For Cadillac’s proposed ATS-V+, ‘plus’ means eight cylinders, 7.0 liters, and 505 horsepower

The 2016 Cadillac ATS-V is a steel-clad M3 fighter with a twin-turbo heart, and it’s a car that blends luxurious cruising and track prowess better than most.

The 464-horsepower Caddy (pictured) is hitting showrooms soon, and with its titanium-aluminum turbines, rev-matching Tremec manual, and 3.9-second sprint to 60 mph, its strong powertrain should go over like gangbusters. Here’s what our own Peter Braun had to say when he drove it in April.

“On the track or a truly demanding stretch of road, the Cadillac ATS-V is a revelation, sharper and more fun than anything the former Axis powers can pull off an assembly line. Cadillac has really found its stride and its personality when it comes to performance.”

As is the American way, people will eventually crave more: something faster, something lighter, and something better on the track. According to Motor Trend, the automaker is already planning a follow-up.

A planned puffed-up version of the ATS-V, known in the media as the ATS-V+, garnered headlines last month after Cadillac’s Lead Executive Engineer, Dave Leone, did no more than make some non-committal statements about the car.

The car was reportedly designed to equip eight cylinders from the beginning, and is now rumored to feature the hand-built LS7 V8 from the fifth-gen Z/28 Camaro and C6 Corvette Z06.

The 505-hp V8 is a bit of an old-school approach for Cadillac, because despite its increased displacement, the 7.0-liter LS7 makes less power than the 6.2-liter supercharged V8 under the hood of the CTS-V. It is physically smaller, lighter, and cheaper though, and it just makes business sense for the brand to differentiate the models. Alas, ATS fans may still long for 640 hp and 630 lb-ft.

The LS7 will allegedly mingle with two transmissions at first: a seven-speed manual and an eight-speed automatic. But don’t worry, DSG fans: a quick-shifting dual-clutch gearbox should pop up as an option sooner or later. The ATS-V+ could arrive by 2017.

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