The new CT5 enters the midsized luxury sedan segment with intent.

As the saying goes: “Variety is the spice of life.” The FACT magazine team couldn’t agree more and we were hugely grateful to be handed the keys to the new Cadillac CT5, compliments of the outstanding team at National Motor Company. Despite test driving vehicles for many years, this was to be our first Cadillac experience and we were more than curious to see what this US-based creation has to offer in terms of looks, comfort and performance.

Exterior Design

The first thing we noticed about the CT5 is how good-looking it is. Replacing its predecessor, the CTS, this latest model has been designed to contend with European luxury sport sedans, a challenge the designers were clearly ready to take on. Configured with sporty intent, the CT5 with its athletic lines and Wave Metallic Blue paintwork certainly looks the part.

Our CT5 featured the luxury trim, and despite this being the baseline model, it comes equipped with many quality features, including signature Cadillac vertical LED headlights, a capless fuelling system and alloy painted wheels.

The body has undoubtably been shaped with aerodynamics in mind. At the front end, vertical ducts channel air through the fascia and around the tires, optimising aerodynamic flow and decreasing vehicle drag. Active aero grille shutters, located under the iconic Cadillac grille, automatically open and close to control air flow. These assist in drag reduction, emission reduction and fuel efficiency.

At the flanks, the muscular stance of the vehicle is underscored by bold lines and 18-inch wheels displaying a Bright Silver finish. The inclined, fast-back figure of the CT5 with its solid, aerodynamic decklid form, decreases rear lift and augments tire traction at greater speeds. We found that the body-coloured rocker mouldings, door handles and side mirrors highlighted the exclusive nature of this shapely sedan.

The well-balanced proportions of the CT5 continue at the back end, with LED tail lamps complete with red outer lenses adding to the modern look of the exterior. Under the body-coloured rear bumper sits a dual-trapezoid exhaust, separated by a bodycoloured rear valance.

All-in-all, the exterior of this new Cadillac demands attention and, we have to say, it definitely holds its own against its European competitors in this area.

Interior Design

Switching our focus to the interior, we eased ourselves into the supportive and comfortable front seats. Handcrafted using premium materials, the inside of the CT5 has been painstakingly designed, with attention being given to every little detail. Task orientated ambient lighting adds a further touch of refinement to an already stylish layout, whilst dual-zone climate control ensures the comfort of all occupants.

The CT5 is one of the smaller cars in the midsized luxury sedan segment, however, we found the cabin, and indeed the rest of the vehicle, to be reasonably spacious, with sufficient leg, head, and shoulder room in both front and rear seating. Installing a child seat would be a relatively simple task, thanks to easily accessible anchors. This contributes toward the practical and everyday nature of this vehicle.

As far as internal storage goes, there are reasonably-sized storage bins and large cup holders, along with a spacious cubby hole. The vertical wireless charger also frees up more space thanks to its novel design. The luggage compartment offers almost 337 litres of space, big enough to store five carry-on suitcases. This area is greatly increased when the 60/40 split rear seats are folded flat.


The CT5 features the latest CUE infotainment system, displayed on a high-quality, 10-inch touchscreen, located in the centre of the fine-looking dashboard. We were surprised by how much we appreciated the physical controls that had replaced the touch sensitive ones of the previous generation.

This well organised and easy-to-operate system can be controlled via a rotary wheel located behind the gearshift or via interaction with the touchscreen. A dual-mic, cloud-based, voice recognition system has also been included. This setup is compatible with both Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. We found the GPS to be of a very high standard and were informed that a premium head-up display can also be installed on request.

Power & Performance

As with every vehicle we inspect, getting out onto the roads was our favourite part of the experience. The CT5 is equipped with the standard 2.0-litre Twin Scroll Turbo, four-cylinder, petrol engine. It produces 237hp at 5,000rpm, and 258lb-ft of torque at 1,500- 4,000rpm. Combined with a 10-speed automatic transmission, this rear-wheel-drive can accelerate from 0-100km/h in a respectable 6.9 seconds and produce an electronically capped top speed of 250km/h.

It didn’t take long for us to appreciate the sound-optimised cabin as we made our way along the busy streets of Manama. Active Noise Cancellation technology eliminates undesirable disturbance, ensuring a quiet journey for all occupants. The ride quality is further enhanced by the smooth handling, accurate steering and a well-tuned suspension system.

“Cadillac have produced a real contender in the midsized luxury segment, one that will have its European competitors sitting up and taking notice.”

Safety and Assistance

One of the most important and impressive features of the CT5 is that it has been awarded a five-star crash-test rating by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. This means that you are about as safe as you can be inside a car when you are in the CT5. Cadillac have also equipped the vehicle with a vast array of additional safety and performance features, including a blindspot monitoring system that causes your seat to vibrate whenever a vehicle enters those hard to see spaces around your car.

Our Verdict

Cadillac have produced a real contender in the midsized luxury segment, one that will have its European competitors sitting up and taking notice. ✤