New Car Review
1994 CADILLAC Sedan de Ville
by: BILL RUSS
SEE ALSO:Cadillac Buyer's Guide
For 85 years Cadillac has been producing luxury motor cars for General Motors. Since its introduction in 1956 the DeVille line has been a top-seller. Ten years ago when it changed to a front- wheel-drive model it quickly became the best selling domestically produced luxury six-passenger sedan, and remains so today. The deVille is designed and powered to appeal to the traditional luxury car owner - the one who prefers a large car with six-passenger seating, a powerful but quiet V8 engine, and all of the amenities that are elegant, luxurious or just plain practical.
For 1994 the DeVille has been completely redesigned not only to maintain, but to improve upon these well-known and expected Cadillac qualities. On the outside the DeVille is longer, wider, higher and sleeker. On the inside there is greater seating area, plus additional comfort and convenience items. Under the hood the 4.9 liter V8 engine and the hydra-matic transmission have been updated, and many other refinements have been made to insure a quieter and safer drive.
In line with its heritage of almost forty years this newest DeVille incorporates Cadillac's theme for the nineties, "Creating A Higher Standard". Most improvements are customer-driven, which is in line with Cadillac's policy to fulfill its owners' needs and wants.
APPEARANCE: The 1994 DeVille sedan may be almost completely new, but it maintains the traditional elegant and smooth design concepts that are Cadillac hallmarks. It is unmistakably a large luxury automobile, with its long hood, large cabin and extended rear deck. Subtle styling revisions have been made to provide the DeVille with a practical, but aerodynamic look. The trademark Cadillac wreath and crest ornament prominently adorns the hood above the exclusive cross-hatch grille and wide combination wrap-around front lighting. Stainless steel accents the side windows, and a wide and bright rub strip extends all around the car. Distinctive alloy wheels and white stripe Michelin tires complete the luxury look.
COMFORT: The interior of the new DeVille is designed for comfort and convenience as well as luxury. While the optional leather covered seats are contoured for four, there is ample room for six full-size adults when necessary. The upgrade Active Audio sound system provides high-fidelity throughout the passenger area from CD, tape, AM or FM sound sources. Comfortable interior temperature is quietly maintained by a heating and ventilating system using new almost silent blowers. Its huge 20 cubic foot flat trunk can handle a lot of groceries and luggage. The wide instrument panel features an electronic digital display as well as a multi-function information center and trip computer. A full array of powered accessories adds to the convenience factor, as does the remote keyless entry system and the 10 minutes of retained power for windows, radio and door locks.
SAFETY: An important feature is the new Airbank system that provides supplemental protection for all three front passengers, as are the shoulder height adjustments for the front outboard seat belts. A safety cage surrounds all passengers, and side-impact beams add additional protection as do the integral front and rear crush zones. Standard four-wheel disc anti-lock brakes assure safe stopping. New and added insulation and weatherstripping assure a quiet ride with a minimum of road noise.
ROADABILITY: Thanks to modern steering and suspension technology, driving, maneuvering and parking this almost 18 foot long and close to two ton sedan DeVille is easy and almost effortless. A combination of front and rear independent suspension, speed sensitive power steering and shock absorbers, plus electronic level control and optional traction control delivers the handling and ride qualities that are geared towards the mature driver and passengers.
PERFORMANCE: The DeVille's powertrain consists of an improved 4.9 liter overhead valve V8 and the smooth and reliable four-speed 4T60-E Hydra-matic transmission, both managed via a powertrain control module. This combination delivers a smooth 200 horsepower to the front wheels and provides very adequate power for merging, passing and interstate cruising, as well as low end torque for rapid acceleration when required. The tuned exhaust emits a subdued but throaty V8 murmur.
CONCLUSION: The newest sedan DeVille is a full-size luxury car for the American traditionalist. It combines luxury appointments with roominess, power, value and surprising economy. It not only commands attention with its appearance, but its trumpet horn lets others know its there too.
1994 CADILLAC Sedan de Ville
Base Price $ 32,990 Price As Tested $ 36,453 Engine Type V-8, ohv - pushrod, smpfi Engine Size 4.9 liter/299 cid Horsepower 200 @ 4100 Torque (ft/lbs) 275 @ 3000 Wheelbase/Length 114"/210" Transmission four speed auto w/od Curb Weight 3770 Pounds per Horsepower 19 Fuel Capacity 20 Fuel Requirement Unleaded premium (91 oct) Tire Michelin XW4 P215/70R15 M+S Brake anti-lock standard disc/disc Drive Train front engine/front drive PERFORMANCE EPA Economy - miles per gallon, city/highway/observed 16/26/19.7 0 to 60 mph 9.3 sec 1/4 mi (E.T.) 17.0 sec Coefficient of drag (cd) .35