It's said the Cadillac STS will spearhead General Motors' planned invasion of the European market, and the supercharged STS-V - shown in Detroit this week - churns out a meaty 328 kW!

It's said the Cadillac STS will spearhead General Motors' planned invasion of the European market, and the supercharged STS-V - shown in Detroit this week - churns out a meaty 328 kW!

The mainstream STS was released in the US last year and confirmed for European introduction later in 2005. Offered at launch with rear-wheel- or four-wheel drive, it was available with a choice of two engines - the 168 kW 3,6-litre V6 or 240 kW Northstar 4,6-litre V8 petrol engines. These powerplants were mated with five-speed automatic transmissions.

The heart of the STS-V is a supercharged version of the previous flagship's double overhead cam Northstar V8 unit, which is also equipped with variable-intake and exhaust valve timing. The engine produces maximum power of 328 kW at 6 300 r/min and peak torque of 583 N.m at 3 600 r/min and marks the first time a supercharger is used on a production Cadillac.

With its angular styling and dramatic good looks, the STS is strategically aimed at markets outside of the US in the luxury brand's drive into European territory. With the planned expansion to European countries, a right-hand drive version is planned, and should trickle down to SA at some time.

The car's suspension incorporates GM's two-mode adjustable "magnetic ride control" system, as part of what GM called "a distinctly American package". Some modifications will be effected to cater for European buyers and their demand for cars displaying above-average handling characteristics.

Reports say that GM has doubled its efforts to bring the fit and finish of the interior in line with premium offerings from European manufacturers. The STS does not skimp on specification, either: leather seats (with optional heating and ventilation), eucalyptus wood or aluminium trim, adaptive cruise control, head-up display, Bose surround-sound 15-speaker audio system with six-disc CD/DVD and MP3 autochanger, touch-screen and voice-recognition controls, sat nav and Bluetooth compatibility.

Original article from Car