If you've been shopping exclusively for a luxury import, thinking you already know all about Cadillacs, you might want to think again. If you want a big sedan that offers athletic handling and performance, a car that feels solid, a car with a luxurious interior, a car with the latest technology, then take a look at the Cadillac DeVille. At a normal driving pace, the DeVille is a big, comfortable, luxurious sedan. Push it hard, and it feels like a big sports sedan.
Cadillac designed the DeVille to please a variety of drivers by offering three distinctive models. The DTS, or DeVille Touring Sedan, is an agile sports sedan. The DHS delivers high luxury with a more traditional Cadillac ride, while the standard DeVille offers a lower price.
For 2003, the DeVille gets minor styling refinements, and new standard and optional equipment. (The current-generation DeVille dates from model-year 2000, when it was completely redesigned.) XM Satellite Radio is now available, offering 100 coast-to-coast digital channels, including music, sports, talk, 24-hour news, and children's entertainment. A tire-pressure monitor is now standard, and Advanced Vehicle Navigation is available for all models.
The 2003 Cadillac DeVille is offered in three distinct flavors: DeVille, DeVille DHS, and DeVille DTS. All are front-wheel-drive sedans powered by a 4.6-liter V8 engine, though the DTS is tuned for higher horsepower.
Of the three, the standard DeVille ($42,950) looks and drives the most like a traditional Cadillac, balancing luxury and value.
DHS (DeVille High-Luxury Sedan) and DTS (DeVille Touring Sedan) are both priced at $47,880. Both depart from Cadillac's old ways. They share many features, but as their names imply, one stresses luxury while the other highlights a sportier driving experience.
DHS and DeVille models come with a full bench seat in front and a column shifter. DTS comes with bucket seats and a floor shifter. The standard DeVille uses Cadillac's traditional digital instrumentation; DHS and DTS get the analog (dial) instruments often preferred by enthusiast drivers. Even the leather on DHS and DTS models is designed for different buyers: Where the DHS has elegantly gathered leather upholstery, the DTS has stretched perforated skins for a sporty look. Yet both offer a supple fit and feel. The DTS is distinguished by a wreath and crest in the grille, while the DHS and DeVille use a traditional hood ornament.