As the 1990s approached, Cadillac was faced with a new threat. In addition to the European Imports, there were now fine Japanese luxury cars being shipped into the country. Lexus, Honda and Infiniti all offered large luxury cars that competed directly with Cadillac. They were all technologically-advanced and highlighted how dated Cadillacs designs really were.
To combat this threat, the company had to buck up its ideas and rethink its designs. By the mid-1990s the Cadillac range was all new and so were the engines. It was the Northstar V8 that really showed the world that Cadillac could compete technically with the Japanese. It was an all alloy V8 with two camshafts per cylinder bank and four valves per cylinder. The engine was built to last and was designed to travel 100,000 miles before the first scheduled tune up. It could even run without its coolant. Should a coolant leak occur, the engine could continue to run safely in limp home mode bicycling air through deactivated cylinders to cool the engine. Power outputs were impressive too. The top specification Northstar V8 produced 300 horsepower.