The Cien – Spanish for 100 – illustrates Cadillac’s new design philosophy, melding design and technology in a mid-engine, two-seat sports car. In keeping with the brand’s role as a technology flagship for General Motors, the premium V-12-powered Cadillac Cien concept car is a befitting icon to usher in the brand’s 100th anniversary this year.
Trapezoidal air inlets are milled into the front-end surface graphically forming Cadillac’s shield-like grille along with the centrally mounted badge. The bank of air inlets cools the front-mounted radiators, and is flanked on either side by vertical headlamps. Functional side air intake and exhaust vents lay flush with the surface of the car, opening up as required. Formal, directional sail panels, which appear to float above the surface, house air intakes for the V-12.
The body and chassis are made of carbon fiber composite that is lightweight and stiff. Cien is equipped with scissor-style doors that pivot at the base of the A-pillars upon opening.
Cadillac Cien’s 7.5-liter, V-12 powerplant, which is visible through the car’s rear window, is a new concept engine from GM Powertrain dubbed the Northstar XV12. The all-aluminum, double overhead cam (DOHC) four-valve V-12 engine generates 750 horsepower and 450 lb.-ft. of torque, yet it meets the packaging requirements and fuel economy standards of a V-8.
The Northstar XV12 concept engine features several technological advancements over today’s V-8 engines, including: GM’s Displacement on Demand technology, which allows the engine to run seamlessly on six cylinders at times to maximize fuel savings; direct injection gasoline combustion system for increased engine power, improved fuel economy and reduced emissions; and a combined starter generator for quicker, quieter starts.