Audio System With Navigation and Back-Up Camera ($1,995); Oversized Power Sunroof ($995); Touring Package ($800 -- includes 19-inch nine-spoke alloy wheels, P245/40R19 all-season blackwall tires, continuously variable real-time-damping chassis with Sport mode selectivity); Xenon HID Headlamps ($695); Head-Up Display ($350); Rear-Seat-Mounted Thorax Airbags ($350).
3,564cc (217 cu-in)
DOHC 4 valves per cylinder, continuously variable valve timing and lift
Compression ration (x:1)
Horsepower (hp @ rpm)
280 @ 6,300
Torque (lb-ft @ rpm)
259 @ 4,800
Transmission and axle ratios (x:1)
I = 4.48, II = 2.87, III = 1.84, IV = 1.41, V = 1.00, VI = 0.74, FD = 2.77, R =2.88
Compared to the 3.0 CXL, there's only a little more snap or sizzle from the CXS's 3.6-liter V6. Again, shifts are exceptionally smooth and occur at what we assume is a 6,500-rpm redline (none evident on tach). Quiet and confident but not at all what we'd call thrilling.
Pedal has some idle stroke, but the brakes themselves feel strong. Despite an identical 127-foot best stop, there's a little more fade on the CXS than on the CXL where this car's distances grew by about 5 feet from first to fourth stop. No ABS flutter or hum and dead straight.
Skid pad: Appropriate effort/build-up from steering wheel. Easy to find the mild understeer at the limit. Good balance so I could easily alter the course with the throttle. ESP is rather conservatively tuned here, resulting in both brake application and throttle closure. Slalom: This CXS doesn't feel as crisp as the CXL did, but it ultimately makes the same handling numbers. The differences are: turn-in isn't as quick, it takes more time to take a set, and I had more difficulty placing the car very near the cones without hitting them. The stability system is well tuned to approach limits with minimal intrusion. All handling tests in Sport mode.