Just as the 2012 Detroit Motor Show opens its doors to the members of the press, Cadillac unveils its highly anticipated sports sedan, the new ATS.
Poised to take on BMW 3 Series in terms of handling and driveability, the Cadillac ATS counts on its fairly low weight of 1,500 kg, rear-drive chassis, and a lineup of two four-cylinders and a V-6 engines. The car’s been endlessly tested on the Nurburgring.
But what the ATS is like as a family saloon? On the surface things look good. It looks as posh and plush as a Caddy should, and the spacious interior is full of leather and real wood in three different color combo.
What’s slightly worrying is the underpinnings. You see, Cadillac’s obsession with handling and balance in this car might have very well sacrificed the ride quality and comfort. The ATS features a driver-adjustable FE3 sport suspension with Magnetic Ride Control real-time damping. It’s got Brembo performance brakes, and underbody aerodynamic shields. You can even have it with all-wheel-drive.
We hope our concerns regarding the comfort is unfounded because the ATS is a very likeable car. Compared to this the established German saloons look, well, a bit boring.
It is also very luxurious and well-equipped, with stuff like the new CUE infotainment system featuring an eight-inch LCD multi-touch sensitive screen, Bluetooth phone connectivity with voice recognition, USB, auxiliary and SD memory card ports, SiriusXM Satellite Radio with three-month trial subscription, Keyless access and keyless push-button start, Reconfigurable 5.7-inch instrument panel cluster display, Full-color reconfigurable heads-up display.
Safety options include Full Speed Range Adaptive Cruise Control, Intelligent Brake Assist, Forward Collision Alert, Brake Pre-Fill Automatic Collision Preparation, Lane Departure Warning, Side Blind Zone Alert, Rear Vision Camera With Dynamic Guidelines, Adaptive Forward Lighting, Hill Hold/Start Assist (Standard, manual transmission).
ATS also features OnStar standard for one year.
As for the engines, it’ll come with an all-new 2.0L turbocharged four-cylinder rated at 270 horsepower (201 kW) and Cadillac’s award-winning 3.6L V-6, estimated at 320 horsepower (238 kW). For Europe it will also get a diesel engine. Transmissions include a ZF auto or a manual, with rear or all-wheel-drive.
What we like to see is a V version of the ATS. such a well-sorted, well-balanced car with a supercharged V8 sounds like a helluva recipe.