Look at the Wheel on That

Steph Willems
by Steph Willems
look at the wheel on em that em

That’s likely something you won’t hear from passers-by when the Blackwing versions of the Cadillac CT4-V and CT5-V sedans appear a year from now.

With the CT6 now dead, this serves as a reminder that the brand’s Blackwing 4.2-liter V8 remains dead and likely futureless, while the name it once bore has now reverted into a lofty trim for Caddy’s remaining sedans.

Yes, the Blackwings — to be clear, the CT4-V and CT5-V Blackwings — will receive their own special performance steering wheel, Cadillac announced Thursday. Teasing a steering wheel a year out from a model’s debut seems a little unusual, especially considering the CT4-V and CT5-V are on sale now.

And the brand’s really jazzed about its wheel. Describing it as “meticulously crafted with leather and cut-and-sewn stitching, a 12 o’clock red racing stripe, carbon fiber trim and a V-Series emblem,” Caddy said the hoop-like protuberance ensures “that each vehicle reflects Cadillac’s championship-winning heritage on the track.”

In the photo, you can see that heritage emerging from the wheel like a ghost. Spooky!

To the uninitiated, Cadillac earned itself a fair share of backlash when it revealed its new compact and midsize sedans, with the smaller of the two carrying a standard four-cylinder engine. In “V” form, the CT4 gains another four-cylinder, this one the 2.7-liter unit found in the Chevrolet Silverado.

The CT5-V makes do with a twin-turbo 3.0-liter V6, good for 360 horsepower and 405 lb-ft of torque. Neither V model is a slouch on paper or on the road, but car lovers with short memories recalled what came before in the ATS-V and CTS-V. That’s where Blackwing steps in.

Going V now means choosing from a variety of flavors. Stock Vs, which left some readers underwhelmed, are only the baseline. Blackwing brings on the power, just not Blackwing V8 power.

Under the hood of the loftiest CT4-V will be a twin-turbo 3.6-liter, while the CT5-V gains a supercharged 6.2-liter V8. Both will be available with a manual transmission. It’s like a repeat of the V-badged sedans’ predecessors, which should suit performance enthusiasts just fine. Looking over the entire range of these cars, maybe Cadillac had the right idea. Choice is good, and the early acrimony was the understandable result of people not knowing the fall breadth of the CT4 and CT5 stable.

Unfortunately, the coronavirus pandemic reportedly pushed back the introduction of the Blackwing models, so we’re left looking at this (pre-production) steering wheel, hoping for a real-world debut sometime soon. With it, drivers can access “V-Mode” and the car’s Performance Traction Management system without taking their hands off the wheel.

The 2022 Blackwings arrive in summer 2021.

[Image: General Motors]

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2 of 22 comments
  • Nick_515 Nick_515 on Aug 20, 2020

    We went for icecream the other day, and parked right next to a CT6. My wife commented that she "didn't dislike" it, which is quite something. Then we saw the passenger mirror camera dangling on its wire underneath the mirror.

  • Pb35 Pb35 on Aug 21, 2020

    My ‘18 CTS-V is at the dealer again for the second time in a month. I’m getting the trans flushed to hopefully cure the dreaded shudder that affects the 8L90 in all applications. This will cease to be an issue when I trade it for the CT5-V Blackwing with a manual. :)

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