Take the Cadillac CTS-V out for a spin — but hang on tight

Take the Cadillac CTS-V out for a spin — but hang on tight

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When you think of the Cadillac brand, an image of a vast piece of machinery larger than your living room may come to mind.

Luxury, easy driving, and comfort that will eat up the miles were all synonymous with Cadillac four decades ago.

But today, Cadillac has successfully reinvented itself into a brand that young people entering the luxury car market definitely want to buy. This was certainly the case upon Cadillac releasing the CTS-V Series in 2004, and continues to be so with the most recent refresh in 2016 — the most powerful Cadillac ever sold.

The 2018 Cadillac CTS-V is a high-performance version of the regular CTS sedan. With 640 horsepower coming from a 6.2 litre supercharged V8 borrowed from the Corvette Z06, the two-ton family sedan can go from 0 to 60 in 3.6 seconds and has a top speed of 200 miles per hour. This isn’t your grandfather’s Caddy. Even with the summer tires that came on our test car, we were able to spin the rear wheels without even trying. Don’t tell the cops.

The CTS-V has a truly state-of-the-art chassis and suspension that allow it to take corners better and impart more communication to the driver than other high-performance luxury sedans. That suspension also allows it to have an impressively comfortable ride for a performance car.

So what is new with the 2018? Well, first on the list, the CTS-V gains an updated infotainment system interface and two USB charge ports for the rear passengers. Passengers also will appreciate the Luxury package’s sunshades, seat heating, and rear climate controls. It’s even got a smart folding rear seatback. Also make sure to consider the CTS-Vs with the optional Recaro sport seats; they are quite attractive.

Standard equipment includes 19-inch wheels, summer performance tires, Brembo performance brakes, an electronic limited-slip differential, a magnetically controlled adaptive suspension, an automatic parking system, xenon headlights with auto high beams, automatic wipers, a driver auto-dimming mirror, remote ignition, keyless ignition and entry, forward collision warning, blind-spot and rear cross-traffic warning systems, lane departure warning and intervention, and rearview and curb-view parking cameras.

Comfort and entertainment features include dual-zone automatic climate control, eight-way power-adjustable front seats (with heating, manual thigh extenders and power-adjustable bolsters), driver-seat memory settings, leather and simulated suede upholstery, a heated power-adjustable steering wheel, a simulated suede headliner, a 12.3-inch all-digital gauge display, a head-up display, an eight-inch touchscreen interface, OnStar communications (with 4G LTE and a Wi-Fi hotspot), wireless smartphone charging, Bluetooth, three USB ports, Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, a navigation system, and a 13-speaker Bose surround-sound audio system with satellite and HD radio.

What was really cool about my test car was the Carbon Fiber package that adds a carbon-fiber hood vent, spoiler, front splitter and rear diffuser.

Driving-wise, this car offers classic American muscle with state-of-the-art handling capabilities which is where the CTS-V shines and has a leg up on its staunchest German rivals. Also, the ultra-solid brakes are an excellent match to the engine and easy to modulate. And the steering response in Touring mode feels spot-on and delivers decent feedback.

On fuel economy, the CTS-V achieves a respectable 14 mpg/city and 21 mpg/highway. At $102,000, it definitely undercuts its German competitors on price.

So if you’re looking for one of the most thrilling high-powered sedans on the market, this Caddy has to be on your shopping list.

Grant Miller is the publisher of Miami’s Community Newspapers. He may be contacted by calling 305-662-2277 or via email at Grant@CommunityNewspapers.com.

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