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Spy Shots! 2019 Cadillac CT6

Kamil Kaluski September 7, 2017 All Things Hoon 20 Comments

There is a little bit of a problem with the Cadillac CT6 – it’s not selling well. That’s a shame because based on what I heard (Caddy doesn’t seem to want me to review their cars) it’s a pretty damn good car. The sales problem is one that is plaguing most sedan models, what with everyone buying SUVs, but the CT6 seems to be hit especially hard. 

For 2019 Cadillac will try to fix that by updating the CT6. It will receive a mild facelift and potentially a long promised twin-turbo V8 engine. Our awesome spy photographer caught up with Cadillac engineers testing the 2019 model high up in the mountains. 

While promised, the twin-turbo engine was never confirmed. Word on the street is that it won’t be a speedy V model but rather a more luxurious model with a powerplant to match. That makes sense as the CT6 was never supposed to be any kind of a performance halo vehicle.

Cadillac wasn’t trying to hide these cars very hard. The engineers were at lunch and the one guy was carelessly watching the cars while chatting on the phone. Our spy photographer took the pics but didn’t feel comfortable lifting the covers, which we understand.

We guess the covered cars were the ones with the updated body panels, the exposed camouflaged cars may have drivetrain changes, and the non-covered cars are current models used for comparison. But that’s only a guess.

Another guess is that the lightly camo’d cars have new safety or driver aide technologies tested. There could also be some self-driving components involved, which could explain should a large pool of cars and camo’d bumpers to hide the sensors.

Whatever the case is don’t expect a significant change to the updated CT6. But damn it, a Cadillac should have a proper V8 engine. Let’s hope that happens. 

  • outback_ute

    I still don’t understand why they haven’t used all-LED headlights to achieve the same look as the Ciel etc that people liked so much. It must be possible.

    On the twin-turbo V8 front, it would seem overkill for a non-V model unless they have a smaller than 6.2 version. Or do Cadillac buyers want Ludicrous mode?

    • Rudy™

      I agree–a frickin’ twin-turbo V8?? Seriously? In a street-driven passenger car?

      Why?

      Even a twin-turbo V6 would be overkill…a well-designed V6 with even a single, smaller turbo (which spools up fast) would be plenty good enough. And get better fuel economy, we’d hope. Hell, even that horrible POS 2013 Impala I drove briefly as a company car had some punch to it when you mashed the throttle.

      For a couple of years (before the flood ate it 🙁 ) we owned an older Acura TL, which had the 3.2L V6 with VTEC. It was plenty fast enough for everyday driving, even a bit too fast at times. Sure, there were many faster and more powerful cars, but other than for bragging rights (or general redneck tire-burning stupidity, or testosterone-fueled purchases making up for a lack of size elsewhere in life), why would anyone even need that much more power, unless they were in a substantially larger/heavier vehicle?

      Even in years past, GM was sticking V6 engines into smaller cars that could have easily used a powerful inline 4. I never “got” this obsession of sticking oversized engines into everything.

      • outback_ute

        Part of the Cadillac luxury is having effortless power to drive the car in all situations without having to work the engine hard. A 4.8L V8, to use one of the previous LS engine capacities, with low-pressure twin turbos would be ample. Possibly wouldn’t be too bad on the CAFE test which doesn’t require much power output.

        Twin turbos are easier to package on a vee engine, unless you reverse the cylinder head configuration and have a “hot vee” as per BMW or M-B (can’t remember which). I’m sure that long term you will be able to tell cars that have this configuration because the paint on the bonnet (hood) will get baked.

    • Paul B.

      I’m assuming manufacturing LED lights as imagined on the Ciel concept would be technically possible, but I’m guessing that NHTSA requirements put a wrench in that.

  • Dean Bigglesworth

    …the hell is a CT6? Supposed to sound like CitySix? Is it a modern Cimarron or an Fleetwood or what?

  • Smaglik

    As an enthusiast, little of what Cadillac has done in recent memory (since before the Cinnamon?) has gotten any attention from me. I just don’t get the angular design language, and have no desire to own anything by them. The lone exception would be the cts-v wagon with the manual from a few years back.

    • Rudy™

      I don’t recall if we used to call that car the Cadillac Citation, or the Chevy Cimmaron!

      I miss those old land yacht Caddies from the past, especially those from the late 50s through the early 70s. Big, clunky, full of chrome, apparently 50 feet in length, wallowy and plush riding, five gallons per mile, big honkin’ V8s…what’s NOT to like? ;o) And fins. Don’t forget the fins.

      • Smaglik

        Cadillac used to stand for something… The pinnacle of American design and production. To me, it now stands for where you go to get the nicest GM parts…

        • cap’n fast

          i believe it was Cady Styling that was the pinnacle of American design. still the same old GM engineering. not saying it was bad engineering. just saying there is only so many things you can cover up with plastic and stickers to make it look different.
          today’s caddies are really chevys that chevy would have built if chevy was caddie. it all sort of makes sense of some kind after a few shots of Wild Turkey.

      • Alan Allawi

        I am a Cadillac fan. I have 1978 Coupe DeVille All original 17K miles its bronze color w leather interior. A real beauty from the 70s !

        I also have a 2013 Escalade EXT Premium with 33K miles black wi black leather interior. This is a beauty from the 2010s ! At end of day its a Cadillac!

        • Smaglik

          Does the Escalade really count as a Cadillac? I mean, yeah, it’s got the badge, you go to that dealer when it breaks, etc., but isn’t it really GM cashing in on those that have the desire and means to buy a really expensive suburban / tahoe. It doesn’t carry any unique design language, in my opinion. Great truck, but certainly a truck.

          • Alan Allawi

            I agree My 2013 Escalade EXT is Not a 60s or 70s Cadillac land yacht or my 78 Coupe Deville. Regarding the Escalade being an Overpriced Tahoe or Yukon I know they share alot as truck frame design etc… I do also have 2011 GMC Yukon Denali which in technical specs similar to my Escalade But to my surprise they Dont exactly drive the same both have same 6.2 V8 and AWD system maybe something to do with suspension calibration feel slightly stiffer on Escalade & feel it slightly slower than Yukon maybe due Escalade EXT being a longer & heavier vehicle approx 400lbs more than Denali I dont know but I am sure they Dont exactly drive same I own both and I know!

            • Smaglik

              I really like the Tahoes from 07-13, but I think I need an actual truck when I finally part ways with my X3 (manual transmission AWD SUV…hard to part with). I do have a man-crush on Vehicle 136 of my university’s fleet, though, so I may inquire into that one as it rolls off. It’s an 11 Tahoe LS, 120,xxx miles on it. We’ve bonded over a number of road trips. 🙂

  • kogashiwa

    Technically a Cadillac should have a V12.

    • Rover 1

      Or a V16.

      Shouldn’t at least one Cadillac have some of the svelte style and swagger of this ’37 V16 Fleetwood bodied Aerodynamic Coupe

      https://notoriousluxury.files.wordpress.com/2014/04/1930-6.jpg
      https://www.heacockclassic.com/wp-content/uploads/Cadillac-V16-Aero-Dynamic-Coupe-bodied-by-Fleetwood.jpg

      • outback_ute

        The El Miraj would qualify I think. Surely there is the technology now to build a low volume vehicle successfully (ie at a reasonable cost). The V16 would be a bit more challenging, but more of a risk from a warranty/reputation aspect and because GM’s internal processes would make it far too difficult because they are intended for products built in the millions not thousands.

        I’m sure that GM could design and build a V16 as a special project successfully. They could charge whatever it cost at the end, the intended market is not very price-sensitive! And it would do a huge amount for the prestige of the Cadillac brand, which is something they really need currently.

        https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/17cf4d8c8d034f2702bbe0e1a7a4ee0879c1952950002e3f3536f5a0454d04a6.jpg

        • Rover 1

          They need a ‘special projects’ skunkworks like Lockheed.

          Or just put the Sixteen into limited production at Rolls Royce prices.
          http://carcastshow.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/07/CadillacV16.jpg

          • outback_ute

            GM has advanced engineering teams a la the skunk works, but I think the problem is they (& Ford) really aren’t geared around limited production – eg the current Ford GT is built by Multimatic, there was the Cadillac Allanté that was built by Pininfarina. But there is a small factory in Detroit that would be available – the Viper factory!

      • cap’n fast

        why stop with a simple V-16? two stroke diesel high pressure turbo compound with power recovery turbines would be smooth and quiet with somewhat good SFC numbers and one could fudge the emissions by doing very limited production. as you say, there are people of a certain bent with more money than common sense who would pay and pay and pay and pay and pay.
        however, is the market not done with retro design cars yet?

  • cap’n fast

    looks like marketing a four door camaro is not going well. hmmm. what to do….. new decals, the universal GM fixit.