Car Review: 2022 Cadillac CT5 V-Series Blackwing rocks big power and a manual transmission

660+ supercharged horses, manual transmission and a Cadillac? The 2022 CT5 V-Series Blackwing will open you eyes what a luxury sedan can be.

After a few years of sitting out, Cadillac is back with a vengeance with its V series of sports sedans. The CT5 V-Series Blackwing is the top-of-the-line mid-size luxury sedan that packs a big punch.

The Cadillac CT5 V-Series Blackwing boasts a 668 horse power thumping, supercharged V-8 engine under the hood. Its sounds are a delight for gearhead’s ears, maybe too much for those who are not. I enjoyed the sounds and usually turned to a mode where you could hear more of it.



This Caddy moves quickly. You are in speeding ticket territory in around 3.5 seconds and it builds speed in a blinding quick pace, if you dare. The manual transmission is a rare find these days and rewards you with quick, crisp shifts. It is what the Blackwing Series needed. A ten-speed automatic might lead to a quicker Caddy but I enjoyed the driver engagement of the manual.

The Blackwing version really shines when the road turns twisty with high and approachable handling limits. However, a track is about the only place to explore what this car can do. This car loves to be driven hard and rewards you as with one of the best-handling luxury sports sedan on the market. The trick Magnaride suspension is very happy thundering down the track or it can offer a more relaxed, compliant ride when you do not want a sporty ride.

Where Cadillac falls short in the luxury sports sedan market is the lower grade interior. Luckily, the CT5 V-Series Blackwing is a nicer place to spend your time. Sport seats covered in leather with contrasting color stitching add to the appeal and do a nice job of holding you in place. The softer touch materials throughout the cabin, and the carbon fiber and microfiber trim are a welcome luxurious touch. Rear seat space is improved over the last generation mid-size Cadillac. It’s still a bit less than other high power luxury sedans.

The 10-inch touch screen is easy to use, there is even data, and a video recorder to watch those hot laps you did at nearby Summit Point Raceway.

The style of the Cadillac V series sedans has taken a more aggressive look compared with the normal version of the sedan. GM transformed the mid-size Caddy with blacked-out trim with a mesh style grill. Special ground effects give the car a lower, sportier stance without screaming boy racer. Even the body color and rear spoiler have a more understated look for those that do not want the flash. Still, look a bit lower and you see four large exhaust outlets ready to bellow the V-8 symphony.


Cost: $83,995 as tested $93,260

MPG: 13 MPG City; and 21 MPG Highway. I managed 18.2 mpg in 440 miles of mixed driving.

Options: $2,890 Sky Cool gray with Jet black leather, steering wheel high performance, sueded microfiber package; $1,450 ultraview sunroof; $1,600 performance data and video recorder; $625 electric blue; $710 parking package; $595 brake calipers blue; $400 seat belt color torch red; $995 destination charge

Safety: HD rear vision camera; front & rear park assist; teen driver mode; performance traction management; automatic emergency braking; forward collision alert; safety seat alert; lane keep assist/lane departure warning; lane change alert/side blind zone alert; rear pedestrian alert

Things to know: Cadillac is back with a proper super-high performance sedan. The CT5 V- Series Blackwing thrills on the road and track and now sports a manual transmission for the enthusiast.

Pros:

  • Performance luxury sedan with a manual is rare
  • Fun-to-drive hard or comfortable enough for daily driving
  • Price undercuts the competition

Cons:

  • The improved interior still is not as nice as the pricey competition
  • Rear seat legroom is lacking compared with some of the competition
  • Big power means the fuel economy is not good

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