: Riding Shotgun in the 09 CTS-V w/Andy Pilgrim



Dr. Design
06-18-08, 09:52 PM
Cadillac Performance Experience Fontana, CA - June 14th, 2008
I had a chance to ride in THE sub 8 minute Nurburgring 09 CTSV at California Speedway during the event. I don’t know if I am allowed to post my review, but I cant hold back!!

Andy Pilgrim was driving the car and putting it through its paces on the infield course at California Speedway. I was then given the opportunity to ride shotgun with Andy for a few laps in the 09MYCTSV. After I was done jumping up and down like a little girl, I was strapped in and we were ready to hit the track. Andy, being a good friend of D3's, I knew he wasn’t going to hold back given the opportunity. Right from a standstill I knew I was in something completely different than any Cadillac GM currently produces, and I have driven them all! Andy hit the gas pedal and my head snapped back like I just got rear ended by an F150. While under acceleration Andy whipped the car back and forth to build up heat in the tires. You could feel how responsive the chassis was and how well it responded! Once we actually got on the track he let all hell brake loose! Into the first bender I could tell Andy was out to prove something, and prove it he did. I was amazed the vehicle was able to hold the lines he was taking. More impressive was how the tires and suspension held up to the rigors he was putting the car through. I just kept thinking, "This car shouldn’t be able to do this!". At 4400 lbs, it was still driving like it was encapsulated in an antigravity bubble. It did not feel like it weighed as much as it did. He was able to toss the car around the corners with great ease and confidence. The chassis felt firm and tight. I could feel the rear end of the vehicle rotating so well. Along the back stretch is where this car really demonstrated the 550+ HP engine. Without barely any engine or exhaust noise it made its way down the straight without any effort. Since Andy was able to keep my head pinned to the racing seat with a little bit of pressure from his right foot, I was not able to lean over and take a peek at the speedo as we approached the switchbacks. As we approached, the pucker factor started to increase a tad bit when I sensed he wasn’t going to lift going through. After I reopened my eyes on the other side of the switchback, I asked him how fast he was going. Andy calmly responded 120mph! This was a full out left-right switchback at WOT. Now normally I wouldn’t be impressed with this at this track. But normally I would have been doing this in a prepped racecar, not a production sedan!

Let's talk about those brakes! These brakes are perfect! No brake fade, 100 degrees ambient air temp, multiple hot laps, and consistent braking performance. I was watching to see if Andy had to start using different braking points to slow the CTSV down, but he was very consistent. I didn’t notice any changes in braking points. Again, this consistency was great! This was again demonstrated to me when going down the front straight away at 130+ MPH and stabbing the brakes to slow down the world’s fastest production sedan. I wish Andy would have warned me he was going to hit the brakes! I am still a little sore where the 5 point harness tried to hold back my 220 lbs from hitting the dashboard in front of me :).

Power - Plenty of power for sure! We built an STSV with 569BHP to see what the power to weight ratio was going to feel like as a comparision to the new CTSV. So we had an idea of what this was going to be like already. But I was still very impressed how effortless the vehicle got up to speed. The transmission shifted quickly and pulled through each gear lightning quick. The power would just swell up to the point where you would think it would start falling off, but the power would just keep coming. As mentioned before it was pretty hot out there and the 09MYCTSV showed no affects from the heat. It has been our experience with most SC cars they tend to fall off a bit due to heat soak. This car just kept pulling like it was still back on the Milford proving grounds.

So to sum up my experience. I am VERY impressed with this vehicle and what it is capable of doing. The balance and control that this vehicle is able to exude is very impressive. The vehicle was able to rotate so well and you still have some forgiveness if you try to push too far. I already knew I wanted this car. I think this experience just eliminated 110% of any potential buyers remorse that could have crept inside my mind. I can't imagine what the CTSV Coupe is going to be like! My recommendation to anyone that is thinking about getting this vehicle. GET it! Then call the good guys at Bob Bondurant School of High Performance Driving and have them show you what it is truly capable of, because I GUARANTEE you it is more capable than what you think!

I was humbled by what Cadillac was able to do from the factory. They have given Cadillac enthusiasts a phenomenal foundation from which to work from. We cant wait to finish up development work on the 09MYCTSV and start testing.

Thank you for letting me share my experience with you. Let me know if there are any questions.

Here are some images from the experience.
http://i143.photobucket.com/albums/r134/ctd3rnd/_MG_3448.jpg
http://i143.photobucket.com/albums/r134/ctd3rnd/IMG_0174.jpg
http://i143.photobucket.com/albums/r134/ctd3rnd/IMG_0176.jpg


Thanks,

Dr. Design
D3 Cadillac

GNSCOTT
06-18-08, 10:00 PM
Excellent write up.

I see you were in the auto. Did he mention the difference in driving between the auto and manual?

Dr. Design
06-18-08, 10:05 PM
Hello,
When I asked him if he was doing any manual shifting with the paddles he responded with a no. He said he was letting the computer do all the shifting. He said it was much better than the manual mode. Honestly I didnt ask him how he liked the auto vs. the stick. But he seemed to be pretty amp'd about the automatic.

Thanks,

Dr. Design
D3 Cadillac



Excellent write up.

I see you were in the auto. Did he mention the difference in driving between the auto and manual?

v84life
06-19-08, 12:27 AM
Thanks for sharing:thumbsup:

lawfive
06-19-08, 12:37 AM
I asked Andy about auto vs. manual. In a very unassuming way, he said "Oh yeah, I could do better with a stick. But most drivers couldn't."

chris1268
06-19-08, 09:17 AM
Thanks for the write up

thebigjimsho
06-19-08, 10:15 AM
I asked Andy about auto vs. manual. In a very unassuming way, he said "Oh yeah, I could do better with a stick. But most drivers couldn't."Nice. Most.

HiTechRV
06-23-08, 10:42 PM
Wow Dr. D!

pietroraimondi
06-24-08, 03:38 PM
The revised auto shifting algorithims in the new V2 much like in the 08 C6 LS3 will dictate that more than 70% of all V2 sales like the 08 C6 will be automatics with the paddle shifters.

There are really only a handful of drivers that will be able to wring out more performance out of either of these vehicles (08 C6 & 09 V2) with a manual transmission.

thebigjimsho
06-24-08, 03:43 PM
The revised auto shifting algorithims in the new V2 much like in the 08 C6 LS3 will dictate that more than 70% of all V2 sales like the 08 C6 will be automatics with the paddle shifters.

There are really only a handful of drivers that will be able to wring out more performance out of either of these vehicles (08 C6 & 09 V2) with a manual transmission.Nice. Handful.

StealthV
06-24-08, 07:32 PM
That's like what? 3?

lawfive
06-24-08, 09:13 PM
Depends how big your hand is.

NormV
06-27-08, 09:32 AM
Good job Craig and the D3 gang! Full page spread in Autoweek!

http://www.autoweek.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080625/FREE/523644855


Norm