I like wagons, but the CTS is one car that I didn't think needed a long-roof variant. For marginal volume, it seems a strange place for GM to be spending money these days, even if it is a relatively minor investment.
After driving the CTS wagon, my tune has changed. Somewhat.
The 304-hp V-6 is a fantastic engine that's always ready to drop the hammer, even at highway speeds. Steering is also great. Together, those two characteristics make this a fairly entertaining drive. The wagon-back is justified with a seriously spacious rear cargo area. The interior is also nicely finished, although I do wish the driver's seat would go lower to afford tall people more knee room. In all, it's a very well-rounded package.
There are issues though. Shifts are rather slow, and when you're really on the gas, they tend to send your head swinging forward as cogs are swapped. Even with the sport suspension, the ride is largely capable of handling rough pavement, but there were some undesirable jolts over the minor buckling in the road. I was also surprised to see that the navigation interface doesn't use the sleek skin from the new SRX crossover. The hard buttons and controls are all there, so why would GM stick with the older, less attractive design?
After driving the CTS wagon, I appreciate its capabilities and appeal much more, but I think Cadillac has plenty of work to do in convincing Americans to consider a wagon, especially versus the new SRX.
Eric Tingwall, Associate Editor