2008 Cadillac CTS: Putting Golf Clubs in the Trunk
October 08, 2008
You know how people claim that goose-neck trunk hinges are a sure sign of inferior quality and cost cutting, while struts are more expensive and therefore better? Well, here's a reason why that's wrong.
The struts shrink the size of the trunk opening, particularly on our Cadillac CTS. As the below video shows, it requires a bit of finagling to fit wider items like golf clubs through the opening. Once in, the battery compartment prevents you from fitting the clubs perfectly width-wise (which they did in a Chevy Cobalt nearby). This makes loading multiple golf bags or other items with the golf clubs more difficult. And since this is a Cadillac, how it holds golf clubs is certainly important.
By comparison, the so-called cheaper goose-neck hinges found in the BMW 5 Series, for instance, allow for the trunk to be more easily opened and provide a wide opening that you can lower golf clubs straight into. And cheap they are not. These hinges are actually fully enclosed and in the Mercedes C-Class, are more than just two hinges, there's actually a rather elaborate mechanism at work.
Therefore, I don't think the type of trunk hinges a car has is a sure-fire sign of quality. Sure, it can be can example of cost/quality (say, when one car has non-sheathed goose-necks that crush your groceries or when a $16,000 Cobalt has struts). But when each is done right, there's logic behind both designs -- a decision made by engineers rather than bean counters.
In the CTS, struts were probably required regardless, given the short deck and the consequent need to extend the trunk lid past 90 degrees. And given that short opening, it would also be difficult to fit bulkier items like boxes into the 13.6-cubic-foot trunk. Just a trade-off, I suppose, for the CTS' hot styling.
James Riswick, Automotive Editor @ 14,157 miles