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Cadillac For 1997

By Carey Russ

1997 is a very significant year for Cadillac. The new, entry- level Catera is here. Premium Northstar models have Stabilitrak, a sophisticated electronically-controlled stability enhancement system. OnStar, a unique combination of electronic navigation and security, will debut. And three models of the DeVille will be offered.

Stabilitrak is an enhancement to the technologically-advanced Integrated Chassis Control System that can detect an impending slide or spin and help regain control by applying the appropriate front brake. It works seamlessly and transparently, adding to handling while taking nothing from the driver's sense of control. It is standard equipment on the top-level front-wheel drive Northstar models: the Seville Touring Sedan, Eldorado Touring Coupe, and DeVille Concours.

OnStar, available on all front-drive Cadillacs for less than the cost of most other onboard navigation systems, links electronic sensors in the car to a human-staffed 24-hour advisory center through the cellular telephone. OnStar advisors not only can give routing instructions in the manner of an onboard navigation system, they can perform functions that an onboard computer can't, such as remotely unlocking a car. In addition, OnStar can track a stolen car. If an airbag is deployed, the OnStar center is automatically notified.


The German-built Catera is a new brand in a new market for Cadillac. It is designed to attract young, import-oriented buyers. The Catera has all of the performance and safety features expected in a German luxury car, and all of the comfort and convenience features expected in an American luxury car. A rear-wheel drive chassis with four-wheel independent suspension, four-wheel antilock disc brakes, and traction control powered by a 200-horsepower V6 engine matched to a multi-mode 4-speed electronically-controlled automatic transmission takes care of the European performance specification. Remote keyless entry, power-assisted seats, electronic climate control, cupholders, and twilight sentinel automatic headlights should please the American buyers.


With the demise of the Fleetwood, Cadillac has added the d'Elegance model to the DeVille lineup. It is the new Cadillac for the traditional Cadillac customer. It joins the regular DeVille and Concours. All DeVille models have had their styling freshened for 1997, with minor changes to the front fenders and hood and new rear fenders with open wheel wells and a wider track. Interiors have been restyled, and the chassis structure has been extensively revised. Door- mounted front side airbags are now standard equipment on all DeVille models.


The Seville Touring Sedan (STS) and Seville Luxury Sedan (SLS) have gotten a stronger body structure and some interior modifications. The STS comes with the Stabilitrak traction enhancement system.


The Eldorado and Eldorado Touring Coupe (ETC) have a stronger body structure and minor interior revisions. The ETC has the Stabilitrak system.

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