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2012 Cadillac CTS-V

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Day by Day Review: 2012 Cadillac CTS V Coupe car test drives daily car reviews cadillac
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Keys to cars with over 500 horsepower from the factory do not end up in my hands very often, so when they do I like to indulge — safely and lawfully, of course. This week 556 tire-shredding horsepower was handed to me in the form of a Cadillac CTS-V Coupe — a polarizing car with two purposes, going fast and burning gas.

Okay, perhaps this car wasn’t designed just to burn gas, but it seems to do so rather quickly as noted by Paul Williams in his test drive, and as noticed by me over the course of two days and 150 km, with already a half a tank of fuel used up. I suppose the CTS-V has a third purpose, that being luxury – this is a Cadillac, after all.

Day by Day Review: 2012 Cadillac CTS V Coupe car test drives daily car reviews cadillac
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If I had the choice I’d pick the sedan over the coupe, or perhaps even the wagon; although it is heavier and slower, what could be cooler than a 556-horsepower station wagon? But let’s get to this coupe, equipped with optional extras like yellow painted Brembo calipers, 19-inch aluminum wheels with satin graphite finish, a six-speed automatic (although I’d prefer the standard six-speed manual) and performance bucket seats with adjustable side bolsters.

This beast comes priced at just over $83,000 and you will either love it or hate it when you set your eyes on it. Reactions from the crowd here locally are all positive so far. The coupe sits lower than the sedan and actually shares very little with the four-door. It really is a unique vehicle and has a number of rarely seen features. For instance, the coupe is not equipped with door handles, as it uses an electronic button for access; a really cool centre-outlet exhaust with large twin round tips; and a unique grille that doubles front-end airflow as well as the chrome quotient.

A car like this is meant to be showy, and if you want to go fast it can do that as well. Stay tuned this week as I’ll be taking this monster to the track to find out what it really can do as our speed limits are just a little too low to experience this car properly.

MSRP as tested (including destination): $83,550

For more information on Cadillac and the CTS-V visit Cadillac Canada

For even more on this car FOLLOW James on Twitter

Day 1 | Day 2 | Day 3 | Day 4

Day by Day Review: 2012 Cadillac CTS V Coupe car test drives daily car reviews cadillac
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Apparently, not much has changed from last year in the CTS-V family. Only a couple of new paint colours and side blind zone alert have been added — exclusively to the CTS-V Coupe, and there’s no wonder why.

This car is very difficult to see out of, forward, sides, rear, it doesn’t matter. The blind spot system and the backup camera are necessities, and a front camera or parking sensors would also be useful, as it is difficult to see the ends of the car. A simple solution is to park away from other cars, and walk a bit further.

Day by Day Review: 2012 Cadillac CTS V Coupe car test drives daily car reviews cadillac
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The V’s interior is all Cadillac, especially with the optional suede steering wheel that feels most excellent in your hands. The rest of the controls are easy to navigate, and there is a good ratio of buttons to features, which does not overwhelm the driver with too many distractions.

Interior comfort is limited to the front seats which, so far, I find to be excellent. Taller drivers should note that there is a manually adjustable thigh support and headroom is quite good with these 14-way adjustable seats. The rear seats (if you can figure out how to get back there and then get out again without dislocating parts of your body, you are doing well) should have a sign that says “emergency use only.”

This isn’t a small car, though, as is obvious by the trunk, which will swallow some golf clubs, but I doubt you could fit many 19-inch tires in there; perhaps one, in a pinch. The gauge cluster reminds you that you are in a performance machine, with the inclusion of a boost gauge and a lateral acceleration display (g-forces).

I’m not sure I’ll be able to keep my eye on that g-meter at the track but I’ll try!

Day 1 | Day 2 | Day 3 | Day 4

Day by Day Review: 2012 Cadillac CTS V Coupe car test drives daily car reviews cadillac
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It is like I’m on some kind of driver’s-car roll here — BRZ, G37S and now the CTS-V. And boy oh boy does the CTS-V ever impress. If I am perfectly honest, this car feels like a waste around town and on my commute to work and back and on the highway. The supercharger has a hint of whine and you know the car is just waiting for you to open up the throttle and shred some tires on your way to jail time.

Sure, the CTS-V is comfortable, quiet and smooth around town, and the driving dynamics are pretty much exactly what you would expect from a sports sedan — but nothing extraordinary. When you take it onto a racetrack, as I did this evening, you realize the true potential of this machine, and it is impressive.

Day by Day Review: 2012 Cadillac CTS V Coupe car test drives daily car reviews cadillac

Power is not a shortcoming in this car, obviously, and on the track, as others point you by and you stomp on the throttle, it is supremely evident. It didn’t really matter who had what out there on the track; this car could pretty much eat up all of them on the straights and, surprisingly, in the corners as well! Caymans, Corvette Z06s… it didn’t matter, I was reeling them in — amazing.

The onboard g-meter reported max Gs as 1.05 left and 1.09 right; braking never faded over a 20-minute session and the tires just got stickier and stickier. The CTS-V does suffer the same fate as Corvettes, though: the differential overheats and a warning to slow down appears in gauge cluster.

Body roll was well-controlled, steering responsive and the Brembo brakes do not miss a beat. This is a very heavy car and my expectations were fairly low. If Cadillac is looking for a way to sell more of these cars, I’ll gladly take potential customers for a thrill ride of their life — this car has it all!

Day 1 | Day 2 | Day 3 | Day 4

Day by Day Review: 2012 Cadillac CTS V Coupe car test drives daily car reviews cadillac
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A bittersweet end to a fantastic week with a fantastic car — on one hand, it will be difficult giving up this 556-horsepower beast, but on the other, I’ll be glad to see it go. You see I absolutely loved the acceleration, the handling; in fact, everything about driving the CTS-V is a true joy. But my pocket book hurts from visiting the gas pumps on what seemed like a daily basis.

I averaged 14.8L/100km over the course of my weekly adventures; a couple of all-highway trips offered slightly better fuel consumption at 12.9L/100km. On the track, I was surprised that I averaged a rather sane 35.8L/100km (only slightly worse than what Paul Williams managed during his week with the car driving in the city (20L/100km)). I’m also looking forward to driving a car that will not be a speeding ticket magnet — not that I got any, but let’s just say I could have.

A fantastic car that far exceeded my expectations — hey Santa, I want one please!

*Rating out of 5:

2013 Infiniti G37S Coupe AWD
Acceleration Day by Day Review: 2012 Cadillac CTS V Coupe car test drives daily car reviews cadillac
Handling Day by Day Review: 2012 Cadillac CTS V Coupe car test drives daily car reviews cadillac
Comfort Day by Day Review: 2012 Cadillac CTS V Coupe car test drives daily car reviews cadillac
Interior Day by Day Review: 2012 Cadillac CTS V Coupe car test drives daily car reviews cadillac
Audio System Day by Day Review: 2012 Cadillac CTS V Coupe car test drives daily car reviews cadillac
Gas Mileage Day by Day Review: 2012 Cadillac CTS V Coupe car test drives daily car reviews cadillac
Overall Day by Day Review: 2012 Cadillac CTS V Coupe car test drives daily car reviews cadillac

*Rating based on vehicle’s classification
MSRP as tested (including destination): $83,550

For more information on Cadillac and the CTS-V visit Cadillac Canada

For even more on this car FOLLOW James on Twitter

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