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King Caddy

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On: Wed, Jan 26, 2011 at 3:28PM | By: Lou Ruggieri


King Caddy

You've seen the commercials by now.  "Fastest sedan on the planet" and "0-60 in 3.9 seconds" while some anonymous figure shifts through gears in a cockpit that looks like it belongs in the movie Tron.  If, like most commercials, you don't remember what the actual product was through the haze of bright lights and quick images, it was General Motors' M5-fighter, the Cadillac CTS-V.  The car itself has been around since 2004 in a few different formats.  The 'V' designation was GM's answer to the luxury car market's idea to use a letter or series of letters to tell the world this is the 'fast' version of the car.  Whether it's V, M, S, F, AMG, Type-S, SS, IPL, Z, the list keeps climbing as more and more car companies are jumping on the alphabet soup  bandwagon, which at this point could be coined the Bandwagon QRS, just so you know that's the faster bandwagon model.  But I digress ... 

 

The V in CTS-V should stand for Very Fast.  The latest rendition of the CTS-V does live up to the hype those commercials promise.  Currently, the CTS-V is the fastest production sedan in the world thanks to the 6.2 liter supercharged LSA V8 under the hood (borrowed from its stablemate the Corvette ZR1)  The "detuned" mill pumps out 556 horsepower 551 lb-ft in stock form.  Now for most of us, that should be enough.  To have the fastest sedan in the world is well ... Enough really.  But then, to guys like John Hennessey, fast has a different connotation altogether.  Apparently 550 horsepower is the beginning for Hennessey.

For an extra $19,995 on top of the cost of your new CTS-V (so about $85,000 total), you can have an even faster, "Fastest sedan in the world" The Hennessey V700 CTS-V is essentially a 16 year old boy-racers dream. Except unlike the trial and error that comes with the do-it-yourself garage modifications, this package is tested and proven because the boy-racer is a few decades past 16 and has been tuning cars for most of his life. Knowing a good things when he sees it, Hennessey kept the supercharged powerhouse and just worked some old-school hot-rodding magic on it: A new pulley and snout for the Eaton blower, custom (read: bigger) V700 camshafts, V700 high flow cylinder heads, bigger fuel injectors to feed the beast more quickly along with an HPE engine management upgrade. Then what hot rod would be complete without throwing on a set of stainless steel long-tube 1-7/8 inch headers funneled through high-flow catalytic converters and exiting through a similarly stainless steel custom three-inch mid-pipe exhaust system. Other mods on this King Caddy are a custom 4-inch HPE cold air induction system, a 160 degree thermostat, a bigger and better performing intercooler as well as more minor details like embroidered headrests with the Hennessey logo and a serial numbered dash plaque and matching engine plaque.

Now for the fun part: The Hennessey V700 CTS-V puts down a sickening 707 horsepower at 6,300 rpm and 701 lb-ft of torque at 3,400 rpm. According to Hennessey, if you check off the box for the optional wheel and tire upgrade that give your V700 a set of 20" HRE rims shod in 305/45/20 Nitto drag radials, you will experience performance that is just short of unbelievable, especially for a four-door sedan. 0-60 mph comes up in 3.3 seconds, which will tie a new Nissan GT-R and actually eek out the Caddy's balls-to-the-wall performance stablemate, the Corvette ZR1 by 0.2 seconds (assuming either of you can get traction off the line). The V700 runs through 1320 feet in 11.1 seconds at 128 mph, which to give some perspective are nearly half a second faster than either the ZR1 or GT-R. Top speed with a six-speed transmission is 211 mph, but we'll take Hennessey's word on that one. The car pulls so hard off the line; it can actually trick the car's OnStar system into thinking it has just been in an accident.

Hennessey is willing to drop in an automatic transmission into your CTS-V if that is more to your liking, and has made all of these bits and pieces that make up the V700 available as separate parts in case you want to add a little at a time to your current or future car. What you won't get by doing it yourself however, is Hennessey's 1 year/12,000 mile warranty on everything. The V700 upgrade is available for the CTS-V sedan, coupe, or Cadillac's upcoming Sport Wagon model.

So where once the 556 horsepower CTS-V seemed fast enough, certainly the V700 should be more than enough. But something tells us that even though all those numbers are breathtaking right now, somewhere the Hennessy team is probably dreaming up something just a little bit faster. Just don't expect to see a commercial for it anytime soon.


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