Cadillac CTS-V vs. BMW M5


Contributing Editor

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, Contributing Editor - October 30, 2015

The longtime benchmark for any sport sedan, the BMW M5 faces a powerful new version of Cadillac's upstart CTS-V. Either one is equally comfortable sliding around a racetrack as it is picking up the kids from school. Will it be Germany’s iconic beauty or the America’s new sweetheart that takes the crown?

See a side-by-side comparison of the CTS-V & M5 »

What we like about the Cadillac CTS-V

When Cadillac’s CTS-V arrived on the scene in 2003, the incredible performance redefined the popular opinion of the automaker. A recently redesigned, though, takes it to a new level. The new CTS-V is an attractive sports sedan specifically built to challenge the mighty BMW M5, among others.

The latest CTS-V packs a punch. With performance numbers that would have been reserved for alcohol-powered drag cars just a couple decades ago, the CTS-V offers luxury and performance to rival European sport sedan favorites. Powered by a supercharged 6.2-liter V8 engine, the CTS-V creates 640 horsepower and 630 pound-feet of torque. The family sedan tears from 0 to 6-0 mph zips in 3.7 seconds, and eventually reaches a top speed of 200 mph. Gas mileage is, as expected, a meager 14 mpg city and 21 mpg highway.

What we like about the BMW M5

Very few vehicles have earned the respect that BMW’s M5 sport sedan has garnered over the years. When the M5 arrived in the United States in 1988, it changed the rules. How could a “grocery-getter” put up performance numbers that rival exotic sports cars?

Powered by a twin-turbo 4.4-liter V8 engine that produces 560 horsepower and 500 pound-feet of torque, the M5 launches from 0 to 60 mph in 4.2 seconds and reaches an electronically-limited top speed of 160 miles per hour. Handling is absolutely brilliant and the M5’s brakes are exemplary. Very little matches the authority with which the M5 drives around. The excellent interior is the product of three decades of development. Gas mileage in the BMW M5 equipped with the automatic transmission equates to 14 mpg city and 20 mpg highway.

Our Verdict: Cadillac CTS-V

Rarely does a shoot-out cause as much of a commotion as the CTS-V versus the M5. Both offer exhilarating performance, and each excels in specific areas. The BMW’s interior beats the Cadillac’s for ease of use and overall ergonomics, and I also think an argument could be made that the timeless exterior lines of the Bavarian sedan have a slight edge over the newcomer from the US.

However, the CTS-V beats the M5 in the area of performance. The trip to 60 mph, for instance, takes a half second less in the Cadillac. Just as important of a consideration is the MSRP, the CTS-V starts at $83,995 versus the BMW M5’s $94,100. Significant savings, even when comparably equipped.

Take a closer look at the Cadillac CTS-V »

Take a closer look at the BMW M5 »

Side-by-side comparison of features, pricing, photos and more!

, Contributing Editor

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