2012 Cadillac CTS and SRX get a five-star crash test rating from NHTSA

Article by Christian Andrei, on December 20, 2011

A five-star crash test rating was given by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration to two 2012 Cadillac models (CTS sedan and wagon and SRX crossover). These recently announced top safety ratings from the U.S. safety regulators mean that GM now has a total of nine vehicles in its 2012 lineup that have the five-star rating.

The rest are the Buick Enclave, GMC Acadia and the Chevrolet Cruze, Volt and Traverse. To date, the five-star rating for overall crash test performance has been given by the NHTSA to 21 vehicles that are set to be released under the 2012 model year range.

“Receiving five stars under the new rating system is an impressive feat – one that clearly demonstrates the strength of the SRX and CTS advanced structure, overall crashworthiness and effectiveness of the models’ state-of-the-art safety technologies,” said Gay Kent, GM executive director of Vehicle Safety.

Featuring a new overall shape and evolved dimensions, the new Cadillac CTS could be availed with the optional all-wheel-drive system. This configuration resulted to a two-inch increase in track width, allowing the new Cadillac CTS to sport a wider stance. This means that the new CTS comes now has a more planted and capable appearance further emphasized by its tighter tire-to-fender relationships.

This also means that the sides of the new Cadillac CTS are now more sculpted inward (tumblehome), enabling it to sport a premium rear-wheel-drive appearance that features a lower roof line that does not affect headroom or interior space.

The premium appearance of the new CTS also conveys sophistication and agility through its lower and more sculpted hood, wider tapering sail panel, a tighter wheel-to-body relationship, and smoother wheel housing lips. Up front, the new CTS takes inspiration from the Cadillac Sixteen concept car. For instance, the CTS now dons a more aggressive, large, chrome dual-textured grille that is now more vertical in shape.

Integrated in the center of this grille is a large wreath and crest. This grille is bordered by vertically stacked headlamps featuring bright bezels with staircase-like piling. In addition, fog lamps and brake duct intakes border the lower air intake. As a tribute to the marque’s grand heritage, side air extractors are just located forward of the car’s front doors.

The sides of the CTS are marked by further chrome detailing like on the moldings framing the side windows, and three-inch exhaust outlets. Completing the side styling of the CTS are, as standard, seven-spoke 17-inch wheels – in painted or machined finishes -- masking the larger high-performance brake calipers and rotors. Also available are optional 18-inch wheels in either premium multi-coat or high-polish finish.

On the other hand, the new Cadillac CTS boasts of a charismatic rear end marked with Cadillac’s hallmark vertical taillamps. Interestingly, the rear decklid carries at the centerline both the angular and directional theme of the front end, with the roofline and rear backlight featuring a coupe-like profile.

Press Release

2012 Cadillac SRX, CTS Models Get Top Safety Ratings

he 2012 Cadillac SRX crossover and CTS sport sedan and wagon models received 5-Star Overall Vehicle Scores for safety from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

The Cadillac additions bring to nine the number of General Motors 2012 models with 5-star overall vehicle scores for safety. NHTSA has announced a total of 21 five-star overall vehicle scores for safety for 2012 models.

The Cadillac models were tested under NHTSA’s revised New Car Assessment Program implemented for the 2011 model year. The overall rating is based on frontal and side crash tests in addition to rollover resistance testing. Under the new system, the four test conditions are combined mathematically into an “Overall Vehicle Score.”

Under this methodology, Cadillac’s SRX and CTS sport sedan achieved an overall vehicle score of five stars – the highest rating possible - even though some individual ratings, such as rollover, resulted in four-stars. NHTSA applies the results for the CTS sedan to the sport wagon model because of its similar body structure and safety equipment.

The SRX and CTS sedan and wagon are designed to help drivers avoid crashes, while protecting occupants in the event a crash occurs. Standard safety features include:

  • Driver and front passenger dual-stage frontal and seat-mounted side pelvic/thorax air bags and head curtain side air bags with rollover protection that cover front and outboard rear seating rows.
  • Rollover sensors which can activate the head curtain side air bags if sensors determine an imminent rollover. In a rollover, the air bags stay inflated longer to provide increased occupant protection.
  • StabiliTrak electronic stability control helps the driver maintain control by comparing the path being steered by the driver with the actual response and, when necessary, applying the brakes or adjusting the throttle or a combination of both.
  • Four-channel disc brakes with ABS for sure stops and full-function traction control to make the most of available traction.
  • Front safety belt pretensioners to reduce forward movement and load-limiting retractors to help manage forces during a collision
  • OnStar, which features the Automatic Crash Response System that uses GPS and cellular phone technology to automatically call for help in the event of a crash that deploys the air bags.
  • Active front seat head restraints on CTS sport sedan and wagon that help reduce the risk of neck injury in low-speed rear collisions
  • Side blind zone alert system on CTS models use sensors to detect and warn drivers of vehicles or objects in the side path of the vehicle.

The SRX is also designed to meet European pedestrian protection standards; and the front bumper is positioned for greater compatibility with car bumpers.

Starting with 2011 models, NHTSA introduced tougher tests and more rigorous requirements for its five-star ratings that provide more information about safety feature performance and crash-avoidance technologies. Changes included a new side pole test simulating a 20-mph side-impact crash into a 10-inch-diameter pole or tree at a 75-degree angle just behind the A-pillar on the driver’s side.

The other GM 5-Star models are the Buick LaCrosse without optional rear side-impact air bags; Buick Enclave; Chevrolet Cruze, Volt, Traverse and Camaro coupe, and the GMC Acadia.

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