In an effort to take advantage of its recent return to popularity, Cadillac decided to build ultra-high-performance versions of several of its cars. Collectively called the V-Series, they are meant to be high-powered, tight-handling, all-around track-tuned performers in the vein of BMW's M series and Mercedes-Benz's AMG lineup.
The Cadillac CTS-V sedan was the first and easily the most successful example. The second-generation CTS-V, though, is a totally different beast that also comes in sedan, coupe and wagon variants. Packing a ferocious 556-horsepower supercharged V8 into the grown-up and dynamically advanced second-gen CTS platform, the result is a high-performance coupe that can take on the world's best.
Current Cadillac CTS-V Coupe
The Cadillac CTS-V Coupe is the high-performance version of the regular CTS coupe. While the standard CTS coupe can certainly get your blood pumping, the V edition is like a defibrillator attached to Niagara Falls' hydroelectric plant. Under its angularly sculpted hood lives a detuned version of the supercharged 6.2-liter V8 found in the manic Corvette ZR1. In the Cadillac it produces 556 hp and 551 pound-feet of torque. A six-speed manual transmission is standard, and a six-speed automatic is optional.
The CTS-V coupe also gets a bulging hood, flared front fenders, 19-inch wheels, huge brakes, an adaptive suspension and big silver mesh grilles. Similarly, the cabin adds piano-black trim and Alcantara faux suede surfaces to the civilized edition's already high-end ambience and materials. Most of the CTS's vast array of standard and optional luxury features carry over, meaning you can burn rubber and listen to AC/DC on the surround-sound stereo at the same time.
With the six-speed manual transmission, the Cadillac CTS-V Coupe can accelerate from zero to 60 mph in an impressively quick 4.2 seconds. That's quick enough for the CTS-V coupe to humble just about every other coupe in its class -- and quite a few that are well outside its price range, as well. The car also handles impressively, with nimble dynamics that belie its 4,200 pounds. For those with a penchant for performance, these traits alone should be worth the price of admission.
There are, however, some less desirable things about this car. While the interior has the attractive style of the Cadillac CTS sedan, the interior volume is much smaller, especially in the narrow two-passenger rear seat. Headroom is an issue for front seat passengers when a sunroof is in place, and there's not enough in the rear seat for adults to be comfortable. Compounding matters, rearward visibility is abysmal, while the trunk offers just 10.5 cubic feet of capacity.
Rival luxury coupes from Europe can outclass the CTS-V in terms of comfort, refinement and convenience. But if straight-line performance and evocative styling outweigh all other concerns, the Cadillac CTS-V Coupe should be on your short list.
Used Cadillac CTS-V Coupe Models
The Cadillac CTS-V Coupe was all-new for 2011. There have been no significant changes since then.