The CTS-V is hardly a subtle car on the outside, with wider fenders, an aggressive metal mesh grille and air intake, and of course a splendid burble of an engine note—also just as much part of its style. With its last redesign, in 2009, the CTS-V became a more aggressively styled and more powerful vehicle, picking up the refinements inside and out that the CTS gained for '08. The CTS-V doesn't cut a smooth hole through the wind, rather it makes use of sharper angles and a boxy body to knife through the air. Softer door lines help smooth some of the shapes, but the CTS-V is undeniable on the road. Smaller details such as jeweled headlights, a sculpted front bumper, mesh upper and lower grille, and vertical taillights are worth the extra effort to notice. V-series badges all around and big 19-inch wheels wrapped around huge Brembo stoppers set the CTS-V apart from the rest of the CTS line in a good way.
The CTS-V is friendlier to softer shapes inside, although it's still very fashionable. Trim from the doors extends through the instrument panel and cuts down into a V-shaped center console that houses infotainment and audio controls. LED accent lighting bathes the interior with a nice glow, and a retractable navigation screen hides out of sight when not in use. Hand-finished cut-and-sewn leather surfaces and chrome accents lend a fantastic feel up close. Altogether, it's a bold design, brasher than its German counterparts, but everything works together.
But the real impact of the CTS-V Coupe is its street presence. The standard Coupe cuts a similar silhouette, but the widened fenders, aggressive front- and rear-end treatments and the throaty burble of the exhaust mark the car out as something beyond a pretty shape.