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On Gossamer Wings: DBusiness' 2011 Car of the Year

The Cadillac XTS Platinum concept, which melds luxury and refinement, has an almost spiritual quality.

2011 Cadillac XTS Platinum

photographs courtesy of GM Corp.

When Cadillac removed the white veil of its latest concept, the XTS Platinum, even the most staid journalists at the North American International Auto Show rose from their seats. The planned replacement for the Cadillac STS and DTS, the XTS is designed to compete with the finest sedans in Europe — yet at a more competitive price.

With its bold shape and elegant proportions, combined with a well-appointed interior laden with technological advances, the XTS is our selection for 2011 Car of the Year. Although a production schedule hasn’t been finalized, look for the XTS to debut later next year as a 2012 offering.

Built on the same platform as the 2010 Buick LaCrosse, the all-wheel-drive XTS is expected to employ GM’s plug-in two-mode hybrid system. Offering a sharp contrast to more recent Cadillacs, the vertical headlamps lend a stature often lost on comparable vehicles. As for our advice, don’t skimp on the trunk space (it’s difficult to store a golf bag in the current STS) and extend the driving range to more than 400 miles.

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