Best Road Tests Ever: Cadillac BLS 2.9 TID Luxury Car News

Tested on 19.4.06

Hoping to break into Europe from within, GM badge engineering allowed the distinctive Trollhättan-built BLS to emerge from Saab’s low-key origins.

Although the BLS retained the roofline, windshield and side windows of the Saab 9-3, the designers did a good job of giving the Cadillac its own identity and its materials beat its American brethren for the quality. The 1.9-litre diesel engine and slightly cogged six-speed gearbox were familiar from the 9-3, Vauxhall Vectra and Alfa Romeo 159.

In top gear, the BLS made a refined cruiser and it managed an excellent 52 mpg when touring. The engine liked revving but wanted a low-end growl, and acceleration was just okay. The steering was precise but light and rebounded over mid-corner bumps while the rear suspension was floaty, robbing the Caddy of Alfa Romeo-rivaling agility. Ridges and potholes also upset the chassis. The brakes were fade-free, however.

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The scoreboard impressed with its style and was less picky than the 9-3. Cabin space was good up front but legroom was tight in the back.

The price of the BLS was its fatal flaw though, being £2500 higher than the equivalent of 159.

For: Distinctive Style, Cruising Refinement, Economy

Versus: Lack of agility, management backsliding, high price

What happened next…

The BLS was also sold with 2.0-liter turbo petrol and 2.8-liter turbo V6 engines, the latter offering 251 bhp and producing a 0-60 mph time of 6.5 seconds in manual form. The Wagon domain was introduced in 2008, just two years before the BLS was abolished. Today there are around 220 BLS on UK roads, according to

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This notice was published: 2022-06-12 23:01:24

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