In a recent episode of The Smoking Tire‘s “One Take,” Matt Farah reviews a Cadillac ATS-V tuned and modified for SEMA 2016 by Renick Performance. Graced with a Renick Performance intake, stainless downpipes, x-pipe delete, and an ECU tune, the Renick ATS-V’s twin-turbo LF4 V6 makes a hearty 520 horsepower and 516 lb-ft at the wheels. A host of suspension and brake upgrades match the car’s handling and stopping to its ferocious powerplant.
Yet despite everything, even while Farah appreciates the capabilities that the RP ATS-V may have at the track, he seems to have a hard time enjoying it on the open road.
The automatic 8-speed transmission and exhaust note are Farah’s two biggest quips with the factory ATS-V, and he says these faults still remain, dragging the car down some. He also sees little sense in spending extra dough on top of a $75,000 price tag (although used ATS-V examples can be had for less than $50K) to get the same performance that you could easily get from a factory Corvette Z06 or a Porsche 911. That’s not to say he doesn’t think the ATS-V doesn’t have potential; he simply doesn’t think it’s been fully tapped just yet.
Farah’s argument is certainly valid, but we would counter that one could look at the Renick Performance Cadillac ATS-V as a more affordable, watered-down version of the ATS-V.R., and that’s got to count for something.
Meanwhile, our own review of a Renick-enhanced Cadillac ATS-V from last February was perhaps a bit less critical. “The little things all become dismissible when there’s the sound of a 498-hp engine passionately screaming back at you, out of joy,” Editorial Director Manoli Katakis wrote after taking a turn in the souped-up performance coupe.
To get Matt Farah’s full take on Renick Performance’s Cadillac ATS-V from SEMA 2016, watch the video above.