When Cadillac introduced the Corvette-powered CTS-V it gave enthusiasts what they wanted - a real hot rod kind of a car. Unfortunately, not too many of those enthusiasts had real Cadillac kind of money. Let’s see if today’s Nice Price or No Dice ’05 is now priced to generate a little more enthusiasm.
Many of you looked at yesterday’s 1993 Chevy Lumina Z34 and commented something along the lines of “nice car, but at the end of the day, it’s still a Lumina.” That damnation shined a light on the Lumina’s biggest foible; being the automotive equivalent of Wonder Bread. And while a rare Z34 edition and sporting appreciably low miles, that stigma couldn’t generate much enthusiasm for the car’s $7,500 asking price. In the end, however, that amazingly squeaked by with a 51 percent Nice Price win.
If the Lumina was representative of GM’s idea of a sporting family car of the ’90s what’s to be found in the company’s similar take from the ’00s? Well, something perhaps like this 2005 Cadillac CTS-V. This is a car that’s a lot more capable than its decade-older ancestor and, thankfully, is both V8-powered and rear-wheel-drive.
At one point in time, Cadillac was the epitome of class and cool on the American car scene, a role the marque enjoyed from the pre-war era right up through the 1960s. By that time, however, things began to change. The most notable of those change agents were the waves of petroleum production slowdowns caused by OPEC as a way to flex the international organization’s political muscle. The resultant gas shortages and spikes in prices led car buyers of all ilks to look for more fuel-efficient options. That included luxury car buyers who began trading in their Cadillac boats for smaller and more efficient cars from the likes of Mercedes, BMW, and Jaguar. The threat to the American carmaker became so acute that Cadillac released its own smaller, more fuel miserly car, the Seville in 1975.
That was the first real effort that Cadillac made to rebrand itself in an attempt to remain relevant in the American luxury car market. Over the years we’ve seen other attempts such as the failed Cimarron and Catera, and greater successes with the Escalade.
In the early 2000s, Cadillac decided to embrace luxury performance as a way to compete, and at the forefront of this effort was a performance line designated by the letter “V,” and a new front-engine/rear-wheel-drive compact car called the CTS. The CTS-V would get its marching orders from a 5.7 liter V8 donated by Chevy’s Corvette and would be offered with a manual transmission, the first such row-yer-own in a Cadillac product since that lamentable Cimarron of the 1980s.
By now we’re all pretty familiar with the CTS-V as it remained in Caddy’s lineup all the way through the 2019 model year. This is a first-generation car and comes with a modest 89,500 on the clock, although the seller claims that number may grow as seemingly the car is used as a driver.
The color scheme is pewter metallic over a standard black leather and Alcantara interior. According to the description in the ad, there are a few dings and scratches in the paint, something to be expected of a nearly 20-year-old car that sees use. The interior looks to be in very nice shape, albeit full of the multi-textured hard plastics that GM seemed to like during this era. We can’t blame the car for those, and that’s somewhat countered by the large center stack screen that lends a certain sense of modernity to the space.
Under the hood lies a 400 horsepower edition of the Corvette’s LS6 V8. That’s coupled to a Tremec T-56 six-speed manual via a dual-mass flywheel. A limited-slip differential in the back makes sure all those ponies don’t get too out of hand.
Aftermarket additions, per the ad, include a Lingenfelter cold air intake and Magnaflow cat-back exhaust. The tires are said to have only 5,000 miles of use and are wrapped around powder-coated factory alloys. There’s not much in the way of maintenance or mechanical status given in the ad, but it would be expected that anything egregious would be called out, seeing as each and every dent has been.
A clean title and an eBay Buy-It-Now price of $21,500 wraps up everything we need to know about this Caddy. No one seems to be biting at this price, nor are there apparently any bids at the $15,900 auction starting point. Where might the seller have gone wrong?
What’s your take on this CTS-V and that $21,500 price tag? Does that seem like a deal for a fun sedan with a stick? Or, is that just sticking it to us?
H/T to FauxShizzle for the hookup!
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