Enthusiasts will be very happy.
When Cadillac pulled the wraps off the new CT5-V and CT4-V, dedicated enthusiasts had their list of complaints at the ready. At 335 horsepower and 320 hp respectively, the new cars are nowhere near as potent as their predecessors, the CTS-V and ATS-V. Cadillac says this is because there will be two hardcore models to sit above the new V models, badged with the Blackwing moniker and accompanying twin-turbo V8 engine.
Enthusiasts were also upset because both the CT5-V and CT4-V were only announced with a 10-speed automatic transmission. Where's the manual, Cadillac? But speaking to the MuscleCarsAndTrucks at an event for the CT5-V and CT4-V, General Motors President Mark Reuss confirmed: "Cadillac will make manuals in V-Series."
This new information draws out some serious questions about Cadillac's future V lineup. Reuss explained the V models were repositioned because buyers were too intimidated by them but with new Blackwing models set to offer more power, it seems like an odd decision not to use the V-Sport name for these new cars. Isn't that what V-Sport was created for?
MuscleCarsAndTrucks says the base CT5-V and CT4-V that have already been revealed likely won't receive the manual option and only the hardcore CT5-V Blackwing and CT4-V Blackwing will offer the option to row your own gears. V has essentially been relegated to a trim level in the Cadillac lineup, which is a bit disappointing when looking back on the sub-brand's 15-year history.
Cadillac could win back favor with enthusiasts if it pulls through with more power and the option of a manual transmission. Aside from the BMW M3, the ATS-V was the last performance sedan/coupe in its segment to offer a manual option and we'd hate to see Cadillac lose customers by not offering a direct ATS-V replacement. The CT5-V and CT4-V could attract new customers to the brand but it is hard to imagine anyone trading out of their ATS-V or CTS-V for either of them until the Blackwing models are revealed.