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Styling Size-Up: 2016 Cadillac CT6 Vs. German Luxury Flagships

Motor Trend logo Motor Trend 4/18/2015 Karla Sanchez

Let’s make one thing clear: The 2016 Cadillac CT6 is not meant to directly compete with the Audi A8, Mercedes-Benz S-Class, and the BMW 7 Series. Sure, the CT6 is properly sized to compete with big, heavyweight sedans, but that’s not what it’s meant to do. Cadillac has insisted the CT6 is more of a middleweight, but that doesn’t mean we can’t visually compare it to other similarly-sized sedans. Below, we take a look at how the CT6’s styling stacks up against three German luxury flagships.

Up front, the CT6 does a good job of fitting in with the rest of the sedans with a large hexagonal-shaped front grille and elaborate headlights that contain detailed internal elements. All of the cars also have cool-looking LED running lights housed within the headlights, though the ones on the 7 Series don’t look as fancy. The 7 Series looks outdated next to all the other sedans since its kidney grille looks rather basic, as well as the headlights that don’t contain any intricate details. That should change with the next-gen 7 Series, which we recently got to sample in prototype form. All cars also have clearly defined power lines on the outer edges of the front hood.

From the side, each car’s long profile is accentuated with the downward sloping roofline that seamlessly tapers off into the trunklid. This styling cue is more exaggerated on the CT6 and the A8, giving them more of a fastback look compared to the 7 Series and the Mercedes-Benz S-Class. With their large, three-box rear ends, both the Bimmer and Benz keep the conventional sedan silhouette. When looking at the rear quarter window, the BMW is once again the outcast with a blunt-sided window as opposed to the sharp angular ones on all the others. Chrome trim around the windows is also found on all the models.

Looking at the sedans from the back, you’ll find a chrome trim piece that stretches across the trunk on all of the cars except for the CT6. Like some other Cadillacs, the CT6 features a rear bumper that comes to a point. An integrated rear spoiler also seems to be a recurring theme in the CT6, A8, and 7 Series since their trunklids aren’t as smooth-sided as the one on the Mercedes. Large taillights are also found on each sedan.

2016 Cadillac CT6 Styling Size Up© Provided by MotorTrend 2016 Cadillac CT6 Styling Size Up

The CT6’s layout inside looks basic compared to the rest of the cars, which open up their doors to reveal an airplane-like cockpit riddled with buttons and knobs. But keep in mind that Cadillac likely has a true S-Class-fighter in the works, hopefully with a more flagship-like interior. Like the BMW and Mercedes, the CT6 has a touchscreen integrated into the dash, though it’s not nearly as large as the one on the Benz. The A8 is the only car among this bunch to have a screen that pops up at start-up, and folds back inside the dash when the engine is turned off. Of course, all large luxury sedans look polished with wood trim. Like the Mercedes, the CT6 also has wood trim on the steering wheel.

How do the looks of the 2016 Cadillac CT6 compare to Germany's large luxury sedans? Do you think the middleweight is on the right track? Let us know in the comments below.

Last week’s edition of Refreshing or Revolting focused on the 2016 Nissan Maxima, which most readers actually found to be pleasantly refreshing.

“Refreshing, this really will help push the design boundaries for mainstream cars,” said Mark Hilliard.

“Refreshing. It's a clear departure in styling from the 7th gen. as well as a refreshing step in breaking the "derivative" theme that seems to be plaguing designs across the industry,” said mopar_srt.

Not everyone was on the same page, though. Especially jdrh, who said “Revolting. Vomitous. Yuck. Nissan has had outlandish designs for years, but they really take the cake on this one.”

FreewayMan agreed, saying “Completely and utterly revolting. Sure, the old Maxima was more on the conservative side, but in my opinion, that's not always a bad thing, and I like its understated grille. This new Maxima has too many bold creases and the grille is absolutely hideous.”

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