Cadillac New Zealand-bound

Probably the most famous of all American car brands, it has been synonymous with style, luxury and performance for more than 100 years, and next year you'll be able to buy a Cadillac right here, and it will have the steering wheel on the right-hand side and a chassis that I can report will surprise you with its tenacity and driveability.Making the highly anticipated announcement, GM Holden chairman and managing director Chris Gubbey this week officially confirmed Australia and New Zealand as the next step in Cadillac's global expansion.Cadillacs are sold around the world and sales have increased by 45.3 per cent in Europe, 98.4 per cent in Asia-Pacific and 49.4 per cent in Latin America, Africa and Middle East for the first three quarters of 2007.Cadillac will be managed in Australia and New Zealand by GM Premium Brands, joining Saab and Hummer under the aegis of director Parveen Batish.The first Cadillac to reach New Zealand will be the new CTS sedan. The CTS will arrive in the fourth quarter of 2008, while other models and powertrains will be confirmed for the Australian and New Zealand model line-up.Named 2008 Car of the Year by Motor Trend magazine, one of the world's premier car magazines, the rear-wheel drive CTS range will be powered by the 3.6-litre VVT direct- injection Global V6 engine, generating 227kW and 370Nm of torque.Direct injection fuel delivery enables efficient combustion, helps reduce emissions and allows higher compression ratio for better fuel economy.The 3.6-litre direct-injection engine requires only regular unleaded fuel, resulting in additional savings for the owner. Buyers will have the choice of two performance-tuned suspension packages with six-speed automatic transmissions.The 2008 CTS will have a comprehensive range of standard features, including "Stabilitrak", an electronic chassis/stability control system, and front, side and curtain airbags.The CTS's interior has hand-cut and sewn interior trim, an innovative ambient interior lighting system, and integrated iPod and MP3-compatible stereo system.The EasyKey system, which enables passive keyless vehicle and boot entry and keyless ignition, will also be available on Australian CTS models. Full details will be available closer to launch.


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