Cadillac looks to set new standards with CT6 flagship sedan

Cadillac has unveiled the new CT6 sedan, which it says marks the company’s return to the global prestige luxury segment, and it's banking on a mix of high style and high tech to help it carve a niche for itself among the likes of the Mercedes-Benz S-Class, BMW 7-Series and Audi A8.

The full-size four-door features an aluminum-intensive chassis, and is as light as the smaller, midsize Cadillac CTS that it resembles. The company says it’s the stiffest of its kind and helps the car achieve world class levels of refinement, ride quality and handling.

The rear-wheel-drive CT6 is available with a unique all-wheel-drive system that features an automatic two-speed transfer case for improved fuel efficiency, and a continuously variable clutch that constantly adjusts the power between the front wheels. Rear-wheel-steering is another option, along with a magnetically-controlled adaptive suspension system.

Power comes from a choice of Cadillac’s familiar 2.0-liter 4-cylinder and 3.6-liter V6 engines, providing 265 hp and 335 hp, respectively, or an all-new twin-turbocharged V6 with 400 hp and 400 lb-ft of torque. An 8-speed automatic transmission is standard across the board, and V6 models come only with all-wheel-drive.

Front and center in the spacious interior is a 10.2-inch capacitive-touch screen infotainment system with handwriting recognition and 4G Wi-Fi. It can be used to control a top end 34-speaker Bose Panaray audio system, or display 360-degrees worth of cameras that eliminate blind spots and can record your driving and any attempted security breaches.

The CT6 can also be equipped with a night vision display, a pedestrian detection system with automatic braking, and an industry first Rear Camera Mirror that can switch from a reflective surface to a video display that offers an enhanced view. Meanwhile, rear seat passengers can be treated to individual reclining seats and their own infotainment system, which includes dual 10-inch retractable screens in the front seatbacks.

Pricing for the CT6 has not been announced, but it is expected to start in the $60,000-$75,000 range, with top of the line models possibly reaching six-figures. Production and sales are scheduled to begin in the fourth-quarter of 2015, with plug-in hybrid and twin-turbocharged V8-powered performance versions debuting at a later date.