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Those who know cars know that Cadillac’s engineering innovations are as notable as their luxury, and the new DeVille DHS is no exception. In a world of undersized luxury sedans offering unnecessary “performance” at the expense of comfort, the DHS offers meaningful advances in automotive design. No, the DeVille won’t match the Mercedes S Class as an autobahn cruiser, but in heavy rush hour traffic on American highways it expresses itself beautifully. The Caddy’s 4.6-liter 275-horsepower Northstar engine not only accelerates responsively, it actually gets an average of 22 miles per gallon of regular gas. That you can get both power and a smooth ride from such a heavy sedan gives evidence of Cadillac’s ability to solve real-world problems effectively. Cadillac equips the DeVille with its StabiliTrak 2.0 integrated vehicle stability control — a system that constantly monitors the car’s motion and selectively applies brakes, modifies acceleration, and assists steering effort should the DHS start to slide or skid out of control. All Cadillacs sport GM’s OnStar system, which provides directions, emergency assistance, and even concierge services. Additionally, the vehicle I drove was equipped with Cadillac’s new Night Vision feature, a small, heads-up infrared display that lets the driver see the proverbial deer caught in the headlights — long before it is actually visible in the high beams. The technology is, in fact, quite effective, though taller drivers may have difficulty viewing the display. Inside, the DHS seats five comfortably and six in a pinch. My back seat passengers loved the lighted vanity mirrors, four-way power adjustable lumbar supports, and customizable rear seat heaters. The car comes with side-impact airbags for the rear compartment, along with a power rear sunshade and manual side sunshades. The DeVille is truly spacious and comfortable, but the seats could offer a bit more lateral support for long trips. The dashboard features an electronically lit analog display supplemented with digital readouts. It can look a bit cluttered, but is adjustable; and you can view just analog or just digital if you wish. Interior fit and finish, good though they are, aren’t quite up to that of Cadillac’s Escalade SUV. Entry and exit ease, though, is a revelation. The DeVille’s doors open almost 90 degrees, allowing easy access to the car even for drivers or passengers with limited mobility. The verdict: Cadillac has packed a tremendous amount of utility and safety into a car that offers comfort, luxury, and a reasonable cost of ownership. M.S.R.P. – $46,987. Price as tested – $53,735. Mileage – 17 city/27 highway on regular gas.

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