An impressive base model sedan from GM's American luxury car division, Cadillac, the CTS uses sharp, "new wave" design, replete with smooth, bold angles and generally eye-catching good looks. Its distinctive Cadillac air is apparent even before one sees the fabled "silver crest" on the car's front fascia. (Though it looks a little bit like an Infiniti G35.)

Of course, good looks do not a Cadillac make. The prestigious automaker is most reknowned for luxury with a fair amount of muscle, and the CTS provides more than adequate amounts of both. Its powerful 3.2-liter, DOHC V6 engine outputs a solid 220 horsepower, enough to propel the rear wheel drive sedan from a dead standstill to 60 mph in a scratch under 7 seconds. A 5-speed Getrag manual gearbox or an equally desirable 5-speed HydraMatic automatic transmission (with winter and sports modes) put the power on the road. The CTS handles and stops just as well as it goes straight forward, thanks to independent suspension and ventilated disc brakes on all four wheels. A nearly perfect 50/50 weight distribution creates a balanced, stable ride assisted by Cadillac's "StabiliTrak" electronic stability control system (included in the "luxury sport" package). The CTS starts at just under $30,000.

A last interesting thing to note is that the CTS was tuned on the infamous Nürburgring -- the hardest race track in the world.

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