- The Washington Times - Wednesday, March 23, 2005

The CTS was the first Cadillac to appear with the marque’s new design statement, presenting bold styling with sharp, angular lines and creases set on an aggressive stance. The CTS for 2005 is all-new, but continues to deliver the muscular message. The CTS-V is an essential element in Cadillac’s product plan in the re-establishment of the “Wreath and Crest” division’s heritage for powerful, refined performance, while also delivering luxurious appointments with an air of sophistication. The CTS-V also happens to be the most powerful production model that the division has ever offered, pumping out 400 horsepower and 395 foot-pounds of torque.

The CTS-V rides on Cadillac’s performance-oriented rear-wheel-drive Sigma platform, and is the foundation for the CTS-V race car. The “V” is the first model in Cadillac’s luxury performance vehicle lineup. The low-volume hot-rod Caddy draws its motive power from a 5.7-liter LS6 V-8 engine, capable of moving the car from 0 to 60 mph in a scant 4.6 seconds. Gear changes are handled via a Tremec T56 six-speed manual transmission. Performance-tuned shock absorbers, springs and stabilizer bars, Brembo brakes with 14-inch rotors along with distinctive V-Series badging all blend in delivering the car’s message about its competitive nature.

This performance Cadillac sits low over its 18-inch seven-spoke alloy wheels shod with ZR performance-rated tires. A ground-effect kit with extended rockers and integrated fascias serves notice that this isn’t simply any old Cadillac. The nose, or front fascia consists of large air intakes and what amounts to a streetable chin spoiler lip (watch out for parking curb stops).

The long horizontal center slot features a chrome wire-mesh insert to match the trapezoidal grille’s insert. The CTS-V generates a lean and mean aura.

The twin, chrome-tip exhaust provides yet another clue to the car’s real personality ” this will likely be the view most often seen.

The test CTS-V Cadillac sported an exterior coat of light Platinum metallic with an ebony leather and suede interior accented by polished wood-trim pieces. The base price was set at $49,300 while the gas guzzler tax, express open sunroof and destination charge elevated the final amount to $52,495.

The Cadillac CTS-V isn’t for everyone. It is a serious driver’s car with all the right stuff for spirited motoring. The ride quality is very firm, which becomes even more noticeable over rough terrain. Interior ambience is traditionally Cadillac, providing all the necessary creature comforts, and then some, with the ebony theme carried out even in the gauge faces.

Acceleration is blistering. Gear changes may be made smoothly and precisely through the six-speed manual gearbox, and stopping is excellent with the Brembo brake system.

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