This week, the Cadillac division of General Motors will take the wraps off two new models in their V-Series, vehicles that will be built at the Lansing Grand River assembly plant.
WKAR’s Scott Pohl talks with Cadillac Product Manager for Future Performance Sedans Ken Kornas about the CT4-V and CT5-V, models heading to showrooms next year.
SCOTT POHL: The CT4-V is smaller. Am I right about that? And, is that the only differentiation between the two?
KEN KORNAS: The CT4 is the smaller, I'd say more nimble of the two. The CT5-V will be a little bit larger, but definitely from a performance standpoint, it's going to provide everything that customers are looking for.
POHL: The Cadillac V-series started 15 years ago. What was the original vision? Were you around at that time? How have things changed, and what was the original vision?
KORNAS: Yeah, I was I was around. I started working on and for Cadillacs over 30 years ago. When we launched the V-series 15 years ago, it really was out of a new philosophy at Cadillac, really an expansion or renaissance. Back in the late 80’s we had a movement that we called Art and Science, really blending engineering and technology excellence with distinctive and beautiful design forms. We had a number of concept vehicles: Evoke, Image, the Vision. That really was the genesis for a new lineup of Cadillacs that we're launching along that way in order to show our technical excellence. That was the genesis and the birth of the series.
Our first V-series 15 years ago was the 2004 CTS-V. We launched that vehicle in the famed Nürburgring in Germany, because that is one of the most aggressive and difficult challenge courses in the world. We wanted to make sure to show people right from the get go, that that we had the capability to match and beat the best.
POHL: The global debut of the CT4-V and CT5-V will be on Thursday, May 30th in Detroit, so no pictures are available yet, but I do want to ask you about the looks. Are they going to differ in any significant way from, say, the CT5 that was unveiled in April at the New York International Auto Show?
KORNAS: Yes, there's definitely distinctive design elements that go with V-series. There's some hallmark cues that you can look for in the grill, in the exhaust, a number of areas around the vehicle, and that's for the enhanced performance of the vehicle.
The Detroit Grand Prix happens that weekend as well. It was a perfect venue for us to not only reveal the CT5-V, but the CT4-V alongside with our CT6-V and really show the sedan lineup of the V series, as well as there will be information shared about our expansion and growth strategy. So, it's also expanding the lineup of what the series represents, and elevating it in a lot of ways.
POHL: It isn't a surprise that these vehicles are going to be built at the Lansing Grand River assembly plant. GM and the Cadillac division have a special affection and admiration for the workers at the Lansing Grand River plant.
KORNAS: Absolutely. We care about our people and we care about our community. In fact, over the last couple of years, we've invested over a half a billion dollars into that award winning world class Lansing Grand River facility. We'll be making Cadillacs and the V-series there for years to come.
POHL: When will they be in showrooms?
KORNAS: Early 2020.
POHL: What's the price range?
KORNAS: Pricing hasn't been announced yet, but these will be the most affordable and accessible V-series ever.
POHL: What's the expected gas mileage?
KORNAS: Gas mileage has not been released, but again, these will be on par with the best.
POHL: Can you talk about production goals?
KORNAS: Nope, can't talk about volume. We're talking about growth and expansion, but we don't have volume forecast to release.