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Cadillac BLS at Frankfurt motor show

1st September 2005 Print
Cadillac BLS at Frankfurt motor show The Cadillac global product offensive is gathering momentum as the General Motors premium brand will debut the production Cadillac BLS at the International Motor Show in Frankfurt. This new premium mid-size saloon adds another important element to Cadillac’s growing international presence following the launch of the CTS in 2003, the XLR and the SRX in 2004, the STS in 2005, and the recently announced addition of the STS-V and XLR-V.

The front-wheel drive BLS offers expressive design, outstanding ride and refinement. It also marks a new era in the brand’s history, with its first turbodiesel variant and is fitted with a maintenance-free diesel particulate filter. Like the petrol versions (175, 210, and 255 hp), the turbodiesel (150 hp) offers the dynamic driving performance that customers have come to expect from Cadillac.

"The BLS was developed for luxury customers, with particular attention to the demands of the European and other international markets," said Jim Taylor, Cadillac general manager. "BLS is an important addition to our Cadillac portfolio and provides a critical entry with which to grow our business in key international markets."

The exterior: unique Cadillac style

The Cadillac BLS design was conceived by an international team of designers led by GM’s Vice President of Design Ed Welburn. The vehicle has clear, sharply defined contours, striking wedge shape and an elegant interior.

"The most striking feature is the vertical lines at the front and rear," said Welburn. "The V-shaped chrome-plated grille, a Cadillac cue, is picked up again by the boot lid. The large side faces communicate a sense of strength and solidity."

The BLS also features jewel-like headlamps, fog lamps integrated into the body-coloured bumper and a wide air intake below the grille. A narrow chrome strip runs along the lower edge of the side windows. The latest LED technology is used in the centre high-mounted brake light, which is prominently positioned on the boot lid and extends across the vehicle. It also functions as a spoiler. The vertical taillights leave no doubt the BLS is a Cadillac.

The interior: a luxurious atmosphere and state-of-the-art infotainment systems

The BLS interior is highlighted by a three-spoke leather steering wheel and an analogue clock in the centre console. The circular instruments have white numerals and red needles on a black background.

The state-of-the-art infotainment systems include high-quality audio units from American hi-fi specialist Bose, among others, a DVD navigation system with touchscreen operation, a Bluetooth-enabled cell phone system with a handsfree kit, and remote controls on the steering wheel.

The engines: one turbodiesel and three petrol engines

In a Cadillac first, the BLS will be available with a turbodiesel variant. The 1.9L four-cylinder unit, with common-rail direct injection technology and 150 hp, is fitted with a maintenance-free diesel particulate filter and complies with Euro 4 emissions standards. The range of petrol engines – all turbocharged – includes two 2.0L four-cylinder versions (175/210 hp) and a high-tech 2.8L six-cylinder unit at 255 hp with twin-scroll turbocharger and variable phasing of the intake camshafts. The BLS offers five- or six-speed manual transmissions and five- or six-speed automatic transmissions, depending on engine type.

The chassis: emphasis on comfort and driving dynamics

The chassis, which has MacPherson struts in front and a four-link rear axle, is designed for the powerful engines and the high demands of a premium vehicle. The chassis tuning ensures dynamic handling performance without compromising comfort.

The European start of sales for both left hand and right hand drive vehicles is planned for spring 2006.

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Cadillac BLS at Frankfurt motor show