2015 cadillac ats

2015 cadillac ats DEFAULT

If an automaker’s success really were just about the cars, as the industry shibboleth has it, Cadillac would be riding high. Take the object of this test, the new-for-2015 ATS coupe. It proved itself a worthy entry-luxury sports coupe by just about every measure imaginable, and it’s one of the most modest Cadillacs you can buy, packing a 2.0-liter turbo four with a six-speed manual gearbox in a compact two-door. Delightful to drive, well appointed, and properly built, it joins the CTS sedan (one of our 10Best Cars winners) as a world-class contender.

And yet, headline after headline is about how Cadillac is “struggling,” its sales volumes down, its leaders stirring new controversies with every pronouncement about how they’re going to “fix” things by moving the marketing team to New York, stripping the wreath from the crest on the badge, changing the naming scheme, pursuing an ambitious higher-price strategy, and investing heavily to expand the range of products. If the secret sauce is good cars, then what’s all that fuss about?

About the Car

On the evidence of the ATS, Cadillac is making really good cars. Some great ones, even. Aside from its drivetrain, this example was no stripper: It arrived at the test track wearing the range-topping Premium trim, which lifts the MSRP from the base $38,990 to $48,090. Aside from the usual abundance of creature comforts and showy technologies that come with such a designation and another 91 Benjamins, the Premium trim brings GM’s Magnetic Ride Control variable suspension and a limited-slip differential, both useful contributors to the ATS’s superb handling and over-the-road performance.

At the track, the turbo-four/manual combo delivered a 0-to-­60-mph run of 5.7 seconds, just 0.3 longer than achieved by the previously tested V-6/automatic ATS coupe, and finished the quarter-mile sprint in 14.1 seconds while doing 101 mph. Good numbers. It surrenders a half-second to 60 mph but finishes the quarter-mile in a dead heat with the BMW 428i that is the most direct competitor. And this ATS handily beat Munich’s base coupe in deceleration and roadholding by braking from 70 mph in only 156 feet and clawing the skidpad at 0.92 g.

When we pitted the 2.0-liter/manual-gearbox Cadillac and BMW sedans against one another in a comparison test, the BMW won but the Detroit entry’s engine has since been recalibrated and delivers a lot more torque earlier in the rev band. It still can’t match the easy-spinning eager personality of the BMW’s mill, but it lands a stronger punch. This coupe was but 2 pounds heavier than the sedan with the same drivetrain in that comparo and 86 pounds lighter than the V-6 ATS coupe. It all seems to have come off the front axle, as the balance shifts rearward from 52.0/48.0 percent with the six to 50.7/49.3 in this car.

And the coupe expands on the “fun to drive” elements we found most appealing in the sedan. It has a sweetly balanced, light and lively character with crisp turn-in response, a precise shifter that’s fun to use, brakes that are not only strong but reassuringly easy to modulate, and a controlled ride free of the excesses of roll, pitch, or head-toss.

No car is perfect, of course, and this one might have drawn more attention if the two-door looked a little less like the sedan, bolder and more daring. No one looks at a 4-series or an Audi A5 and says, “That looks just like the sedan without the rear doors.” Some say that about the ATS coupe, noting that the previous-generation CTS coupe was far more distinctive. It was also harder to see out of and the expressive design didn’t result in many sales, so this more conservative approach with the ATS is understandable. It might look better without a B-pillar, but so might the 4-series and the Lexus RC, and those, too, had to yield to the need for structural rigidity and side-impact safety.

Aspirations and Prices

There was only one extracost option on this example (the manual is a no-cost choice over the standard six-speed automatic): $1295 for the upgraded Kona brown leather with jet-black accents that dressed up the cabin. We liked it, but the standard cabin trimmings already meet high standards for materials and fit. The bottom line falling just shy of $50K reflects Cadillac’s conviction that premium-grade cars should wear premium-grade stickers. Some of us have opined that this strategy is a tad ambitious—or just plain too much. In this case, we spec’d out a 428i with equivalent equipment and rang up a $53,000 tab. No further comment.

Cadillac already builds cars as good as (or better than) those from German and Japanese luxury marques. Yes, it could stand for that accolade to spread across a wider range of its products, particularly in the crossover segment, but the past few years suggest that future models in the pipeline should do fine. And yet, there’s all that ill news in the wind. Success must not be only about the cars. If Cadillac has to pay more attention to dealers and marketing and brand-building, okay, so long as it keeps building cars like this ATS. Because making great cars is where it begins, and Cadillac has a strong running start.


VEHICLE TYPE: front-engine, rear-wheel-drive, 4-passenger, 2-door coupe

PRICE AS TESTED: $49,385 (base price $48,090)

ENGINE TYPE: turbocharged and intercooled DOHC 16-valve inline-4, aluminum block and head, direct fuel injection

Displacement: 122 cu in, 1998 cc
Power: 272 hp @ 5500 rpm
Torque: 295 lb-ft @ 3000 rpm

TRANSMISSION: 6-speed manual

Wheelbase: 109.3 in
Length: 183.6 in
Width: 72.5 in Height: 54.8 in
Curb weight: 3479 lb

Zero to 60 mph: 5.7 sec
Zero to 100 mph: 13.7 sec
Zero to 130 mph: 25.4 sec
Rolling start, 5-60 mph: 6.6 sec
Top gear, 30-50 mph: 10.3 sec
Top gear, 50-70 mph: 7.8 sec
Standing ¼-mile: 14.1 sec @ 101 mph
Top speed (governor limited): 150 mph
Braking, 70-0 mph: 156 ft
Roadholding, 300-ft-dia skidpad: 0.92 g

EPA city/highway: 19/30 mpg
C/D observed: 21 mpg


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The new Cadillac ATS coupe is the lovely, delightfully adept product of a Hobson’s choice. Luxury-coupe sales are stagnant, yet here comes a new luxury coupe because there are really no alternatives. At least the new ATS coupe is a hottie that’s gratifying to drive.

Here is the backstory: It’s so expensive to engineer a new platform that no company does it for just one mainstream model. After the high-volume sedan is developed, its guts usually get stuffed into another model as quickly and cheaply as possible. That leverages the component set with yet another new product that can reach a different customer, bringing in more sales at relatively little cost.

Thus, the BMW 3-series sedan, at which the four-door ATS is squarely aimed, begets a coupe, a convertible, a wagon, and the new 3-series GT. The problem for Cadillac is that, in the United States where Caddy’s sales are heavily concentrated, sedans are king while all these other potential variants are relative sales duds. None provide any significant volume, and most of these segments, including two-door luxury coupes, are actually in decline as their traditional buyers age and SUVs and crossovers continue their march toward domination.

Still, GM’s luxury-car executive chief engineer Dave Leone told us at the ATS coupe launch in Connecticut that, when faced with the choice of doing a coupe or the likely second option, an ATS wagon, the decision was easy. “Wagons are only popular in three places—Europe, Australia, and in journalists’ driveways.”

Amen to that, brother! However, try as we might to convince the public that wagons are cool, we automotive journalists must admit collective failure. Leone says his numbers tell him that, Subaru and Volvo notwithstanding, dealers sell 15 coupes for every wagon, and thus the two-door ATS was a shoo-in choice. (That decision also makes a third ATS model, a convertible, much more likely to actually happen.)

ATS’a Looker

Look over the photos and judge for yourself, but we think the ATS sedan translates extremely well into a coupe. Designers walked away from the butch, superwedge themes of their last sedan-gone-coupe, the CTS, and went for light, spare, and elegant. The ATS’s roof drops because coupes should have lower rooflines, but so does the beltline as it heads rearward. That keeps the rear-glass area reasonably ample so that the design doesn’t get heavy, as it did in the CTS coupe, and so that back-seaters aren’t sealed in a dark cave.

Sure, this idea is lifted straight from the playbook of the BMW 3-series coupe/4-series (among others), which has operated this way for generations. And it makes the ATS coupe less distinctive than the old CTS coupe. But it also makes the car look both more lithe and a little less overtly masculine, a good move in a segment teeming with female buyers.

The ATS coupe also looks good in back, where thin, vertical taillamps preserve a Cadillac trademark while also making the car look wide, squat, and powerful. An aerodynamic spoiler shaped into the trunk and the thin band of brightwork under the trunk lip adds visual detail. Helping the car’s athletic stance are slight increases to both the front and rear tracks. In front, Cadillac’s new streamlined and windblown crest dominates the grille, which strives to be a modern interpretation of the egg-crate chrome-deco jobs of the past.

Diving Deeper

In going from sedan to coupe, the ATS loses its base 2.5-liter four-cylinder—hardly a devastating loss—and gains some amenities, including a slightly stiffer suspension, standard 18-inch wheels, standard front Brembo brakes, a backup camera, and so forth. The base coupe uses the 272-hp 2.0-liter turbo four-cylinder, with the 321-hp 3.6-liter V-6 serving as the upgrade engine. Optional all-wheel drive can be paired with both engines for about $2500 (it includes heated front seats), but only the rear-wheel-drive 2.0-liter can be ordered with the six-speed manual.

Every sheetmetal panel except for the hood is new to the coupe, while the basic ATS structure, an exceptionally stiff cage of mostly conventional and high-strength steels, remains unchanged. Sadly, the B-pillar also remains, a stout stump necessitated by the requirements of chassis stiffness and side-impact protection. Nearly 400 feet of bonding adhesive in the body help preserve twisting and bending numbers. In fact, Cadillac claims that the ATS coupe is 42 percent stiffer torsionally and 28 percent stiffer in bending rigidity than the old CTS coupe, and if it’s any looser than the ATS sedan, you can’t feel it on the road. And high-spec ATS goodies such as the ZF electric-assist steering rack carry over.


VEHICLE TYPE: front-engine, rear- or 4-wheel-drive, 4-passenger, 2-door coupe

BASE PRICES: $38,990; AWD, $41,440; V-6, $46,145; V-6 AWD, $48,745

ENGINE TYPES: turbocharged and intercooled DOHC 16-valve 2.0-liter inline-4, 272 hp, 295 lb-ft; DOHC 24-valve 3.6-liter V-6, 321 hp, 275 lb-ft

TRANSMISSIONS: 6-speed manual, 6-speed automatic with manual shifting mode

Wheelbase: 109.3 in
Length: 183.6 in
Width: 72.5 in Height: 54.8 in
Curb weight (C/D) est: 3450-3600 lb

Zero to 60 mph: 5.4-5.6 sec
Zero to 100 mph: 13.3-13.6 sec
Standing ¼-mile: 13.8-14.0 sec
Top speed: 150 mph

EPA city/highway: 18-21/28-30 mpg


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New for 2015

  • ATS Coupe
  • New Cadillac crest
  • Revised front styling on ATS Sedan
  • Cadillac DockSpot wireless phone charging (included with Cadillac CUE) – late availability
  • Text Message Alerts integrated with Cadillac CUE
  • OnStar with 4G LTE and built-in Wi-Fi hotspot (3GB/three-month trial)
  • EZ Key passive entry standard on all models
  • 2.0L Turbo engine torque increased nearly 14 percent
  • Power tilting and telescoping steering column added to Premium Collection
  • Automatic safety belt tightening and lane change alert added to Driver Assist Package
  • Lane keep assist added to Driver Awareness Package
  • Exterior colors: Crystal White Tricoat and Dark Adriatic Blue Metallic
  • Revised interior color and trim combinations, including semi-aniline leather and sueded microfiber-accent interiors

Product Information


The Cadillac ATS lineup expands for 2015 with the all-new ATS Coupe. Lighter, more agile and more engaging than its competitors, it extends Cadillac’s product-driven growth and the brand’s tradition of dynamic luxury coupes – while the ATS Sedan continues to challenge the world’s best premium cars with an acclaimed balance of performance and refinement, wrapped in a progressive expression of Cadillac’s Art & Science design philosophy.

The new ATS Coupe – offered with 2.0L Turbo and 3.6L V-6 engines, in RWD or AWD – takes advantage of its lightweight and strong structure to deliver exhilarating performance with efficiency, with segment-leading standard torque and power-to-weight ratios when compared with comparable competitor offerings.

Like the sedan, the ATS Coupe’s driving dynamics are rooted in mass efficiency, which helps make it one of Cadillac’s lightest and most agile models ever – and the lightest car in the compact luxury coupe segment. The 2.0L Turbo engine offered in the Coupe and Sedan is upgraded to deliver nearly 14 percent more torque for 2015, taking it to 295 lb-ft (400 Nm). This gives the standard ATS Coupe an advantage in power and torque over similarly equipped coupes such as the BMW 428i.

Greater torque means greater pulling power, for a greater feeling of responsiveness at all speeds, and helps the 2.0L Turbo-equipped ATS Coupe achieve an estimated 0-60 time of 5.6 seconds. With the 3.6L V-6, 0-60 takes only 5.5 seconds.

Additional contributing components and features for Coupe and Sedan models include:

  • Nearly perfect 50/50 weight balance
  • Cadillac’s first five-link independent rear suspension using lightweight, high-strength steel and efficient straight link designs
  • A multi-link double-pivot MacPherson-strut front suspension with direct-acting stabilizer bar
  • Available driver-adjustable FE3 performance suspension with Magnetic Ride Control real-time damping
  • Underbody aerodynamic shields
  • Premium (belt driven) electric variable-effort steering gear from ZF Steering Systems
  • Brembo performance brakes – available on Sedan and standard on Coupe
  • Available all-wheel drive.

The ATS lineup is offered as well-equipped Standard models, as well as Luxury, Performance and Premium Collections. A broad lineup of engines – including two four-cylinders and a V-6 for North America – delivers strong power to the ATS and capitalizes on the car’s lightweight and rigid structure to complement its performance with efficiency. The optional engines include Cadillac’s award-winning 2.0L Turbo, rated at 272 horsepower (203 kW) and a 3.6L V-6, rated at 321 horsepower (239 kW).

New and revised features for 2015 include:

  • New Cadillac crest
  • Revised front styling on ATS Sedan
  • DockSpot wireless phone charging from Powermat included with Cadillac CUE
  • Text Message Alerts and Teen Driver features integrated with Cadillac CUE
  • OnStar with 4G LTE and built-in Wi-Fi hotspot (3GB/three-month trial)
  • EZ Key passive entry standard on all models
  • 2.0L Turbo engine torque increased nearly 14 percent
  • Power tilting and telescoping steering column added to Premium collection
  • Automatic safety belt tightening and lane change alert added to Driver Assist Package
  • Lane keep assist added to Driver Awareness Package
  • Exterior colors: Crystal White Tricoat and Dark Adriatic Blue Metallic
  • Revised interior color and trim combinations, including semi-aniline leather and sueded microfiber-accent interiors.

New OnStar with 4G LTE and built-in Wi-Fi hotspot, as well as enhanced features for Cadillac CUE, bring greater connectivity and convenience to ATS drivers and passengers.

ATS design and exterior features
The new ATS Coupe rides on the same 109.3-inch (2,775 mm) wheelbase as the sedan, but features its own bodywork. The roof, doors, rear fenders and trunk lid are unique to the Coupe, along with a specific front fascia and front fenders that accommodate a wider track than the Sedan.

The unique front appearance introduced on the ATS Coupe is shared by the 2015 Sedan models, all incorporating Cadillac’s new crest on the grille. Both body styles have a firmly planted stance, enhanced by short overhangs and taut sheet metal that appear to wrap tightly around the tires. Seventeen-inch wheels are standard on ATS Sedan and 18-inch wheels are standard on ATS Coupe.

The ATS Coupe also includes capless fuel fill.

Bold lighting elements are a Cadillac signature feature and the ATS advances the tradition with available high-intensity discharge (HID) headlamps, light-emitting diode (LED) vertical light signature elements and Adaptive Forward Lighting. The Standard model features projector-beam halogen headlamps, while the HID headlamps and front vertical LED light signatures are included on all collections above the Standard model on Coupe, and on the Performance and Premium Collections for Sedan. Illuminated outside door handles on Performance and Premium Collections lend technologically advanced style and function. All models feature LED technology for the taillamps and rear-center stop lamp. 

The Intellibeam feature – included with the Driver Awareness or Driver Assist packages – automatically deploys high-beam headlamps when needed and instantly turns them down when oncoming traffic is detected. 

Seventeen-inch premium painted aluminum wheels are standard on the Sedan, with 17-inch polished and 18-inch forged machined-face and polished wheels available. Nineteen-inch wheel-and-tire combinations are available as dealer-installed accessories. A range of 18-inch premium painted, machined or polished wheels is available on the ATS Coupe.

Exterior colors: Red Obsession Tintcoat, Phantom Gray Metallic, Majestic Plum Metallic, Dark Adriatic Blue Metallic, Radiant Silver Metallic, Black Raven, Black Diamond Tricoat, Crystal White Tricoat, Opulent Blue Metallic and Silver Coast Metallic.

ATS interior features
A driver-focused interior with integrated technology and crafted materials complements the exterior elements and supports the ATS’s driving experience. Everything from the placement of the pedals to the position of the shifter is designed for effortless and intuitive performance driving. Available performance seating includes power-adjustable bolsters to optimize lateral support during high-load cornering. 

Contributing to the interior’s intuitive feel is an instrument panel that wraps into the doors and a center stack in the mid-instrument panel that flows into the center console. LED lighting within the bold gauge cluster enables clear, at-a-glance viewing in all lighting conditions, while ambient lighting accents functional elements of the console and doors.

Real wood, metal plating and carbon fiber trim and Cadillac’s cut-and-sewn instrument panel, console and doors enhance the emotional connection to the ATS. Choices of many interior environments, each with unique accent trim material, cover a wide range of flavors – from light, open and warm to dark and serious, bold, technical and sporty.

Interior color and trim choices are offered in four levels:

  • Level 1 – Light Platinum/Black with Oil Rubbed Bronze-appearance trim (Sedan only) or Black/Black with Oil Rubbed Bronze-appearance trim on Sedan and High Gloss Okapi Stripe designer wood trim on Coupe. Leatherette seating surfaces
  • Level 2 – Light Platinum/Black with High Gloss Sapele Wood accents or Black/Black with aluminum trim. Leather seating surfaces
  • Level 3 – Medium Cashmere/Light Platinum with Dark Olive Ash Wood trim. Leather seating surfaces and sueded microfiber interior accents (Sedan only)
  • Level 4 – Kona Brown/Black with Natural Sapele wood trim or Morello Red/Black with carbon fiber trim. Semi-aniline leather seating with sueded microfiber seatbacks and sueded microfiber interior accents.

Available interior features include:

  • OnStar 4G LTE connectivity with built-in WiFi hotspot (included with Cadillac CUE)
  • Bluetooth phone and audio connectivity with natural voice recognition
  • Text-to-voice, which converts incoming text messages to speech and reads them over the audio system speakers
  • USB, auxiliary and SD memory card ports
  • SiriusXM Satellite Radio with three-month trial subscription
  • Reconfigurable 5.7-inch, three-window instrument panel cluster display
  • New power-assisted tilting and telescoping steering column added to the Premium Collection
  • Full-color reconfigurable head-up display.

A Bose® premium audio system with Active Noise Cancelation technology is standard on all models and on ATS coupe; it includes electronic sound enhancement when equipped with the available premium surround sound audio system. It differs from other manufacturers’ systems that pipe recorded engine sounds through the audio system. ATS electronic sound enhancement enhances only the car’s authentic powertrain sounds to support the performance experience.

A 12-speaker surround sound upgrade is available on Standard and Luxury, and is included with Performance and Premium collections. It includes Bose Audio Pilot, which continuously monitors ambient sounds and adjusts the music volume and program content to optimize the listening experience.

Additionally, a navigation system is also available on Luxury and Performance collections, and it is standard with the Premium Collection.

Enhanced Cadillac CUE and new OnStar 4G LTE
Cadillac CUE is the centerpiece of the ATS’s comprehensive collection of technologies designed to enhance the driving experience and complement customers’ increasingly connected lifestyles. It is available on Standard models and included on Luxury, Performance and Premium Collections, with enhanced connectivity and convenience for 2015, including a new Text Message Alerts feature for smartphone users with Bluetooth profile (M.A.P.) and Siri Eyes Free for iPhone iOS 6 and iOS 7. Each enables voice-controlled connectivity – and helps keep phones stored and hands on the wheel.

The new Cadillac DockSpot magnetic inductive charging system (late availability) is a wireless phone charger that allows users to simply place their phone on a small mat in the ATS, where it charges without the need to plug it in.

The heart of CUE is the eight-inch LCD multi-touch sensitive screen, integrated into the top of the central instrument panel and featuring a motorized, fully capacitive faceplate at the bottom concealing a 1.8L storage area. CUE’s vibrant LCD screen resembles a smartphone’s screen, with large, easy-to-target icons to execute commands.

Complementing CUE to enhance the ATS’s connectivity is new OnStar with 4G LTE and standard built-in Wi-Fi hotspot. It provides a mobile hub for drivers and passengers to stay connected. The hotspot is on whenever the vehicle is on and comes with a three-month/three-gigabyte data trial.

4G LTE is the most current and fastest mobile data network – 10 times faster than 3G and 100 times faster than the previous generation of OnStar hardware. And with OnStar, it also offers stronger, broader coverage than smartphones on the same network and it’s easy to use: If the vehicle is on, the connection is on.

At the time of purchase, six months OnStar Directions and Connections includes all of OnStar’s advisor-based safety and security features, including Automatic Crash Response and Stolen Vehicle Assistance, as well as Turn-by-Turn navigation.

Five years of OnStar Basic Plan includes RemoteLink Key Fob Services, allowing owners to remotely start and lock/unlock a car (if properly equipped), and activate the horn and lights from anywhere with a data connection. It also includes OnStar Vehicle Diagnostics, which runs monthly checks of a vehicle’s engine, transmission, anti-lock brakes and more, and Dealer Maintenance Notification, which sends a diagnostic report directly to a preferred dealer, simplifying service scheduling.

Additional technologies that make life with the ATS more convenient include the capability of remotely starting the engine or lowering the windows with the key fob or the owner’s smartphone. EZ Key passive entry and push-button starting is standard, too, so the key never needs to leave the driver’s pocket or purse.

ATS powertrains
The engine lineup includes a 2.5L four-cylinder standard on some Sedan models, a 2.0L turbocharged four-cylinder available on Sedan and standard on Coupe; and a 3.6L V-6 available on Sedan and Coupe. The four-cylinder engines were designed and developed specifically for the ATS, with the 2.0L Turbo offered with a manual transmission – a choice unavailable with many luxury competitors.

The 2.5L is rated at 202 horsepower (151 kW) and 191 lb.-ft. or torque (259 Nm), while the award-winning 2.0L Turbo is rated at 272 horsepower (203 kW) and 295 lb-ft of torque (400 Nm) – a nearly 14-percent increase over 2014 models. The award-winning 3.6L V-6 is rated at 321 horsepower (239 kW) and 275 lb-ft of torque (373 Nm). 

At 136hp/L, the 2.0L Turbo is one of the most power-dense engines in the industry, topping engines from European competitors. It also delivers 90 percent of its peak torque from 2,100 rpm to 3,000 rpm and the full 295 lb-ft of peak torque (400 Nm) from 3,000 to 4,600 rpm. The broad torque band is supported by boost levels as high as 18 psi (1.26 bar) in the speed range, which is designed to give the lightweight ATS an exhilarating feeling of immediate power on demand.

All of the engines feature direct injection and dual overhead camshafts with continuously variable valve timing, which help optimize power and efficiency, as well as reduce emissions. And all of the engines are matched with six-speed transmissions, including the Hydra-Matic 6L45 automatic with tap-shift control, and a TREMEC six-speed manual available with the 2.0L Turbo.

ATS driving experience
Proportion and balance are on the ATS’s side, with a low curb weight and power-dense powertrains that are also lightweight, enabling a nearly perfect 50/50 weight distribution and excellent power-to-weight ratios. They complement wide front and rear tracks – including wider tracks on ATS Coupe – and a low center of gravity, promoting greater stability.

Low vehicle mass and optimal brake sizes give the ATS braking performance that is among the best in the segment, with Brembo brakes contributing to 60-0 performance of approximately 129 feet (39.3 meters).

Up front, a multi-link MacPherson strut suspension uses a double-pivot design for a more precise feeling of control, including more linear and communicative steering, and a smoother ride. It also improves impact isolation on bumps and rough surfaces.

The double-pivot system incorporates a pair of ball joints and lower control links that replace a conventional wishbone at each wheel. The optimal balance of ride and handling is achieved via a suspension geometry that decouples road inputs by integrating a soft fore/aft “ride link” that provides greater isolation from impacts and a stiff, laterally positioned “handling link” for more direct steering feel and quicker lateral response.

The control arms, the spindle and the body form an effective four-bar link for each side of the front suspension, creating virtual pivot points with reduced spindle length, significantly reducing steering wheel feedback due to wheel impacts. There is also a direct-acting stabilizer bar.

The front suspension’s design also enables a shorter spindle and positive-offset steering geometry for optimal steering control, excellent straight-line stability and a more refined ride. High-durometer rubber and hydraulic bushings are used with the front suspension for an excellent balance of ride comfort and precise response when cornering.

At the rear of the ATS is the first five-link independent suspension in a Cadillac. The design helps reduces roll center motion, enables positive lateral control, reduces “squat” during acceleration and promotes excellent dynamic stability. In short, it helps keep the tires planted on all surfaces and during all hard-cornering maneuvers.

Four handling links (upper and lower control arms) are used at each side to control wheel motion and a toe link at each wheel provides additional horizontal control – particularly during hard cornering. The upper and lower links create an effective double-wishbone design, although the links are mounted independently. As with the front suspension, the five-link design creates virtual pivot points that the ATS’s engineers used for geometry optimization. The stiff links are mounted on a cradle that contributes to a smoother, quieter and more isolated ride. The cradle is made of steel (with hydroformed side rails) to help optimize the car’s structural stiffness and mass.

On the Sedan, 17-inch wheels are standard, with 18x8-inch wheels available – all matched with 225/40-series tires. The available FE3 Performance Suspension features wider 18x9-inch rear wheels with 255/35 tires (all FE3 tires are summer-only). On the Coupe, 18x8-inch front (225/40 tires) and 18x9 inch rear wheels (255/35 tires) are standard. As with Sedan, the Coupe’s FE3 Performance Suspension includes summer-only tires.

The mechanical limited-slip differential feature is not matched by all other competitors and gives the ATS an edge when it comes to ensuring all of the powertrain’s torque is applied to the tires during hard cornering. It is standard with the six-speed manual transmission and included with the FE3 Performance Suspension. It is housed in a robust 8.6-inch carrier. Other models feature a 7.67-inch carrier.

Supporting the ATS’s suspensions are advanced damping, steering and braking systems, including Magnetic Ride Control (MRC), which is the heart of the FE3 Performance Suspension (included on the RWD Premium Collection) – and also includes a mechanical limited-slip differential, high-capacity engine cooling system and 18-inch summer-performance tires. MRC is a real-time damping system that delivers more precise body motion control. It “reads” the road and can change damping every millisecond.

Selectable driver mode settings are standard and include Sport, Touring and Snow/Ice (automatic transmission only). On FE3-equipped vehicles, each mode is optimized for Magnetic Ride Control damping, as well as transmission shift algorithms and stability control and traction control system intervention. 

All models come with an electric, variable-assist power steering system from ZF Steering Systems. It is designed to deliver excellent response and on-center characteristics, while also saving fuel because engine power isn’t directly required to assist gear movement – as is the case with conventional hydraulic systems.

The ZF steering gear has great torsional stiffness and low operating friction, which enhance the steering feel with almost perfect linear response. Additionally, the steering column and intermediate shaft feature stiff, direct-acting and low-friction ball bearing designs. That means there is almost no “lash” in the entire steering system, for a more immediate and connected-to-the-road feel for the driver.

Four-wheel disc brakes – with patented rotor coating protection and auto-dry functionality – are standard. Brembo performance front brakes are standard on Coupe and standard on all Sedan Collections above the Standard model, where they are available. They are matched with a four-channel ABS system integrated with standard StabiliTrak stability control and full-function traction control.

ATS’s available all-wheel-drive system is designed to make the most of handling and stability in all driving conditions. It is an advanced, fully automatic and on-demand system that includes wheel-slip management. 

Advanced safety features
ATS provides standard NHTSA 5-Star all-around and overall crash safety ratings (Sedan model tested), the highest safety ratings available.

In addition, Cadillac provides available advanced safety based on Cadillac’s “control and alert” strategy that employs advanced technologies – including radar, cameras and ultrasonic sensors – to help prevent crashes. The safety features bolster driver vision and awareness of road hazards, and can even assist to help the driver avert potential crashes. In certain situations, Cadillac’s advanced crash-avoidance systems, such as automatic braking, can pre-fill and automatically apply braking in response in certain situations.

Among the most sophisticated of the features is front and rear automatic braking. It relies on radar, camera and ultrasonic technology to help the driver prevent front and rear low-speed collisions via a progression of alerts that extend to complete braking, if necessary.

Many of the advanced safety features are bundled in the Driver Awareness and Driver Assist Packages. The Driver Awareness Package is available on Luxury and included in Performance and Premium Collections. It includes:

  • Safety alert seat
  • Forward collision alert
  • Lane departure warning
  • Lane keep assist
  • Intellibeam® high-beam control
  • Rainsense wipers
  • Rear thorax air bags (sedan models).

The Driver Assist Package is available on Performance and Premium collections and includes all of the Driver Awareness Package content, plus:

  • Full-speed range adaptive cruise control
  • Automatic collision preparation
  • Automatic safety belt tightening
  • Electronic park brake
  • Front and rear automatic braking
  • Side blind zone alert
  • Rear cross-traffic alert
  • Full-color head-up display.

The advanced technologies complement the ATS’s other safety features, including eight standard air bags (10 available on sedan with Driver Awareness and Driver Assist Packages), safety belt pretensioners and load limiters, StabiliTrak electronic stability control system with full-function traction control and four-wheel disc brakes with four-channel ABS, patented rotor coating protection and auto-dry functionality. Hill Hold/Start assist is also standard on ATS with both automatic and manual transmissions; and front/rear park assist is standard on all except Standard models.

A rearview camera system with dynamic guideless is included with CUE on Sedan models (available on Standard and included with other Collections) and standard on Coupe.     

Sours: https://media.cadillac.com/media/us/en/cadillac/vehicles/ats/2015.html
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