The 2004 Cadillac CTS is a rear-wheel-drive, entry-level sports sedan intended to take on established winners like the BMW 3-Series and Audi A4. A more powerful V-6 and a very powerful V-8 have been added to the lineup, the latter in the CT-V, a new performance model.
US Prices for a 2004 Cadillac CTS sedan go from $25,250 for the base car to $49,995 for the CTS-V.
The Inside Story:
There's an upscale feel to the 2004 Cadillac CTS interior but a couple of areas remain that that need improving and some occupants may find the high dash and window line claustrophobic; for us 6-footers, access to the rear seat was awkward. Controls are confusing at first. Seats are firm, a good thing in a performance car. All the expected luxury features are there; we especially appreciated the seat warmers. Side airbags standard, accident alert system available.
Under the Hood:
The 3.2 liter, 220 hp DOHC V-6 is standard; for 2004 a 3.6 liter is available, with a step up to 255 hp. New this year is a 5.7 liter V-8 right out of the Corvette. It produces a whopping 400 hp and will feature in the high-performance CTS-V.
The smaller 3.2 comes only with a 5-speed manual, while the optional 3.6 is fitted only with a 5-speed automatic. If you order the upcoming CTS-V, your transmission is a 6-speed manual.
4 years/50,000 miles bumper-to-bumper. 4years/50,000 miles powertrain.
Should You Buy A 2004 Cadillac CTS?:
For us the argument regarding the 2004 Cadillac CTS revolves around Cadillac's knife-edge new look. Some folks like it, some don't. Count us among the naysayers. That said, the CTS handles as well as any European sports sedan and can generally match them in steering feel and braking ability. If you're tired of seeing a Bimmer in front of every trendy coffee house and you're pleased with Cadillac's return to life as a driver's car and not a plushmobile, we have no hesitation in recommending the 2004 Cadillac CTS.