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Write up on the V


Jan Olsson

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I thought I would do a write up on my experiences with the V so far. First of all, it is a truly amazing car and I don’t regret buying it for a tiny instance despite the fuel economy, insurance costs and taxes. I did a thorough research before I bought it and estimated the insurance costs, taxes and fuel economy pretty darn god. Since I use it as my daily driver it is important to me that it is comfortable, safe, fun to drive, practical and reasonable easy to work with. I prefer doing my own work on my cars, shops are in my opinion expensive and cut corners hoping that people will not notice.

For instance my V wasn’t an exception from that rule. When I bought it they promised to fix some problems I had discovered. To be fair they told me about them before I did mention them myself so I figured that they had their act together. After all they are an authorized Cadillac dealer here in Sweden.  But since I am suspicious by nature and like to know that a professional has done the work I did it myself ;)

They claimed that the engine oil was changed and it wasn’t. It was black and the OLM was at 55%. I replaced it myself.

The brake fluid level was too high. Overfilled because they changed pads, Shops always does this. They top of the fluid even if the pads are almost worn down completely in order to fool the customer that the brakes are “top notch”. This of course is bull because the fluid reservoir almost always is matched to the brake system with respect to the volume of fluid. This means that if the level is at full with new pads the level is at the lower mark when the pads are due to change. The level will be brought back to the full mark with new pads installed. It won’t do any good to top of the fluid and you will have to drain fluid to not cause the fluid to pour out when replacing pads. It is just plain stupid.

They should have replaced the coolant fluid, which they didn’t.  I did that.

The hand brake pads were completely destroyed confetti in the “drum” part of the discs when I really carefully removed them. And no, I did not kill them. J I replaced them.

The replacement pads they put on weren’t Brembo but a very cheap aftermarket solution. Wagner for $60 for the lot of them. Downright dangerous after some spirited driving. Lost brakes completely after five hard brakes apply from about 100 mph down to 50 mph. I replaced them with OEM Brembo pads which made a HUGE improvement.

Heard a grinding sound from the rear end. It seems like a pretty common concern and it always manifests when the car is cold, at moderate speeds and in turns only. It comes from the clutches…I hope. But I still have a warranty and insurance will pay the cost of an R&R if it ever comes to that. That is the only time I let a shop do the work. If it is for free… I did however try to replace the differential fluid. I’ll give it a few days to see if the sound persists.

 

(Oh I did let a shop change catalytic converter on my wife’s STS. But that is because I didn’t have the space and time and thought that it is hard to mess a work like that up. The STS will revisit the shop because they somehow managed to weld it so poorly together that the exhaust system sometimes contacts the body and causes irritating sounds. That s ok on a Volvo but this is a Cadillac. Sorry for my rant.

 

The infamous supercharger clatter. GM has released a TSB that says they will replace the supercharger for free but I will have to convince Cadillac Europe and the shop that it applies to them as well…

Of course they managed to put the wheels in the wrong spots causing my tire pressure reading to be wrong. Not to worry, I have the tool to fix it.

I wrote some very angry letters to Cadillac Europe and to the shop and at least got apologies and they also admitted that they did a poor job and promised me that they “changed their routines” but as I pointed out it wouldn’t help for the holes in my wallet so they got me the latest navigation DVD which is really expensive over here and not for sale to private persons. Well, better than nothing!

 

I will write down driving impressions of the V later on but now it is time for me to have some quality time with my wife and an old James Bond movie.

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What about driving impressions? Well let’s see. It is definitely bad for the driver’s license as expected. It is incredible fast, sticks like glue and so on. There is nothing I can say that hasn’t been mentioned in every ad or car magazine road test. BUT. I can tell you that there is no way to describe the feeling sitting behind the wheel in a V and actually experience the sales talk.

Now it is dark in the morning when I drive to work and the sun sets when it’s time to drive home and there is a lot of deer and other wild life along the roads that I travel so I have to drive carefully. But even that is fun because some parts of the roads have very tight curves and I can take them at 0.6-07 gs without speeding. It is quiet, powerful at every gear, excellent heating and cooling in the seats, rain-sense wipers a must, the auto leveling lamps a real welcome bonus on twisty roads, the nav and stereo are great, magna ride excellent and so on. It has performance algorithm shifting that makes the tranny shift to a lower gear and hold it in tight curves, limited slip differential and of course Stabilitrak. The g-force meter by the way remembers the highest amount of g-force for both left and right turns and  shows the value for the  last corner  for a couple of seconds. It seems pretty useless until you wonder if you can take that curve faster J To make sure that I can get up to speed quick in busy intersections I put in in sport mode and select “competition mode”. In that way I make sure that the Stabilitrak won’t kick in and stop me when I need to pick up speed and still have the security if I would start to spin out. It is ridiculously fun to accelerate and get some wheel-spin in second and even third gear with a little bit of fish-tailing when launching up to triple digits. Not too often though but at least once a day ;)

It is very forgiving and easy to drive but it is easy to spin the rear tires on wet roads if you are not careful. But Stabilitrak gives feedback and cuts out just before it gets a little too exciting. It is just as Cadillac says, it makes you feel like a very good driver.

If one would try to floor it on a big empty road with good vision just to see what it can do (not me, not me, not me) one would be amazed about the way it accelerates endlessly. 0, 60, 100, 150 is reached completely effortless. The top speed for the auto is 305 km/h on the speedometer which equals about 290 km/h on the GPS (180 mph) and it feels completely stable and silent at those speeds. It still pulls at that speed… Use the Brembo brakes and you can brake hard down to 60 mph (you actually will be pushed hard against the seat belts and the steering wheel). It is actually harder to use the brakes when they are cold in moderate speeds. But when they are a bit warmed up they are truly incredible!

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22 hours ago, Jan Olsson said:

What about driving impressions? Well let’s see. It is definitely bad for the driver’s license as expected.

It's amazing how some vehicles affect that more than others.

I had a 70 Chevelle SS 396 that was terrible on my drivers license, making me pull my drivers license out along side the road several times.... :blink: 136 in a 75 ...  BUT, I was slowing down. Bless his heart he only wrote it for 95. Gotta love the North Carolina state police....

THERE IS ALWAYS ENOUGH TIME TO DO THE JOB RIGHT - THERE IS NEVER ENOUGH TIME TO DO THE JOB AGAIN !!!

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1 minute ago, OldCadTech said:

It's amazing how some vehicles affect that more than others.

I had a 70 Chevelle SS 396 that was terrible on my drivers license, making me pull my drivers license out along side the road several times.... :blink: 136 in a 75 ...  BUT, I was slowing down. Bless his heart he only wrote it for 95. Gotta love the North Carolina state police....

That was very generous! Over here they take the drivers license if you drive over about 19 mph too fast.

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Oh my!

I'd would probably be without a drivers license, or driving a Smart car :P

How long do they take the license for?

THERE IS ALWAYS ENOUGH TIME TO DO THE JOB RIGHT - THERE IS NEVER ENOUGH TIME TO DO THE JOB AGAIN !!!

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They normally take it for two months but that depends if they consider it reckless driving or not or if you have strong reasons to why you need a driver’s license. I have lost the license twice. Both times for relatively slow speeding violations. Last time was twelve years ago so I guess I’ll keep my fingers crossed! The fine was about $500 for driving 75 mph at a 55 mph road…But if you are ticketed for several minor speeding violations they can take your driver’s license for longer. If you drive 50 mph or faster at posted speed 30mph or higher they can take it for eight months. But there are so few police men on the roads here that if you ever encounter one you can almost bet that they are alone. With the right circumstances, for instance if you are driving on an open stretch of highway, one could theoretically drive away from them with ease (they drive Volvos), drive of the next exit, exit the car and tell them, when they finally arrive, that someone else was driving. They have to make sure that the person they stop actually was the one behind the wheel.

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There is a german video that says all you need to know about the acceleration. Notice that he didn't use sport mode which means the tranny starts in second gear. It's almost not noticeable! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IjU1UwldQxs

 

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