DRIVEN pedal pusher James Lamdin‘s latest automotive assignation was with the brand-new Cadillac CTS V-Sport. Read on to see what difference one letter can make…

Earlier this year, I reported from behind the wheel of the game-changing 2014 Cadillac CTS.

Using descriptions like “an utterly fantastic driver’s car,” and “not your grandmother’s Caddy,” I attempted to convey just how much of a game-changer this masterpiece from General Motors truly is.

Hopefully you were paying attention and went out and bought one.

But after six months of reflection, and some more seat time with some other current Cadillac vehicles, it is my duty to report that there is a caveat to my previous observations.

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And that caveat comes in the form of the CTS V-Sport: the standard sedan’s testosterone-injected sibling.

While the standard CTS is by all means a world-class sedan, that little V-Sport badge tagged on to its rear end changes the game completely.

In place of the standard 3.6L V6 sits a twin turbo unit that spews out an additional hundred horses (now 420), seemingly enough to set fire to the pavement from a dead stop.

Paired with an eight-speed automatic gearbox with flappy paddles, an electronic limited slip differential and a liquid metal Magnetic Ride Control system borrowed from a Terminator T-1000, the CTS V-Sport truly is a different beast altogether.

In a very, very good way.

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Unlike so many horsepower-injected saloons, the V-Sport can be driven with the same grace as its un-blown sibling, provided you leave the drive mode in “Tour.”

But flip the selectable drive mode to Sport (or one of the included Track modes) and you’re liable to instantly forget what you’re sitting in.

Mainly because the exhaust begins snarling like a track-prepped Corvette.

The handling also improves dramatically in Sport mode, belying the luxury sedan’s size and amenities and enabling the driver to pour it on in the corners without much drama.

Visually, the ‘Vet… err… V-Sport doesn’t differ much from the standard CTS.

A more aggressive grille and some snazzy wheels are just about all that sets it apart, making it one of the best modern sleepers we could think of.

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That said, a look at the vertically stacked LED headlamps coming up in the rearview was pretty much all it took to convince slower drivers to move out of our path, as evidenced on a recent road trip from Manhattan to Maine.

They just look plain mean.

So there you have it, kids.

The CTS is one hell of a machine, with or without the V-Sport kit.

Our suggestion? Take the V-Sport.

I mean, what could be better? It’s not like there’s an all-new full-blown CTS-V coming down the pipeline or anything…

… oh.

James Lamdin