Of course, there's more to this machine than just visceral thrills behind the wheel. The CTS-V comes with an awesome Bose sound system that we cranked up almost as much as we did the rpm on the LS6. There's also an XM satellite radio network capability in case you run out of CDs. Your parents may have listened to Lawrence Welk on their Caddy, but this system begs to crank up the tunes with a thumpin' rock 'n' roll system that not only has sound power, but a clarity that makes you want to plant it right in the middle of your living room.
On our road trip to Phoenix, we even employed the onboard navigation system in search of a decent place to eat. We now know the location of every BBQ eatery between Los Angeles and Phoenix. The CTS-V can also play DVD discs in the video screen, but only allows viewing when the car is not in motion. But who needs Hollywood when you've got all this power and style wrapped up in a package that just begs to be driven? It feels like a four-seat Corvette. This is unlike any Cadillac ever built, and it may not be at the top of the typical car crafter's Top 10 Wish List, but combine performance with style with an effortless road machine, and the CTS-V stacks up against cars costing much more that deliver less.
Car: '04 Cadillac CTS-V
Engine: 5.7L LS6, 3.89-inch bore and 3.62-inch stroke, 400 hp @ 6,000, 395 lb-ft torque @ 4,800, 10.5:1 compression ratio, 75mm throttle-body, aluminum block and heads, hydraulic roller camshaft, 1.7:1 roller rockers, engine weight: 454 pounds
Transmission: Tremec six-speed manual, Third and Fourth gears double- and Second gear triple-cone synchronizers, needle bearings on all forward gearsets, dual mass flywheel to eliminate gear rattle, and remote-mounted shifter.
Rearend: Cast-aluminum independent rear axle housing, 8.42-inch ring gear, limited-slip differential, GKN-built 2.75-inch diameter driveshaft, 3.73:1 rear gear ratio, electronic traction control
Front suspension: Thicker front cradle, unequal-length, aluminum upper and lower control arms, electronically controlled, larger-diameter Nivomat 46mm shocks, larger 26.6mm hollow front stabilizer bar, four-channel StabiliTrak
Steering: Power rack-and-pinion steering with increased effort for road feel
Rear suspension: Independent rear suspension, reinforced rear subframe, electronically controlled Nivomat shocks and four-channel StabiliTrak chassis control
Brakes: (Front) 14x1.25-inch rotors with Brembo four-piston calipers, specially tuned brake pads; (rear) 14.4x1.20-inch rotors with Brembo four-piston calipers, and full four-wheel antilock braking system (ABS)
Wheels and tires: 18x8.5-inch aluminum six-lug wheels with P245/45WR18 Goodyear F1 extended mobility tires (EMT), tire pressure monitored via a sensor in each valve stem
Wheelbase: 115.2 inches
Curb weight: 3,833 pounds
Vehicle height: 58.1 inches
Tread width: Front, 62.0; rear, 62.3 inches
Performance: 13.50 @ 105 mph (Motor Trend)
Base price: $49,300
Price as tested: $51,195