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Cadillac ATS, Compact Luxury Sedan 'Lite'

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On: Wed, Jun 27, 2012 at 10:53AM | By: Chris Salamone

Cadillac ATS, Compact Luxury Sedan 'Lite'

Every few years we get a renovated soda brand which seemingly defies our perceptions of what makes soda so freaking delicious. Case in point: Coke Zero, all of the taste, none of the calories (or some such jingle). But Cadillac’s incoming 2013 ATS model is much more than just a gussied up pig with new lipstick.

Instead, the ATS will be Cadillac’s second market contender, after the CTS V-Series, that will challenge a powerhouse segment – flooded with the likes of the BMW 3-Series, Mercedes-Benz C-Class, and Audi A4.

And, just before the ATS hits the showroom floor, the slugmatch has officially begun. Cadillac released a competitive comparison graphic showcasing the ATS’s weight saving, and thus performance, specs.

“Being quick and agile are highly valued qualities in the compact luxury sport sedan segment,” said David Masch, ATS chief engineer. “We designed and engineered ATS’s all-new vehicle architecture to deliver a spirited driving experience that builds on Cadillac’s sport heritage and success with its performance-tuned CTS-V.”

The base model ATS, equipped with a 2.5-liter engine, is good for a class-leading 3,315 pounds – which is about 150 lbs lighter (+/-) than the competition. And starting with an MSRP of $33,990, the base ATS is priced to sell.

But if you’re looking for a little meat on the bone, Cadillac will offer a 2.0-liter turbocharged model for $35,795 and the chart-topping 3.6 liter V-6 for $42,090. When equipped with the largest of the three, the ATS will jump from naught to sixty in 5.4 seconds.

Rear-wheel drive is standard across the range, and all-wheel drive is optional on all but the base model. For the right mix of speed and fuel economy, though, we’d suggest looking into the rear-wheel drive mid-range 2.0-liter turbo – equipped with the six speed.

While EPA estimates have not yet been released, GM suggests an anticipated highway economy of 32 mpg and city rating of 22 mpg for both 2.5-L and 2.0-L turbo engines.

The ATS is fast, lightweight, and devilishly handsome. Throw in a nifty visual organizer and compact luxury sedan enthusiasts might just start salivating. Mention the vehicle’s heart-stopping quickness, 50-50 mass distribution, Brembo brakes, and value and enthusiasts might transform – not unlike the caterpillar – into whimsical flying butterflies…oh, or…buyers.

Considering the success and popularity of Cadillac’s current CTS, it’s safe to say the all-new CTS lite is sure to make a splash.

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