As a competitor to Audi, Mercedes-Benz, Lexus and BMW, the CT-5 has to look both tough and sophisticated. The designers nailed this one. PHOTO: CADILLAC

As a competitor to Audi, Mercedes-Benz, Lexus and BMW, the CT-5 has to look both tough and sophisticated. The designers nailed this one. PHOTO: CADILLAC

Cadillac CT5-V: Performance, style and value

If there’s such a thing as a bargain luxury-performance sedan, this is it

With much talk centred on the coming electric-vehicle revolution, it’s interesting that Cadillac continues to offer an expanding assortment of performance sedans that lean on internal-combustion engines.

Cadillac will indeed be a leader for parent company General Motors’ electrification effort, but in the meantime the new V-Series sedans growl and snort delightful sounds with pistons, turbochargers and gasoline. Bottom line? Enjoy them while you can.

The midsize CT5-V – the subject of this review – and the smaller CT4-V are equipped with higher-output powertrains (plus a number of specialty features) that separate them from their less-sporting relatives.

Being sedans, the pond they swim in is dominated by BMW, Lexus, Audi and Mercedes-Benz. The four brands also offer assorted performance models. For BMW, they get the M badge. For Lexus it’s the letter F, Audi builds S and RS variants and Mercedes-Benz has its AMG models.

For Cadillac, it’s all in the V.

The first-ever CT5-V builds on the precision-focused details of the all-new luxury sedan introduced earlier this year to offer elevated road performance and an engaging driving experience. PHOTO: CADILLAC

The first-ever CT5-V builds on the precision-focused details of the all-new luxury sedan introduced earlier this year to offer elevated road performance and an engaging driving experience. PHOTO: CADILLAC

The CT-5, which was launched for the 2020 model year alongside the CT4, shares styling DNA with Cadillac’s three XT-class utility vehicles, particularly in the shape of the grille. The result is a sharp- and smart-looking sedan with subtly sculpted body panels that will neither offend or cause passersby to point and stare.

The CT5 is about 18 centimetres longer than the CT4 and has a wheelbase that’s greater by the same amount. With the difference mostly going to the CT5’s passengers, trunk room is only slightly greater than the CT4’s.

The gauges, switches and steering-wheel controls are intuitively laid out and the 10-inch high-definition touch-screen has a convenient volume knob (some vehicles make you go to the screen). The fussy pistol-grip shifter isn’t as intuitive as a conventional lever, but it’s better than dials or buttons.

The base CT5 uses a turbocharged 2.0-litre four-cylinder producing 237 horsepower and 258 pound-feet of torque. Optional is a twin-turbo 3.0-litre V-6 with 335 horses and 405 pound-feet. A 10-speed automatic transmission directs power to the rear wheels, or optionally to all four.

The CT5-V is something else. You get a 360-horsepower version of 3.0-litre V-6 and the kind of content you would expect/want in a performance sedan, such as an electronic limited-slip rear differential, sport suspension with constantly adjusting (1,000 times per second) dampers, Brembo-brand brakes and a traction-management system originally developed for the Chevrolet Corvette. Each of the modes – Dry, Wet, Race and two Sport levels – vary the traction and stability settings, or the system can be turned off for intervention-free driving.

As with the standard CT5, the V is available in rear- or all-wheel-drive, which is significant in terms of traction and four-seasons suitability. (The AWD test car was shod with winter tires.)

The car makes some fantastic noises during acceleration. Push the “V”-mode button on the steering wheel for custom performance settings including one that makes the exhaust even louder.

It might look like the normal CT5 interior, but there’s a Race mode and two levels of Sport mode, paddle shifters and a little “V” button on the steering wheel the makes the car sound louder. PHOTO: CADILLAC

It might look like the normal CT5 interior, but there’s a Race mode and two levels of Sport mode, paddle shifters and a little “V” button on the steering wheel the makes the car sound louder. PHOTO: CADILLAC

At each gear change under moderate to hard acceleration, there’s a short and sudden ‘BLAAAP’ noise – also common to Audi and Mercedes-Benz competitors – and will likely give CT5-V owners a thrill. Until it gets annoying and they change exhaust modes.

According to Cadillac, the CT5-V can reach 60 mph (96 km/h) from rest in a reasonably quick 4.6 seconds, which feels about right.

Fuel consumption is rated at 12.7 l/100 km in the city, 9.1 on the highway and 11.1 combined.

Pricing starts at $53,300 for the RWD model and $55,500 for the AWD version. Among the option packages is Cadillac’s latest semi-autonomous Super Cruise system that for 2021 comes with lane-change-on-demand capability (which does exactly what you think it would do).

Other extras include a panoramic sunroof, driver’s- and passenger’s-seat lumbar massage, illuminated door handles and sill plates and a 15-speaker Bose-brand audio system. Key active-safety technology is included, such as emergency braking and blind-spot warning, but lane-departure warning and active cruise control are optional.

The question is whether the CT5-V’s attributes put it in the same league with the BMWs and Audis of the world. The answer is absolutely. The bonus is that the Cadillac costs less, which makes it a terrific value.

Compared with the CT4, the CT5 has about 18 more centimetres of space between the front and rear wheels, which means the rear-seat space is quite generous. PHOTO: CADILLAC

Compared with the CT4, the CT5 has about 18 more centimetres of space between the front and rear wheels, which means the rear-seat space is quite generous. PHOTO: CADILLAC

What you should know: 2021 Cadillac CT5-V

Type: Rear- /all-wheel-drive midsize sedan

Engine (h.p.): 3.0-litre V-6, twin-turbocharged (360)

Transmission: 10-speed automatic

Market position: Cadillac is attempting to compete with other premium-level models by offering a range of sophisticated sedans with reasonable levels of luxury plus available performance powertrains.

Points: The CT5’s styling is attractive and Cadillac adds just enough to the V to make it distinctive and athletic. • Potent twin-turbo V-6 and 10-speed automatic transmission make a great team. • Surprising that a complete array of dynamic safety technologies is not standard. • Blackwing model with a considerably more powerful engine is slated for 2022.

Driver assist: Blind-spot warning with cross-traffic backup alert (std.); active cruise control (opt.); front-emergency braking (std.); lane-departure warning (opt.); pedestrian detection (opt.)

L/100 km (city/hwy): 12.7/9.1 (RWD)

Base price (incl. destination): $53,300

BY COMPARISON

BMW M340i xDrive

  • Base price: $62,900
  • A 382-horsepower turbo inline six-cylinder is standard, as is all-wheel-drive.

Lexus IS 500 F Sport

  • Base price: $75,000 (est.)
  • Upcoming 2022 RWD model uses a 5.0-litre V-8 that puts out 472 horsepower.

Audi S4

  • Base price: $66,400
  • The sporty version of the A4 runs with a turbo 349-h.p. V-6. AWD is standard.

– written by Malcom Gunn, Managing Partner at Wheelbase Media

If you’re interested in new or used vehicles, be sure to visit TodaysDrive.com to find your dream car today! Like us on Facebook and follow us on Instagram

AutomotivecarsSUVsTrucks

Just Posted

Email letters to the editor to editor@northislandgazette.com and we will publish online and in print.
LETTER: Port McNeill councillor responds to May 12 North Island Rising column

‘council raised residential taxes for no reason and I stand by that statement’

The seasonal Search and Rescue program will run between May to September. ( File photo/Canadian Coast Guard)
Coast Guard Inshore Rescue Program starting up next week

Teams have protocols in place to ensure COVID-19 safety

Shearwater is located in the Great Bear Rainforest on the West Coast of B.C. (Cariboo Chilcotin Coast Tourism Association photo)
Heiltsuk Nation buys historic Shearwater Resort and Marina

Chief Marilyn Slett said Heiltsuk Nation has always valued its relationship with the company

B.C. Centre for Disease Control data showing new cases by local health area for the week of May 2-8. (BCCDC image)
Vancouver Island COVID-19 local case counts the lowest they’ve been all year

On some areas of Island, more than 60 per cent of adults have received a vaccine dose

A nurse gets a swab ready to perform a test on a patient at a drive-in COVID-19 clinic in Montreal, on Wednesday, October 21, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Paul Chiasson
Island’s daily COVID-19 case count drops below 10 for just the second time in 2021

Province reports 8 new COVID-19 cases on Vancouver Island Wednesday

Daily confirmed COVID-19 cases reported to B.C. public health, seven-day rolling average in white, to May 12, 2021. (B.C. Centre for Disease Control)
B.C. preparing ‘Restart 2.0’ from COVID-19 as June approaches

Daily infections fall below 500 Friday, down to 387 in hospital

Sinikka Gay Elliott was reported missing on Salt Spring Island on Wednesday, May 12. (Courtesty Salt Spring RCMP)
MISSING: Salt Spring RCMP find woman’s car, still seek Island resident

Sinikka Gay Elliott is 5’3” with a slim build and dark brown short hair

A Saanich man received almost 10 years in Supreme Court in Courtenay for a shooting incident from 2018. Record file photo
Shooting incident on Island nets almost 10-year sentence

Saanich man was arrested without incident north of Courtenay in 2018

Bradley Priestap in an undated photo provided to the media some time in 2012 by the London Police Service.
Serial sex-offender acquitted of duct tape possession in B.C. provincial court

Ontario sex offender on long-term supervision order was found with one of many ‘rape kit’ items

Rich Coleman, who was responsible for the gaming file off and on from 2001 to 2013, was recalled after his initial testimony to the Cullen Commission last month. (Screenshot)
Coleman questioned over $460K transaction at River Rock during B.C. casinos inquiry

The longtime former Langley MLA was asked about 2011 interview on BC Almanac program

Steven Shearer, <em>Untitled. </em>(Dennis Ha/Courtesy of Steven Shearer)
Vancouver photographer’s billboards taken down after complaints about being ‘disturbing’

‘Context is everything’ when it comes to understanding these images, says visual art professor Catherine Heard

Trina Hunt's remains were found in the Hope area on March 29. Her family is asking the public to think back to the weekend prior to when she went missing. (Photo courtesy of IHIT.)
Cousin of missing woman found in Hope says she won’t have closure until death is solved

Trina Hunt’s family urges Hope residents to check dashcam, photos to help find her killer

Chief Public Health Officer Theresa Tam listens to a question during a news conference, in Ottawa. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Restrictions will lift once 75% of Canadians get 1 shot and 20% are fully immunized, feds say

Federal health officials are laying out their vision of what life could look like after most Canadians are vaccinated against COVID-19

Most Read