click above image to view new high-res pics of the 2008 Cadillac STS

The refreshed 2008 Cadillac STS was quietly debuted at the New York Auto Show in early April. By no one's measure is the '08 STS as significant a product for General Motors' luxury brand as the all-new 2008 CTS. Nevertheless, the bigger sedan needed an update to bring itself in line with the new Cadillac style. The new corporate grille is the most obvious exterior change, and it looks sharp on the schnoz of the STS. Fender vents are all the rage right now, and the new STS gets a pair of chrome side extractors that match ones found on the Escalade and new CTS. There are also new chrome door handles, rocker panels, body-colored rear fascia and polished 3" exhaust tips, as well as new 18-inch chrome wheels.

The interior is where the '08 STS falls short of matching what its smaller sibling will be offering later this year. We were hoping the car would receive the same interior shown in the long-wheelbase version of the SLS that will be sold in Chinese markets, but instead it got only a new steering wheel and revised center stack with aluminum and wood trim.

In addition to the styling tweaks, the '08 STS also gets GM's well-received 3.6L direct injection V6 that will produce 302 horsepower and 272 ft-lbs of torque, which is expected to improve on the outgoing engine's fuel economy numbers of 18 mpg city/27 mpg highway. With a V6 like this, who needs a V8? The engine will be coupled with the 6L50 six-speed auto, and other new technology includes StabiliTrak electronic stability control, active steering, a Lane Departure Warning System and Side Blind Zone Alert System.

The full press release is after the jump, and all the new high-res pics have been added to the gallery below.

[Source: GM]
Related Gallery2008 Cadillac STS


PRESS RELEASE:

Enhanced 2008 Cadillac STS Delivers Signature Styling And Advanced Performance Technology

DETROIT - The 2008 Cadillac STS debuts next month with a new, 302-horsepower engine with direct injection technology that improves fuel economy and reduces emissions. In addition, Cadillac's luxury performance sedan also showcases enhanced signature styling and the addition of leading-edge safety technology.

"For the past two decades, the Cadillac STS has been a showcase of luxury, performance and technology," says Jim Taylor, Cadillac general manager. "The enhanced 2008 model extends that with bolder design, more standard power, better fuel efficiency, improved emissions and new safety technology."

New direct injection V-6 debuts

For 2008, STS will be the first GM vehicle equipped with a new 3.6L direct injection V-6 engine. Direct Injection, an advanced system for more precise and productive fuel delivery, enables the rare achievement of simultaneous gains in power, fuel efficiency and emissions performance.

The new standard engine for STS delivers a SAE-certified 302 horsepower (225 kW) at 6300 rpm,* 47 more horsepower (35 kW) than the previous 3.6-liter V-6. Torque is also increased to 272 lb.-ft. (366 Nm) at 5200 rpm,* an upgrade of 20 lb.-ft. (27 Nm). At the same time, the engine is expected to deliver improved fuel efficiency. Official EPA fuel economy statistics for the 2008 model have not yet been announced. On the outgoing 2007 model STS, EPA fuel economy is 18 mpg city and 27 mpg hwy.

Additionally, direct injection's more efficient operation enables a 25-percent reduction in cold-start hydrocarbon emissions.

Coupled to the new V-6 engine will be the 6L50 six-speed automatic transmission, introduced last year on Northstar V-8 models, which has a generous 6.04:1 overall ratio that enables a steep first-gear that helps deliver strong launch acceleration. The STS V-6 continues to be available with all-wheel drive for 2008.

New technology

Continuing Cadillac's commitment to the advancement of safety and performance attributes, the 2008 STS includes new systems and advanced technologies to enhance driver awareness and control.

For the first time, Cadillac's acclaimed StabiliTrak electronic stability control system now includes the optional addition of active steering technology. In addition to controlling brakes and reducing engine power, the latest iteration of StabiliTrak combines active front steering to turn the front wheels into the skid when rear wheels lose traction. The system includes a new steering motor assembly combined with computer-driven electronic controls that measure wheel slippage at all four wheels independently during acceleration, braking and adverse road conditions.

Active steering will be available exclusively on all-wheel-drive V-8 models.

GM's Lane Departure Warning System also debuts on the 2008 STS. Controlled by a camera located in the rearview mirror that reads the lines in the road, the system will alert drivers when they have strayed into another lane. Drivers get both an audible and visual alert cue.

When the Lane Departure Warning System is engaged, a driver traveling at 35 mph or more who crosses a detected lane marking without signaling is alerted in two ways: The system flashes an amber indicator light located in the fuel gauge of the instrument panel, and an alerting chime of three beeps is played. The system does not steer the vehicle; it is designed only to alert drivers so they can take appropriate action to move the vehicle back into the lane.

GM's Side Blind Zone Alert System extends and enhances driver awareness and vision. Alternating radar beams in Side Blind Zone Alert System sweep adjacent lanes of traffic, covering a zone of about one lane over from both sides of the vehicle, or 11 feet (3.5 m). The zone starts at each side mirror and goes back about 16 feet (5 m).

When the system is engaged, a driver will know that following vehicles in the adjacent lanes are entering their side blind zone when an amber symbol, located in the outside rearview mirror, is illuminated.

The system is not designed to detect vehicles outside of the side blind zone that may be rapidly approaching, or detect pedestrians, bicyclists or animals. It's designed to ignore infrastructure such as fire hydrants or parked cars. In addition, the system displays do not come on while the vehicle is approaching or passing other vehicles.

The Lane Departure Warning and Side Blind Zone Alert systems can be manually turned off by the driver.

A new performance handling package will be available for V-8-equipped rear-wheel and all-wheel-drive models and V-6-equipped rear-drive models. The package includes 18-inch x 8.5-inch aluminum alloy, chrome-plated wheels fitted with new P255/45R18 Michelin Pilot Sport summer-only tires.

Four-piston caliper Brembo brakes, with front rotors measuring 355 mm x 32 mm and 365 mm x 28 mm rear rotors, provide enhanced baking. All four rotors are vented.

A bolder new look, inside and out

The new STS injects more of the bold design flair that has become a Cadillac signature. Up front, the dual-textured, multi-faceted grille - first seen on the landmark Cadillac Sixteen concept car and incorporated on both the Escalade and soon-to-be-launched CTS - has been adapted to the STS.

High Intensity Discharge lamps and the Intellibeam automatic high-beam system are added for the first time for V-6 models. The lower front fascia features a new intake and grille pattern evoking Cadillac's V-Series high-performance models.

Similarly, side air extractors, again inspired by the Sixteen and Escalade, are now

incorporated into the front fenders of STS. New chrome-plated door handles and lower rocker moldings are added for more presence and refinement. At the rear, the new fascia is now body color and is highlighted with polished aluminum three-inch exhaust tips. New, polished 18-inch x 8-inch aluminum 14-spoke wheels are available.

The luxurious interior of the STS includes a new steering wheel with available genuine Sapele Pommele wood trim. The center stack of the instrument panel is revised with the addition of wood and metallic trim.

The 2008 STS begins production this spring, with initial availability beginning in June.

*SAE certified.