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Oupa Bob's CTS-V bests BMW's M5

2009-10-30 07:38

We love Bob Lutz. A decade past retirement age and still fooling around with supercharged V8s.

Vehicle Specs
Manufacturer Cadillac
Model CTS-V
Engine 6.2l supercharged V8
Power 415kW
Torque 745Nm
Transmission Six-speed
Front Suspension Independent double wishbone, stabiliser bar
Rear Suspension Independent double wishbone, stabiliser bar
In typically brusque fashion, GM marketing General Bob Lutz’s “run what you brung” challenge has seen Cadillac’s CTS-V thrash its German competitors.

A renowned automotive marketing maverick and perhaps the most colourful character seen in the US industry post WW2, Lutz happened on a rather different way of marketing GM supersaloon, the Cadillac CTS-V.

Race Me

Instead of irrelevant (and rather expensive) broadcast advertising, Lutz simply created a Facebook group and hosting website for an event which challenged anybody who thought they could outdrive the CTS-V to make a date of it.

This “run what you brung” challenge saw 120 responses, which were vetted down to three journalists and five other participants.
The formula was simple, timed runs around the 5.6km Monticello Motor Club private circuit located in upstate New York.

This happy crew pitched up in their own German (and Japanese) performance four-door saloons to race some 77-year old guy in a Cadillac - the result was not a foregone conclusion.

When the sound of screaming tyres had settled and the lap times were tabulated the CTS-V ranked absolutely dominant – it took the first three places.

Fastest time of the day belonged to legendary GM engineer and Nurburgring specialist John Heinricy.

M3 restores (some) European pride

Michael Cooper (21) was the only non-CTS-V driver to sneak under the three minute barrier, finishing a highly credible fourth in his BMW M3, with a time of 2:50:424, four seconds adrift of Heinricy.

Journalists placed fourth and fifth, in CTS-Vs.

At three and a half times Cooper’s age, Lutz’s time of 2:56:321 showed petrolhead credentials and driving skill don’t fade with time.

Journalist Wes Siler planned to race a Mercedes-Benz C63 AMG or Jaguar XFR, yet both manufactures eventually withdrew their test car offers due to concerns about brake rotor durability…

Oupa Bob might wear glasses, but the former Marine and pilot can still handle a 415kW CTS-V with aplomb.

We can only wonder why the AMG-, RS- and M-car clubs of North American did not take up the challenge with greater urgency, dispatching some of their club members with discernable driving talent to the event?

Was the CTS-V a bit much of a muchness?

Perhaps, but you can never cast doubt on Bob Lutz’s petrolhead credentials or his ambitiously original take on marketing obscenely irrelevant muscle cars.


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