Kemna Cadillac Compares 2017 Lincoln Continental VS 2017 Cadillac CTS Near Algona, IA

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2017 Lincoln Continental

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2017 Cadillac CTS

Safety Comparison

The rear seatbelts optional on the Continental Select/Reserve inflate when a collision is detected, helping to spread crash forces over a much larger area of the body and limiting head and neck movement. This can help prevent spinal and internal injuries. The CTS Sedan doesn’t offer inflatable seatbelts.

The Continental Select/Reserve’s optional driver alert monitor detects an inattentive driver then sounds a warning and suggests a break. According to the NHTSA, drivers who fall asleep cause about 100,000 crashes and 1500 deaths a year. The CTS Sedan doesn’t offer a driver alert monitor.

Both the Continental and the CTS Sedan have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver and front passenger knee airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, height adjustable front shoulder belts, plastic fuel tanks, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights, rear parking sensors, available all-wheel drive, crash mitigating brakes, lane departure warning systems, blind spot warning systems, around view monitors and rear cross-path warning.

Reliability Comparison

The Continental has a standard “limp home system” to keep drivers from being stranded if most or all of the engine’s coolant is lost. The engine will run on only half of its cylinders at a time, reduce its power and light a warning lamp on the dashboard so the driver can get to a service station for repairs. The CTS Sedan doesn’t offer a lost coolant limp home mode, so a coolant leak could strand you or seriously damage the car’s engine.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2016 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that Lincoln vehicles are better in initial quality than Cadillac vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Lincoln 7th in initial quality, above the industry average. With 16 more problems per 100 vehicles, Cadillac is ranked 16th, below the industry average.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2016 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that Lincoln vehicles are more reliable than Cadillac vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Lincoln 10th in reliability, above the industry average. With 13 more problems per 100 vehicles, Cadillac is ranked 15th.

From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ April 2017 Auto Issue reports that Lincoln vehicles are more reliable than Cadillac vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks Lincoln 1 place higher in reliability than Cadillac.

Engine Comparison

The Continental has more powerful engines than the CTS Sedan:



Continental 3.7 DOHC V6

304 HP

Continental 2.7 turbo V6

335 HP

Continental 3.0 turbo V6

400 HP

CTS Sedan 2.0 turbo 4 cyl.

268 HP

CTS Sedan 3.6 DOHC V6

335 HP

As tested in Motor Trend the Lincoln Continental twin turbo V6 is faster than the Cadillac CTS Sedan turbo 4 cyl.:



CTS Sedan

Zero to 60 MPH

5.4 sec

6 sec

Quarter Mile

13.8 sec

14.5 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

101.3 MPH

93.5 MPH

Fuel Economy and Range Comparison

On the EPA test cycle the Continental FWD 2.7 twin turbo V6 gets better fuel mileage than the CTS Sedan V-Sport RWD turbo V6 (18 city/27 hwy vs. 16 city/24 hwy).

Regardless of its engine, the Continental’s engine automatically turns off when the vehicle is stopped, saving fuel and reducing pollution. (Start/Stop isn’t accounted in present EPA fuel mileage tests.) The CTS Sedan V-Sport doesn’t offer an automatic engine start/stop system.

Brakes and Stopping Comparison

For better stopping power the Continental’s brake rotors are larger than those on the CTS Sedan:



CTS Sedan

Front Rotors

13.6 inches

12.6 inches

Tires and Wheels Comparison

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the Continental Premiere has standard 18-inch wheels. Smaller 17-inch wheels are standard on the CTS Sedan. The Continental Select/Reserve’s optional 20-inch wheels are larger than the 19-inch wheels optional on the CTS Sedan.

The Continental has a standard space-saver spare tire so you can replace a flat tire and drive to have the flat repaired or replaced. A spare tire isn’t available on the CTS Sedan; it requires you to depend on its run-flat tires, which limits mileage and speed before they are repaired. If a run-flat is damaged beyond repair by a road hazard your vehicle will have to be towed.

Suspension and Handling Comparison

The Continental’s drift compensation steering can automatically compensate for road conditions which would cause the vehicle to drift from side to side, helping the driver to keep the vehicle straight more easily. The CTS Sedan doesn’t offer drift compensation steering.

For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the Continental’s wheelbase is 3.3 inches longer than on the CTS Sedan (117.9 inches vs. 114.6 inches).

For better handling and stability, the track (width between the wheels) on the Continental is 1.7 inches wider in the front and 1.9 inches wider in the rear than the average track on the CTS Sedan.

The Continental Black Label AWD handles at .83 G’s, while the CTS Sedan Luxury AWD pulls only .81 G’s of cornering force in a Motor Trend skidpad test.

Chassis Comparison

As tested by Car and Driver, the interior of the Continental Reserve AWD is quieter than the CTS Sedan V-Sport Premium Luxury:



CTS Sedan

At idle

37 dB

43 dB


73 dB

84 dB

Passenger Space Comparison

Because it has more passenger and cargo room, the Continental is rated a Large car by the EPA, while the CTS Sedan is rated a Mid-size.

The Continental has 9.4 cubic feet more passenger volume than the CTS Sedan (106.4 vs. 97).

The Continental has 2.1 inches more front hip room, 1.4 inches more front shoulder room, .2 inches more rear headroom, 5.9 inches more rear legroom, 1.5 inches more rear hip room and 1.1 inches more rear shoulder room than the CTS Sedan.

For enhanced passenger comfort on long trips the Continental Reserve’s available rear seats recline. The CTS Sedan’s rear seats don’t recline.

Cargo Capacity Comparison

The Continental has a much larger trunk than the CTS Sedan (16.7 vs. 13.7 cubic feet).

To make loading and unloading groceries and cargo easier when your hands are full, the Continental Select/Reserve’s power trunk can be opened or closed just by kicking your foot under the back bumper, leaving your hands completely free. The CTS Sedan doesn’t offer a power or hands-free opening trunk.

Ergonomics Comparison

If the windows are left down on the Continental the driver can raise them all using the keyless remote; on a hot day the driver can lower the windows. The driver of the CTS Sedan can only raise the windows from inside the vehicle, with the ignition on.

In case you lock your keys in your vehicle, or don’t have them with you, you can let yourself in using the Continental’s exterior PIN entry system. The CTS Sedan doesn’t offer an exterior PIN entry system, and its OnStar® can’t unlock the doors if the vehicle doesn’t have cell phone reception or the driver can’t contact the service.

Optional air conditioned front and rear seats keep the Continental’s passengers comfortable and take the sting out of hot leather in Summer. The CTS Sedan doesn’t offer air-conditioned seats in the rear.

Economic Advantages Comparison

Insurance will cost less for the Continental owner. The Car Book by Jack Gillis rates the Continental with a number “5” insurance rate while the CTS Sedan is rated higher at a number “10” rate.

The Continental will cost the buyer less in the long run because of its superior resale value. The IntelliChoice estimates that the Continental will retain 39.71% to 42.52% of its original price after five years, while the CTS Sedan only retains 37.28% to 38.81%.

According to The Car Book by Jack Gillis, the Continental is less expensive to operate than the CTS Sedan because it costs $279 less to do the manufacturer’s suggested maintenance for 50,000 miles. Typical repairs cost much less on the Continental than the CTS Sedan, including $634 less for an alternator, $101 less for front brake pads, $75 less for fuel injection, $429 less for a fuel pump and $244 less for front struts.

IntelliChoice estimates that five-year ownership costs (depreciation, financing, insurance, fuel, fees, repairs and maintenance) for the Lincoln Continental will be $2759 to $10502 less than for the Cadillac CTS Sedan.

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