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2011 Cadillac CTS Coupe preview drive (photos)

Cadillac's CTS sedan proved such a success that the company is creating variants. The CTS Sport Wagon has already been released, and later this year the Coupe version comes out. Cadillac invited us for a preview drive of the new CTS Coupe in the sunny hills of Northern California.

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Wayne Cunningham
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1 of 16 Wayne Cunningham/CNET
Cadillac is getting a lot of mileage out of its CTS model. The car originally launched as a sedan, after which Cadillac released a wagon version. The Coupe version represents a radical exterior style. Along with the standard body types, Cadillac is also releasing high-performance V versions.
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The CTS Coupe cuts a different stance from its sedan sibling, with 2 inches shaved off length and height; the track has been increased 2 inches for greater cornering stability.
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Similar to the CTS sedan, the Coupe gets vertical light pipes in the head casings to serve as markers at night.
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The rear pillar of the Coupe is very wide, which Cadillac says increases the car's rigidity.
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These door handles are a nice design touch. An electronic pad underneath the skin opens the door.
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This angular style, what Cadillac calls Art and Science design language, sets the CTS Coupe apart from other cars on the road.
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Unlike the sedan, the Coupe's tailpipes are set in the center of the bumper, and have trapezoidal tips to complement the general styling of the car.
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The long back glass dictated a small trunk opening, so Cadillac fitted the lid with long arms.
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Top-stitched leather covers the dashboard, and wood trim elements run through the doors, giving the CTS Coupe a luxury treatment worthy of Cadillac.
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With the Coupe body, the rear seating area became more compact. Cadillac lowered the seat bottoms to ensure head room for rear seat passengers.
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Because of the low roof-line, the rear windows are small triangles of visibility.
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The steering felt a little lifeless during hard cornering, as Cadillac engineers leaned toward a luxury feel in the tuning.
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The LCD motors up vertically out of the dashboard. In its recessed position, it serves as an audio display on the exposed strip of screen.
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Cadillac uses a Full Speed iPod connection, which separates the cable into USB and audio jacks.
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The onscreen interface is very usable for audio options, and attractively designed.
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The navigation system's maps, stored on the car's hard drive, are easy to read and show useful route guidance information. We particularly like the traffic data.

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