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Jay Leno Thinks the 2012 Cadillac CTS-V Is a Future Collectible, Loves Its Stick Shift

The 2012 Cadillac CTS-V Coupe was America's return to performance sedan development. It redefined Cadillac's position in the segment, offering European luxury sedan performance at half the cost. With 556 hp (564 ps) on tow, it's mean enough to keep up with a Jaguar XFR or have a similar-sized Mercedes-Benz E63 AMG sniffing its tail feather. Jay Leno owns one of these spectacular models and featured it on the latest episode of Jay Leno's Garage.
Jay Leno 2012 Cadillac CTS-V Coupe 10 photos
Jay Leno 2012 Cadillac CTS-V CoupeJay Leno 2012 Cadillac CTS-V CoupeJay Leno 2012 Cadillac CTS-V CoupeJay Leno 2012 Cadillac CTS-V CoupeJay Leno 2012 Cadillac CTS-V CoupeJay Leno 2012 Cadillac CTS-V CoupeJay Leno 2012 Cadillac CTS-V CoupeJay Leno 2012 Cadillac CTS-V CoupeJay Leno 2012 Cadillac CTS-V Coupe
The 2012 Cadillac CTS-V Coupe is a genuinely iconic American luxury car. The 2012 unit was in its fourth year after a complete redesign. While it came with a ton of power, it also had exemplary interior finishes reminiscent of its European competition.

Leno has owned his 2012 Cadillac CTS-V Coupe for ten years. In his opinion, the Cadillac CTS-V is a four-seater Corvette. He loves it most due to its six-speed manual transmission. The 2012 model was the first time since 1948 that Cadillac featured a manual gearbox. 

Under the hood, it packs a 6.2-liter supercharged V8, paired to a 6-speed manual transmission, making 556 hp (564 ps) and 551 lb-ft (747 Nm) of torque (6-speed automatic was optional at no extra charge). The 2012 Cadillac CTS-V had a front to rear weight distribution of 51 to 49, giving it an edge on bends even at high speeds.

"It's amazing Cadillac had the guts to go ahead and do this. Because Mercedes-Benz, Ferrari, all these, even Lamborghini pretty much abandoned the manual transmission. But Cadillac was determined to change their image, and they really did it," Leno says.

Behind the wheel, Leno admits the 2012 Cadillac CTS-V is comfortable even with the Recaro seats. He loves the size, the power, and handling, but most of all, its manual transmission.

Leno feels his 2012 Cadillac CTS-V, even though cheaper, is as good as his 2002 Mercedes-Benz E55 AMG.

Leno's 2012 Cadillac CTS-V is impressive, but you'll likely have quicker acceleration with the automatic transmission model (in sport mode).

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