New Cadillac ATS
“The ATS ticks all the right boxes for European customers,“ says Wolfgang Schubert, Cadillac Europe Managing Director. “It is stylish, quick, nimble and great fun to drive. We are very excited to be expanding our model line-up with the addition of this superb vehicle.
It has all the credentials necessary to seriously challenge the established order in its class.”
Four model variants are offered – Elegance, Luxury, Performance and Premium. In true Cadillac tradition, each is generously equipped, including standard features that usually appear on the options lists of competitors.
Highly competitive pricing for European markets is exemplified in Germany, where prices range from just 37,500 euros for the ATS Elegance with manual transmission to 50,970 euros for the top-of-the-line ATS Premium with all-wheel drive.
The all-new vehicle architecture at the heart of the ATS is focused on saving weight without compromising structural strength or running refinement. Combined with a lightweight powertrain, it gives the ATS a curb weight as low as 1540 kilos, which is among the very lightest in its class.
Low weight is a key requirement for nimble handling responses, a favorable power-to-weight ratio and minimized fuel consumption. Managing the needs of load and space – what engineers call topology – ensured that mass efficiency was integral to the ATS’s structural design. Body sections and components were evaluated gram-by-gram and are precisely tailored to fulfill their function, without incurring unnecessary weight or bulk.
Mass is primarily reduced by the strategic incorporation of high-strength steels and the use of aluminum for the hood, front sub-frame, front strut mounts, both bumper beams and suspension components. Even the engine mountings are in weight-saving magnesium.
An optimal weight distribution is another desirable for well-balanced handling. And here the ATS boasts a near-perfect weight split between its front and rear axles: 50.1%/49.9% for cars with a manual gearbox and 51%/49% for those with automatic transmission.
Chassis dynamics are further enhanced by the use of double-pivot, MacPherson strut front suspension – for improved steering, ride and noise isolation – and the installation of Cadillac’s first five-link, independent rear suspension, giving excellent stability through restricted roll center motion.
High-performance Brembo front brakes, premium ZF variable-effort, electric power steering and StabiliTrak electronic stability control are all fitted as standard across the range. A mechanical limited-slip rear differential also comes as standard with manual transmission.
Magnetic Ride Control, the world’s fastest-acting active suspension system, is included with Premium specification and is also part of an optional Sport Suspension pack.
All chassis components have been optimized through exhaustive testing on the fabled Nürburgring Nordschleife in Germany, where many of the ATS chassis engineers were involved in the development of the highly-acclaimed Cadillac CTS V-Series.
Highly efficient power
With 276 hp/203 kW on tap, the all-new aluminum 2.0-liter turbo engine packs more power per liter than any powerplant in the ATS’s class. Light and compact, it makes a perfect partner for the car’s agile chassis.
This highly efficient, four cylinder motor propels the ATS from zero to 100 km/h in just 5.9 seconds and delivers impressive combined cycle fuel economy of 8.2 l/100 km (6.0 sec and 8.6 l/100 km respectively with manual transmission).
The engine utilizes state-of-the-art technologies, including direct fuel injection, continuously variable valve timing and a twin-scroll turbocharger. Running refinement and fuel economy are enhanced by a series of measures that have reduced frictional losses by an average of 16 percent compared to GM’s current generation of turbo fours.
On the road, the driver enjoys easy, instant access to strong pulling power. Maximum torque is a plentiful 353 Nm and, equally important, the torque curve hits its peak at a low 1,700 rpm and holds steady all the way to 5,300 rpm. As a result, the ATS offers plenty of pulling power over a wide range of engine speeds for swift and relaxed driving.
Power is delivered to the rear wheels through a choice of six-speed manual and automatic transmissions. The former comes with a limited-slip differential and the latter – featuring magnesium steering wheel shift paddles – is also available with all-wheel-drive.