Ask the Best and Brightest: In What Car Would You Beat Bob Lutz?

Edward Niedermeyer
by Edward Niedermeyer

GM’s “May The Best Car Win” campaign is beginning to take shape, and it’s turning out to be every bit as gimmicky as you might guess. In a conference call with the motoring press, GM’s Bob Lutz challenged all comers to beat him around the Mazda Raceway at Laguna Seca. Lutz will be driving a Cadillac CTS-V, and he promises to beat any production four-door sedan as a way of proving that Cadillac does build world-beating cars. Jalopnik‘s Wes Siler has taken up the challenge, and will be facing Lutz in a Mercedes C63 AMG. So we’re curious: what unmodified sports sedan would you mount up in to send Lutz back to the RenCen with his tail between his legs? Myself? I believe water skis are the traditional conveyance for shark-jumping competitions. Meanwhile, TTAC would like to take this opportunity to pit our own Jack Baruth in this competition for the ages. Do we have a deal, GM?

Edward Niedermeyer
Edward Niedermeyer

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  • Andy D Andy D on Sep 12, 2009

    I was in the back seat of a CTS4 last weekend as it was hooned around the Berkshires. The V6 was deemed plenty adequate. The car was a rental with 12K miles on the clock. The interior looked and smelled pretty good still. The driver liked it better than his 530i.

  • Morea Morea on Sep 12, 2009

    It's the tires, stupid! Do they have to run the stock tires, and if so what are the stock tires on these cars? (Run flats on either?) Can they swap in slicks or must they be DOT legals? For cars this close in performance it's the car prep details that matter. Even correct choice of tire pressures can make all the difference. Will the GM engineers make better choices than the Jaolpinik boys?

  • Faygo Faygo on Sep 12, 2009

    the CTS-V will likely have the "track" brakes, which are a different pad compound & floating discs IIRC. all fair there, it's a box to check when you order one. the C63 is probably marginally slower than the M3, but neither one is fast enough. E60 M5 is down on power & torque. G8 GXP is a silly suggestion as it's down 125hp and isn't meaningfully lighter. while S65 has tons of power/torque, it's too big & heavy, not optimized for the track. driver skill (or lack thereof) will be a significant factor in the result. a cleaner (but less entertaining) test would be to have the cars driven by the same driver, but I don't think The Stig is available.

  • AICfan AICfan on Sep 12, 2009

    What a waste. What killed GM was the crap reliability and build of their cars. In the mid 80's, right after Harley had their brush with death, they brought a pair of bikes with the then-new evolution motor to Daytona, I think at the time of the rally, and ran the balls off 'em (over 100mph, constantly) for a day or so, stopping only to swap riders. A company that had a reputation for motors that blew up with stunning regularity, didn't work right, and fell apart fast, basically erased that reputation after that. Shovelheads are unreliable time bombs, but evos just keep on trucking - everyone 'knows' that... Dealers who couldn't give the things away suddenly found lines out the door. Quality and reliability bring customers back a lot faster than some old geezer posting a nice track time in a car that costs more than most folks make a year.