Market trends tend to swing back and forth in a never-ending cycle of what customers are feeling like on the day of purchase. In recent years, SUVs, crossovers, and trucks have dominated the landscape as fuel prices sank and credit became plentiful once again. But all good times must end and Cadillac is hedging its bet by introducing two mid-size sedans—the CT4 and CT5—and their hotter-than-a-habanero V-Series brethren.
As both the CT4-V and CT5-V are all-new to the Cadillac lineup—and staring at a copy and pasted spec sheet can be tiring—The Drive thought we’d take the hit for you, run through Cadillac’s announcement, and give you the best of the best details on the two all-new cars. Those armchair engineers shouldn’t worry though, below the five coolest details is a more substantial writeup. See, The Drive is delivering all the coverage you want.
5.) Both the CT4-V and CT5-V Come Standard With Magnetic Ride
General Motors’ Magnetic Ride has been the industry standard for adaptive suspension for nearly a decade. GM even sells the technology to Ferrari. And what was once only reserved for the highest-tiered Corvettes and Camaros—and a couple of Ferraris—can now be had on these relatively inexpensive performance offerings. Sounds good to us.
4.) Brembo Brakes are Standard
Stopping is truly an underrated vehicle dynamic. It ensures that you don’t hit a wall, a person, or another car. It also gives you further control when pushing a car to the limit. Cadillac’s new CT4-V and CT5-V both come standard with 4-Piston Brembo brakes—CT4-V customers only get Brembos in the front, though.
3.) Cadillac’s L2 ADAS “Super Cruise” System is Optional
Cadillac’s Super Cruise—a geo-fenced advanced driver-assistance system—has, like Tesla’s Autopilot, been a hot topic of debate as safety regulations haven’t kept up with technology. That said, the addition of Super Cruise functionality on more inexpensive offerings means it will become more ubiquitous and could run into the same issues as Tesla’s Autopilot. This is Super Cruise’s first real test.
2.) Either Comes in Drift or Rally-Spec
Whereas many performance sedans of late have lost their strictly RWD status, instead opting for an AWD system with “Drift Mode,” the CT4-V and CT5-V can be had in either rally-ready AWD or Formula D-dominating RWD from the get-go. Customers will be able to spec their cars how they want, however, only the RWD versions will get limited-slip differentials. Hoons, take your pick.
1.) They’re Going to Have More than Enough Power
While previous V-Series cars were monsters of motivation with horsepower trekking into the 640 mark, the CT4-V and CT5-V won’t be as bullish; though no less potent. The new CT4-V uses a turbocharged 2.7-liter four-cylinder engine that puts out 320 horsepower and 369 pound-feet of torque, while the CT5-V makes use of a twin-turbocharged 3.0-liter V6 engine good for 355 horsepower and 400 pound-feet of torque. While that’s nearly half of previous Vs, Cadillac stated that these are only the mid-range hellions. The V-Monsters are coming later.
Cadillac is going through another rebirth. In recent years, it’s failed to keep up with consumer demands and has pushed the company to its breaking point. It’s since stymied the blood loss with a handful of upscale SUVs and crossovers that do well in their respective markets. However, Cadillac is looking to play the long game and is hedging that when gas prices shoot back up, and consumer trends end, people are going to be wanting sedans again. In the interim, the surest way of making bank is offering performance iterations that will attract up and coming buyers, i.e. the CT4-V and CT5-V.
The two performance offerings are based around GM’s Alpha 2 architecture, which is an updated version of the previous Alpha platform that birthed the ATS-V, CTS-V, CT6, and Chevrolet Camaro. Given how superb the last generation Alpha platform was, we’re confident the update will make the CT4-V and CT5-V handle expertly as well as deliver the sort of ride you expect from a Cadillac.
As far as aspiration, both are powered by turbocharged units and backed by 10-speed automatic transmissions—this is the same, though slightly updated, unit we’ve seen in the Camaro and other Cadillacs and was co-developed with Ford. In terms of cylinders, the two performance offerings are slightly different with the CT4-V using a turbocharged 2.7-liter four-cylinder engine rated at 320 horsepower and 369 pound-feet of torque, while the CT5-V uses a turbocharged 3.0-liter V6 good for 355 horsepower and 400 pound-feet of torque. Performance metrics like 0-60 and top speed haven’t been released as of yet, but those numbers definitely indicate that they’ll be quite impressive.
All that said, many weren’t as impressed as The Drive’s editors were with these numbers given Cadillac’s V-Series heritage. The previous ATS-V was good for over 400 horsepower, while the CTS-V was good for over 600. These, according to many, don’t gel with that history. Many, however, missed Cadillac saying that these weren’t the top-tier Vs and that more monstrous versions are coming in the near future. As to when and how much more monstrous has yet to be determined, but Cadillac does have the twin-turbocharged 4.2-liter V8 “Blackwing” ready for service.
Performance and dynamics, however, aren’t the only notables for the CT4-V and CT5-V as both with be available with Cadillac’s geo-fenced “Super Cruise” advanced driver-assistance system. This marks the first time the technology has trickled down to other Cadillacs after debuting on the CT6. Super Cruise, like Tesla’s Autopilot, is an L2 automated system, meaning it can handle basic tasks while the driver still maintains focus on the road. Essentially, Super Cruise is there to help when the driver is fatigued or distracted. Cadillac, however, maintains that “Even while using the Super Cruise driver assistance feature, always pay attention while driving and do not use a hand-held device.”
Speaking at the launch of the CT4-V and CT5-V, Mark Reuss, General Motors’ president, said, “The new lineup expands the V-Series ethos, drawing more customers into the Cadillac Performance family, and the newest Vs are focused on elevated athleticism and luxurious refinement for customers wanting a dynamic daily drive. And this is only the beginning of the V family. Cadillac’s passion for performance shines on a racetrack. Stay tuned.”