Mich. -- The
Cadillac XTS was described as an inspiration, a dream, a symbol
of achievement. The tradition continues with segment leading products,
and red-blooded marketing, according to a video created by GM.
"It's time to deliver on promise. The time is here. Are you
ready?" The XTS takes over the role of the "big Cadillac"
replacing the aged DTS. It offers front-wheel drive and optional
all-wheel drive. XTS is the brand's technology flagship which
includes the new Cadillac User Experience (CUE) system. CUE features
the industry's first production use of a touch screen in a vehicle
infotainment and human/machine interface system.
chassis and suspension package includes standard Magnetic Ride
control, HiPer strut front suspension, rear air springs, and front
Brembo brakes. The hydraulic steering assist features Nexteer
Automotive's Magnasteer magnetorheological variable assist. The
XTS package includes a front-facing camera, a rear backup camera
and a radar mounted in each rear quarter panel.
Merchant, GM's Vehicle Chief Engineer, says every car has a story.
"XTS creates a timeless design," she explained. "This
is where our story begins. Our mission is to fulfill the promise
of elegant, modern and spacious design which our customers have
fallen in love with. Even the details has details. The rearview
mirrors appear to float on pedestals. There is dramatic lighting
in both exterior and interior. The headlamps swivel and the exterior
door handles illuminate. Interior ambient lighting comes alive.
With rear seats folded down, it will fit a 55-inch TV screen.
This vehicle creates space and elegance that you expect from a
Cadillac. XTS redefines luxury and technology."
added: "Our goal is the industry's first safety alert approach
in crash avoidance. The safety features continually surveys the
road for expected hazards. These systems are key to driver awareness
and driver assist technology which include forward collision alert
system, radar-based cruise control, camera-based lane departure
warning, radar-based blind zone alert and cross traffic alert.
The seat vibrates, has standard push-button start and has a 14-speaker
Bose surround sound system. Every interaction with our customers
define our brand. Every 2013 Cadillac XTS sold in the United States
includes an Apple iPad."
Park, GM's Cadillac Lead Designer, says they integrated sheet
metal together and used technology as no other car has in the
world. "We spent more emphasis on interior spaciousness.
The exterior demands a sleek and low profile. A fifth window elongates
the shape. Our vertical signature lighting makes XTS stand out
even at night. The beauty you see in the exterior extends in the
interior. The console looks like a beautiful wooden jewelry box.
There is harmony between the exterior and interior. The elegance
can be seen in the interior like a brush stroke. It connects the
car as one complete work of art. The design looks clean and simple.
The experience is multi-dimensional."
a sketch of the interior for the audience on the big screen before
our eyes. "You have just witnessed the art of XTS,"
Conneally, GM's Program Engineering Manager, couldn't attend because
she lost her voice. Jeanne Merchant spoke on her behalf. "The
standard of the world is a mindset that fuels our shared long-term
commitment to the brand," Merchant said. "What is luxury?
Authentic design, authentic materials, spaciousness, smooth performance,
and purposeful technology is the ultimate luxury. Smooth performance
includes HiPer strut suspension which virtually eliminates torque
steer. The 3.6-liter, V6 direct injection achieves 17 mpg city
and 28 mpg highway. Purposeful technology includes safety technologies
with full speed range adaptive cruise control and auto collision
preparation and low-speed emergency braking."
Manager of GM's User Interface Design Group, says he is responsible
for hardware and software at General Motors. "We were going
to design a new entertainment system," he explained. "What
are we going to do for the next generation? We thought that the
designers and engineers would collaborate from the beginning.
One of the first things we needed to realize is bringing bright
people together. However, none of them got along with anyone.
We had struggles early on. We taught the engineers to draw. The
designers were eager to learn the technology. This helped the
team mesh up. Where do you start? What the industrial designers
did was benchmarking, then things started to surface. Piano black,
touch screens, seamless transition between displays and controls
were some key features of the CUE system in the center stack."
added: "We observed customers as they interacted with their
infotainment systems. We built this artifact model to find out
what people used and brought into the car. We have two liters
of storage areas and it's out of sight. We have two USB ports,
SD slot and an auxiliary jack. We built an affinity diagram and
put together sticky notes regarding direct customer observations.
We wanted to minimize the time people took their eyes off the
road with natural language and voice recognition. Another feature
is steering wheel control integration. You can browse music, recent
calls or address book on the steering wheel which is the key to
do our own user testing. It is best for the designers to do the
testing. Outside testing didn't work, so now we do our own testing.
Eventually everything connects, people, ideas and objects. Industrial
design, graphic design and interaction design work together. We
have Cadillac CUE customer assistance center to get feedback from
Merchant provided the closing remarks. "Remember, whether
you are arriving or departing, XTS will get you there in style,"
she says. The event ended at 8:45 p.m.
Detroit Section Chair Brian Sangeorzan announced all of the future
SAE events. The next event, titled “Following the Electron
Through the Electric Vehicle" will also take place at the
San Marino Club on Wednesday, Nov. 7.
more information about the SAE Detroit Section or to purchase
tickets to future events, visit www.sae-detroit.org.
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