By on February 19, 2009

Breathe. Remember this when you drive the Cadillac CTS-V. No matter what happens, continue to breathe, lest you fall victim to what us aviators call G-LOCing, or G-Force Loss-of-Consciousness. Steady, rhythmic breaths will help your body cope with the stresses induced by a four-door sedan capable of hurtling your fragile, carbon based body into speeds that challenge the Theory of Relativity. Entering hyperspace, where the gravity wells of passing stars actually start to affect the navigation system of the CTS-V, you might forget this simple fact, pass out, and crash the American-built sports sedan that beats its German competitors into submission.

The 2009 Cadillac CTS-V warns you about its evil intentions with a niftier mesh grill (from the same suppliers that gave the Bentley Continental its garish nose), a power bulge, six-piston brake calipers with vented disks peeking out from polished aluminum rims, and a lip spoiler doubling as the brake light. The mods give the high-test V just enough visual octane to separate it from the stunning base model. The CTS-V’s ice cold Americana makes the BMW M3 and Audi RS4 look like Solid Gold dancers.

The CTS-V offers one of the most interesting and beautiful automotive interiors on the market, at any price. The two-tone black and beige interior [not shown here] mocks the dour Europeans with its elegance, while the polished black trim, high quality plastics, and unusual yet effective placement of secondary controls delight the senses. The CTS-V provides the kind of mass market elegance previously restricted to Jaguar XF drivers.

To wit: the CTS’ designers have placed the heated seat controls at the bottom of the control stack with their own LCD screen control, angled towards the occupant. The set-up combines deft ergonomics with a brand-appropriate touch of class. The Cadillac CTS-V’s chrome stereo controls sit below a polished clock. They’re far more user-friendly than BMW’s iDrive (you nuts?) or Audi’s MMI (My Mental Ignorance?). The needles in the Caddy’s instrument cluster contain combat cool red LED chaser lights that enable mission critical visual scanning.

The Cadillac CTS-V’s start button awakens a 556 bhp supercharged 6.2L LSA V-8 engine, derived from the LS9 powerplant used in the “Blue Devil” Corvette ZR-1. The burble coming out the Caddy’s back end mimics muscle cars of old and Mercedes C63 AMG of today. On a cold Dallas day, pure malice tumbled from the CTS-V’s twin tips, turning into a dragon-like fog. Once the engine warmed, the distant sound of detonating explosives settled into a smooth purr.

As we departed Lemmon Ave. and headed for the interstate, the CTS-V’s automatic transmission grabbed gears as smoothly as the Rifleman spinning his weapon. Just 3.9 seconds later I was breaking the legal limit. A mere 0.1 seconds after that, I started using fighter jet techniques to maintain consciousness. Peaceful negotiations had broken down inside this Caddy’s power bulge. Somewhere beyond the horizon, small countries trembled in fear.

The recently demobilized GM Performance Vehicle Operations team have banished the driveline shunt that turned the previous generation CTS-V into a cruel joke. Leaving . . . the rush. The sheer magnitude of the event unleashed by pressing a simple plastic pedal left me giddy with go-fast. The CTS-V’s torque could talk softly but it carried one hell of a big stick.

This is the part of the review where I say an over-engined American car falls off the edge of the world—as poor steering, bad brakes and dubious chassis control conspire against life, liberty and the pursuit of German sports sedans. Not so slow, Mr. Bond. Assaulting the curves of a certain park north of downtown Dallas, I could find no fault with what PVO hath wrought. The CTS-V’s rear end stayed planted and controllable in all situations, and there were plenty of ‘em. If the electronic nannies ever cut in, I couldn’t tell.

I repeat: the CTS-V is no Duke of Hazard SRT-8 tail-happy monster. The CTS-V carves the time-space continuum into finer and finer slices with genuine finesse. From razor sharp turn-in to graceful tenacious through the sweepers, the Cadillac CTS-V knows the fastest way from point A to point B is any damn way you please. It never fails to flatter the sporting driver.

The only chink in the CTS-V’s armor: slightly over-light steering. In this it only fails in comparison to . . . need I mention any names? No, I don’t. The Cadillac CTS-V is its own machine. It’s also the final realization of all those previously po-faced Cadillac claims of world class performance prowess. Whether that sort of automotive glory was a worthy goal for the Cadillac brand is an open question. But as a swan song, the 2009 Cadillac CTS-V forces the competition to play follow my lieder. Put another way, if GM has jumped the shark, the CTS-V represents the apogee of that lamentable leap.

[Look out for MS sports sedan comparo: Cadillac CTS-V vs. Mercedes C63 AMG vs. Audi RS4 vs. BMW M3 vs. Lexus IS-F.]

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70 Comments on “Review: 2009 Cadillac CTS-V...”


  • avatar
    Austin Greene

    All of us knew deep down inside that General Motors was capable of this.

    TTAC and its best and brightest have lambasted GM for not performing to its true potential.

    And now that GM has we must wonder aloud whether it will take another near-death experience for it to ever do so again.

    Buy one now, for this CTS-V will be as rare and hair raising as a lunar landing.

    Requiescat In Pace Performance Vehicle Operations.

  • avatar
    Casual Observer

    Wow! It warms my heart to read that the numbers translate to the road.

    Look out for MS sports sedan comparo: Cadillac CTS-V vs. Mercedes C63 AMG vs. Audi RS4 vs. BMW M3 vs. Lexus IS-F.

    Wouldn’t the E63, S6, and M5 be more appropriate to compare to the CTS-V and IS-F?

  • avatar
    Detroit-Iron

    I’ll bet anyone a CTS-V that oil will drop to $5/bbl and be found to have been stabilizing global temperatures. That would be just GM’s luck/foresight.

  • avatar
    trk2

    Nice car but I can’t stand the front. It looks like it’s gobbled together with a WRX ground effects package purchased from ebay.

  • avatar
    Casual Observer

    trk2 – I agree about the front. It looks too much like the last CTS-V.

    It should look more like the regular CTS front that is not bisected by the sheet metal.

  • avatar
    Detroit-X

    The GM Performance Line of cars is created in a telling manner inside GM. GM Performance is essentially a somewhat separate organization within the GM organization, so GM itself won’t pollute it with its poison culture. (How about that contrast there… We’re the best! We’re dopes!)

    GM Performance was given more trust, things were done more hands-on, skilled engineers were located/retained/rewarded, and they were relieved of the excruciating nonsense of justifying everything they want to do to the N-th degree. They were trusted to do what’s right.

    No more, now, back to the pool of suffering talent (with an axe over its head).

    ‘Lutz The Arrogant’ has his greatest failing to not to set up all of GM to be like this. (That is aside from personally failing to rise to CEO in about five tries.)

    As for the V-lines and the Corvette: Bravo, and I love to see it from GM. But personally, an extra 300HP for about a 1 second gain over the Cobalt SS in 0-60, isn’t my cup of tea for the tons of extra cash and complexity involved.

  • avatar
    NN

    this car will appreciate in value over time.

    All the reviewers tend to love it, even the British.

    GM introduces the two most amazing (ZR1 & CTS-V) performance vehicles it has ever made…indeed two of the best available in the world…right as it’s going bust, and then kills the operation that made them. GM always does it’s best work at the end of the line when it’s too late (see Olds Aurora, Intrigue, modern Saturn lineup, etc.).

    Bob Lutz had a personality that grates those here at TTAC and he didn’t do much to improve GM’s marketing, branding, or profitability. But without Bob Lutz, this car would never have made it. That is why he is important. If they could just lock him up and have him work on the product side…

  • avatar

    Great review, Mike.

    Agree with other commenters that the front of the regular CTS is more attractive.

    Have been waiting for Detroit roads to clear up so I can drive one of these myself. This much power and ice are probably not a good combination.

    The regular 2008 CTS has not fared well in TrueDelta’s Car Reliability Survey. The repair rate in recent updates isn’t as high as it was initially, but remains around twice the average. The 2009 probably requires fewer repairs–the 2008 was the first year, after all.

    The results page for the CTS:

    http://www.truedelta.com/car-reliability.php?stage=pt&bd=Cadillac&mc=37&email=Guest

  • avatar

    Detroit-X: bingo

    It’s all about developing trustworthy teams (not just individuals), then trusting them.

    http://www.truedelta.com/execsum.php

    Disassembling a high-functioning team is idiocy.

  • avatar
    Ronman

    I can proudly say, I’ve driven it, and feel with you. very well written, and I liked the part about the mission critical lights in the dash.

    And you got it right about the steering, it is a bit light in comparison.

    my only thing is its weight, on a track pushing it to the limit, you can really feel how heavy that thing is. but it is still comparable with the gemans in that department as well. so i guess, GM was finally capable of creating a beast that does know how to take a turn and transport in luxurious comfort.

    now that their high performance division has been disbanded, this CTS-V might be the last of an Era, ‘too bad, i was waiting for a lightened version that would prove mental.

    is it possible that GM concluded the horsepower war on top? with the best of the mental sedans?

    i guess it did,

  • avatar
    Justin Crenshaw

    Wouldn’t the E63, S6, and M5 be more appropriate to compare to the CTS-V and IS-F?

    You could certainly make that arguement based on size and power but the CTS-V plays in the 60-70k range with the RS4/C63/IS-F/M3 while the larger ones (E63/S6/M5) are much higher. It would turn into a classic ending… “being 25k cheaper the CTS-V is…”

  • avatar

    Right now, I’ve got $15,000 set aside as a down payment for the CTS COUPE. If they release that car with a V-series engine, which they might…that car would be nothing short of a poor man’s Reventon.

    And yes… Lambo door hinges.

    Its going to be my next project car. My last was a Chrysler 300 to supplement my S550.

    The CTS is already one of the most sexy cars on the road, arguably more so than the C300. I’m amazed what GM did here.

  • avatar

    I knew GM could do it. Then again, we all did. Too bad they can’t put this much attention into a four cylinder subcompact that’ll sell in volumes, but that’s another story.

    I also agree with the comments on the styling, because steroids have gone out of fashion. And the buffalo butts (that come with) need to go too, and E39 proportions need to come back. But other than that…

    This car is an instant classic, and I wonder how it’ll rival sports cars in the used/collectible car market in the future. If any sedan will rival a Vette, 911, Muscle Cars, etc…this will.

  • avatar
    jerseydevil

    wonderful. another brutally fast car to sit in traffic jams with.

  • avatar
    tankd0g

    And now it’s dead. Seems car makers usually manage to get everything right in the final incarnation of a model.

  • avatar

    @ jerseydevil,

    But thats the beauty of it, it does docile extremely well

  • avatar
    mdh

    This is a good review, and indeed encouraging that GM can build a car that gets mentioned in the same company as the M3, C63, et all.

    That said, this reminds me of my trip to the Chicago Auto Show yesterday.

    As I walked thru the “aisle of death” which is what the row with Hummer, Pontiac, Saab, etc. reminded me of – I saw the ZR1 Vette sitting along the aisle. The car they’re showing is painted in this pretty metallic gray color, with a little blue flake in the paint. Very showcar-esque.

    So, here’s this $120K car and the fucking paint color on the hood is WAY off color to the fenders and bumper cover! I make this observation and some dude jumps down my throat… “no, its the light… cut them a break”.

    Now, for sure the lighting on the show floor is brutal but… Bullshit. The paint color just didn’t match, I looked at it from 5 different directions. I get it, its the part of the car where 2 maybe 3 different materials come together. But…. curiously… Mercedes, Toyota & BMW didn’t have the same trouble with the lighting on their hoods.

    It all comes down to this, and I suspect this applies to the CTS-V just the same. It’s not just about 0-60 times or quarter mile ET. Until GM can put true quality together. Real fit & finish, True rattle-free engineering… they have no business building cars like this!

  • avatar
    Justin Berkowitz

    But make mine a diesel manual wagon?

    I kid, I kid.

    Cool car, just not for me.

  • avatar
    06M3S54B32

    “It all comes down to this, and I suspect this applies to the CTS-V just the same. It’s not just about 0-60 times or quarter mile ET. Until GM can put true quality together. Real fit & finish, True rattle-free engineering… they have no business building cars like this!”

    I totally agree. American “performance” philosophy, is to put a huge engine into a POS and hang a big price tag on it so disco dads will pay up. Meanwhile, the exterior looks like the kids who hangs out in the accessory isle at Pepboys designed it, the interior is a hideous mix of plastic, glue smells coupled with poor fit and finish. Seriously, BMW and particularly Audi’s interiors, (exteriors too) blow this heap away. Top price of ANY American POS should have a $25K price cap. It’ll devalue by 50% anyway in a year.

  • avatar
    DIYer

    Justin:

    I sat in one of these at the Detroit Auto Show and it had a 6-speed manual, which was standard equipment. The automatic is an option which runs a little more. The car stickered for around $62k.
    The car reviewed had an automatic, but I think the author should have mentioned the availability of a manual.
    The interior of the car looked pretty sharp for a GM vehicle,
    and better than some of the lower-end BMW’s I sat in. This is Cadillac’s top-of-the-line vehicle, and it got a lot of looks at the show.

  • avatar

    o6M353S54B32

    ——–I totally agree. American “performance” philosophy, is to put a huge engine into a POS and hang a big price tag on it so disco dads will pay up. Meanwhile, the exterior looks like the kids who hangs out in the accessory isle at Pepboys designed it, the interior is a hideous mix of plastic, glue smells coupled with poor fit and finish. Seriously, BMW and particularly Audi’s interiors (exteriors too) blow this heap away. Top price of ANY American POS should have a $25K price cap. It’ll devalue by 50% anyway in a year.———–

    Sounds like you are talking about the Chrysler 300/ dodge Charger/ Dodge Challenger and the Mustang.

    the price tags aren’t so big – but, yes, the disco dads love em.

  • avatar

    @ 06M3S54B32,

    Fit and finish were top quality. No rattles, no cheap crap, no exposed flash seams, and the paint was flawless (although orange peel was more evident than the Germans). That particular opinion, regarding the CTS-V, should be banished to the dustbin of unecessary hatred.

  • avatar

    One comment I forgot to make earlier: the steering in just about everything is too light. Light steering ruins the current M3 for me.

  • avatar
    wsn

    I just don’t understand what’s all this fuss about “GM being able to do something.”

    Yeah, the CTS-V is way better than a Camry, but it’s so much more expensive as well. Given the price tag, Tata Motor can produce a car just as good.

    A good car should be:
    1) substantially cheaper than its same-ability peers (such as 1st gen Lexus LS), OR
    2) substantially outperforms, in some way, its same-priced peers (such as Infinity G, much faster than same-priced BMWs)

    I see neither from the CTS-V.

  • avatar

    I sat in one at the auto show last night. I didn’t care for the manual shifter much, but the rest was great! I loved the Recaro seats. If I could even afford one, I’d get an automatic. *waits for lightning to strike me down*

  • avatar
    Robstar

    This is one of the few GM cars I’d pay good money for. If I could get this for say, $35k in 2-4 years, dump my STi for $15k, put down $10k & finance the rest, I’d do it in a heartbeat.

    That is assuming I can still find parts for it in 2-4 years.

    I love the look.
    I love the numbers.

    I wonder if I can get a test drive?

    I am doubting it since it’s a halo car. Has anyone tried?

  • avatar
    Brian E

    @Mike Solowiow:

    The CTS has an awesome interior, but I’m still not convinced that it will hold up over time. The interior of Edmunds’ long-term CTS is starting to come apart at the seams and the gizmos are starting to develop gremlins. It’s also developed a bad case of the rattles. Maybe the CTS-V is built to a different standard, but it seems unlikely to me.

    Of course the Germans have their issues too, particularly when it comes to gremlins in the electronics. I suspect that the coupling of massive thrust and extreme reliability is why our dear leader Mr. Farago is so enamored with the IS-F.

  • avatar

    I cannot WAIT for the M3 comparo. This is the first GM car I can even fathom in history that I would march in and throw cash money down on the table for, no questions asked…

    …IF it weren’t for the fact that GM et. al. have crashed the Michigan economy so badly that my house has lost well over the $70K it would take me to buy the damn car already.

  • avatar
    AllStingNoBling

    Something about stars shinning their brightest right before they supernova….

  • avatar
    Justin Berkowitz

    @DIYer:

    I know a stick is available. Actually I was really saying “Manual diesel wagon” because of the running joke among commenters here on TTAC that they/we would prefer any car with those three attributes.

    For me actually a manual transmission is a lot less important than for other people. I generally just like my cars to be sort of slow, sort of small, and have a lot of doors.

  • avatar

    @ wsn

    The CTS-V, for the same price as the other, puts out 100bhp more, and runs 0-60 faster. Thats the difference that puts it out on top.

    Reliability… hmm… tough question, I have my doubts, but that will remain to be seen. Suggest going to TrueDelta for better info.

  • avatar
    ajla

    I like it, but I do have one big problem.

    Here is a CTS-V track test video. On the run of the V down a drag strip, the car is very quiet for its 1/4 mile launch, and the exhaust note disappears about halfway down. On the fly-by you can hear it a bit more, but I still think it is subdued.

    Compare that to a track test of a C63 AMG. On its acceleration runs, I think the AMG sounds a lot better than the V, and you can hear its engine all the way down the strip.

    Maybe GM thought that a quieter car would be a virtue in this segment, but the difference is pretty large.

  • avatar
    NickR

    Oh to have the money to afford a dedicated, summer weekend-only car. I know it can handle traffic and poor weather…but I’d feel guilty of squandering that potential on something so mundane as going to the grocery store.

  • avatar

    A good car should be:
    1) substantially cheaper than its same-ability peers (such as 1st gen Lexus LS), OR
    2) substantially outperforms, in some way, its same-priced peers (such as Infinity G, much faster than same-priced BMWs)

    It is the same size/weight as the M5, out performs it, and is cheaper.

  • avatar
    netrun

    I’m with Justin: make mine a manual diesel wagon. :)

    Sounds like a nice car. I would also wonder about long-term issues with a car like this – but that’s par for the course in this territory. Good luck avoiding electronic gremlins in the German designed and built stuff.

  • avatar
    CarnotCycle

    GM killing off their V-division reminds me of their actions with the Cadillac Allante.

    They put such a no-holds-barred effort into that thing. Had Pininfarina build the body kit for the cars and literally fly them back to the States on a 747. GM of course fundamentally ruins the vehicle by tossing the 4.9L V8 in it. Essentially, GM was selling a pig with a ton of lipstick at that point. Sales reflected that.

    Finally, GM drops a real engine in the car with the Northstar. That engine actually looked like it was developed for a nice car. Overhead cams, digital control, etc. GM finally had a powerplant that a rational car person could see going into a Pininfarina-coached coupe.

    GM killed the Allante after one year with that motor. GM makes the same mistake again and again this way. They did it with small cars, they do it with their nice cars. Its like watching a re-run of a bad TV series, but every time they show the same episode, the actors are somehow different but everything else is the same. Time to take this dog behind the barn, stat. Poor CTS-V, never even had a chance.

  • avatar
    Axel

    I think I left a damp spot after reading that review, Mike.

    Well done.

  • avatar
    BEAT

    Do you think rich people from California are not affected by the depression?

    This car is not going to be a seller.
    sorry to say that but it’s true.

  • avatar

    Michael Karesh

    I think they put light steering on everything to mask their true weight and make them feel sportier than they are – totally hiding all the technology and machines underneath that make steering and body roll levels appealing.

  • avatar
    salhany

    To think that Santonio Holmes, after winning the Super Bowl MVP, passed on one of these in favor of a (blech) Escalade hybrid.

    I badly want one of these babies. Can’t afford the scratch though. Lottery ticket playing will continue until morale improves.

  • avatar
    ccd1

    Maybe it’s me, but does anyone else think this is car is a throwback?

    1) The car may be cheap compared to the competition, but it is still a $60K+ car. In one of the worst recessions ever, do we need another expensive car???

    2) Gas may be around $2/gallon now, but does anyone expect it to stay at that price? In an age of high energy prices, gas guzzlers like this car just seem out of place.

    3) This is yet another 2 ton monstrosity whose porkiness is compensated for by a monster engine. In that regard, this car breaks no new ground.

    Mazda is reportedly working on the next gen RX-7. There are no confirmed reports, but the rumor mill says that the car will be 16% more powerful than the current RX-8, 20% more fuel efficient and over 300 lbs lighter (and keep in mind the RX-8 is already one of the lighter cars on the road). No one knows if they will pull this off, but that sounds like the right car for 2009. By contrast, the CTS-V is a sophisticated muscle car in an age where such cars are a dying breed.

  • avatar
    billc83

    Correction, CarnotCycle:

    The Allante was never equipped with the 4.9L motor. It was introduced with the 4.1L for the 1988 model year, and then upgraded to 4.5L in ’89. But, your point is still valid (perhaps even moreso!).

    However, GM’s work with the Allante was hardly no-holds-barred. It simply was rushed to the market. MANY defects discovered in pre-production made it to market, so much so that early Allantes had to be informally recalled. It sure looked pretty, but a Mercedes SL fighter it was not.

  • avatar
    dean

    Sounds like a fantastic car. Almost as quick as my 600cc sportbike, although the -V will annihilate it in top speed and very likely any roll-on test above 80mph.

    While I understand that the gratuitous use of hyperbole is a great device to convey how remarkable a vehicle this is, I can’t help but chuckle at some of Mike’s over-the-top prose. Given that anyone with a few grand burning a hole in their pocket can buy a used sportbike that will humiliate this car in the 1/4 mile, invoking Relativity as a metaphor for the performance of the -V leads me to believe that the vast majority of car enthusiasts have never felt what it is like to reach 60 in a few ticks over 3 seconds. The CTS-V’s 3.9 seconds would feel slow to me if I was just coming off my bike. Until you feel like you’re arms are going to be ripped from your sockets, you don’t know Relativity!

    But who cares? Entertaining review, and a helluva sport sedan. I’d take one.

  • avatar
    wsn

    Oldsmoboi said:

    It is the same size/weight as the M5, out performs it, and is cheaper.

    It may be heavy (a negative), but in terms of size, it’s in the same class as an M3.

    Why not compare to the IS-F? The CTS-V is more expensive and less refined.

  • avatar
    npbheights

    Robstar said:

    “That is assuming I can still find parts for it in 2-4 years.”

    a couple of people have said things like this. They obviously have never owned a classic car.

    I can easily get parts for my 30 year old Lincoln.
    A few months ago I needed a piece of “Premium Bodyside Moulding” with a medium turquoise vinyl incert. Medium turquoise was color that was only available for cars built from August 1978 through June 1979.

    It took me about a half an hour to find a new old stock one. It was still in the original Ford packaging.

    I really don’t think parts for a CTS with a Corvette motor will be a problem to find in 3 years (or 30 years for that matter).

  • avatar
    jybt

    A full 5 rating? And these are the future cars that you’re aborting to keep your company alive?

    To make your company alive, you have to make the Cruze SS, Camaro Z/28, etc.

  • avatar

    Well, you all can put your money down on this Dick Clark car, I’m going to look around and see if there is a Solid Gold Dancer who will take me home.

  • avatar
    Robstar

    npbheights>

    For a newly revamped model with 1 model year and a lot of upgrades compared to older models…….I think it _WILL_ be hard to find parts a few years down the road.

    Also, your example as bad, because you can always get another model year part & simply paint it.

  • avatar
    njgreene

    Anybody else wish they built a Q-ship version with the full on turbo LS9, the plain grill, and no badging?

  • avatar
    npbheights

    @ Robstar

    Actually you proved my point exactly and my example was perfect. The part I needed was only made for ONE year. It was new in box, and thirty years old.

    I could have painted one that was the wrong color, but I was able to get the exact, perfect piece thirty years later. And not in a normal color like black or cream or cordovan. It was Medium Turquoise a pretty obscure 1979 only color.

    The there is very little except for the grille and V badging that is different than a regular CTS on the outside. And I am sure engine parts will be available for the 6.2 for years to come.

    And, If GM keeps getting BILLIONS, they will continue making the CTS V and let it die on the vine. They disbanded the team that designs them. They will probably make them for the rest of the current CTS life cycle and not make a new one when they redesign the CTS.

    I will go one better. Need Parts for your 1958 EDSEL? They are all over the net.
    See: http://www.edselworld.com/Parts.htm They have some new reproduction tail light lenses for you.

    Buy one, don’t buy one, but parts are not something I would fret about.

  • avatar
    CommanderFish

    The only chink in the CTS-V’s armor: slightly over-light steering.

    Zing!

    Ah, proof that this car is, in fact, a GM product.

  • avatar
    reclusive_in_nature

    Just when I think TTAC is completely biased against American cars you go and make a review like this……AND TOTALLY REDEEM YOURSELF! Kudos to GM for making this car, hope the performance/interior engineering that went into this car trickles down to the other brands.

  • avatar
    highrpm

    That’s a helluva nice car. No question. But Mr. Solowiow, I have to question whether this car really deserves the jet fighter metaphors that you used.

    Yes it has power. But it also weighs more than two tons. Maybe I’ve been jaded by the ZR1s and Veyrons of the world, but 550hp in a two ton car seems fast but it doesn’t really strike me as “holy cow!” fast anymore.

    Like dean posted above, I also used to own a 600cc sportbike. I would have used some of your metaphors to describe its acceleration for sure. Also words like barely hanging on for dear life as the bike tried to rip itself out from under me. I could only imagine what the new 1000cc sportbikes would feel like – I’d buy a new CBR1000 if I wasn’t scared to death of it. For sure I would use the jet fighter metaphors on something that fast.

  • avatar
    golf4me

    Nice review. Car is nice enough, but honestly the base version is plenty fast for 99.99% of Americans, and looks much much better, especially in person. GM would have been better served investing the money spent on this into a little more weight reduction and more substantial-feeling touchpoints. The interior is nice, but you just get the nagging feeling that it’s going to fall apart in 3 years. BTW-how did this review get past RF?? ;-)

  • avatar

    @ highrpm,

    Despite its two tons, it still is holy cow fast. In fact, its currently the fastest four-door on the planet (mainstream production anyways). And as a veteran of terrifying F-15 rides, the fighter jet metaphors are an apt description… but to tell the truth, I have never piloted a motorcycle, nor will I, as with my luck, I will kill myself (A-type personality where everything is a race and all…)

  • avatar

    Can we get a regular CTS review also? I picked up a used CTS, the regular engine, and I love it. But the CTS-V gets all the attention and I don’t think most folks are going to be purchasing a new one at this price right now, let alone a used one. And TBH, as a daily driver, the standard 6 in these is pretty impressive.

  • avatar
    golden2husky

    CTS-V represents the apogee of that lamentable leap.…

    Hehhh. You said “Apogee.” I had a bong in high school that was made by a company called “Apogee”…

  • avatar

    I rode in my friends new Cadillac and I really liked it. The interior is nice, spacious, and the sound system was impressive. But, when it came time to buy a car, its exterior looks did not even give it a second chance. If a woman had all those sharp edges, she would be left sitting at the bar too!

  • avatar
    Kman

    The CTS interior is so frikkin’ beautiful, in any car, at any price.

    Oh, and that opening paragraph was brilliant: “…where the gravity wells of passing stars actually start to affect the navigation system of the CTS-V…”

  • avatar
    KnightRT

    Those of you complaining about to the weight would do well to consider that [i]everything[/i] approaches two tons these days. It’s part and parcel of satisfying today’s federal regulations and piling in class-competitive luxury equipment. All of the V’s competitors in the same size class weigh over two tons. They do this because they can; if the chassis tuning is up to snuff, extra weight matters is far less detrimental to dynamics than it used to be.

    On balance, this car is probably the best one that GM has ever made. It’s the full package.

  • avatar
    Michael Ayoub

    This car is in my dream garage.

  • avatar

    I drove a CTS recently, and while the six was powerful enough for normal needs, I don’t have normal needs….If I could only find six of the proper numbers.

    I guess my chance of guessing six important numbers at lotto is equal to GM ever making anything like this again. :(

  • avatar
    Phil Ressler

    The interior is nice, but you just get the nagging feeling that it’s going to fall apart in 3 years.

    I have two V Series Cadillacs in my garage right now that just rolled past the three-year mark for my ownership, last week. My experience suggests one shouldn’t worry about this upgraded 2nd-generation car falling apart given its visibly more evolved design and assembly. Neither of my 2006 V Series cars has had any reliability or service issues. The CTS-V did have the pinion seal recall despite no prior problems. The interiors in both cars still look new with no visible wear. Rattles haven’t surfaced despite unforgiving run-flat tires on both vehicles and L.A.’s deteriorating streets. Paint remains excellent with minimal attention. Electronics work as intended. Maintenance requirements have been limited to wiper blades, tires, brakes and fluids changes.

    Having driven the excellent 3.6L DI CTS, the new V heads our list of contenders for next sedan. Mike’s vividly impressionistic review describes about what I extrapolate the car to be, from personal experience with the new DI car and prior Vs.

    Phil

  • avatar

    I love the new look of the current gen CTS. I’m quite happy with my ’04 and don’t see a need to own the CTS-V myself, but eventually I’ll upgrade to a newer model for sure with the v6.

  • avatar
    YoungAndSmart

    Im the only 20 yr old that drools over this car.

  • avatar
    qazy

    I own a 09 CTS-V

    the car is great. The car is fantastic, The car is beyond the bimmers, MB, Audi… this sedan can whip them all right out of the box… stock.
    The M5 is 25K more and is a loser on all reviews side by side with the 09 CTS-V just goggle and look at the video of the M5 losing….

    The fit and finish is great and with 3200 miles on my V it has had no problems. Other owners report the same results….

    I am very proud of GM & Cadillac

  • avatar

    I saw that motor at an auto show last week in a ZR1.

    Never again will we see a 500hp engine that passes emissions and has a warranty sold off a showroom floor.

    I rented a “regular” CTS recently. Once I turned off the traction control, hooning was easy and the car quite predictable. Coming out of a (sorry) 3 series sport package, I was very, very impressed, and no excuses had to be made for the CTS.

    Yes, I could see that car with 500 hp, and would select it over an M5, if only to have the supercharged v-8

  • avatar
    qazy

    You folks, glad none of you owns a 09 CTS-V.
    you have no concept of this fantastic car….
    That never again 500HP crapola, many 4-door sports sedans are at the 500 hp level or above…

    all foreign and all are fully covered.

    Who is the one that looks what is going on….

    The 2010 CTS-V is open for orders now, and the 2012 CTS-V Coupe will start taking orders
    in 17 Months….

    since 02April09 I have the 556HP beast, and it is the best riding, handling, and fastest 4door at a price many can afford, sure you can spend 95K to 190K on up and get a tad faster, but not by much….. the CTS_V the 2009 or the 2010 can be had for mid 60K. The 09 V rocks, the interior and the electronics are first rate…….. The speed is so fast you need to make sure you got your shoes tied on tight.

  • avatar
    Anna Mac

    I drove the ’05 version of the CTS-V and was absolutely blown away and it had a ways to go to reach the level of the ’09. The restrained cabin and ride coupled with the manual transmission and horsepower was superb. I am forever indebted to Marquis Motors in Troy, MO for throwing the keys to that work of art to a bored wife back in 2004. What a ride.

  • avatar
    werewolf34

    What’s the depreciation on one of these?


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