Saturday, January 14, 2012

NAIAS 2012: Cadillac ATS

  In recent years, Cadillac has been rapidly catching up to its foreign competitors, almost entirely thanks to the CTS.  Now they're launching a smaller RWD sedan to directly compete with the BMW 3 Series, Mercedes-Benz C Class, and Audi A4- the ATS. 

  The base engine will be the new 2.5 liter Ecotec inline 4, which puts out 200 horsepower, with an available turbocharged 2.0 liter making 270 horsepower.  The top of the line ATS will recieve a powerful 3.6 liter V-6, good for 318 horsepower.  The standard transmission will be a 6 speed automatic, with a 6 speed manual available with the turbocharged engine.  GM promises a diesel variant in the near future, along with an 8 speed automatic gearbox.
  Cadillac has put sufficient effort into making the ATS handle well, fine-tuning the cars suspension at the infamous Nurburgring.  GM claims a curb weight of just 3,400 pounds, making it the lightest luxury car in its segment, which helps with speed, handling, and fuel efficiency. 
  It has a much sharper appearance than any of its German competitors, with vertically extended headlights that don't try to hide the sedans quick performance.  However, the styling is still refined enough to be a successful luxury car.

  The Cadillac ATS is a gorgeous, lightweight luxury car with competent drivetrain and suspension technology.  But will it really be enough to take on the ultimate BMW 3-series?  We'll find out this summer when it goes on sale, hopefully soon followed by a convertible, coupe, and high performance ATS-V variant.


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