1997 Cadillac Seville STS 4.6L Northstar - 300 hp from North America


This car has a LONG WAY to go to be viewed as any car manufacturer's flagship model design


Over-heated and head bolt stripped (in Monteagle, TN - Dec, '02) on our way to the 2003 Orange Bowl from Kansas City to Miami.

High oil consumption. It uses a healthy quart of oil every 1000 miles.

Rear radio antenna quit working 2 weeks after I purchased the vehicle (79000 miles).

Automatic interior thermostat is not working properly. When it shows blowing warm air on the floor, there is both warm and cold air blowing on the windshield, primarily on the passenger side of the car (warm air on driver and cold air on passenger side).

It seems to almost hydroplane (in dry weather) when the car experiences bumps driving at speeds of 50-70 mph. The whole car swerves.

General Comments:

I love the overall responsiveness and comfort the car provides. This car has tremendous power... too bad it burns oil and strips head bolts under heavy strain. However, GM says this is all a know issue and is operating within specs. Then why isn't this displayed in the showroom floor or in the car's portfolio? It sounds more like a feature not an issue to be addressed.

Interior storage is somewhat limited.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know

Review Date: 29th March, 2003

17th Feb 2004, 17:19

I find it really curious that almost all of the STS purchasers say that it is acceptable to have a car that burns oil, jumps when it hits bumps, and numerous other things. Yes I agree it is a lovely car, but as all have mentioned why would we put our trust and lives into a vehicle that they seem to not be able to fix? We have the same problems as you, but We had a new engine placed at 39000 miles and many attempts at fixing the flying sensation when we drive.

If you look at the other tech reports available online you will see this is not the only year Cadillac that has these problems and not able to fix.

1997 Cadillac Seville SLS from North America


Good looking, bad usage


1997 Cadillac Seville SLS.

I traded in a perfectly good (wonderful actually) Toyota Avalon to buy the Seville when with 27,000 miles on the odometer and it was 5 years old.

12 month later almost to the day, I added 13,000 of almost total highway driving and I changed the oil every three thousand miles.

- the car required a replaced mid-plate section of the Northstar engine which is supposed to go for 100,000 miles before service. Who would design an engine block with three sections unless someone wanted to increase the possibility of oil leaks.

- the repair cost estimated originally at $2,700 cost some $1,900 after Cadillac agreed without much prompting to supply the part at wholesale cost. (Not counting the week or so of car rental cost.) Why would a manufacturer offer such largess?

- less than 30 days and 1,200 miles later, (Not counting another week or so of car rental cost.) the rattle, shake, rock and roll of the car resulted (I think) the battery to have a hole which spilled out acid over the wiring harness which prevented the car to start.

- more than $600 later and less than 1,000 later the car had a blown head gasket. Again Cadillac agreed to reduce the dealer estimated cost of $7,000 for an engine replacement to just $900. (Not counting yet another week and half of car rental cost.) Now why would a car manufacturer do this, I wonder?

As indicated in other reviews:

- one does have to be a tiny to get in and out of the back seat.

- the automatic seat adjustment did try to kill my wife at least a dozen times, pushing her into the steering wheels and was stopped only after she opened the door.

- owner's manual and the gasoline spout clearly indicate using premium gas (which I did) but the dealer was emphatic that I start using regular gas only. Did the extra octane blow the supposed great Northstar engine apart? I wonder?

- it is a good looking car, gives an excellent ride form its excellent power from the 8 cylinder engine, but overall the best use for the car is in the driveway.

I for one, won't buy another Seville nor Cadillac.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 3rd January, 2003

7th Mar 2003, 03:17

Your engine must have been a factory dud. I have owned a 1997 Cadillac Seville STS for some time now and put some intense mileage on this car. I got it about two years ago with 72,000 miles on it. Since then I put about 80,000 miles on the thing and after regular maintenance with only three parts failing. The knock sensor, the brake fluid switch sensor, and the O2 sensor. Total cost was about $125.oo. I love the car. It doesn't smoke oil, leak, or anything. It's a dream of a car. The dealer did tell me to put the low octane stuff in, but the car seemed to be hard to start in the cold weather. The compression ratio is way to high to put the low octane gas in. After all this time and mileage the car can still tear up a stock 5.0L Mustang on the road, and look better doing it. Hope this helps to clear the name of the mighty Northstar and venerable Cadillac.