Thursday, January 28, 2016

Fast 'n' Furious Family: 2006 Cadillac CTS-V

The first generation Cadillac CTS-V was sold starting in the 2004 model year with an engine borrowed from the Corvette C5 Z06 (the 5.7 liter LS6) and a 6-speed manual gearbox, but folks in the know will tell you that you want to get a 2006-2007 version that is powered by the Corvette C6 base 6.0 liter LS2.  With a new MSRP of $50k in 2006, the CTS-V was hit early with the depreciation bat and continues to be beaten down into poor people territory (our territory).  Find this 2006 Cadillac CTS-V offered for $15,000 in Windsor, MI Ontario via craigslist.

The '06 CTS-V is powered by a 6.0 liter LS2 V8 that produces an even 400 horsepower and 395 ft-lbs of torque, mated to a Tremec T56 6-speed manual and a limited slip out back. Earlier cars suffered from axle and rear differential issues, but it seems the 2006+ cars are better sorted.  Rounding out the CTS-V package is a set of huge Brembo 4-piston brakes, a track-ready suspension, and a few custom exterior pieces like the mesh bug-zester grill.  Unfortunately the seller only includes one picture and precious little detail in this listing, but it doesn't look bad in the one pic.

See another 4-door, V8, 6-speed sedan for cheap?


  1. The only Windsor in the Detroit metro area is across the bridge in Ontario. That plus the Ontario front plate and the fact that the seller mentions it in the ad lead me to believe this will require importation.

    It's likely importation won't be bad due to the whole us having the same exact thing over here, but it is worth noting.

    1. Yeah, I believe the gauge clusters and etc. on these things can be recoded for MPH without hardware changes.

      Seriously, these things are a brilliant drive. Okay, you look around the interior, you open the hood and look at the cheap plastic, and you see where the money goes in an M5. But on the road these things feel a thousand pounds lighter than an E39 M5. Okay, maybe 500. The steering and turn-in are crisper, the Stabilitrak is much more forgiving, the brakes are better.

      The shifter/clutch relationship is not as good, the shifting is clunky and nowhere near as crisp as the M5's Getrag box. The seats are cheap garbage and only work because of the ass-velcro Alcantara upholstery. The back seat is a bit tighter than the E39 and the rearward visibility's not as good.

      Still, it's very much in the same league and if you're shopping one you owe it to yourself to drive the other just to compare and contrast.

    2. I will note that the subsequent and largely unlamented STS-V seems to have been a product of the marketers rather than the engineers, and they missed one key point: it had the same seats as the CTS-V, but with a perforated leather in the keister part, and as such it's impossible to drive one quickly. You might as well be flogging a '73 Montego.

    3. Funny you mention the seats - one of the guys who designed them was a member of my alma mater's SAE club. He spoke at one of our meetings and then took us all out to show us a pre-production CTS-V that he'd brought with him. He offered up some driving-time which most of us took him up on.

      I didn't think the seats were that bad, but admittedly I was paying more attention to not wrecking the car than I was the comfort of my posterior.

    4. The seats work fine, the fact that you didn't notice them is an indication thereof...they're nothing special, but because of the Ultrasuede they hold you in place reasonably well.

      There's all kinds of odd textures in the interior of a first-gen CTS/CTS-V, at $50K you can grumble about stuff like that, at used prices it's more about the seat-butt-steering-gas-pedal experience.

      The best thing I can say about the first-gen CTS-V is that three friends bought them 7-8 years ago on my 'drive everything else, then go drive this, and see what you think' recommendation, and they all still own them.

    5. Ours is a little newer, but after driving it to Canada last year I found out it automatically changes from English to metric and back automatically

    6. This comment has been removed by the author.

  2. I track my CTS-V regularly, and the seats with Alcantara or fake suede inserts do a great job of holding me in place even on really tight tracks. Actually haven't even installed my CG Lock because I haven't needed it.


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