The new CTS borrows some appearance elements and mechanical components from the former high-performance V-Series variant, with a new strut tower brace for improved handling, larger brakes than previously used, and retuned steering. Three different suspension tuning levels are available ranging from comfortable to high-performance: FE1, FE2, and FE3. The standard wheels are 17-inch alloys, but larger 18-inch wheels are available, finished either with a multi-coat or high-polish look.
The CTS does come very well equipped, but the interior appointments and available high-tech options are what really distinguish the model from its competitors. The center console was designed in consultation with entertainment industry experts and has an interface for iPods and music players, including a USB port. There's also an available 40-gigabyte hard-drive music system that allows recording of live radio and ripping of CDs. The sound system itself has 300 watts, ten speakers, and Bose Centerpoint technology. Also on the options list is a 3D-imaging navigation system with eight-inch screen, an adaptive forward lighting system that adjusts the beam direction of the xenon lamps to improve night visibility, and a heated windshield and washer system, along with heated and ventilated front seats.
The new interior incorporates handcrafted trim on the instrument panel and doors, and hand-cut, sewn, and wrapped materials used throughout. Recessed LED interior lighting also helps to improve the interior ambiance, and a distinctive Ultra-View sunroof that provides a sky view for both front and rear occupants is available. The seats themselves have been redesigned to maximize space for back-seat passengers.
A full range of air bags are standard on the CTS, including a new dual-depth front passenger air bag, plus front pelvic/thorax bags, along with roof-rail side-curtain bags covering front and rear rows. The StabiliTrak system and four-channel anti-lock brakes are also standard.