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Tale of the Tape: 2016 Cadillac CTS-V VS 2015 Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat

Now that General Motors has announced the new 2016 Cadillac CTS-V with the drivetrain from the 2015 Corvette Z06, the Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat finally has some competition from another Detroit automaker and today, we take a look at how these two super-sedans will match up.

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The 2015 Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat is the most powerful, the quickest and the fastest 4-door production sedan in the world and before the 2016 Cadillac CTS-V was introduced online, the Charger had no real competition from either of the American automaker. However, now that GM has announced their plans to produce to the Z06-powered CTS-V sedan, the Hellcat Charger will have some solid competition in the high performance sedan segment.

Today, we look at the numbers for the new Cadillac CTS-V and the Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat.

Drivetrains: Hellcat Charger VS LT4 CTS-V
First off, both the 2015 Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat and the 2016 Cadillac CTS-V are powered by supercharged V8 engines measuring 6.2 liters and the power is sent to the rear wheels via 8-speed automatic transmissions in both cars. The Dodge is powered by the Hellcat Hemi, with 707 horsepower and 650lb-ft of torque while the Caddy is powered by the same LT4 as the one used in the Corvette Z06, but in the new CTS-V, the new blown GM small block “only” delivers 640 horsepower and 630lb-ft of torque due to a change in the oiling system. This gives the Charger an advantage of 67 horsepower and 20lb-ft of torque, but the Charger also weighs significantly more.

Galleries of the Two:
The First Images of the 2016 Cadillac CTS-V
Live images of the 2015 Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat debut
My 2015 Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Test Car

The Cadillac is expected to have a curb weight of 4,145 pounds while the Charger weighs a heftier 4,560 pounds. This gives the Caddy a substantial weight advantage of 415 pounds, but due to the massive advantage in engine output, the Charger still has an advantage in power to weight ratio. The Charger has a ratio of 6.45 pounds per horsepower while the CTS-V has a ratio of 6.48 pounds or horsepower. This is a very (very) small difference, but in a battle of inches, this advantage makes a difference.

This advantage in power to weight ratio is why the Dodge Charger Hellcat has a top speed 4 miles per hour better and it is also why the Charger could outrun the lighter CTS-V in the quarter mile – although we will have to wait for official quarter mile times from GM to know for sure which is quicker in stock form.

Handling Head to Head
While the true test of handling capabilities between the 2015 Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat and the 2016 Cadillac CTS-V will be staged in the real world on a collection of race track, we can make some guesses as to what we can expect when these two super sedans hit the road course. Both cars feature high tech adjustable suspension setups, with the Cadillac sporting the newest GM Magnetic Selective Ride Control system and the Charger packing the latest version of their three-mode suspension package which has been specifically tuned for the Hellcat package. Both cars feature Brembo brakes with 15.4 inch rotors up front, but the Cadillac has slightly larger brakes out back (14.4” to Dodge’s 13.6” rotors) so when combined with the lighter weight, the CTS-V should be able to get stopped quicker…although that will also have to be proven.

The past CTS-V has proven to be one of the best handling sedans in the world so the Charger Hellcat will have to prove that it can handle the turns better than the 640hp Caddy. When you consider the fact that the previous CTS-V models were such amazing road course cars combined with the fact that the newest CTS-V has bigger brakes and it weighs 415lbs less than the Hellcat Charger, it looks on paper as though the Caddy should have an advantage in terms of handling.

Of course, that is all based on speculation based on numbers and past performances so when the two cars meet in the real world – results may vary.

Charger Should Have a Big Price Advantage
When comparing the 2015 Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat and the 2016 Cadillac CTS-V, the two cars are very similar in many ways with the biggest known difference right now being the 67 horsepower advantage of the Hellcat Hemi. We don’t know the pricing of the new Cadillac super sedan just yet, but we do know that the Hellcat Charger starts at $62,295. We also know that the 2015 Cadillac CTS V Sport with the 420hop twin turbo V6 starts just over $60,000 and the previous CTS-V sedan started right around $65,000.

Considering that the new Cadillac CTS-V has a ton more horsepower, a ton more torque, a new 8-speed automatic transmission and a collection of high performance features, I would expect that the newest CTS-V sedan would at least cost a coupe grand more than the previous version. If the 2016 CTS-V costs $3,000 more than the 2013 model, we can expect a base MSRP of roughly $68,000 so before any options have been added on – the Charger could cost almost 10% less than the Cadillac while packing more power and being faster.

With the new Cadillac CTS-V slated to debut at the 2015 North American International Auto Show, we should know all about the newest super sedan within the next few weeks. At that point, we should have a better idea of how the CTS-V will match up with the 707 horsepower Hellcat Hemi powered Dodge Charger.

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D Schmidt (not verified)    December 30, 2014 - 12:21PM

I would hope a Caddy costs more than a Dodge. If they were the same exact price, I don't know anyone who would choose the Charger over the CTS-V, even with slightly better performance numbers.

Jay (not verified)    December 30, 2014 - 1:45PM

Both nice cars! I'd choose the Dodge because Cadis are too expensive to repair and drive every day.

Dodge, while mainstream, is about big hp.

The only home turf rival to the CTS-V would be (well, this was originally my own idea) a Ford Performance-tuned Lincoln MKZ GTR (distinguished from the rest of the Lincoln model lineup) with a 5.2L V8 producing at least 645 hp.

im (not verified)    December 30, 2014 - 10:44PM

In reply to by Jay (not verified)

Lincoln lol... thats funny... domestic or not the M5 is the only thing with a shot of matching that thing in terms of both performance and refinement, sure to be another major thing to separate the V from the hellcat.

Garry (not verified)    January 11, 2020 - 1:48PM

In reply to by Jay (not verified)

I just wanted to point out a common misconception. In the past Cadillac might have been more expensive to repair, not so much these days. The engine is the same 3.6 that is in many GM cars, the 6.2 is the same motor as the Corvette and Camaro with a slightly smaller blower, the brakes on my CTS are the smarter as the Camaro. They ate not add proprietary ads in the past, they have a whole new management theory these days.

Darren (not verified)    December 30, 2014 - 7:11PM

Top speed has very little to do with weight, it's all about friction in the form of wind resistance and drivetrain losses. Similarly acceleration is about power to weight AND how well the car (and the driver) can put that power down.

Joe (not verified)    December 31, 2014 - 11:25AM

Currently driving the 2014 CTS-V Sport and awaiting the 2016 CTS-V. I disagree with the cost to repair being too high on the Cadillac. You get 4yr/50K bumper to bumper and 6yr/70K on powertrain. Plus you get 4yr/50K included maintenance. Plus you get roadside assist and OnStar.