Every model in the Cadillac CT5 range is a luxury sedan, but the 2021 Cadillac CT5-V adds the words “high-performance.” In fact, it’s currently the most powerful CT5 there is, and will remain so until the 2022 Cadillac CT5-V Blackwing launches this summer. Given its dual role of the CT5-V, it makes perfect sense that Cadillac has provided it with two distinct characters according to how it is driven.
For example, there is a particular sound effect that becomes apparent only when the CT5-V is being pushed as hard as it will go. The twin-turbo 3.6L V6 LGY gasoline engine, rated at 360 horsepower and 405 pound-feet of torque, makes a distinctive popping sound during gear changes when the throttle is fully open.
This is not unique to the Cadillac CT5-V. Several other performance cars from other automakers do this, too. But that makes it no less relevant to the Cadillac.
If the GM Hydra-Matic 10-speed automatic gearbox is left to make its own decisions about when to shift from one ratio to the next, the sound will be heard only rarely. Taking the car to the max legally in every gear would require either a very long runway or a visit to a German autobahn.
However, there is a more practical way of making the engine pop on its way through the gears. The effect does not occur only at maximum revs but rather at wide open throttle, so a driver wanting to hear it can make early shifts manually. The V6 engine note is slightly more muted in these conditions, but the pops are as loud and as pleasing as ever.
The Cadillac CT5-V – and indeed every other Cadillac CT5 for the Americas – is built at the GM Lansing Grand River assembly plant in Michigan, on the Alpha 2 platform also for the Cadillac CT4. It is priced to start at $48,790 (including $995 destination charge) with rear-wheel-drive, or at $51,390 with all-wheel-drive.
To hear the CT5-V popping during a series of manual shifts, check out this video: