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The 2022 Cadillac CT4-V Blackwing Is a BMW M3 on a Budget

Despite its appellation, the CT4-V hasn’t quite been living up to its predecessor, the Cadillac ATS-V. While it has an excellent engine, it’s a bit too heavy and less spacious than some of its rivals. Chief among them is the BMW M3, recently updated for 2021. But now, Cadillac has unveiled the 2022 CT4-V Blackwing. And it’s something the M3 should worry about.

The 2022 Cadillac CT4-V Blackwing is “a true successor” to the ATS-V, Road & Track says

Road & Track calls the 2022 Cadillac CT4-V Blackwing “a true successor” to the ATS-V. And that’s not just because of the sedan’s level of performance.

The front view of a red 2022 Cadillac CT4-V Blackwing on a racetrack
2022 Cadillac CT4-V Blackwing front | Cadillac

Under the CT4-V Blackwing’s hood is an updated version of the 3.6-liter twin-turbocharged V6 in the old ATS-V. Cadillac tweaked the oiling system, the intake, and the exhaust, and improved the engine’s “thermal management,” Car and Driver reports. As a result, the rear-wheel-drive Cadillac CT4-V Blackwing has 472 hp and 445 lb-ft. And while a 10-speed automatic is available, the standard transmission is a 6-speed manual.

Those specs put the Cadillac CT4-V Blackwing right on the M3’s tail. The also-RWD 2021 BMW M3 has a 3.8-liter twin-turbocharged inline-6 rated at 472 hp and 406 lb-ft. In Competition spec the sedan makes 503 hp; however, the Competition model only comes with an 8-speed automatic.

The front 3/4 view of a green 2021 M3 sliding around a racetrack
2021 BMW M3 front 3/4 | BMW

It’s not just in output that the Cadillac CT4-V Blackwing and BMW M3 come close, The Drive reports. The CT4-V Blackwing is heavier by 49 pounds, but it has the same claimed 3.8-second 0-60 mph time. However, in manual form, the Cadillac also has automatic rev-matching and no-lift shift; the M3 only has the former. And, while it’s technically a moot point on normal roads, the Cadillac CT4-V Blackwing has a higher top speed.

Horsepower isn’t the only thing the Cadillac CT4-V Blackwing is bringing to take on the BMW M3

The 2022 Cadillac CT4-V Blackwing isn’t just about its engine, though.

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Regardless of which transmission you pick, the sedan has an electronic limited-slip rear differential, MotorTrend reports. The Blackwing model also has stiffer suspension components than the standard CT4-V, along with a shock tower brace and an updated version of GM’s adaptive magnetorheological dampers. Plus, Brembo brakes are standard; you can even tune the brake pedal feel, Roadshow reports.

The 2022 Cadillac CT4-V Blackwing comes standard with a functional aero body kit. You get a front splitter, a rear spoiler and diffuser, and a different grille for better cooling, Hagerty reports. There’s also an optional carbon-fiber body kit that adds even more aero elements, similar to the one in the BMW M3 performance parts catalog. However, as of this writing, the teased magnesium wheels aren’t available.

The driver's seat, gauge cluster, and dashboard of the 2022 Cadillac CT4-V Blackwing
2022 Cadillac CT4-V Blackwing interior | Cadillac

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Inside, the Cadillac CT4-V Blackwing has a 12” digital gauge cluster and an 8” center touchscreen, Automobile and Autoweek report. Well-bolstered sport seats, multiple driving modes, shift lights, and launch control are all standard, as is the AKG audio system. But if you want leather upholstery or heated, ventilated, and massaging seats, you’ll have to step up to the higher Blackwing trims, Hagerty reports. However, these trims come with sportier seats with headrests designed to accommodate helmets.

Pricing and availability

The 2022 CT4-V Blackwing should arrive in dealers in summer 2021. And when it does, it will actually be cheaper than the BMW M3.

The rear 3/4 view of a red 2022 Cadillac CT4-V Blackwing on a racetrack
2022 Cadillac CT4-V Blackwing rear 3/4 | Cadillac

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The base CT4-V Blackwing starts at $59,990. In contrast, the 2021 BMW M3 starts at $69,900. And while the Competition model offers optional AWD, even without it, the trim starts at $72,800.

Confirming how close the CT4-V Blackwing gets to the M3 will have to wait until then. But for now, on paper, Cadillac’s taken the fight to BMW.

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