be acquired at a starting price of $62,450. The engines can be linked to either a 7-speed dual-clutch automated manual transmission or a standard 6-speed gearbox. Fuel economy is 19-20 mpg city / 26 – 29 mpg highway.

Mazda 3 / Speed3

Mazda 3

For the new version, the Mazda 3 model is powered by a 148 hp engine while the “s” variant is equipped with a 167 hp power unit. Both versions don’t look like the rest of the so-called “econoboxes” and feature high quality materials, good ride feeling and solid chassis control. Let’s not forget about the Mazdaspeed 3 which is equipped with a powerful 263 hp engine. Similar to the BMW 3-Series, the Mazda 3 has a bundle of features in all of the trim levels available, making it a very balanced car. The basic price for the standard version is $16,045 while the “s” goes for $19,790. If you want the extra muscle under the hood, the Mazdaspeed 3 will set you back $23,945. The available transmissions are the 5-speed manual, 6-speed manual and the 5-speed automatic with manumatic shifting. According to EPA, the Mazda 3 will do 18-25 mpg city / 25-33 highway.

Mazda MX-5 Miata

Mazda Miata

Yes we know that this is another Mazda, but the car was too good to not be included in our top 10. The Miata is probably the most popular model from Mazda and although it has only a 167 hp power unit (158 hp with the automatic gearbox), it is one of the most fun to drive sports car in the world. What makes it so great? It is very easy to drive, the gear changes are done in an instant and the steering is borderline perfect. We almost forgot the affordable selling price which starts from only $23,560. It still is affordable (a little above the $30k mark) if we add the optional features like the power-retractable hardtop or the leather seats. The transmissions available for the Miata include the 5-speed manual, 6-speed manual and the 6-speed automatic with manumatic shifting. According to the EPA ratings, the car will do 21-22 mpg city / 28 mpg highway.

Cadillac CTS / CTS-V

Cadillac CTS

Finally, something made in the US of A. The Caddy benefits from an exquisite interior that looks and feels expensive and the cabin room is far more spacious in comparison to other cars that are priced in the same category. From the outside, the CTS looks great, managing to mix comfort, driving dynamics and refinement in a very exciting way. New to the lineup is the Sport Wagon offered with a 304 hp V6 3.-6 liter. If this isn’t enough, you might as well go for the CTS-V which is powered by a massive 556 hp supercharged engine, making it one of the best alternatives for the German cars. The entry-level engine is the 3.6-liter V6 DOHC 24-valve power unit that is capable of outputting 270 hp and 223 lb-ft. The base price for the CTS is $37,555 while the CTS-V can be yours for $62,845. The engines can be linked to either a 6-speed manual gearbox or a 6-speed automatic with manumatic shifting. According to the EPA ratings, the car will do 12-18 mpg city / 18-27 mpg highway.

In the second part of the article we will be presenting the five remaining cars of our top 10: Ford Fusion Hybrid, Honda Accord, Honda Fit, Audi S4 and the BMW 3-Series / M3. Feel free to suggest other cars that you consider worth belonging to this top, there are no restrictions or conditions, but we do require enough reasons to determine us to include the car(s) into the list. If we receive a positive feedback, we will do a follow-up top of the best car releases in 2010.

Cadillac Developing Luxury Plug-in Hybrid

According to various reports published over the Internet in the last few days, it seems that General Motors is at the moment working on a plug-in hybrid car based on the Cadillac SRX crossover. The car will most likely share some of the technology that General Motors developed for the soon to be popular Chevrolet Volt over the past four years, allowing the American car manufacturer to lower the costs of its emerging electric automobile offerings.

This new Cadillac model would also be inspired from an abandoned project to launch a rechargeable crossover car that General Motors had thought about 1-2 years ago under the now forgotten Saturn and Buick brands which were closed for good due to low sales. If the project will go into production, it will be the very first American luxury automobile after the company gave up on making the Converj concept car which was a Cadillac variant of the Chevrolet Volt.

The current Cadillac SRX debuted back in 2008 at the Detroit Auto Show as a concept car that General Motors said that it could carry an electric and fuel-cell powertrain in the near future. This new project will allow the company to extend its lead over the Japanese automaker Toyota, in what GM names “extend range electric vehicles.”

The Chevrolet Volt will be manufactured in 10,000 units next year, but recently the executives affirmed that this figure will go up as the demand for the car is very high. Officials at General Motors stated last month that the company is planning on hiring 1,000 engineers and research in Michigan in the next two years to have the necessary support for developing new hybrid and electric cars which will most likely replace conventional gasoline powered cars in the next 2-3 decades.

The first delivers of the Volt were made at the beginning of this month in several selected United States markets – including Michigan and California. The Volt is considered by General Motors to be the most important model at the moment in the company’s attempt to regain the image that was affected by the 2009 bankruptcy and the federal bailout. However, the $41,000 Chevrolet Volt will most likely bring a marginal profit for General Motors due to the high costs of developing this first-of-its-kind automobile that will definitely set new trends in the automotive industry.

The European variants of the Volt will be the Opel and Vauxhall Ampera, which will go on sale in the last part of 2011 for a bigger price. The Volt has been rated by the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for a 35 miles range, powered by the lithium-ion battery pack that has a weight of 400 pounds. Beyond this range, the Chevrolet Volt will use a 1.4-liter gasoline power unit.

The Japanese automaker Toyota is already preparing a plug-in version of their highly acclaimed Prius model which will be launched in 2012 at a price more affordable than the Volt, according to the officials at the Toyota Corporation.

Source: AutoNews.com

Cam Shaft Cadillac CTS V

Cam Shaft Cadillac CTS V

The German aftermarket engineers at Cam Shaft have come up with their own version of the Cadillac CTS-V sedan. The car comes equipped with the Wait4Me performance upgrade kit that includes a more generous air intake, a re-mapped ECU and an increased, 0.4 bar boost pressure. With these upgrades, the 6.2-liter V8 power unit that powers the Cadillac is now capable of outputting 630 hp. The price for this tuning program developed by Cam Shaft for the CTS-V is 3,800 euros (including the fee for installation).

Cam Shaft Cadillac CTS V

In addition, owners of the Cadillac can get for 2,250 euros more the Matt-White exterior foil and if they want to add the new black rims, they have to pull out of their pockets another 3,250 euros. In order to boost the styling of the Cadillac CTS-V, the people at Cam Shaft have added several chrome-plated parts for offering extra contrast.

The engine that powers the Cadillac CTS-V is the same one as the one on the beautiful ZR 1 model, developed by the same manufacturer. The wheel bolts of the Cam Shaft model are black nickel-plated, offering the perfect contrast of black and white. Both the doors and their visible edges can be foiled if the customer wants to, offering a very special look to the car.

Cadillac Returns To Racing

Cadillac CTS-V Coupe

After 4 years of pause, Cadillac will be once again entering a race series with a production-car based on the CTS-V Coupe. The CTS will be participating in the Sports Car Club of America World Challenge, which is a production-based race car series. Cadillac will not be entering this competition for the first time as in 2005 and 2007, the CTS-V sports sedan managed to win the GT Class Manufacturer’s Championship.

Don Butler, who is the vice president of marketing at Cadillac, said in a statement today that with the occasion of returning to the event “is a great way to demonstrate the performance and capability of the CTS-V Coupe. The race cars in this series are production-based, which allows us to validate our performance against the best of our competitors on the track and not just the showroom.”

Some of the production components of the automobile that will take part in the series will be customized for racing, although efforts are taken in order to keep as much production content as possible. The Cadillac CTS-V Coupe 2011 features a powerful 6.2-lier V8 engine that outputs 556 hp.

Cadillac will enter the SCCA World Challenge GT Series with two teams. The drivers that will be racing in the series will be Johnny O’Connell and Andy Pilgrim. The American automaker will collaborate with Pratt & Miller, located in New Hudson, Michigan, an engineering company that specializes in motorsports. Jim Campbell, General Motors vice president for Performance Vehicles and Motorsports, said that “the SCCA World Challenge lends itself well to a natural transfer of knowledge. The series will become a key test-bed for Cadillac. We anticipate using what we learn on the racetrack to ensure the V-Series stays on the cutting-edge of performance.”

The first event in which Cadillac will participate will be organized in March 25-27 in Saint Petersburg. As we mentioned before, Andy Pilgrim (winner of 2005 SCCA World Challenge GT class in a Cadillac) and Johnny O’Connell (three-time GT1 champion in the America Le Mans Series) will be behind the two Cadillac teams.

The CTS-V was first introduced in 2003 and since then it managed to obtain a good reputation among luxury sports car buyers. For the 2011 edition, the American automaker will start producing the CTS-V Coupe and the CTS-V Sports Wagon, creating a complete family of high-performance automobiles. Some of the most important highlights of the CTS-V include the Brembo brakes, a Magnetic Ride Control suspension system that is capable of reading and reacting to the road 1,000 times per second and the very powerful 556 hp V8 power unit.

The SCCA competition was created in 1944 and since then it has been organizing and supporting races on all levels, starting with series for amateur drivers and ending with professional courses. The World Challenge in which the CTS-V Coupe will be participating, was designed in order to provide teams, manufacturers and aftermarket suppliers a very competitive production-based race series in which all of the companies can prove their various lineup of products and equipment. The race will have a 50-minute maximum time limit and the number of laps as well as the total distance will be determined upon the track configuration, race conditions and lap times.

Source: AutoNews.com

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Cadillac Rolls Out Limited Edition CTS-V Wagon

Cadillac CTS-V Wagon

The CTS-V Wagon is Cadillac’s limited-production V model of the very successful CTS wagon. The heart that powers this car is a 6.2 liter, supercharged V8 that is capable of outputting an impressive 556 hp and a massive torque of 551 lb-ft. It is a rear wheel car that is equipped as standard with a 6-speed gearbox or with an optional 6-speed automatic transmission.

In comparison to the standard CTS model, the V is 0.59 inch (15 mm) lower and looks very aggressive thanks to the chiseled lines that give it a very distinguished appearance. Being a “V” model, it comes with a lot of goodies, including Brembo brakes, a magnetic ride control, and 19-inch aluminum rims covered by Michelin Pilot Sports tires. For those of you (not many we are sure) interested in the cargo room available, you will have 58 cubic feet, plenty enough in our opinion.

Cadillac CTS-V Wagon

As standard, the car is offered with a Bose stereo system, navigation and heated seats (Recaro seats are optional at $3,400). People at AutoWeek took it for a spin and have nothing but nice things to say about it. They liked the raw power of the car and the very good materials used for the inside. Handling is top-notch and the magnetic ride control is not just a gimmick, it really does the job very good.

For those of you interested in this model you should know that it will be available in a very limited edition at a starting price of $62, 990. The car has a top speed of over 190 mph and 0-60 mph is done in exactly 4 seconds which is remarkable for a vehicle that weighs 4,390 lb.

Source: AutoWeek.com

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Cadillac to debut Urban Luxury Concept at the 2010 LA Auto Show

It looks like the small luxury cars market is becoming more and more attractive to carmakers, because after Aston Martin confirmed production of its controversial Cygnet, Cadillac announced that the 2010 LA Auto Show will mark the debut of their Urban Luxury Concept.

“While small in size, this concept is an exploration of what Cadillac could be in the future, as the brand continues to focus on redefining industry standards for advanced vehicle design and integrated technology,” said Don Butler, vice president for Cadillac marketing.

Measuring 151 inches (3,8 meters) in length and with a 97.1 inch (2,4 meters) wheelbase, Cadillac is trying to prove, just like Aston Martin, that if a car’s small it doesn’t mean it can’t be spacious and luxurious. Designed in Los Angeles, the Urban Luxury Concept follows Cadillac’s current design philosophy, with bold angles and vertical front and rear lights, plus scissor-type doors. Under the bonnet, the car is powered by a prototype hybrid system that includes a 1.0-liter turbocharged three-cylinder engine, engine start-stop function and brake energy regeneration, all contributing to a fuel economy of 56 mpg in the city and 65 mpg on the highway.

“It may not look like Cadillacs on the road today, but it shares the comfortable and high-tech elements that owners have come to associate with larger, traditional luxury sedans,” said Frank Saucedo, the car’s lead designer. “As more customers demand premium features even in smaller vehicles, a vehicle like the Urban Luxury Concept could be a solution.”

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Security flaw makes Cadillac Escalade most stolen car in the United States

According to recent reports, the Cadillac Escalade luxury SUV is the first on a list of United States’ most stolen vehicles. Nothing weird so far, right? I mean, it’s a nice and expensive car, thieves have all the reasons to steal it. But it’s not the case. Because it looks like, though it costs a lot money, the Escalade is one of the easiest cars to steal, due to a security flaw. Even though the ignition key has a computer chip that prevents the Escallades from being started, the car doesn’t have steering wheel interlocks, or have weak ones, so thieves can easily break a window, force the shift level out of the parking position and then just push the car away or use another car to do that. And all this, in only 14 seconds.

And apparently the Escalade is not the only one with the problem, but the Chevrolet Tahoe and GMC Yukon Denali also. The good news is that Cadillac already announced stronger theft-prevention measures for the Escalade.

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Cadillac planning BMW 3-Series and Mercedes C-Class competitor

According to Automotive News, GM is very ambitious with its future plans. In a telephone conversation with Cadillac spokesman Nick Twork, they were told Cadillac is currently planning a model positioned below the CTS which will be a direct competitor to BMW’s 3-Series and Mercedes’ C-Class. In order to be successful with the model, Cadillac plans on investin $190 million in the Lansing Grand River assembly plant which will produce the model. No details were released on the model’s name or when production will start.

“We will have a car positioned below the CTS in our lineup to compete with the BMW 3-Series and Mercedes Benz C-Class” Mr. Twork said. These statements are also backed by a recent GM press release, where the company’s CEO Dan Akerson said that “America’s fastest-growing luxury brand this year is about to get even more competitive with the addition of an all-new small luxury car [..] This investment demonstrates GM’s commitment to Cadillac and to a strong U.S. manufacturing base.”

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