Used 1997 Cadillac Seville Review

Edmunds expert review

What's new for 1997

All Sevilles receive body structure, suspension, brake system and interior enhancements. STS models get a new stability enhancement feature designed to correct lateral skids, and road texture detection, which helps modulate the ABS more effectively on rough roads. Enhanced programmable memory systems are new to both models, as is a revised rear seat back and the availability of OnStar, a vehicle information and communications service. SLS models get MagnaSteer variable-effort steering.

Vehicle overview

When Cadillac introduced the 1992 Seville to the motoring press, they reacted with such overwhelming approval you would have thought they had just heard an announcement that People had forever banished Princess Diana from appearing on its cover. They ooohed' and aahhed' and proclaimed the Seville the best American luxosport sedan ever produced.

Well, they were half right. It was another year before the Seville Touring Sedan (STS) was worthy of that honor with the introduction of the stellar Northstar V8 engine. The STS became a civilized hot-rod, and it wasn't long before the more subdued Seville Luxury Sedan (SLS) made the switch to a less potent version of the Northstar System.

For 1997, the SLS and STS benefit from more of the continual improvement that has marked the evolution of these sedans. Both models get a stiffer body structure to suppress noise and vibration, along with enhanced sound deadening materials. Front suspensions are revised to improve handling and reduce harshness, and front brakes are larger for enhanced stopping ability, better response, and improved pedal feel. Interiors receive revised climate system and radio controls for easier operation, and seating front and rear is slightly redesigned for improved comfort. Optional on SLS and STS is the OnStar services package, which includes a cellular telephone and services ranging from emergency roadside assistance to stolen vehicle tracking to remote door unlocking. Programmable features for 1997 include automatic door locks, remote flash lights, exterior lighting when doors are unlocked, and battery storage mode.

STS receives additional refinement in the face of fresh competition from the United States and abroad. The most visible, and most dubious, improvement is a revised Integrated Chassis Control System (ICCS) with stability enhancement and road texture detection. Stability enhancement is designed to control skids and force the Seville to respond more quickly to driver input in situations where the Seville is slightly out of control. Road texture detection measures road roughness and adjusts brake operation to maximize the efficiency of the antilock brake system. Cadillac has made the sound system an integral part of the STS's memory package for 1997, which means the sound system will remember which stations particular drivers prefer, as well as tuning preferences and even which track on the CD the driver was listening to last.

SLS models aren't completely ignored as far as individual model improvements go. MagnaSteer variable effort steering has been added, and the SLS also receives CV-RSS, which is a Cadillacronym for Continuously Variable Road Sensing Suspension.

The Seville has enjoyed several years in the spotlight as America's premier luxury-sport sedan. Lincoln's Continental is less expensive, but we prefer the Cadillac's distinctive styling over Lincoln's egg-shaped techno-cruiser. While this Cadillac is far from cheap, it is a worthy alternative to pricey luxury sedans from the U.S., Europe and Asia.

Edmunds expert review process

This review was written by a member of Edmunds' editorial team of expert car reviewers. Our team drives every car you can buy. We put the vehicles through rigorous testing, evaluating how they drive and comparing them in detail to their competitors.

We're also regular people like you, so we pay attention to all the different ways people use their cars every day. We want to know if there's enough room for our families and our weekend gear and whether or not our favorite drink fits in the cupholder. Our editors want to help you make the best decision on a car that fits your life.