2013 Cadillac ATS 3.6L Premium
3.6L V6 321 HP with 6 Speed Automatic Transmission/Paddle Shift
Crystal Red Metallic with Jet Black Leather
That we were anxious to experience that ATS is an understatement, we were excited! Having experienced a few CTS's and other sport sedans from GM, our expectations for the ATS were high.
Yes...the car met our expectations and more. Its a serious entrant in the hyper competitive market segment ruled by German cars.
We picked up the car headed for a road trip, without referring to the owners manual or being overly distracted we quickly navigated our way through CUE to adjust the climate control, the flow of air, the navigation, and obvious set our favorite satellite radio stations.
Is it a wow moment to grasp the basics of CUE by intuition?
Picking up a car, and driving for a few hours is a unique opportunity to mentally compare the car to others in the segment, our conclusion was always the same..."this is a good car, a serious competitor". Accompanied by a good level of power, wonderful sounds coming from the engine, smooth shifting transmission, precise steering, enhanced by robust brakes with Brembo front calipers. An impressive Bose sound system...which is essential on a road trip.
Turning to the interior, with lovely stitching on the dash, power seats, everything fits well, no squeaks, and after a few hours we are not sore, the seats are very comfortable, and supportive. The other controls are easy to locate and use. The cruise control speed in the heads up display is cool. Lane departure warning that communicates through the seat alert is interesting. If you are closing too fast to vehicles in front the seat alert comes into play as well as the heads up display...interesting! To accompany the precise steering, the steering wheel is the right size, thickness, with thumb rests.
Cadillac provides the choice to select different colors and materials to configure the interior to your preferences. Our tester had the Jet Black leather with the aluminum panels on the dash and doors, there is wood or carbon fibre available to replace the aluminum.
The rear seat is destined for small adults or children, not so much the leg room, as the headroom being at the premium, with the space used by the sunroof mechanism.
This car fits right, its snug and comfortable, with a low seating position which enhances the feeling of snugness.
You can configure the Cadillac ATS here.
How good is the chassis? Its fall, its colder, its wet, not ideal weather for performance summer tires, but negotiating a tight left hand sweeper on the highway the car telegraphed that it could deal with much more, uncanny the seamless performance of this car. Yes...its rear wheel drive, for the enthusiast it feels like a proper rear wheel drive car with a positraction.
The configuration of the front LED's on this car is totally cool, while adding a discrete level of bling, augmented by the illuminated door handles.
Agreed there are numerous well established incumbents in this segment, and we all know the names. The ATS is as good, and better than the incumbents. If you are seeking a competent, precise, luxury sport sedan, we encourage you to visit your Cadillac dealer and experience the ATS for yourself. We had high expectations, this car did not disappoint us, it impressed, and surprised the entire Strada crew.
The quick review.