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Spied: 2014 Cadillac CTS Hits the Nurburgring

Cadillac is hard at work developing the new 2014 CTS, and that means engineers are putting the car through its paces at one of the world's most famous and grueling courses -- Germany's Nürburgring. Our spy shooter managed to snap these photos of the new Cadillac sports sedan undergoing some hard testing laps.

Those Cadillac engineers have been racking up some distance on their frequent-flyer cards: we previously saw prototypes of the CTS testing in Michigan, and elsewhere in Europe, before the arrival at the 'Ring.We shouldn't be particularly surprised to see the car there: Cadillac made a big fuss about developing the 2013 ATS at the so-called Green Hell, and the 2009 CTS-V sedan set a lap time of 7:59.32 at the Nürburgring in 2008. That time, incidentally, is reportedly only one second slower than the lap time for the brand-new 2013 Porsche Boxster S.

The sedans pictured here are unlikely to be high-performance V-Series models, but there's still no telling what engine is under the hood. The next Cadillac CTS is expected to offer the turbocharged 2.0-liter inline-four engine from the 2013 ATS, probably making 270 hp, as well as a 3.6-liter V-6 with at least 318 hp. The new car rides on General Motors' Alpha chassis, which will be shared with the 2014 Chevrolet Camaro. Compared to the cars we saw before, more of the lower front fascia is exposed, presumably allowing more airflow through the various gaps and vents to help cool the mechanical components.

The good news about seeing the car tested on the Nürburgring is that there is still a focus on sportiness: the next Cadillac CTS will grow a bit to make room for the new ATS, but the carmaker is apparently still focused on making the car fun to drive. Based on our earlier spy photos, it will even offer Brembo brakes. We expect to learn more about the 2014 Cadillac CTS early next year, as the car is reportedly scheduled to enter production in September 2013.

Until then, place your bets on how quickly the 2014 Cadillac CTS will turn laps at the Nürburgring. Can the next-generation CTS-V model beat the 7:59.32 time set by its 2009 V-Series predecessor?