- Awesome, world-class performance
- Responsive automatic transmission
- Some of the best, most advanced technology features
- Unappealing instrument panel design
- Interior materials don’t feel as upscale as they should
- Lacks back-seat space
The 2008 Cadillac STS-V is a formidable rival to BMW's M5 and the Mercedes E63 AMG--at a lower price.
The 2008 Cadillac STS-V is the limited-edition, high-performance variant of the mid-size STS sport sedan. Although it keeps the same basic layout and appearance of the STS, it has more aggressive exterior styling, interior upgrades, and a host of additional performance equipment to match the special hand-built supercharged 4.4-liter V-8 underhood.
For 2008, the entire STS family, including the STS-V, gets a new nose and wider grille, along with some interior enhancements.
The engine makes 469 horsepower, and can get the 2008 Cadillac STS-V to 60 mph in less than five seconds, delivering power to the rear wheels through an excellent six-speed automatic with tap-shift controls.
The 2008 Cadillac STS-V has a firm ride, but it almost miraculously soaks up the bumps while staying tight in the most abrupt maneuvers and keeping the tires firmly planted. In addition, the STS-V gets stiffer springs and larger anti-roll bars than the standard STS, plus powerful Brembo brakes, and the steering ratio is quicker.
Seating in the 2008 Cadillac STS-V rivals that offered by the German competition. The front seats are amply proportioned and very supportive, with plenty of space; the backseat is barely roomy enough for average adults. The instrument panel feels rather dull and plasticky compared to its German rivals--and the design hasn't been updated to the extent of the new CTS (and CTS-V)--but the rest of the interior, such as upholstery, is impressive in quality.
In addition to some of the best performance equipment available, the 2008 Cadillac STS-V comes with an extensive list of the latest high-tech features--with many of those optional on the regular STS models standard on the STS-V. They include a head-up display, along with new Intellibeam headlamps, which sense approaching headlights and dim themselves accordingly. Other technological upgrades standard on the STS-V include heated rear seats and steering wheel, a lane-departure warning system, Adaptive Remote Start, and a blind-spot warning system.
The 2008 Cadillac STS-V is in the middle of the pack in safety, based on crash-test results. Four-star results were given from the federal government in all but side protection for rear-seat passengers (five stars), and the STS earned "good" results in frontal-offset protection, "acceptable" results in side impact, and "poor" in rear impact insurance industry (IIHS) tests. Standard safety equipment on the STS-V includes front side airbags, head-protecting side-curtain bags, and a performance-calibrated electronic stability control system.