2011 Cadillac
CTS 3.6
vs. 2011 Kia
Optima LX

2011 Cadillac CTS 3.6

9.7

starting from

$42,605
"The biggest surprise though, would have to be the transmission...we were glad to have it."
automobilemag.com | talking about the CTS's transmission
"The FE3 suspension on our tester manages the car’s considerable weight with supreme competence, keeping body motions in check through quick switchbacks."
automobilemag.com | talking about the CTS's ride quality

Reasons to buy the Cadillac CTS 3.6

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Power windows
Standard
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Cruise control
Standard
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Entertainment system
Standard
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Fast 0-60 time
6.5 seconds
2011 Kia Optima LX

8.9

Runner-up

Kia Optima LX

starting from

$19,950
"Audio quality is balanced with a nice neutral sound ."
reviews.cnet.com | talking about the Optima's stereo
"Great combination of power, handling, safety and fuel economy."
reviews.cnet.com | talking about the Optima's ride quality

Reasons to buy the Kia Optima LX

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Fantastic range on the highway
648 miles
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Less chance of rolling over during emergency lane change
5 stars
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Very spacious front seats
60.2 ft3
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Good highway fuel efficiency
35 mpg
Luxury Features 10.0 vs 7.0
2011 Cadillac CTS 3.6 Winner: CTS 3.6
[details]
  • Leather comes standard on the CTS 3.6; the Optima LX only offers cloth seats
  • Conveniently adjust your seat with the CTS 3.6's power seats; not available on the Optima LX
Entertainment System 10.0 vs 7.5
2011 Cadillac CTS 3.6 Winner: CTS 3.6
[details]
  • If you want to keep the kids occupied with an entertainment system, it comes standard in the CTS 3.6; no amount of money can buy it on the Optima LX
  • The CTS 3.6's subwoofer accurately reproduces deep bass notes in music
  • Have your pick of music from around the world with the CTS 3.6's satellite radio
Cost 9.1 vs 10.0
2011 Kia Optima LX Winner: Optima LX
[details]
  • Basic warranty lasts 1 more year, 5 year vs 4 year
  • Basic warranty lasts 10,000 more miles, 60,000 mile vs 50,000 mile
  • Gets more than 30% more miles per gallon in the city, 24 mpg vs 18 mpg
Practicality 9.4 vs 10.0
2011 Kia Optima LX Winner: Optima LX
[details]
  • The Optima LX's standard power outlets will keep your gadgets charged; not available on the CTS 3.6
  • A single tank lasts more than 30% longer, 648 miles vs 486 miles
  • The Optima LX has 4 more cupholders, 8 vs 4
Safety Features 10.0 vs 10.0
Too close to call
[details]
  • Child door locks come standard
Crash Test Ratings - vs 10.0
Missing information
[details]
Performance - vs 10.0
Missing information
[details]
  • Neither has an air compressor to maximize power output
Road Tests 10.0 vs -
Missing information
[details]
  • The CTS 3.6 has extraordinary brakes, and the Optima LX is pretty good, too
Overall 9.7 vs 8.9

Luxury Features

Cadillac
CTS 3.6
2011 Cadillac CTS 3.6
2011 Kia Optima LX Kia
Optima LX
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moon roof Not Available vs Not Available Neither offers a sun roof
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power seats Standard vs Not Available Conveniently adjust your seat with the CTS 3.6's power seats; not available on the Optima LX
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keyless entry Standard vs Standard Both have keyless entry
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leather Standard vs Not Available Leather comes standard on the CTS 3.6; the Optima LX only offers cloth seats

Entertainment System

Cadillac
CTS 3.6
2011 Cadillac CTS 3.6
2011 Kia Optima LX Kia
Optima LX
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Number of speakers 10 vs 6 The CTS 3.6 has more speakers, but the Optima LX has very few
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Has speed sensitive volume No vs No Neither offers speed-sensitive volume
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CD player Standard vs Standard CD player comes standard
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premium radio Standard vs Not Available Have your pick of music from around the world with the CTS 3.6's satellite radio
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Has auxiliary audio input Yes vs Yes Both have an audio-in jack so you can plug in your own MP3 player to the stereo
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Has subwoofer Yes vs No The CTS 3.6 has a subwoofer to accurately produce deep bass frequencies in music
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entertainment system Standard vs Not Available If you want to keep the kids occupied with an entertainment system, it comes standard in the CTS 3.6; no amount of money can buy it on the Optima LX

Cost

Cadillac
CTS 3.6
2011 Cadillac CTS 3.6
2011 Kia Optima LX Kia
Optima LX
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MSRP $42,605 vs $19,950 The Optima LX has a great price and the CTS 3.6 is pretty reasonable
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In-city gas mileage 18 mpg vs 24 mpg The Optima LX has OK city mileage, while the CTS 3.6 is very inefficient
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basic warranty miles 50,000 mile vs 60,000 mile Both have long-lasting basic warranties, but Optima LX in particular is extraordinary
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basic warranty years 4 year vs 5 year Both have long-lasting basic warranties, but Optima LX in particular is extraordinary

Practicality

Cadillac
CTS 3.6
2011 Cadillac CTS 3.6
2011 Kia Optima LX Kia
Optima LX
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Passengers 5 vs 5 Average number of seats
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Highway driving range 486 miles vs 648 miles The Optima LX gets fantastic distance on a single tank, and the CTS 3.6 gets OK distance
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Cargo space 13.6 ft3 vs 15.4 ft3 Both have OK cargo room
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front seats 54.0 ft3 vs 60.2 ft3 The Optima LX has very spacious front seats, and the CTS 3.6 is OK
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folding rear seats Optional vs Standard A standard folding rear seat on the Optima LX is a great way to free up space for road trips; requires optional upgrade on the CTS 3.6
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power outlets Not Available vs Standard The Optima LX's standard power outlets will keep your gadgets charged; not available on the CTS 3.6
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roof rails Not Available vs Not Available Neither offers roof rails
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navigation system Optional vs Not Available The CTS 3.6 offers an optional navigation system; not available on the Optima LX
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Cupholders 4 vs 8 The Optima LX has an absurd number of cupholders, 2 extra in front and 2 extra in rear
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front air conditioning Standard vs Standard A/C for hot summer days comes standard

Safety Features

Cadillac
CTS 3.6
2011 Cadillac CTS 3.6
2011 Kia Optima LX Kia
Optima LX
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antilock brakes Standard vs Standard Both come standard with ABS brakes
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Stability control system Yes vs Yes Both have electronic stability control
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Airbags 5 vs 5 OK number of airbags
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Rear brakes Disc vs Disc Both have the usual brakes for this class of vehicle
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child door locks Standard vs Standard Child door locks come standard
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Roadside assistance system OnStar vs None

Crash Test Ratings

Cadillac
CTS 3.6
2011 Cadillac CTS 3.6
2011 Kia Optima LX Kia
Optima LX
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Rollover resistance 4 stars vs 5 stars The Optima LX is exceptionally safe; 1.5x safer than the CTS 3.6
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Front driver crash test Unknown vs 5 stars
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Driver side crash test Unknown vs 3 stars

Performance

Cadillac
CTS 3.6
2011 Cadillac CTS 3.6
2011 Kia Optima LX Kia
Optima LX
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Horsepower 304 HP @ 6,400 RPM vs 200 HP @ 6,300 RPM The CTS 3.6 is fairly powerful, but the Optima LX is not far behind
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Number of gears 6 vs 6 Average number of gears
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Transmission Automatic transmission vs Manual transmission The CTS 3.6's automatic transmission is convenient for stop-and-go traffic
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paddle shifters Not Available vs Not Available Neither offers paddle shifters
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Air compressor None vs None Neither has an air compressor to maximize power output
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Power-to-weight ratio 12.7 lb/hp vs 16.0 lb/hp The CTS 3.6 is a sporty car, while the Optima LX is just average
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Drivetrain type rear-wheel drive vs front-wheel drive The CTS 3.6 has a good drivetrain for off-road and poor weather driving
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Curb-to-curb turning radius Unknown vs 35.8 ft

Road Tests

Cadillac
CTS 3.6
2011 Cadillac CTS 3.6
2011 Kia Optima LX Kia
Optima LX
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0-60 mph 6.5 seconds vs 9.2 seconds The CTS 3.6 can accelerate to 60mph quickly, but the Optima LX is pretty bad
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Braking distance at 60mph 108 ft vs 121 ft The CTS 3.6 has extraordinary brakes, and the Optima LX is pretty good, too
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1/4 mile 14.9 s @ 95 mph vs 16.9 s @ 84 mph The CTS 3.6's 1/4 mile time is good, but the Optima LX's is below average for this class of vehicle
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Lateral acceleration 0.84 g vs 0.76 g The CTS 3.6 has OK cornering abilities compared to the below average Optima LX
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Top speed 146 mph vs Unknown

Other Vehicles to Consider

2011 Cadillac CTS 3.6 2011 Chrysler 300 300C CTS 3.6 vs 300 300C
2011 Cadillac CTS 3.6 2012 Buick LaCrosse CTS 3.6 vs LaCrosse
2011 Cadillac CTS 3.6 2011 Cadillac STS CTS 3.6 vs STS
2011 Cadillac CTS 3.6 2011 Chevrolet Corvette Z06 CTS 3.6 vs Corvette Z06
2011 Cadillac CTS 3.6 2011 Dodge Charger R/T CTS 3.6 vs Charger R/T
2011 Kia Optima LX 2011 BMW 328i Optima LX vs 328i
2011 Kia Optima LX 2011 Kia Sportage EX Optima LX vs Sportage EX
2011 Kia Optima LX 2012 Hyundai Elantra GLS Optima LX vs Elantra GLS
2011 Kia Optima LX 2011 Lexus IS 250 Optima LX vs IS 250
2011 Kia Optima LX 2011 Volkswagen Jetta TDI Optima LX vs Jetta TDI

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