2021 Cadillac CT5
The Cadillac CT5 sedan arrived last year as a replacement for the CTS; a car that made great strides in being a true competitor to European luxury sport sedans. Now, just one year later, and Cadillac is already making updates to the CT5. Attempting to win over buyers of European cars is nothing new for Cadillac, starting with the Seville way back when MotorWeek first went on the air in 1981.
The current CT5 is actually about 2-inches shorter than the last CTS, yet has 1.4 additional inches of wheelbase. That, along with a more coupe-like profile really improves upon the CTS’ look.
Among the numerous updates to the 2021 Cadillac CT5 is an available 12-inch virtual gauge display, along with next-gen Super Cruise, and a special Diamond Sky Edition.
Standard engine, remains this 2.0-liter 4-cylinder. Its 237-horsepower is actually 31 less than the CTS’. Torque is down even more; 258 is 37 fewer lb-ft. But, if power is a priority of yours, a 335-horsepower twin-turbo V6 is available.
Both come with a 10-speed automatic transmission, and both engines can be optioned with all-wheel-drive. However, the CT5 does remain rear-wheel-drive based.
There are also two high performance models available, an impressively affordable 360-horsepower CT5-V also with a turbocharged V6, and the almost outrageous 668-horsepower CT5-V Blackwing with a supercharged V8.
Even the garden variety CT5 is well documented for its firm street ride. So, we were surprised that it actually felt a little squishy during spirited maneuvers. Still, the CT5 can really hustle through corners, and delivers an overall very pleasant sport sedan driving experience.
Like many of its rivals, the CT5’s luxurious interior looks polished and classy, with excellent materials, but without anything being over-the-top. Premium Luxury trim sounds exotic, but it’s only one step up from base Luxury; and delivers appropriately to its name with plenty of soft leather, 14-way adjustable front seats, and metallic accents. Higher trim levels are more about ratcheting up the sporty aspects of the vehicle from here. Unlike recent Cadillac mid-sizers and most European competitors, rear seat leg room is quite good here in the CT5.
We are even happier about the trend back to more actual buttons for routine controls, greatly improving the man machine interface. The standard 10-inch touchscreen works well and is visually appealing. Both wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are standard. In addition, a Navigation and Bose Premium Audio Package is available.
For our complete road test of the Cadillac CT5 be sure to catch MotorWeek episode #4047 that begins airing July 30, 2021. For a listing of the PBS public television stations that broadcast MotorWeek, go to motorweek.org and click the “About the Show” tab at the top. MotorWeek is also seen Tuesday evenings and Sunday afternoons on the MotorTrend cable channel. The show can also be streamed on PBS Living through Amazon’s Prime Video.
We thoroughly enjoyed our time in the 2021 Cadillac CT5. It’s quite luxurious, has great amounts of space inside to make your family’s life easier, and compared to European rivals, it’s a bargain. Still all four-door makers are facing a tough task of getting luxury pretenders to even consider a sedan over an SUV. But, we’re glad that Cadillac is putting up the good fight with an impressive car like the CT5.