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I am not sure I love my 5BW


Active Member
May 16, 2022
Carbondale, IL
I got my CT5-V Blackwing 6MT in February. I ordered from Sewell in August 2021, and after being on a waiting list forever, they told me that I could have the car in 6 weeks if I omitted the CF1 package. Eventually I relented.

Mine is blaze orange (which is the best color, IMO) and has the bronze wheels, red seatbelts, PDR, sunroof, mid-range seats with white inserts, and the digital rear view mirror. I think that's it--I didn't do the fancy brakes or the CF1 or CF2.

Before my 5BW arrived, I coordinated to have full PPF done--I absolutely hate rock chips, and I had planned to track the 5BW, which is just asking for chips. I paid $6300 for the PPF job. The installer offered to tint the car for free, which I accepted. He did a good job laying the tint, but must have done it in a dirty environment because the rear glass's tint had a ton of specs.

I ordered a carbon fiber spoiler from Exhibitions of Speed. The PPF installer said he would PPF the spoiler and install it. When I dropped the 5BW off with him, I asked him to remove the tint, which he did in a passable fashion. For the spoiler, the installer did a shit job--the PPF had white specs under it, he used both the 1.5mm and 3mm tape which resulted in an abhorrent gap, and he only installed four of the six bolts.

So I am working on getting that resolved. I went to two shops today and they both told me that they thought they would damage the trunk PPF if they removed the spoiler to re-PPF it. I called the original installer and told him that I wanted him to schedule me ASAP, even if it involved reorganizing his schedule, and that I wanted the car back within 24 hours, not within a week or two as has been par for the course. I am waiting to hear back about him reorganizing his schedule.

All of this stuff has taken the sheen off of having the first brand new car I have ever bought, much less a unicorn like a 6MT 5BW. Now onto the things that I don't love about the 5BW.

--No adaptive headlights. My '11 and '15 Audi S4s have headlights that move right and left to follow the road at night. My 5BW does not.
--It's irritating how the trunk pops up with such force that you basically have to slam it shut to get it to stay closed.
--The 5BW just feels like a big car. It seems to take up soooo much space in my two-car garage. (A friend has a nearby warehouse where I shuffle a few other cars, but the 5BW has a permanent spot in my home garage because.. holy shit, it's worth about what my other four cars are worth put together. Probably a lot more.)
--The traction control is fucking stupid. Every one of the settings is some degree of wildly intrusive. The only other setting is "completely off", which is like "no condoms allowed" night at the brothel. I want to be midway through a corner in second gear and be able to roll on the throttle and exit with a moderate degree of sideways--reign me in if it seems like I'm going to pirouette the car, but otherwise, shut the fuck up and let me be.. This is wholly and completely impossible with even the most lax of traction control settings.
--I don't want to push the brake pedal to turn off the parking brake. I disabled this in my S4.
--668hp is.. kind of quick. But it's not earth-shattering. I would like 800hp without voiding my warranty, please.
--The seat feels narrow in the thighs (I am 6'4" and 215lbs). This is probably because I haven't figured out how to adjust the seat properly, but also, every time I have messed with the seat settings, I have seemed to make them worse.
--6th gear is like 7th gear. What I mean is 1st through 5th gears are pretty close ratios. Each time I shift, the next gear "feels" like it's at the right RPM. But when I go from 5th to 6th, the RPM drop is so huge, I feel like I'm going from 5th to 7th gear. I had two Fox body Mustangs back in the day and their transmissions were similar--1st through 4th would feel good, but 5th was such a huge drop in RPM that I never wanted to use it unless I was cruising on the interstate at high-ish speeds.
--More things I will think of when I drive the kids to school tomorrow morning.

My other cars are:
--'94 Chevy Caprice wagon. It's black cherry, has a high-stall converter, 20" Boss 338s, dark tinted windows, a big cam, and is basically a modern muscle car. Keeping this thing forever.
--'02 Porsche 911 cabrio. Silver (cliched) but Boxter red interior. Mostly stock. 6MT, exhaust mods, sounds great. Wouldn't mind replacing it with a 996 turbo if funds and availability line up.
--'03 Mustang Cobra convertible. 613rwhp. Slightly quicker than the 5BW in a straight line. Still working on mods so I can roadcourse it.
--'11 Audi S4 6MT. This is the benchmark against which the 5BW might fall short. This car is modded to about 500 crank horsepower. It just "feels" right. I had a comparably-modded '15 S4 and sold it in August 2021 to buy an '09 CTS-V. I regretted that choice instantly, put the V up for sale, and put in the order for my current 5BW. The S4 is the "right" size. It handles really well, and the 3L V6 is really punchy. And it's 12 years old with its share of blemishes so I don't worry about what I might park it next to. If something breaks, I don't mind throwing money at it because it's just a really great car.

The one time I really enjoyed the 5BW was when I was on a backroad and I dialed it up to about eight 10ths. The car felt really good at that pace, and I feel like I would enjoy at at the roadcourse. I'm not ready to post the for-sale tag yet--maybe I need to thoroughly whup the laptimes that I've posted with my 911 and S4 to feel like the 5BW has earned its place. On the other hand, I wonder if I shouldn't try out an F80 M3 with the 6MT. But along those lines, I think a 4BW might be the perfect sedan if it came with the supercharged 6.2L--it is very close to S4 sized but.. I am not afraid to admit that I do not love turbos. Give me supercharged or normally aspirated--screw turbos.

This has been a lot of typing and mostly to just get my thoughts on "paper". All feedback is encouraged. Am I a spoiled elitist pigdog? First world problems? Or just a jaded old codger?
My impression from reading your post is you bought the wrong car for "you". It doesn't seem to fit what you like. You are probably also a little jaded by some issues with others that are not the car's fault.
To be honest, I was expecting to see gas mileage on your list of complaints. But your complaints seem minor in my opinion.
It is a big car, that should be no surprise. I do agree about the adaptive headlights, not sure why GM hasn’t got on board with offering them. Part of cost cutting I suppose.

I am surprised by the traction control comments. I‘ve had two ZL1s and now the 4V BW. I’ve never had a problem with finding a TC mode that isn’t too intrusive. Might take some more time to play with to find the right one.

It does sound like the car might not be for you. Maybe a new M5 or Charger Hellcat, but no MT of course.
Sorry OP but I'm not with you on anything but that the 5 feels like a big car.

Having spent over half of my 17k miles on a track, all the PTM modes have there uses. And even in my 4BW anything above dry allows throttle oversteer. So the 5 is just more of the same, but you're complaining it's too intrusive when in actuality the chassis on these cars is so good that it's exposing you aren't as smooth as you think.

As for the other complaints all princess and the pea. The 5 is a big sports car, not a muscle car, so it's not meant to be driven like a Hellcat. You're true to form complaining the TC is too good but the car is too powerful yet figuring it needs another 150hp.

As for the parking break yeah I'd prefer a handle, but the electronic set up operates per safety regulations.
All feedback is encouraged. Am I a spoiled elitist pigdog? First world problems? Or just a jaded old codger?

Yes to all three. ;)

My impression from reading your post is you bought the wrong car for "you". It doesn't seem to fit what you like. You are probably also a little jaded by some issues with others that are not the car's fault.

I think the OP's issue is that he has a couple of really high performance modified cars, and he's expecting/missing some of that in his stock OE Ponti... er, Cadillac.

If you want the traction/stability control to let you drift just a little bit but not too much, you need to buy my M4 which has that option. I never use it, I can't drift and unless I can find a wet skidpad, I'm not practicing on public roads. But that's me, you go ahead and tear up your tires if you want to.

The other stuff is really just trivial minor nonsense. I concur with @shbox above that most of your discontent is probably brought on by the issues with the wing and the PPF. Not to diminish your annoyance, but none of that is the fault of the car.

I concur that the car doesn't feel as "quick" as perhaps it should for all of that power, and it is big, yes. And yes, it was cheap/oversight for them to have left out adaptive headlights on a $100K car. Ditto no trunk closer. But in the grand scheme of things, neither are deal-breakers to me.

BTW, I once had the S5 with the V8 (I forgot the model designation) and it was a really interesting car, with the magic diff and that lovely engine. The clutch was weird, the dealer here sucks and like the BW, it just never "felt" fast. Sometimes things just don't click.
Where to start. If I didn’t have a busy work schedule, I could spend two hours unpacking your post. First off I recommend you schedule an appointment with Dr. Zoomie, @ZoomieZoom55. It would seem there are some underlying issues not related to the car. How are things going at home and with your job?

Don’t try to PPF the spoiler. I went down that road and ultimately removed it. The angles are too sharp for an invisible/seamless application. Also the PPF noticeably reduces the depth and beauty of the carbon fiber.

The approach to demand the PPF work be done in 24 hours is likely going to lead to even more problems. Patience will give a better result. I been in these situations and the best outcome is to tell them to take as much time as necessary to do the job right, but also ask for a reasonable deadline.

On a general note, it seems like aside from the nit-picking this car is not a good match for your personality. But, I also think you may not understand what the PTM modes do and how to set them properly for different situations.
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The answer is: Tesla Model S plaid.

Forget naturally aspirated, non aspirated for the win!
OP, This ^ might be right, in your case.

I see your problem, you're used to High HP AWD.
A heavy RWD car can't put power down the same way.
It's going to struggle on Public Roads.
Although, at the Track, on Warm Tires, RWD is in its element.

I agree that the 5 is too big/heavy...... but for people who routinely carry rear seat passengers, it's perfect.
For those who don't, it makes little sense.

You have a well rounded fleet already, so the 5 seems a bit redundant, in your case.

On the G80, you should know the BMW 6MT shifts like a wet noodle, compared to a BlackWing.
The upside of BMW is that long term parts availability is very good (where BW parts are effectively unavailable already).
This has been a lot of typing and mostly to just get my thoughts on "paper". All feedback is encouraged. Am I a spoiled elitist pigdog? First world problems? Or just a jaded old codger?
Jeff Goldblum What GIF by The Late Late Show with James Corden

troll deal with it GIF
Why don't you get a 4BW, talk with Tapout Tuning on a particular package and then have maybe what you want?
He doesn’t like turbos. All of them. Which is why I wonder how an F or G80 M3 could solve that…?
Why don't you get a 4BW, talk with Tapout Tuning on a particular package and then have maybe what you want?
That was my first thought, but except for size it has all the same "problems" on his complaint list, and he would probably add more since the 4 has a few less features than the 5. And he hates turbos. ;shrug

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