General Motor Co. adds a high-performance variant to the Cadillac CTS Coupe, squeezing a 6.2L supercharged V-8 engine into the 4-passenger sports car.

The auto maker will unveil the ’11 Cadillac CTS-V Coupe during media days at next week’s North American International Auto Show in Detroit.

GM first showed the coupe in concept form last year at the Detroit show, where it was named the event’s top show car. It bowed in nearly identical production skin last month at the Los Angeles auto show.

The standard version CTS, which employs a 304-hp 3.6L V-6 engine with gasoline direct injection, arrives at Cadillac dealers in the second quarter. The V-Series arrives early in the third quarter. Both models are built at GM’s Lansing, MI, Grand River assembly plant.

Cadillac General Manager Bryan Nesbitt calls the CTS-V Coupe a marriage of GM’s “most potent and sophisticated technologies” with the “most dramatic production design” from the auto maker.

“This combination of visual and technical attributes is designed to create a very compelling choice for luxury sports-car consumers,” Nesbitt says in statement.

It’s unclear what effect the slowly recovering economy will have on the high-powered luxury coupe’s sales.

The U.S. recession has pummeled the segment, with sales falling from 103,901 units in 2007 to 72,900 in 2008 and a meager 39,031 through the first 11 months of 2009, according to Ward’s data. Between 2007 and 2009, deliveries were down a whopping 62.4%, compared with an industry downturn over the same period of 41.7%.

As such, Ward’s data also shows low build numbers for the V-Series. Midway through the ’09 model year, the V-8 accounted for just 3.1% of all engine installations for the CTS.

But as with the CTS-V Sports Sedan, the CTS-V Coupe undoubtedly will raise the cache of the Cadillac brand among performance enthusiasts. Reviewing the ’09 CTS-V Sports Sedan at its launch, for example, Ward’s editors lauded its thunderous acceleration and exceptional value.

Pricing has not been released, but with coupes traditionally demanding a premium over sedans, expect the CTS-V Coupe to sticker above the $60,000 CTS-V Sports Sedan.

The CTS-V Coupe uses the same V-8 found in the CTS-V Sports Sedan. It is mated to either a 6-speed manual or 6-speed automatic transmission. Making 556 hp and 551 lb.-ft. of torque (747 Nm), the engine will take the coupe from 0-60 mph (67 km/h) in less than four seconds, GM says.

The exterior of the car is distinguished from its less-powerful stable mate by the addition of a lower air dam to the grille for enhanced intake, as well as a hood bulge to accommodate its 4-lobe Roots-type supercharger from Eaton Corp.

Additional performance treatments to the CTS-V Coupe include Magnetic Ride Control, which instantly adjusts the suspension to changes in driver aggressiveness and road conditions; Brembo racing brakes; and standard 19-in. aluminum wheels with Michelin Pilot Sport 2 performance tires.

Inside, the coupe receives a new Saffron interior trim, with contrasting microfiber seat inserts and stitching in the upper-trim area. Recaro performance seats are optional.

jamend@wardsauto.com