By on October 29, 2009

Via Cadillac’s Twitter Feed:

John Heinricy (Cadillac test driver)- Cadillac CTS-V: Top Lap: 2:46:560

Aaron Link (Cadillac development engineer)- Cadillac CTS-V: Top Lap: 2:48:902

Brian Redman- CTS-V: Top Lap: 2:49:596

Michael Cooper (Who is this guy?)- BMW M3: Top Lap: 2:50:424

Jack Baruth- Cadillac CTS-V (TTAC): Top Lap: 2:51:153

Lawrence Ulrich- CTS-V (New York Times): Top Lap: 2:53:157

Bob Lutz- Cadillac CTS-V (VP of Marketing, GM): Top Lap: 2:56:321

Michael Mainwald (carguydad.com)- BMW M5: Top Lap: 3:05:398

Wes Siler- Mitsubishi Evo X (Jalopnik): Top Lap: 3:08:126

Chris Fairman- CTS-V: Top Lap: 3:14:292

Archan Basu- Jaguar XF: Top Lap: 3:15:670

Tom Loder- Audi RS4: Top Lap:  3:15:702

It’s official: TTAC’s top driver has beaten Bob Lutz! Check back tomorrow for Jack’s on-the-ground take on the weirdness that was.

Get the latest TTAC e-Newsletter!

96 Comments on “CTS-V Challenge Lap Times...”


  • avatar
    KixStart

    Typo in Jack’s time?

    And 18 secs off the pace in an EVO but you save how much money?

  • avatar
    wrxer

    Surprised the EVO isn’t doing better. Can that Wes Silver drive?

  • avatar
    Daanii2

    It’s official: TTAC’s top driver has beaten Bob Lutz!

    And this proves what? Next thing you know they’ll be whipping out their personal equipment and measuring it with a ruler.

  • avatar
    wrxer

    Surprised the EVO isn’t doing better. Can that Wes Siler drive?

  • avatar

    The Evo is down over 200 horsepower. It never had a chance.

    There are two Vs, a manual and an automatic. Baruth can blame the fact that his car was the automatic. As was Lutz’s. The best time so far, by GM engineer Aron Link, was in a manual V.

    Props to Michael Cooper for a stellar time in his M3–beat Baruth.

    Heinricy just posted fastest time yet. Five seconds ahead of Baruth…

  • avatar
    DrBrian

    KixStart :
    October 29th, 2009 at 2:05 pm
    And 18 secs off the pace in an EVO but you save how much money?

    Not enough

  • avatar
    CommanderFish

    You guys should make a note of automatic CTS-V vs manual CTS-V. That’s important information!

  • avatar
    TEXN3

    I believe all of the Caddys were automatics, which are faster and easier to operate. From an article that qouted both John Heinricy and Aaron Link, John ran the auto for his record setting run at the ‘Ring and Aaron was operating a manual…right behind John but doing much more work.

    http://www.supercars.net/PitLane?viewThread=y&gID=3&fID=0&tID=10073&bottom=950#post964

    Without the help of the two GM ‘Ring testers (who both ran top times in the V), the privately-owned M3 sedan did quite well. Now, is Micheal Cooper a professional racer? I’m guessing so.

  • avatar
    PeregrineFalcon

    Aaron Link (the CTS-V engineer) set his (currently) leading time using a manual CTS-V.

    Did Jack get a shot at one of those, or is he being forced to drive from the metaphorical ladies’ tee?

    Edit – Thanks to Michael Karesh for the clarification there, Jack was driving an automatic. I say give him a shot at a manual and see how many seconds he shaves off.

  • avatar
    basho

    I think some are thinking about a modded EVO’s capabilities rather than stock. Yes, it’s an impressive car in a lot of ways, but it’s still a 300hp car stepping into the ring with a 556hp beast.

  • avatar
    yournamehere

    I thought this was about which car is faster, not which driver is faster.

    plus – Lutz is 77 years old. If my grandfather could drive half as well as him I would have the coolest grandfather in the world.

    also, the CTS-Vs N’ring time was set with the automatic. Its the faster car.

  • avatar
    threeer

    I have to agree with Daanii…what does this prove? So Lutz got his ass handed to him…this still doesn’t make me want to run out and buy a CTS-V (or any other GM product, for that matter).

  • avatar
    salhany

    I’m really having a hard time understanding what all this was supposed to prove. Even TTAC said the CTS-V was a fantastic vehicle; no one doubts that at all. It’s a great car. This test only shows that a bunch of good young drivers can beat an old man on the track. And that GM’s pet race car driver can beat them all. None of this should be surprising.

  • avatar
    Joseph

    It would be much better if TTAC had another car besides the Cady. The M3 and Evo times are the most interesting part of this as this is really not about the drivers, but the cars.

  • avatar
    Spitfire

    wait wait wait…I thought Jack had to be in another mass production 4 door other then the cts-v, right? Jack should easily be a better lapper then Lutz I mean for god sakes Lutz is how old and does what all day?

    the only thing this has proved is that Michael Cooper is a heck of a driver. I think he should start writing some articles for TTAC.

  • avatar
    JMII

    So John Heinricy is the Stig? Glad that is finally sorted ;)

  • avatar
    pete

    Strikes me that as per the original challenge Lutz is on the winning side – may the best car win…

    I still don’t want a CTS-V after this though.

    …and I’m impressed by the M3 result. Who on Earth was driving the M5 or is that 5 minutes a typo?

  • avatar
    TZ

    yournamehere :
    October 29th, 2009 at 2:39 pm

    I thought this was about which car is faster, not which driver is faster.

    It was about the faster car until the challengers couldn’t get cars. Then, it became about the drivers. At least, that seems to be the claim.

  • avatar
    basho

    This race proves nothing…but again this isn’t the race that it was supposed to be. Lutz called everyone out with a simple test, bring your stock 4 door sedan (any price) and our’s (CTS-V) will beat it. Not a fools gamble as the CTS-V was (at the time) the fastest 4-door sedan in the world. I think if anything this might give some GM employees a little pride today. Maybe that pride will translate to some small change they make in how they go about their job. Pride in your company can really change how you do your job.

  • avatar
    Stingray

    I’d love to lap like Mr Lutz when I’m 77. Really.

    He may be old, but it’s on 5th place at 14:35 local.

    May have been beat by Baruth, but the M3 beat Jack. And those GM engineers… WIN

    The M5 is not even trying

  • avatar
    Rusnak_322

    Started out good “who can beat the CTS-V”. Got stupid when your ran their car and claimed some sort of victory.

    Who won? Lutz. Who lost? TTAC readers who thought you were going to bring a car that is faster then the Caddy, not a driver who is faster then a AARP member.

  • avatar

    The M5 was driven by a friend of carguydad.com. I’m not sure who Michael Cooper is, other than a very fast 20-year-old driver.

  • avatar
    Stingray

    One fact is for sure:

    The CTS-V beat the M3, XF-R and M5 (this one may not count)

    And the other pussies, who didn’t brought their rides to the challenge.

    GM people must be proud.

  • avatar
    ohsnapback

    Nice going, Jack.

    Heinricy & Link – wow, they’re monsters – as is the CTS-V.

    Bring it, Deutschland !!!

  • avatar
    jeremyb

    This event definately translated to a win for GM. I am surpised TTAC would use a GM product in the event with all the “GM-bashing” that usually takes place here. I really expected TTAC to rise to the occasion here but it didn’t happen. You can say TTAC (Baruth) beat Lutz. But GM won.

  • avatar
    frizzlefry

    Stingray :
    October 29th, 2009 at 3:19 pm

    One fact is for sure:

    The CTS-V beat the M3, XF-R and M5 (this one may not count)

    That it did. Very impressed. BUT it did take two very experienced drivers to beat an avg joe in an M3 by just seconds. Too bad BMW did not send their test driver to take the M3 around, I would wager the M3 could have taken top spot had it been piloted by a pro.

    Overall, CTS-V is VERY impressive but I think the M3 had a strong showing too.

  • avatar
    frizzlefry

    Michael Karesh :
    October 29th, 2009 at 3:14 pm

    The M5 was driven by a friend of carguydad.com. I’m not sure who Michael Cooper is, other than a very fast 20-year-old driver.

    A very fast driver who’s name is being looked up right now by every cop across the country :)

  • avatar
    RetardedSparks

    As I recall, Lutz’s challenge was “I’ll bring my Caddy, you bring your whatever,and I’ll beat you.” That’s a throwdown as old as cars (probably as old as chariots, but I digress).

    There was never any mention of substitute drivers, everyone in a Caddy, etc.

    So by those terms, the original terms of the challenge, an average guy in an M3 beat Lutz in a CTS-V. END OF STORY.

    All this other BS is just distraction:
    A professional driver beat a nobody, a 30 year old guy beat a 77 year old guy, a cheaper car came within a week of beating a more expensive car.. whoop-dee-freakin-do!
    This is all great for GM because they can claim victory any which way by spinning it all. But GM lost, TTAC didn’t play (didn’t bring their own car) and except for the guy with the M3, nobody else really got off the bench.

  • avatar

    RetardedSparks:

    Agreed.

  • avatar
    Rusnak_322

    Nope. Lutz challenged anyone to find a “stock production sedan on the planet that could outperform the CTS-V on the track.”

    GM won.

  • avatar
    hreardon

    I haven’t followed closely enough, but if the challenge was a “Beat Lutz Challenge”, then indeed, the M3 beat Lutz.

    They should have made the challenge requirement:
    1. No professional drivers
    2. No company drivers/test drivers
    3. Just you, your car and The Lutz.

  • avatar
    salhany

    Nope. Lutz challenged anyone to find a “stock production sedan on the planet that could outperform the CTS-V on the track.”

    GM won.

    GM “won” using a professional race car driver and a company development engineer, and they “won” by about 4 seconds over some 20 year old kid. Frankly I think everyone expected Heinricy to set the fastest time; this is what he does for a living after all.

  • avatar
    RetardedSparks

    Rusnak_322: OK, if that’s the case then they were all idiots for not bringing a pro driver when GM said it was bringing theirs. Nothing was proved with that kind of disparity in talent.
    And as I said, GM won the “PR event” no matter what.

  • avatar
    hreardon

    Well, Rusnak_322, if you are correct, then the CTS-V did win.

  • avatar
    salhany

    I would have liked to see what Baruth could have done in the M3.

  • avatar
    Rusnak_322

    can’t blame GM that the other manufacturers and TTAC failed to bring it.
    This is racing. The winners often exploit gray areas of the rulebook to their advantage, and the losers often say it was cheating because they didn’t think of it first.

    It is the fastest car. If I wanted to see the fastest driver win I would watch NASCAR, Not F1.

  • avatar
    DearS

    Like I said, a 335i would have done some damage. Ok, now that I said that. It seems like an interesting event.

  • avatar
    RetardedSparks

    It is the fastest car. If I wanted to see the fastest driver win I would watch NASCAR, Not F1.

    ..but you have no idea what you saw, because there was only one pro driver in one car.

  • avatar
    frizzlefry

    I’m waiting for some pro driver to post his rejection letter from GM saying that their car was not a direct competitor or that all available slots were full.

  • avatar
    zerofoo

    Well done Jack!

    Any chance we can get a video of the lap?

    -ted

  • avatar
    celebrity208

    It appears that Michael Cooper is not necessarily a non-professional a.k.a. average guy. So… Lutz did win?

  • avatar
    bomberpete

    Exactly!

    Daanii2 :
    October 29th, 2009 at 2:26 pm

    It’s official: TTAC’s top driver has beaten Bob Lutz!

    And this proves what? Next thing you know they’ll be whipping out their personal equipment and measuring it with a ruler.

  • avatar
    Saracen

    A 335i would not have any chance of touching the top times.

    Michael Cooper must be a natural. Most impressive.

  • avatar

    Is that the same Michael Cooper? The one in the M3 lives in New York, the pro at the link is in NC.

  • avatar
    frizzlefry

    celebrity208 :
    October 29th, 2009 at 4:09 pm

    It appears that Michael Cooper is not necessarily a non-professional a.k.a. average guy. So… Lutz did win?

    THAT michael cooper has red hair and is from North Carolina. The Michael Cooper that took part in the CTS-V challenge has brown hair and is from New Jersey.

    Not the same guy.

  • avatar
    FreedMike

    Well, I knew an M3 would be the right tool for this job…but who the hell is this Michael Cooper kid?

  • avatar
    segfault

    Was the M5 in limp-home mode? Running on snow tires? Or both?

  • avatar
    Bridge2farr

    Congrats to the CTS V. Take on the world and whip em good!

  • avatar
    TEXN3

    The only people getting defensive are those that think everyone else is defensive about the CTS-V (regardless of driver) pulling the best time.

    This was a PR campaign by GM and Lutz to show that he could beat anyone (first, just Jalopnik) in any 4-door sport sedan. Everyone thought that an M5 or Panamera would be quicker, but then GM would have pulled the price card. Everyone thought that the XF-R, M3, RS4, and C63 would be slower but GM could still pull the power-rating card and the M3 split the CTS-V numbers.
    If it wasn’t a sure thing as a positive win for the CTS-V, then GM wouldn’t have done this.

    I think it is very impressive that someone with a less powerful (and supposedly slower) M3 sedan put up such a good time…regardless of their competence and age.

    Everyone knew that having John and Aaron in the CTS-V, GM would win the challenge. Lutz did a great job.

    Now, will this help sell the CTS-V? It might sway a handful of shoppers…but it won’t make a very big difference, as you still have GM standing behind the product, take that as you may.

  • avatar
    NickR

    Well, given the performance of Heinricy and Link, no one can a) doubt that GM/Cadillac has some serious *expletive* drivers on their roster and that b) when GM tests their cars they really do wring the crap out of them.

    And, have to say, Lutz impressed.

  • avatar
    TEXN3

    The M5’s lap time was not updated, I believe it ran around a 3:05. Edmunds did a good job of blogging the ordeal:
    http://blogs.insideline.com/straightline/Manufacturers/Cadillac/

    I also meant to ad, that GM did win the original challenge: GM vs Jalopnik. Wes lost.

    I truly am curious, as neither a GM or BMW fan, what either John or Aaron could have done with the M3. It does seem very capable. At the same time, GM should have given Micheal Cooper a go in the CTS-V and see if he could shame the GM ringers.

  • avatar

    Who let Michael M into this, he’s obviously not a skilled driver; that M5 time is embarrassing.

    And congrats to Mr. Baruth!

  • avatar
    Rusnak_322

    The only way that GM lost is if you think that Lutz was bragging about HIS lap times and not the speed of the CTS-V, or if GM didn’t allow a legitimate challenger (pro or not) to enter.

  • avatar
    pete

    Michael Cooper’s result looks better and better. A few seconds off professional drivers with 414 vs 556 horses!

  • avatar
    ajla

    GM is just lucky that no one brought a Nash Rambler to the race.

  • avatar
    TEXN3

    Rusnak: No one said GM lost…where are you getting this from? Under the original premise, Lutz lost but GM still won. GM was going to win regardless and the CTS-V is a damned fine vehicle, no one on TTAC has denied that. Please check your facts before trying to incite flaming.

    Here are the final results:

    CTS-V (John Heinricy): 2:46:560
    CTS-V (Aaron Link): 2:48:902
    BMW M3 (Michael Cooper): 2.50:424
    CTS-V (Jack Baruth): 2:51:153
    CTS-V (Lawrence Ulrich): 2:53:026
    CTS-V (Bob Lutz): 2:56:321
    Evo (Wes Siler): 3:08.126
    BMW M5 (Michael Mainwald): 3:05:989
    CTS-V (Chris Fairman.): 3:14:292
    Audi RS4 (Tom Loder): 3:15:702
    Jaguar XF (Archan Basu): 3:16.670

  • avatar
    pete

    Shouldn’t the M5 and Evo results be flipped – 3.05 vs 3.08

  • avatar
    frizzlefry

    The only way that GM lost is if you think that Lutz was bragging about HIS lap times and not the speed of the CTS-V, or if GM didn’t allow a legitimate challenger (pro or not) to enter.

    I think bob did a real good job, certainly MUCH faster than I could even hope to do on a track. But I don’t think that it looks very good for the CTS-V that GM felt it needed to stack the deck with ringers. Plus, almost 150 more hp, years of pro racing experience, 11 SCCA championships, countless hours in a CTS-V during development = only 4 seconds faster than an amateur kid in an M3? The CTS-V is damn good. But if it was as good as GM has been saying, it should have annihilated Cooper in his M3 with all the pro experience behind the wheel. This ended up being pros vs joes with the pros barely winning in a car that’s much more powerful than the M3.

    BMW better take an M3 around the same track using their driver and let us know how it goes.

  • avatar
    TEXN3

    Yes, I had written the M5’s time, per an errant number (3:08 vs 3:05), and updated it.

  • avatar
    RetardedSparks

    Let’s see:
    From Jalop’s 9/10 original post:
    “And to prove it, 77-year-old Bob Lutz told reporters he would challenge anyone in any production sedan to a race around Mazda Laguna Seca Raceway and try to beat him….The details have yet to be worked out, but Lutz already told us and the assembled reporters “You’re running into a trap because if you beat me by a second on the lap time, we’ll just advertise the price difference.”

    And from Lutz’s own “Cadillac Notes” blog:
    “And I put the challenge out to you. If you own a car comparable to the Cadillac CTS-V (a 4-door production stock sport sedan) and you want to match up against me and the Cadillac, you can join us at Monticello.”

    Now, unless Bob has adopted one hell of a royal “we” when referring to GM (and I wouldn’t put it past him!) this sounds pretty personal to me. So yes, we all admitted long ago GM had a great car in the V, and we all knew from the git-go that GM would make a PR win out of this no matter what happened, but in the end GM had to bring ringers to “win”, not the other guys.

    The only irony is that Lutz got beat by almost everyone BUT Siler!

  • avatar
    TZ

    RetardedSparks :
    October 29th, 2009 at 5:11 pm

    The only irony is that Lutz got beat by almost everyone BUT Siler!

    CTS-V (Bob Lutz): 2:56:321

    Evo (Wes Siler): 3:08.126
    BMW M5 (Michael Mainwald): 3:05:989
    CTS-V (Chris Fairman.): 3:14:292
    Audi RS4 (Tom Loder): 3:15:702
    Jaguar XF (Archan Basu): 3:16.670

    Don’t let facts get in the way.

  • avatar
    therealtruth

    frizzlefry,

    Newsflash – 4 second IS an annihilation on a track of this length. Plus, I suspect the guy in the M3 had a lot of track experience as well. Not to mention, the M3 weighs about 500 pounds less than the CTS-V + is smaller. Bottom line – The CTS-V is an incredible 4-door track star.

  • avatar
    ChristyGarwood

    Who is Michael Cooper? From the Cadillac web site

    “Name: Michael C.
    Hometown: Long Island, NY
    Our second Michael has trained at Skip Barber. At just 21 years old, Michael is the younger driver in the Challenge. He owns a BMW M3.”

    http://cadillac.gmblogs.com/2009/10/23/meet-the-v-series-challengers-%e2%80%93-preliminary-list/

    I have never been trained to drive on a track, and I don’t know about anyone else on this site, but when I as 21, I drove alot faster than I do now, and certainly I will drive slower when I reach 77 years old.

    So a 21 year old trained to drive on a track beat a 77 year old who quit driving on a track 30 years ago. I think all of the drivers did a great job. I think the CTS-V is great car. I am proud today to say I work for Cadillac/ Buick/ GMC/ Chevrolet.

  • avatar
    Spitfire

    I give Lutz a lot of credit here, clearly he is very close in skill to the younger whipper snapper Jack. The point is easily proven that we all knew all along: the CTS-V is exceptionally high performance sedan.

    Here is the key..Jack(and Lutz) allowed a lot of time to be left on the table as proven by true race car drivers who have the advantage of being very familiar with the car. I would suspect that the M3 driven by Cooper has less on the table left to gain. Assuming absolute ideal conditions and flawless driving(the manufacturers respective test drivers) the CTS-V would marginally outrun the M3 at this track. Case Closed.

    But wee all knew that to begin with….its a hell of a car and if I had the money I would strongly consider it verses comparably priced performance oriented rides

  • avatar
    RetardedSparks

    TZ:
    Yeah, sorry, heat of the moment! I counted 5 above Lutz, forgetting that 2 of them were HIS guys!

    I’m not flaming Siler or Jalop by any means – they actually played the “rules” and run what they brung and did well – in fact only one non-V did better…

    It just all turned into such a cluster…. It’s disappointing.

  • avatar
    Stingray

    @ ChristyGarwood

    y0! your car is great.

    You shall be proud of it.

  • avatar
    RetardedSparks

    Spitfire-
    Agreed. The fact that we are even talking about a Cadillac vs M3 on a racetrack means we’re in a brave new world indeed. Imagine putting an ’88 Caddy against an ’88 M3?
    I think the car, and the sheer amount of blogosphere bytes devoted to the discussion of racing lines, power to weight ratios, etc, etc, etc just proves that GM has, in this case at least, accomplished a remarkable brand transformation based on the quality of the product, rather than hype and BS. They certainly deserve credit for that.

  • avatar
    wsn

    TEXN3 :
    October 29th, 2009 at 4:55 pm

    Here are the final results:

    CTS-V (John Heinricy): 2:46:560
    CTS-V (Aaron Link): 2:48:902
    BMW M3 (Michael Cooper): 2.50:424
    CTS-V (Jack Baruth): 2:51:153
    CTS-V (Lawrence Ulrich): 2:53:026
    CTS-V (Bob Lutz): 2:56:321
    Evo (Wes Siler): 3:08.126
    BMW M5 (Michael Mainwald): 3:05:989
    CTS-V (Chris Fairman.): 3:14:292
    Audi RS4 (Tom Loder): 3:15:702
    Jaguar XF (Archan Basu): 3:16.670

    According to this info, two conclusions can be made:

    1) The CTS-V is the most available car of the event.

    2) Lap times are dictated by drivers.

    It does not prove that the CTS-V is faster than the M3. The M3 time beat four CTS-V times and lost to two. Given that driver skills vary, there is not evidence to say one car is faster than another.

    I had multiple graduate level course in statistical distribution. I just can’t see any scientific conclusion can be drawn from the info here. The “experiment” is not properly controlled from the start.

  • avatar
    wsn

    RetardedSparks :
    October 29th, 2009 at 6:01 pm

    just proves that GM has, in this case at least, accomplished a remarkable brand transformation based on the quality of the product, rather than hype and BS. They certainly deserve credit for that.

    It being the fastest (not that I agree with it) doesn’t make it less of a hype. GM is a car business (or government agency), everything is a hype before proven otherwise in the market.

  • avatar
    Steven02

    Michael Cooper has plenty of experience at a track, he has trained at the Skip Barber Racing School.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Skip_Barber_Racing_School
    The M3 is a great car, but Michael Cooper is no average Joe. In the end, it is just cool to see cars go fast around at track.

    Another great event would be to take all professional drivers to a few different tracks and have them race different cars around to see who comes out on top. CTS-V would be right up there, along with the M3 and the Panamera.

  • avatar
    Greg Locock

    Quote from a real race engineer “If you aren’t within 2 seconds of pole, it isn’t the car, it’s you”

  • avatar
    keepaustinweird

    IMO, the two biggest winners from this thing? Cadillac/CTS-V and Michael Cooper. Who ever heard of this guy before this event? Hopefully he can make something of it – if he wants. The guy’s got skills.

  • avatar
    Steven02

    @wsn
    He didn’t say the CTS-V was the fastest. He says it won the event, which you cannot deny. You may have multiple classes on statistics, but no statistical analysis is needed for this. It is simple.

    Check the times, lowest one wins. So, you could have a #3 on your list.

    For the event in we are talking about, the CTS-V was the fastest.

  • avatar
    frizzlefry

    Newsflash – 4 second IS an annihilation on a track of this length. Plus, I suspect the guy in the M3 had a lot of track experience as well. Not to mention, the M3 weighs about 500 pounds less than the CTS-V + is smaller. Bottom line – The CTS-V is an incredible 4-door track star.

    You are correct, as it has come out, the guy has had training. Lets say 5 years of training, which would be about the legal amount of time he could have been training. Even then, 5 years of training compared to 11 championships and, perhaps more importantly, involment in the development of the car he was racing. The equals 11 championships in a pro circuit plus counless hours behind the wheel of the CTS-V during development which means tuning of it would have been geared toward better performance when he is driving it. Now I am not saying that the M3 is a better track performer than the CTS-V. But, when a person of less experience can drive an M3 and beat a more expereinced Jack Baruth and almost tie a Nurburgring veteran like Aaron Link (I doubt mr.cooper has driven the nurburgring once let alone countless times), that says to me that the M3 may be the better choice for a non-pro driver. if their intent is to have a car that they, personally, can drive the fastest.

    Lets be honest, the CTS-V is one hell of a fast track car. But its being sold to non-pro buyers. And the best car for a non-pro is a car that will help them go fast, which the M3 seems to more inclined to do given the close finish it had with a far less experienced driver. Its not just the car that makes a fast driving experience, its the driver and how the car interacts with them. If it was all about the car then a joe could buy a lambo and tear up the track. But a lambo/ferrari/Koenigsegg is very unforgiving and when joes push them hard, you dont get smokin track times, you get a picture on wreckedexotics.com.

    I’m saying from the point of marketing the car to normal avg joe buyers, mr joe may be faster in an M3 than the CTS-V, and thats the point right? The challenge was you bring your car, and bob lutz will bring his. Open challenge. The pros (ringers) were thrown in at the last minute. And ringers may not have been involved had cooper not done so well in his M3. That could be why they went last.

  • avatar
    MattPete

    Brian Redman is 72, so I don’t think Lutz can use the age argument.

  • avatar

    Considering he was driving an unfamiliar car, Baruth did quite well.

  • avatar
    NulloModo

    Congrats to Jack, great run. GM got it’s PR blurb, the CTS-V dominated the course.

    The real question is, what car could have beaten the CTS-V on the course? If you limit it so sedans available in the US I’m having trouble of thinking of anything that could have taken it stock for stock. Perhaps a Panamera Turbo?

  • avatar
    PeteMoran

    Excuses everywhere. The CTS-V is a good car.

    But pass me the M3/M5 keys thanks.

  • avatar
    KnightRT

    Hugely impressive time by Michael Cooper. As to Jack, 4.5 seconds behind Heinricy on a 3-minute track is a hell of a performance. Well done!

  • avatar
    rpn453

    RetardedSparks : As I recall, Lutz’s challenge was “I’ll bring my Caddy, you bring your whatever,and I’ll beat you.” That’s a throwdown as old as cars (probably as old as chariots, but I digress).

    There was never any mention of substitute drivers, everyone in a Caddy, etc.

    So by those terms, the original terms of the challenge, an average guy in an M3 beat Lutz in a CTS-V. END OF STORY.

    That’s the way I saw it. M3 FTW!

  • avatar
    mcs

    By the way, the M3 is a cheaper car. The V is 62k and the M3 is 55k.

    Personally, I just don’t trust the reliability of the V. Been burned too many times with GM. Yes, I’ve had minor problems with my BMWs, but nothing as bad as domestics I’ve owned. That’s the real problem with this little exhibition. They can win all of the challenges they want, but that’s not what’s going to bring back past GM owners that have been burned in the past.

  • avatar
    thetopdog

    I don’t think you guys realize how huge a 4 second difference is on a track of this length. 4 seconds is a pretty big deal on the ‘Ring, and that track is many times longer. 4 seconds on a track of this length is significant

    wsn: It’s not about statistics. This is not some kind of clinical trial. The fastest time wins, period. What I would have liked to see is a pro driver in the M3, then it would have been a fair comparison, no statistics necessary

  • avatar
    no_slushbox

    Unlike “Who is this guy?” in the M3, Baruth completely missed the entire point of the CTS-V challenge. This wasn’t supposed to be a spec race.

    The point wasn’t that another person in a CTS-V could go faster than a senile old man in a CTS-V. That’s rather obvious.

    What GM wanted to prove was that, even with the CTS-V handicapped by the fact that a confused 77-year-old was driving it, no other four door sedan could post faster lap times, even with a better driver.

    “Who is this guy?” is the only person that actually understood the challenge and succeeded at it, beating both Lutz and Baruth in a non-CTS-V (an M3).

    So what was it? Was Baruth afraid that he couldn’t beat the old man in something other than a CTS-V, or would nobody else offer him a ride?

    The guys in the Evo and Jag didn’t win the challenge, but at least they understood it. And the guy in the M3 actually won the challenge – the challenge was to go faster than Bob Lutz in a CTS-V, not anyone in a CTS-V.

    This isn’t something TTAC is only covering, this is something that TTAC actively participated in; I’m not trying to flame, I’m just a bit confused.

    Anyway, none of these cars are at all reliable or justify any of their added cost of performance on the street (except in the imaginary world where Baruth regularly does triple digits on side streets and I just deflowered 20 runway models), and that’s why I like the G37 6MT sedan.

    And the G37 leaves enough money left over, compared to the above sedans except for the EVO, for a used C5/C6, Elise, Boxster/Cayman or MR2 Spyder, or a new Miata or Z (although the Z is a bit too redundant to the G), or even a car for one’s wife if she’s too uppity for the bus.

  • avatar

    Originally this was supposed to be “other makes/models against CTS-V”. How did this race degenerate into “Top Gear celebrity laps in a reasonably priced car”? OK, not reasonably.
    It would be tragic if Jack had worse time than B.L. How did GM pulled this – getting so many other drivers drive their CTS-V rather than a competition? Clear win for GM in PR. TTAC could improve in this respect. Good for entertainment value as a Top Gear episode, lacking in value as a comparo against competitionn. I wish CTS-V well, especially being made by a more positive company.

  • avatar

    Michael Cooper (reportedly) speaks:

    http://www.m3post.com/forums/showthread.php?p=6123513#post6123513

  • avatar
    Robbie

    Off topic, but why did the CTS-V do so poorly on the Top Gear track…?

    http://www.fastestlaps.com/track1.html

  • avatar
    YZS

    GM wins this round because nobody had enough testicular fortitude to challenge them other than the M3 and Evo guy, and Lutz did pretty good for his age. They will be spinning every which way they can.

    TTAC, you got us pumped up and let us down, big.

  • avatar

    RE: The CTS-V Top Gear Lap time. I just watched this episode on demand a few days ago. Here’s why it didn’t do as well as you might expect:

    1) Very Wet track.

    And, more importantly, it was

    2) NOT THE SAME CTS-V. They tested an ’05, which has a mere 400 hp.

  • avatar
    wsn

    # thetopdog :
    October 30th, 2009 at 12:02 am

    wsn: It’s not about statistics. This is not some kind of clinical trial. The fastest time wins, period. What I would have liked to see is a pro driver in the M3, then it would have been a fair comparison, no statistics necessary

    No matter how you spin it, this event is not about the fastest lap time. It’s about the bragging right of GM that CTS-V is the fastest production sedan. Which it isn’t — at least this event didn’t prove it.

    Even if we look at the event at face value, let me quote no_slushbox:
    And the guy in the M3 actually won the challenge – the challenge was to go faster than Bob Lutz in a CTS-V, not anyone in a CTS-V.

  • avatar
    John R

    Actually, I’m fairly pleased at how well the Evo did in the hands of someone who’s less than a professional driver. I’d wadger it would have done better in better hands.

  • avatar
    Steven02

    For those guys who think Michael Cooper is the average joe, you are wrong. He has trained at, at least one, top notch racing school.

    Also, this race was open to any manufacture to bring any driver they wanted to as well. Which is why more experienced drivers were out there. This isn’t any more an excuse than… well if you don’t count those drivers. Seriously, the CTS-V won. It is a great car. So is the M3 and some of the other cars at the event. But the CTS-V won.

  • avatar
    bumpy ii

    I’m waiting for the superwagon sequel: CTS-V Conestoga versus whoever. Probably have to hold it in Canada so the Stagea 260RS can show up.

  • avatar
    mentir

    @Steven02
    “Also, this race was open to any manufacture to bring any driver they wanted to as well. Which is why more experienced drivers were out there.”

    Steven, drivers were prohibited from participating if they were deemed “professional” drivers, so while any manufacturer could participate, they would have to cede control of their car to a journalist or Average Joe. Presumably, this is the real reason why Jaguar, MB, et al were reluctant to ‘lend’ their cars.

    Edited to add: Appears Pro drivers could participate, but would be competing against GM’s pro drivers.

  • avatar
    ChristyGarwood

    @mentir

    From the CTS-V Challenge web site
    http://ctsvchallenge.com/about_the_challenge.php

    “Professional Challenge participants, if any, shall compete against a GM professional driver or appointed designee. ”
    and “Challengers will be selected by GM in its sole discretion. ”

    Should Baruth’s and Cooper’s times be compared to Heinricy’s and Link’s or to Lutz’s?

  • avatar
    mentir

    @ChristyGarwood
    Thanks, I’ve edited my post, and was actually looking for the fine-print official rules yesterday.

  • avatar
    wsn

    Steven02 :
    October 30th, 2009 at 11:28 am

    For those guys who think Michael Cooper is the average joe, you are wrong. He has trained at, at least one, top notch racing school.

    Also, this race was open to any manufacture to bring any driver they wanted to as well. Which is why more experienced drivers were out there. This isn’t any more an excuse than… well if you don’t count those drivers. Seriously, the CTS-V won. It is a great car. So is the M3 and some of the other cars at the event. But the CTS-V won.

    Heinricy won “the best driver”. CTS-V didn’t win as the “fastest sedan”. Cooper won “the beat Lutz invitation.”

    No matter how much training Michael Cooper received, he is an amateur compared to Heinricy. And he beat Lutz, who is also well trained.

    Cooper has the advantage in reflex (due to being younger), but Lutz has his own advantages too. Such as:
    1) He pick the type of car. (For instance, why not midsized stock cars? I.e. Malibu vs. Camry would reflect what GM car owners are really driving.)

    2) He picked the course.

    3) He has a logistic advantage. (Better training that’s specific to the event, pick the right time, etc.)

    So, I would call it a wash in terms of advantages/disadvantages. And Cooper beat Lutz.


Back to TopLeave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.

Subscribe without commenting

Recent Comments

New Car Research

Get a Free Dealer Quote

Staff

  • Contributing Writers

  • Jack Baruth, United States
  • Brendan McAleer, Canada
  • Marcelo De Vasconcellos, Brazil
  • Vojta Dobes, Czech Republic
  • Matthias Gasnier, Australia
  • W. Christian 'Mental' Ward, Abu Dhabi
  • Mark Stevenson, Canada
  • Cameron Aubernon, United States
  • J Emerson, United States