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Cadillac DTS



  • robw64robw64 Posts: 76
    I dropped off my '06 DTS at the second dealership yesterday morning.

    The good news is: this service advisor rode with me and felt the shuddering at highway speeds, then he asked if he could drive the vehicle back to the dealership. He was able to re-create the issue when he was driving, also.

    The bad news is: he called later in the day to advise that they really do not know what is causing the issue. They have another advisor coming in to check out the suspension on Friday.

    Although it is a good thing that I now have documentation from a Cadillac dealership that something is wrong, it's still frustrating to have the vehicle "out of commission" for so much time.

    The rental vehicle this time is an '08 CTS, base edition, black with grey interior. It's an extremely nice car, with much more room inside than I expected (I'm 6'5", and without a sunroof I have plenty of room). The handling and suspension, of course, are quite different from the ride of a DTS, but it's really a nice looking/driving car.
  • sls002sls002 Posts: 2,788
    This is progress, and at least this Cadillac dealer's service department is not saying there is no problem. My guess is that something has gone out of balance in the transmission or engine, or the engine/transaxle mounts are failing. In any case this is an unusual problem and will probably require some time to sort out.
  • robw64robw64 Posts: 76
    Well, the dealership called to tell me their transmission specialist can find nothing wrong and their suspension specialist can find nothing wrong. Their solution is it must be the tires because the Pirelli side wall ratings are too stiff for this class of vehicle. I (again) calmly explained that this is the third set of tires and the problem has been there through all them, so I don't buy this resolution at all. The service advisor told me the only tires that are acceptable for a DTS are high-quality Michelins. When I asked him to help me understand why the DTS comes standard with Continentals he was speechless (literally).

    Cadillac corporate called later to advise me they had spoken with the dealership and are closing the case. Because I changed the tires, I have caused the problem with the vehicle. I pointed out to the (very polite & courteous) Cadillac rep that there are so many inconsistencies in the diagnoses that this simply makes no sense. Their final resolution is to close the case with "Customer Dissatisfied" as the bottom line.

    I'm stumped. I'm trying to not become too emotional, but I think I've hit a brick wall and have no option but to get rid of this car.
  • You can buy a lot of tires for the $25,000 you will lose if you trade in this car. Obviously the tires will not cause any other suspension part to be damaged so why not simply buy another four original equipment Continental tires? Perhaps the tire place still has the ones they replaced and are selling them as used tires. In any event it shouldn't cost more than three or four hundred dollars and then you might take it back to the second dealer and see if they can feel the vibration. My guess though is that the dealership has no idea why the vibration is occurring. If the dealership feels the vibration then you can invoke the lemon law. I hate to see you lose a fortune in depreciation. Another option is to take the car -as is - to someplace that specializes in suspension work -perhaps someone who rebuilds race or specialty cars -and see what they say.
  • Keep fighting the closing of the file, I think you need to move up the management chain. Get the name of the Cadillac corporate service department manager and write to this person. I like the idea of spending the four hundred or so dollars and putting the original brand and size of tires on the car. It is very disappointing to me that Cadillac corporate would treat its' owners as you have been treated according to your reports. Keep us posted, and suggest you get the Lemon law papers for your state as just trading the car will result in a very large loss from depreciation. I think the
    Attorney Generals office of most states have a consumer division that deals with Lemon law issues. Best wishes and keep us posted so we can give moral support and additional suggestions.
  • sls002sls002 Posts: 2,788
    I think now is the time to move forward with the lemon law resolution of the problem. I am not sure what the lemon law does for you, but it should require the manufacturer to buy back the car with a minimum of depreciation to you. Getting this resolved will take time. Something has to be unbalanced somewhere to cause a vibration, or there is something wrong in the drivetrain somewhere. I think that this second dealer's service advisor does agree that there is a vibration.
  • You are absolutely right -I hope he keeps us posted.
  • robw64robw64 Posts: 76
    I took the car back to the tire store where I purchased the Pirelli's. I explained what the dealer had told me. They had no problem evaluating the tires for me.....they have a 30-day return/replace guarantee, so it is no big deal to them if something is wrong.

    The tire store inspected, re-mounted, rotated, and balanced the tires. They found nothing wrong with the tires at all. I drove right from the tire store to the highway....the vibration is exactly at the same point on the speedometer. No change whatsoever. If this was a tire issue, wouldn't a rotate & balance change the nature of the vibration at least a little?
  • sls002sls002 Posts: 2,788
    someone suggested that you have the tires/wheels Road Force Balanced, which is done with a particular type of tire balancing machine. I would think that this was done if the tire dealer has good state of the art equipment. It is possible that the brake rotors are out of balance, which may cause some problem.

    If the vibration is noticable at a certain speed, then the problem is not likely in the transmission (like the torque convertor), as the vibration would show up at different speeds in lower gears.

    goggle "Road Force Balance" to learn more
  • Are you sure that one tire is not out of round? They can check this without removing the wheel. In any case you felt the vibration with the Pirellis as well as with the Continentals so chances are it is the car and not the tires. I wouldn't let Cadillac close out the case. This is a $50,000 car and it has a bumper to bumper warranty. I'd keep pushing this up the line at Cadillac or start the lemon law rolling. Do you have any friends who are attorneys? Sometimes just a letter from an attorney works wonders. Lawsuits are bad publicity.
  • I've been silently following this thread. I agree with the above posters. Get going on the lemon law. Not sure if GM-Cadillac can still make a stink over the tires though. Seems they're using that as an excuse. You may have to put back on the factory tires.
  • sls002sls002 Posts: 2,788
    I think that it should be up to "Cadillac" (either the factory or dealer) to replace the tires if they think that will fix the problem. The original equipment tires were on the car when the problem started.

    Assuming that the tire dealer who has balanced the Pirelli's did dynamic balancing on the tires/wheels, then the problem is most likely the brake rotors being out of balance.

    I think that I would proceed by talking with the salesperson who sold me the car, explaining what has taken place, and then making it clear that the car is not acceptable, possibly dangerous (since no one knows why there is a vibration), that I want a full refund of my money. Then let the dealer propose a solution.
  • vic10vic10 Posts: 188
    Since you've pretty much ruled out the tires, have you considered the wheels they're mounted on? Ever had anyone follow you when you were feeling the vibration to see if the alignment looks funny or if the wheels are "wobbling"? Many years ago I had a vibration issue with Firestones that were repeatedly rebalance and shaved to cure out of round. But the problem was the tires were wobbling side to side--only discovered when a friend followed me on the freeway.
  • I think that it should be up to "Cadillac" (either the factory or dealer) to replace the tires if they think that will fix the problem. The original equipment tires were on the car when the problem started.

    I agree the Pirelli tires don't seem to be the problem, but appearantly Cadillac is using this as an excuse not to do anything.
    I think the lemon law is the way to go.
  • marsha7marsha7 Posts: 3,703
    if there really is a tire/rotor balance problem...there are still some shops that can high speed balance the tires while the wheel is mounted on the rotor...that way, the rotor, wheel and tire are all balanced simulataneously as one unit, with the weights onviously mounted to the wheels, but it takes into account an out of balance rotor...

    Might give that a try simply to rule out a "simple" balance problem that will not show up with conventional methods...
  • So what is the latest on the vibration. This is pretty far out but you have some sort of seat messaging in that car. I wonder if it turns on and creates the impression of a vibration. Probably not but I thought I'd ask. I don't have it in mine but will when I get a 2007 Lux II next March. I guess you have gone as far as you can with Cadillac corporate.
  • gbosleygbosley Posts: 20
    well after reading the issues on dts , and looking at this seems like g m not wanting to resolved this man trouble i think i been sent a omin ,i order a dts performance package 2 months ago , and it still sitting in the computer waiting on seats, so i think i will call the dealer and cancel my order ,i had a terriable experience with AUDI usa thought i go to g m thinking if there a issue they would step up, looks like they won't for a bad vibration just can't chance it
  • sls002sls002 Posts: 2,788
    All "we" really know is that robw64 finds the vibration objectionable. Since no-one seems able to pin down the source of the vibration, I think that it is a minor vibration problem. It is possible that there is a resonance at some speed with the tires and suspension that amplifies bumps in the road rather than smoothing them out.

    Looking back throught robw64's posts, the vibration seems to have developed over a period of time, and has become objectionable more recently. Perhaps the shocks are wearing to a point where they are not working quite right? If you look through the CTS forum, the owners there complain about vibration too, so this problem is not just DTS.
  • kpsmkpsm Posts: 12
    I love my DTS Performance model, and have found it to be the most trouble free car I've ever owned. I'm up to 11,000 miles now, and have only had oil changes and the tires rotated. My car has every available option, with the exception of the adaptive cruise control which I do not want.

    The magnetic suspension gives a noticeably pleasant ride, and my passengers typically comment on what a great riding car it is.

    I have not sensed any kind of vibration at any speed. If I'm not using the cruise control on the interstate, it's very easy to suddenly find myself moving along at 85 to 95 miles per hour, or higher.

    Would I go for another performance model? Without a second thought...
  • This is a relatively new car and I believe that it has struts, not shocks. These are covered under warranty and should last well beyond 50,000 miles. If I was Robw64 and was faced with losing $25,000 by an early trade of this car I would contact some company that specializes in performance vehicle suspensions and pay them to troubleshoot the vehicle. There are plenty of these people who advertise is Hemmings or they can be searched out on the Internet. I don't know where Robw64 lives but California is full of them. It is either that or invoke the Lemon Law. I don't see a lot more options. He could change tires till doomsday and it probably won't solve the problem.
  • sls002sls002 Posts: 2,788
    Struts still have shock absorbers. The point is "we" don't know exactly what the vibration is or how serious it is. I have not had problems with balance. My 2002 Seville was basically the same thing as the DTS, only real difference is a shorter wheelbase. My OEM tires did not go out of balance while I owned the car, more than 50,000 miles.

    One question that robw64 can think about is: is the vibration noticable in the steering wheel or not (the answer to this means the vibration is in the front suspension or the rear suspension).

    The lemon law will not automatically result in getting your money back. First you have to "prove" the car is defective, which means that some disinterested person (probably more than one) will have to back you up that the car is defective and not repairable.
  • The car doesn't seem to be repairable based on all the times Robw64 has tried to get it repaired and failed. The steering wheel comment was good. I don't know how the Lemon Law works -it works differently in different States. I'd like an update from Robw64 as to what he has done to get the problem resolved and for those up us who have or are getting '06's and '07's his problem may turn out to be ours.
  • robw64robw64 Posts: 76
    Since the last post, we've tried to get rid of the car. My family (kindly) informed that this situation was making me difficult to live with and it had turned into a part-time job in itsef.

    They were right.

    We found a reasonable deal on a Lincoln MKX, but the dealer would only offer $24.1k for a trade on the Cadillac. They suggested we try appraising it at Car Max to see if a better offer could be made there. They came back with $23.5k, because 2006's are known to be troublesome (1st year of the re-design).

    So, now we're debating whether to take a huge hit on trading the vehicle or try spending another $800 or so for another set of tires. I suppose I could buy them at the Cadillac dealer and if the problem doesn't go away they would have some solid proof it's the vehicle and not the rubber.
  • I'm not sure it's time to give up your DTS but I own a Lincoln Town Car that is everything as good as my DTS. The Town Car has to this point been much more reliable than my DTS and really feels like a luxury car. The DTS feels more like a performance sedan. When the the DTS works as it should I like them both equally but for different reasons and features. If you do trade you might try to find a low miles pre owned Town Car, they are available at very reasonable prices in the used market. One big advantage to Town Car is it gets about 20% better fuel economy than my DTS.
  • This is a good suggestion. Even a new Lincoln Town Car is heavily discounted. You can buy a new one for the price of a Program DTS at least around here. Robw64 could probably swap his car for a 2007 top of the line 2007 Town Car for little or no money. I haven't heard any more about the Lemon Law. Was this an option?
  • sls002sls002 Posts: 2,788
    I don't think that a new set of tires will make any difference. I don't know why you bought Pirelli's, which I think are more of a performance tire, but they should only ride a bit firmer. I think the problem is something not quite balanced right where the wheels mount onto the car - the hubs or more likely the brake rotors. I would think that this has been checked out by all of the service departments that have looked at this problem though.

    Since you are trading it in because of a problems that seems unfixable, and assuming the problem is obvious to anyone who drives the car ( :confuse: ), you really will have to take a hit on the trade-in value. I mean who would buy this piece of junk :sick:
  • Yeah, its a tough decision, but I know I couldn't take that kind of hit financially.
  • I think the lemon laws and Cadillac by back program should be pursued before considering another car. I also think that some people just don't have the disposition to go through all the red tape of either of these programs. If I were in the same set of circumstances I would assess the cost in time, stress and related aggravation and decide whether it was worth my time based on a personal quality of life estimate. Each of us as you probably know have different ways of dealing with these issues and problems so there will never be an answer that fits all needs and preferences. Having said that I do think the Town Car would be a nice alternative to putting oneself through the lemon law or by back program. I was checking used Town Car prices and was amazed at how well these cars are holding up value wise after the initial large derpreciation hit. Part of the reason for the plateau is that Town Car for 2008 is only being produced in limited numbers at the new plant in Canada.
  • sls002sls002 Posts: 2,788
    If you search the Town Car forum for vibrations you will find that some owners have problems with vibrations.

    My point here is that getting some other car may solve the problem, but may not. If one test drives the next vehicle, and there is no problem, then probably you will be OK, but who knows.
  • I would not be concerned about vibrations and Town Car. With any kind of luck based on my experience with both vehicles you will get a more reliable vehicle in Town Car than DTS and of course if you want to go NEGATIVE I'm sure you can find some Town Cars that are lemons too. I would take with a grain of salt, any postings at this forum from non owners of the DTS as I feel some of them will only confuse issues and not clarify them. Any brand of car can have issues, in my experience Cadillac has had a mediocre record of resolving mine and YES I do own a DTS!
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