As you’re probably aware, Cadillac has different tiers for its performance vehicles. V-Sport cars make up the tier underneath full V-Series models that provide the most power. It’s much like how there’s a difference between the BMW M550i and the M5. Perhaps to give its flagship sedan an image boost, Cadillac is renaming the CT6 V-Sport to CT6-V, without making any mechanical changes.
Despite the new name, the Cadillac CT6-V will make the same 550 hp and 627 lb-ft of torque that the CT6 V-Sport debuted with earlier this year. This power comes from a hand-built 4.2-liter twin-turbo V-8 that GM calls the Blackwing. It produces significantly less power than another full V-Series model, the not-long-for-this-world CTS-V, which is rated at 640 hp and 630 lb-ft.
“Beginning with the debut of the CTS-V Sedan in 2004, the V-Series sub-brand sparked new life into Cadillac,” said Mark Reuss, executive vice president and president of GM Global Automotive Group and Cadillac, in a release. “As a result of the overwhelming response the CT6 V-Sport received when revealed in early 2018, we’ve decided to formally make it a V-Series, signaling the expansion of V-Series.”
GM also announced that CT6 Platinum models will get a version of the 4.2-liter engine, which was previously said to be exclusive to the V-Sport. The engine will be detuned to 500 hp and 553 lb-ft in the Platinum trim, however.
The CT6-V is expected to arrive this spring. In addition to the CT6-V, Cadillac says it will expand the V-Series with new variants across the entire lineup starting in 2019. It’s unclear if this includes crossovers like XT4 and XT5, but Caddy say the new V models would get upgraded propulsion systems and brake systems, as well as chassis updates.
Prior to his sudden ousting in April, former Cadillac chief Johan de Nysschen had planned to expand the V-Series to enhance the brand’s image as a maker of sporty cars. Whether his replacement, Steve Carlisle, is following that plan or charting his own course, we don’t know. But this announcement does alter a product built on de Nysschen’s watch, even if it only changes a badge. Last we heard, Cadillac will still go forward with the CT4 and CT5 to replace the ATS and CTS. The brand is also looking to expand its crossover lineup beyond the XT4 and XT5.