At First Glance: 2009 Cadillac CTS-V

When automotive journalists (ourselves included) were proclaiming the Chevrolet Malibu to be Detroit’s savior, we obviously had not accounted for the 2009 Cadillac CTS-V. The all-new CTS-V mixes performance, quality, luxury, and refinement under (surprise!) an American badge.


You might ask, “What makes the CTS-V so special?” and one can only answer, “The performance and the power.” This Caddy boasts a 6.2L supercharged V8 that is capable of producing 556 horsepower at 6,100 rpm and 551 lb-ft of torque at 3,800 rpm. The engine is paired with one of two six-speed transmission options, either the new, Tremec TR6060 with dual-disc clutch or the Hydra-Matic 6L90 six-speed automatic with paddle-shifters (the first automatic offered in the CTS-V). The CTS-V also features Magnetic Ride Control, one of the world’s fastest-reacting suspension that uses shocks controlled by electro-magnets rather than mechanical valves. Tiny iron particles suspended in fluid fill the shock damper and when put under the presence of a magnetic charge, these particles align in tight formations to provide more damping resistance with incredible speed. To slow down this beast, Cadillac worked with Brembo to develop a great braking system with six-piston calipers in the front and four-piston calipers in the rear. Slotted and vented rotors enable strong initial braking force while optimizing heat resistance and eliminating fade.


On the interior of the CTS-V, this sports sedan mixes elegance with the car’s performance abilities. Recaro performance driving seats that provide support for spirited driving also take comfort into account, adjustable in 14-ways, including a pneumatic bolster control in the seat cushion and backrest. New Obsidian material accents the car’s integrated center stack as well as the center console and door trim. And, just like every CTS, the V-Series includes a hand-stitched instrument panel, door trim, and center console. Other interior features are the 40-gigabyte hard drive, advanced navigation system with a “pop-up” screen, and Bose digital surround audio.

Stay tuned for driving impressions and video footage of the 2009 Cadillac CTS-V before it goes on sale this Fall.

Key Specs:

*Limited-slip differential made of cast iron
*Main competitors: BMW M5, Mercedes-Benz E55 AMG, and the Mercedes-Benz E63 AMG
*Engine Type: 6.2L supercharged V8 (LSA)
*0-60 mph: 3.9 seconds
*Quarter-mile: 12 seconds at 118 mph
*Fuel delivery: SFI
*Recommended Fuel: Premium (recommended but not required)
*Transmissions: Tremec TR6060 six-speed manual and the Hydra-Matic 6Ll90 six-speed electronically controlled automatic overdrive with torque converter clutch.
*Wheels: 19 x 9 inch (front) and 19 x 9.5 inch (rear)
*Tires: 255/40R19 Michelin PS2 summer Z-rated (front) and 285/35R19 Michelin PS2 summer Z-rated (rear)
*Wheelbase: 113.4 inches
*Curb weight: 4,200 lbs (manual) or 4,300 lbs (automatic)
*Nurburgring lap time: 7:59.32 (possibly the fastest publicly documented time for a production sedan)

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