Howdy, Stranger!

It looks like you're new here. If you want to get involved, click one of these buttons!

Cadillac CTS/CTS-V



  • The struts that support the trunk on my 2004 CTS have been weak from the getgo. Had them replaced under warranty and the new ones are mich stronger and hold the lid up much better. A really minor thing but thoughr I would share it.
  • You'd think they would have put in the following:


    1) A light in the glovebox

    2) Grab handles above the driver and passenger doors

    3) A strap on the trunk so that I don't keep getting my hands dirty shutting it.


    I have been driving an '05 CTS for the past 4 days while my Catera is in service and I am really impressed with the handling and acceleration of the 3.6. The interior is way better than most anything that comes out of Detroit but it pales compared to most any import and the omission of something like a light in the glove box on a $30,000+ car is almost unforgivable. I am picky and wouldn't buy one just because of those things.


  • vanman1vanman1 Posts: 1,397
    I read somewhere there will be some changes to the CTS interior next year. Anyone else see this?
  • I really don't understand why people, and there have been many on this board, complain about some CTS omissions. I was digging in the glove box the other day and I said to myself, "what a waste it would have been to put a light in here when you can't really look into it.

    I had grab handles above the driver and front passenger doors on my Saab. Hardly ever used. By the way, Jeff, you have looked inside a CTS I suppose and saw the grab handles for the rear seat passengers? And if you want a strap for the trunk I bet you could get one put in for you. As far as I am concerned, I loved my 95 Saab and the 04 CTS is a big step up.
  • bingomanbingoman Posts: 373
    My thoughts exactly. And as for that strap for the trunk, I wonder how long it would take before pulling on the strap would cause his wrist to get slamed by the trunk lid. To keep from getting his hand dirty he should try washing the car.
  • Meow! Sorry, I just compare the CTS to European and Japanese cars and it just comes up short inside. If you read just about any car review you'll see most come to the same conclusion. If you are used to American cars only (especially GM), then the CTS is leaps and bounds ahead of the rest in terms of build quality.


    Some people are just picky about the little things. I wouldn't be caught dead in a Cavalier but others think it's a great little car and wonder why people bash it. I think that's the mentality of some people here that are so used to American car quality standards.
  • bingomanbingoman Posts: 373
    Jeff, if you want a real complaint about the CTS what about the fact that you cannot lock the trunk or glovebox when you give the car to a valet parking attendant, because there is no separate lock for the back seat and the trunk release. There are other practical items which are not available even as accessories. Also the missing temperature gauge in the early production modules such as mine. I will replace mine with another CTS as soon as they work out some of these problems, but for now I am very happy with the current model even if some think the interior is too plastic. I happen to like the use of modern materials and I think the interior design and execution is excellent. I also thought my 97 Catera was an excellent car and it took me all over the US from California to Maine, Georgia to Texas and home.
  • I actually prefer my 2000 Catera interior-wise to the CTS but of course the 3.6 in the CTS and it's 300 pound weight advantage easily beat the Catera in every other area. Due to the fact that the Catera was a real European car, it has all of those nice little things the CTS lacks although the glovebox and trunk lacks complaints you mentioned were there. A lot of the ideas from the Catera carried over into the design of the CTS but I am puzzled why they would omit certain things. People like to bash the Catera since it's unreliable but it really opened the door for Cadillac to become serious about taking on it's European and Japanese competitors. The Cat actually sold quite well until quality issues effectively killed it. Typical GM!


    Everything comes down to money. I hear labor costs (health insurance and retirement benefits especially) are the biggest thorns to American car companies and they have to cut costs somehow and the result usually makes them cut corners in important, but not essential areas such as grab handles and glovebox lights. Oh, and what about those vinyl/plastic vanity mirrors? The ones in my Hyundai Elantra were better!
  • vanman1vanman1 Posts: 1,397
    Late model Cateras were actually not bad in the reliability dept. I would pick up a low mileage used one if I needed a cheap lux car.
  • I just got a '05 CTS with 16" rims. I would like to get some custom 17" wheels for it. Has anyone else already done this?

    I'll be going from 225/55/16 tires, to 225/40/17 tires.

    The rims and wheels won't be much different in size compared to the Luxury package rims which are 17x7.5 - 225/50/17.

    Just want to make sure I won't have any problems.
  • danf1danf1 Posts: 935
    I would recommend that you check on Enter the vehicle you have and their site will automatically show you wheel/tire combos that are guaranteed to fit.

    You could go to the aftermarket and accessories forums and Ask Connor at the Tire Rack, but he isn't the fastest at responding. I guess he has a job to do too.
  • sls002sls002 Posts: 2,788
    I think the diameter of the 225/55 16's are nearly the same as the optional 225/50 17's. If you go to a 225/40 17inch, the diameter will be smaller and the speedometer will be off. Perhaps that is not a concern.

    However, a 245/40 18 inch will be nearly the same as a 225/55 16. I don't know if that would work. I have checked on the actual sizes of some tires and a Michelin Pilot Sport A/S size 235/45 17 is nearly the same size as the originals. I noted that the same size tire varies in diameter depending on the design. So, you have to look at the actual tires that you want to see what size they really are.

    Watch the video by clicking the link. Pretty sweet. I think it is really cool that a dealership commits this much of its own resources.
  • merckxmerckx Posts: 565
    There's actually more Catera talk here(I've got a 2001)than on the Catera board I've singlehandedly been trying to revive. I'd like to discuss ownership with others...
  • Great video. Thanks for posting the link. Looks just like my CTS with my wife on her way to the shopping mall. If you are a Caddy owner, this makes you want to take to Lund if you ever need a tune-up.
  • I had my 2003 CTS (44K miles) in for an oil change this week and the car dies on them at the dealership. Further review showed that the battery was not up to snuff. I had seen this before a number of times with my CTS before, usually having the battery die if I was at the self-serve car wash and had the headlights on for about 30 minutes unintentionally with the "Auto" setting. I had thought that this was my own dumb fault, but apparently there's a service bulletin that says that a number of the factory batteries were defective.

    The dealership cheerfully replaced my battery for no charge and paid for my rental vehicle for the day (first CTS I'd ever gotten as a loaner car from the dealership). The 2005 CTS I was driving wasn't as well appointed as my car, but the 3.6L engine certainly puts a extra step into its felt like a lighter car.
  • richw5richw5 Posts: 152
    It's funny you should coment on the "car wash" and battery problem. About 4 weeks ago my wife took our '03 CTS to the local Turtle Wax car wash. After the wash was completed, the car wash driver parked the CTS and finished drying it by hand. When my wife went to start it up, the car wouldn't start.

    She got a jump start from the car wash and drove right to our Caddy dealer. They checked the battery and said that nothing was wrong, it tested out OK. We've never had any major problem with the CTS before, so it upset me. Althought the CTS has not failed to start since that incident, one morning the wife left to go to work and said thet the clock (analog) was spinning, first in one direction, then back to the correct time. It hasn't happened again.

    I hate car washes and try not to have our cars washed at one unless the salt, from snow plows, gets really bad. Unfortunately, the wife is obsessive/compulsive on being clean and that includes cars. I'll just have to watch the CTS closer for electrical glitches whenever she has the car washed.
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America I70 & I75 Posts: 21,504
    >local Turtle Wax car wash

    Is that owned by the company that has the Turtle Wax copyright? What a great name for a car wash.

    2015 Cruze 2LT, 2014 Malibu 2LT, 2008 Cobalt 2LT

  • sdasda Indian Land, SCPosts: 2,024
    I had the privilege of driving an '05 with sport suspension for a week while my car ('01 Aurora 4.0) was being repaired. I haven't had so much fun driving a car in a long time. Reluctantly, my wife agreed to drive it. She doesn't like driving cars that aren't ours. Now, all I hear is when are we going to buy one? I loved the balanced ride and handling. The seats are very comfortable, the car quiet and rattle free. The power from the 3.6 and great shifting 5sp auto really put a smile on my face (hers,too). Hopefully, in about 12 mos when our Honda Odyssey comes off lease, the CTS will find a way into our garage.

    2010 Pilot EXL-RES, 2013 Accord EX

  • thebugthebug Posts: 294
    I had the same problem. I jumped the car, and drove to the dealer, and they said the battery was fine. I explained, of course it's fine now, I just charged it on the way over. So I let it die again and called OnStar. This time they changed the battery while it was in the driveway. They did say that many 03 CTS batteries were going bad. Two weeks later they returned with a new battrey and replaced it no questions asked. Otherwise, I have had no proplems with my 03 CTS.
  • cdnpinheadcdnpinhead Forest Lakes, AZPosts: 4,142
    Is the CTS battery in the engine compartment or the trunk?

    I have a Lincoln LS (& follow this board because the CTS hasn't kicked the manual transmission to the curb. . .yet), which keeps the battery in the trunk.

    This is an excellent situation for me, since I live in the hellhole that is Phoenix, and engine compartment heat added to the ambient situation here half of the year fries batteries in very short order. Point being, my original battery will be five years old in May, and that's two lifetimes in Phoenix battery (dog) years.

    Plus which, of course, putting the battery in the trunk is worth ~2% in front-to-rear weight distribution.
  • thebugthebug Posts: 294
    cdnpinhead, It's in the engine compartment. I live in the desert also, and you're right the overall heat situation is murder on a battery. Coupled with the heat, I rotate six cars, and during the summer, it's really tough getting them all on the road before the battery in one of them dies. The norm here in the Las Vegas area desert is 2 to 2.5 years on a battrey even if you drive a car daily. I normally just change the battery at two years to avoid problems.

  • cdnpinheadcdnpinhead Forest Lakes, AZPosts: 4,142
    Thanks for the quick response.

    Even though I have "issues" with Lincoln (mis) management, I still enjoy the car itself. The fact that they were willing to do the battery in the trunk thing (like BMW) adds to the concept that the LS is one of the more under-advertised/marketed performance sedans ever.

    Those long fat copper cables cost money, but return better handling. Front-to-rear weight distribution is the RWD's claim to fame. I'm surprised GM didn't go the extra bit to do it for the CTS.
  • bingomanbingoman Posts: 373
    My battery also died suddenly after about 2-1/2 years. The nice thing about OnStar, I pushed the button, told the operator my problem and a half hour later a truck arrived with my new battery. No cost, no hassle, except that I would have missed class that morning but for my wife's car. I called OnStar after I got home from school.
  • richw5richw5 Posts: 152
    Thanks for the info guys. Our CTS hasn't had a battery problem since the car wash, but I'll discuss it with the dealer when I go in for an oil change or to have the brake pads replaced.

    My wife did try the OnStar when the battery went dead, but it didn't work.
  • bingomanbingoman Posts: 373
    Sounds like an electrical system problem other than a dead battery. When the battery is too low to start the car it should still have enough power to run the OnStar system. At least mine did.
  • slopoke1slopoke1 Posts: 5
    One more 2003 CTS owner with battery failure. Mine failed sitting in my garage with only 2K miles on odometer. I put charger on and drove it for one day. When it was dead again the next morning I called on-star via land line and had a jump start within 15 minutes. Dealer replaced.
  • I just purchased an 03 CTS. I was in my garage setting up the programming and the battery died. I connected a charger and a few hours later it started. I guess I need to call the dealer. Was there a TSB on the battery?
  • bingomanbingoman Posts: 373
    There is no TSB that I know of. The dealers just replace the dead battery under the warrantee.

    By the way did you leave the headlights on on automatic. I did that once while trying to program the navigation system for a trip the next day. I put my charger on overnight and the battery was fine the next day. That was a long time before the battery died for good.
  • thebugthebug Posts: 294
    When the Cadillac road side service guy returned with the new battery, (to exchange the loner, because they were out of stock post #5864), he said that he had replaced over 45, 03 CTS batteries that month (Dec) alone, and that GM was stuck with a bad batch of batteries which effected 03 CTS' over a range of build dates.

    He didn't mention that there was a recall, but said that they (the dealers) were replacing batteries for the 03's as they died, no questions asked. My guess would be that all the 03 CTS' in that build date range didn't receive one of the faulty batteries. If that's the case, a recall would probably be too costly. I haven't had any problems since the new battery was installed.

Sign In or Register to comment.