The year is 2005 and Cadillac is in the process of revamping their Image. Cadillac introduced the Art and Science style on the New CTS in 2003 to rave reviews while the rest of their product line still carried styling rooted in the 90's and late 80's. With the addition of the Corvette based XLR Along side the CTS Cadillac not only showed focus on new styling but also a renewed focus on performance.
Prior to the 2006 MY the only performance oriented model Cadillac had offered in the past 20 years had been the STS trim for the Seville. Which with the introduction the 32v Northstar V8 was a 300 HP and 300 LB-FT front wheel sports sedan. While Cadillac made claim of competing with the BMW M5 with the STS realistically they where not even close. Though one should never discount the 4th and 5th gen STS by any measure. In the last few years of the Seville Based STS it set mile stones as being the first production based car with ride on magnetic suspension as a production test mule for the Corvette. Beating even the likes of Ferrari to market with the latest suspension tech. Though as good as it was, if Cadillac truly wanted to fight the m5 it was time for a change.
That change came in 2004 for the 2005 MY when the Seville name plate was split and retired. In 2004 the SLS, which was the base trim of the Seville was on sale as simply the SLS. In reality all the 2004 SLS's where left over 2003 production SLS's. While for 2004 no Seville STS was offered. In stead Cadillac Offered up a whole new STS. Equipped with either a 3.6LT V6 or the venerable 4.6LT Northstar V8, this time in a RWD configuration. For the first time Cadillac could say they had a true BMW 5 series fighter. Offered in All Wheel Drive as well as RWD the new sedan was exactly what Cadillac need to attract new buying in the competitive mid size luxury market. Except for one thing, they lacked a true performance version. While the 2005 MY saw the Northstar receive a bump from 300 to 320 HP thanks to new variable valve timing it wasn't enough. Cadillac needed more power.
That power came way of a brand new member to the Northstar family. Displacement was down the 4.4LT's from the base V8's 4.6. But power came in ata healthy 469Hp and 439 LB-FT thanks to The super charger and Variable Vale timing. Armed with the New engine Cadillac debuted the STS-V, a RWD Sports sedan with the poise, style and grunt to take on what ever Munich could throw at it. The STS hit show rooms in late 2005 For the 2006 MY, which was to be it's first and only production run.
Sadly less than 2600 of these magnificent beats left the show rooms. But they were not the only V cars Cadillac Introduced for the 2006 model year. Along side the STS they also introduced the XLR-V which sported the same 4.4LT supercharged Northstar as the STS-V but detuned to 443 HP and 413 LB-FT. This I can only speculate was to keep the XLR from Cannibalizing the sales of the corvette. Even though the XLR came in at the hefty price of $100k, it offered far less preference for the money the it's platform mate the Corvette. this lead to poor sales, though it did linger on till the end of the XLR production run in 2009.
So while Most people Think of the V8 CTS-V when they think of the cadillac V cars, lets also not forget the Other V Cadillacs the STS and XLR