The 2004 CTS-V - Cadillac's ambitious entry into the low-volume, high-performance luxury car niche - represents the first vehicle to wear the divisions V-Series badge.
Equipped with a revised LS6 5.7-liter 400-horsepower V8 engine mated to a Tremec T56 six-speed manual transmission, the CTS-V is a highly refined performance sedan that's designed and engineered for driving enthusiasts, whether on the road or at the track.
Based upon GM's new rear-wheel-drive Sigma architecture - which also is the foundation for the CTS sedan, SRX luxury utility and future STS luxury sedan - the CTS-V incorporates a series of high-performance refinements tuned on the world's most renowned tracks, including the famed Nürburgring in Germany.
The result is the most powerful production car in Cadillac's lineup - and one that is engineered to more than hold it's own with some of the industry's most renowned high-performance luxury sport vehicles, including entries from the BMW M-series, Audi S-series and Mercedes-Benz AMG series.
CTS-V enters this prestigious club currently near - or at the top - of the high-performance luxury car niche in terms of horsepower per vehicle pound. The car is engineered with near 50/50 weight distribution and reaches 60 mph from in an estimated 4.6 seconds.
However, the CTS-V is about much more than raw power.
The exterior of the luxury sport sedan has been revised with purposeful enhancements, including: larger front and rear fascias and rockers; seven-spoke 18-inch flangeless wheels; dual investment-cast stainless steel exhaust tips; wire-mesh upper grille and lower front air intake; and badging that incorporates the distinctive Cadillac V-Series emblem.
2004 Cadillac CTSV
Interior revisions include suede seat inserts to hold the driver in place during high-speed maneuvering; accent stitching throughout; driver and passenger adjustable lumbar; satin chrome and real aluminum accents; a lowered, shorter center armrest that ensures ergonomic manual shifting, especially in cases of high lateral G-force; and a completely revised instrument cluster with two Driver Information Center (DIC) readouts controlled by steering wheel mounted switches.
+ In order to manage high-output horsepower and torque from the LS6 engine - and to ensure desired noise and vibration characteristics - a host of performance modifications have been made to the vehicle. These include:
+ Extremely robust front and rear suspension, including larger shocks, springs and stabilizer bars; performance tuned bushings; and strategically placed reinforcements on the larger, hydroformed front and rear cradles;
+ Enhanced rear differential housing for increased robustness and optimized cooling;
+ Focused-mount strategy for the engine that ensures the high-output powerplant is optimally supported (to compliment its torsional axis) to minimize idle vibration, ensure optimized tuning of engine mounts, and achieve appropriate ride and handling characteristics;
+ Performance-tuning of the steering system, taking into account the increased weight of the vehicle (approximately 264 pounds heavier than the base CTS), for precise on-center feel and enhanced responsiveness.
+ Steel tower-to-tower cross car brace that brings enhanced cross-vehicle structure, as well as sure steering response and linearity;
+ Heavy-duty, increased diameter prop shaft and CV joints for higher torque requirements;
+ Significantly larger, extremely robust, Nürburgring-tuned Brembo brake system that's considered world-class and unmatched in the high-performance luxury vehicle niche;
+ Dual exhaust with larger diameter pipes to ensure minimal back-pressure for engine performance;
+ Tunable remote mounted shifter that enables appropriate transmission packaging, precise shift feel and noise/vibration characteristics;
+ Dual mass flywheel that reduces the potential for gear and drive-away rattle;
+ Four channel/four-selection mode chassis control system (StabiliTrak), enabling the driver to switch between four stability settings, including a "less-governed" competition mode for the performance enthusiast;
+ Larger Goodyear Eagle F1 Supercar run-flat tires and 18 by 8.5-inch wheels for outstanding, sure-footed performance; and,
+ An undercarriage, front-positioned "belly pan" for enhanced aerodynamics, powerplant cooling and reduced vehicle lift at high speeds.
All work for the CTS-V was engineered by the newly formed GM Performance Division, an in-house center of expertise designed to explore potential enthusiast-oriented versions of production models.
No engineering, design or assembly functions were outsourced; making the vehicle a true original equipment offering.
The Cadillac CTS-V will be powered by GM's celebrated 5.7-liter, overhead valve (OHV) LS6 V8 engine. The two-valves-per-cylinder powerplant will deliver approximately 400-horsepower at 6000 rpm and 395 lb. ft. of torque at 4800 rpm. The engine - a variant of what is found on the Corvette ZO6 - will be mated with a six-speed manual Tremec T56 (M12) transmission.
The LS6 V8 provides the CTS-V with successful, racetrack-proven performance and outstanding reliability and durability, as well as smooth, quiet operation. Its lightweight all-aluminum construction, including cylinder heads and block, provide an excellent power-to-weight ratio and good chassis balance.