As an automotive journalist, I tend to pay close attention to the manufacturer ad campaigns — especially those for new model vehicles.

Some are pretty clever, some I don’t understand at all and most I would say tend to be so generic they blend in with all the other ads to the point of being meaningless.

One of my favorite all time automotive ads happens to be for the all-new 2008 Cadillac CTS — this week’s spotlight vehicle.

What makes this ad so memorable is one catch line near the end of the ad that grabs you by the shirt collar, gets your attention and leaves you thinking about it for hours after viewing the ad.

Just one line: “When you turn your car on, does it return the favor?”

What a great line. I’ve been hooked since the first time I saw the ad.

Who doesn’t want to own a vehicle that delivers a strong feeling of driver satisfaction every time you get in the car?

I couldn’t wait to drive this car just to see if it returned the favor.

I had a chance to see the new CTS at the Texas State Fair Auto Show a few months back. I was very impressed with the styling and interior appointments — not to mention all of the cool technology such as the new direct-injection V6 engine with six-speed transmission, adaptive forward lighting, LED light pipes, EasyKey and Smart Remote Start capability, hard drive audio system and “pop-up” navigation screen to name just a few items.

Visually, it is an attention-getting luxury sedan.

And the accolades keep pouring in. Most recently, Motor Trend magazine named the 2008 Cadillac CTS its “Car of the Year.”

To say I’ve been chomping at the bit waiting for my turn to come up in the media fleet would be an understatement.

Well, this week was my week.

To answer everyone’s question, yes, the 2008 Cadillac CTS does return the favor.

It is an elegant, finely crafted and performance driven luxury sedan that definitely turns you on the second you start the car.

Available in rear- or all-wheel drive configurations, consumers have their choice of three available engines mated to either a six-speed manual or six-speed automatic transmission (all engines require regular unleaded gasoline):

2.8-liter V6 with variable valve timing (210 horsepower — EPA fuel economy ratings not available); 3.6-liter V6 with variable value timing (263 horsepower — 18 mpg city, 26 mpg highway); 3.6-liter with direct injection (304 horsepower — 17 mpg city, 26 mpg highway).

It’s also loaded with safety features, such as six airbags, tire pressure monitoring system, ABS, StabiliTrak electronic chassis control system and OnStar, to name a few.

While impressed with the CTS ad campaign, I’m totally blown away by this vehicle. With a distinctly American flair, Cadillac is redefining the luxury sedan segment. From styling to performance, the new CTS has raised the bar.

I strongly urge taking this car for a test drive.

Neal White has been covering the automotive industry for more than 15 years and is affiliated with the Texas Auto Writers Association and the Midwest Automotive Media Association. Comments may be sent to Neal at