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Let’s face reality. The economy is headed into the toilet. For how long, no one knows but the fact is that all of these financial giants going under, Sidev2_optsub-prime loans and huge bail-outs can only spell one thing – disaster! A couple of my homies in the financial sector have said we are headed into a depression that will make the 1929 crash look like blip in the radar. And there is really no one else to blame but ourselves because we live on credit and love to buy goods made overseas. Buying domestic is a huge issue here in North America because both Canadians and Americans are not buying domestic cars like they used to. Considering areas like Ontario, Canada that make some of the best quality cars in the world have 1-in-7 jobs related to the auto industry, it could get ugly. So, hate to hit the panic button but I’m looking to go more liquid assets and the next car I buy might just be a domestic.

The the price range, I’d be looking at something like an SRT-8 Challenger or the Cherokee. I kinda like the looks and features of the Ford Flex as well. But if I find some buried treasure in my backyard, it would most certainly be the Cadillac CTS-V. This is a 556hp menace with 551 lb-ft of twist, it runs engine1_optmid-12s stock and roasts through 60mph in 4.0-seconds. And the party doesn’t stop there because it isn’t just a straight line machine because it will brake 60mph-0 in under 110ft and clobbered the Nurburgring in 7:59.32. The supercharged LS7 engine pushes this euro-fighter to 191mph terminal velocity outgunning many of its espresso-sipping competitors. Imagine what it would be capable of with a big turbo...

Now imagine what it would be capable of with two. That is what Team ETC (Elite Tuners of Canada) decided to accomplish after their highly acclaimed Top Tuner Sky and Top Tuner Solstice projects. Sure this build did not start out life as a CTS-V, but the mission was to essentially build their own iteration of the ‘V’ and make it something that has never been done before to a Cadillac. At the heart of the project is the newer LSX cast iron block with ported and polished LS7 heads. The engine work was performed by a few of the best shops in Canada. Paul Arsenault from PA Performance and Marc Arsenault from Arsenault Cylinder Heads both located in Shediac, New Brunswick performed the machining, porting and polishing duties. J.P Lamoureaux from the Cailloux Rod Shop in Mariville, QC did all of the custom fabrication work and plumbing for the motor while Simon Rowe at Rowetech Automotive in Oakville, ON did the project management of the build. The engine internals consist of K1 Technologies steel crank and connecting rods with JE Pistons 8.5:1 slugs and high horsepower rings. Everything was cinched back up with Cometic and GM gaskets by ARP fasteners.

The forced induction came from a blower on last years SEMA sensation, the Saturn Sky. But this year they decided to switch it up for the Top Tuner cover_optCadillac. Team ETC decided to roll with twin turbos, big T-66s supplied by Turbonetics. The materials for the custom: turbo headers, and piping and mufflers were all supplied by Vibrant Performance. The IC piping are all custom stainless steel while the twin Spearco intercoolers are cleverly mounted up front to maximize airflow. The twin Turbonetics Racegates regulate the gases on the hot sides while twin Turbonetics Godzilla blow-off valves vent the excess air. Charge air heads to a Wilson 90mm throttle body and a custom Wilson aluminum intake manifold. The fuel comes in like a tsunami from a trio of Bosch external pumps feeding Wilson rails and RC Engineering 1680cc injectors. Igniting the mix are Electromotive coil packs and Bosch Iridium plugs connected to Moroso wires. What the motor won’t accomplish the turbos will and if they run out of juice, they always have the direct port 250-shot from NOS Systems.

The entire ensemble is orchestrated by the Electromotive TEC-3 standalone and has put down some impressive numbers at the Mechanical Power dyno run by Steve Szozepanski. The numbers say the car pushes 1455whp and over 1100lb-ft of torque. Enough twist to mangle driveline components, so the clutch and Flywheel were replaced with Zoom Performance Stage V clutch and lightweight flywheel. The driveshaft is a custom aluminum piece spinning up an LSD and axles from a CTS-V fed by the 6-speed Tremec box.

With the mechanics all sorted out under the hood, Team ETC projects are all about dramatic award-winning styling. Father and son team Lee and Chris Nankoo from Phat Ride Customs in Montreal, QC set out to design a custom widebody for the CTS ... completely out of metal. The bumpers are customrear_opt fiberglass both front and rear and the hood and trunk lid are also both custom pieces. The grill is a custom piece from Strut with triple stage chroming and hand-signed by the crafter. The sideskirts are custom fiberglass and every protruding piece on the car has been shaved. The headlights have been relocated and fitted with Ignited Performance HIDs and the rear tails have been modified and relocated. Even the wheels wells and undercarriage have been custom fabricated and all wiring has been ghosted. The finished product was sprayed in seven coats of Sikkens Vicious Red and seven more coats of clear. Serge Leger, Pierre LeBlanc, Christien LeBlanc, Matt Robillard, Ed Dorion and Justin Cormier at Henry’s Autobody in Shediac, NB contributed to the over 1000 man hours spent on the body.

With new widebody and tubbed-out wheel wells, there was more than enough volume to sink in some massive rollers. And Team ETC contacted Strut for their new wheel the Icon MS. Up front are 22x9.5-inch and in the rear are 22x11-inch rollers boasting almost 6-inches of unbelievable lip. Wrapped around the 22s are Pirelli PZero Neros 265/30R22 in the front and staggering 315/25R22 meats on the drive wheels. Behind the wheels is the product of Team ETC brake sponsor, Baer. These massive Baer brakes are 6-pot calipers all around fitted with Baer Sport Tuning pads clamping down on 15-inch 2-piece rotors.

Trunk_opt front interior_opt rear interior_opt

When it came to suspension, Team ETC needed something with high adjustability to get the project to sit right. A set of Easy Street air suspension struts and bags were custom fitted to each corner by Cailloux Rod Shop and lowered to extremes. The in-car controls allow for the compressor to adjust the suspension height as needed and in the case of SEMA will be on the lowest possible setting.

Any modern Cadillac interior is definitely something for the designers to be proud of. But in the case of Team ETC, it was only a basis for what was to cover_optcome. The interior was completed stripped bare and Dyna-matted everywhere possible for total sound fidelity. A special order aged and stressed leather was imported from Italy which took several months to deliver. A two-tone hide scheme was devised by Collins Upholstery shop in Moncton, NB and hundred of hours later everything was rewrapped. And everything was recovered including: the steering wheel, shift boot, e-brake boot, then onto the headliner, the carpets, the pillars everything in exotic fabrics and hides.

The audio and multimedia install was something that Pioneer and Team ETC worked closely together on. Pioneer would supply everything including lending a hand by their audio engineers to ensure the performance was outstanding. The center console was extended to the rear of the cabin and integrated into the rear seats. The console houses custom enclosures for two Pioneer Premier 12-inch subwoofers, two center console_optadditional LCD monitors and a Sony PS3 gaming console.  Integrating the AVIC-N2 headunit to play nice with all of the integrated controls in the factory radio console was a real task but Team ETC ensures it is all fully functional. The Pioneer AVIC-N2 was fitted with optional Bluetooth, XM radio and a rear back-up cam. Also onboard is the G-Net vehicle PC which allows for full computing powers, access to files and the internet. A Pioneer center channel was installed in a custom enclosure in the dash and custom gauge pods are found throughout the vehicle. The trunk is where the real shock sets in, a custom V-inspired enclosure houses two more Pioneer Premier 12-inch subs and four separate Pioneer Premier 1200.1 amps. There are also three separate Pioneer Premier 300.2 amps in the deck lid to feed the three sets of 6.5-inch Pioneer components found through the interior. Also housed in the trunk is the NOS bottle and all of the Easy Street air ride gear.

Yet again, Team ETC has completed the tri-fecta of SEMA accomplishments. Members: Serge Leger, Tajai Das, Edmund Manasan, Chris Nankoo, Lee Nankoo and Simon Rowe have collaborated to really bring out something special to the aftermarket for the 3rd year in a row with Castrol Canada and GM Canada. Then with Pioneer, Meguiar’s, NOS Energy Drink and Strut offering marketing dollars, product and technical support, they have attracted over 30 product sponsors who realize the value of being involved in a project of this scope. After having winning almost every conceivable show award including those from SEMA and GM, they plan to continue the trend of bringing together all areas of tuning subcultures with one SEMA build.

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