2016 Cadillac ATS-V Sedan RWD

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2016 Cadillac ATS-V Sedan RWD

Gary S. Vasilash –

January 8, 2016

The Cadillac ATS-V is a performance model of a compact luxury sport sedan. Sporty becomes sportier. It is powered by a 3.6-liter twin-turbo V6 engine that produces 464 hp and 445 lb-ft of torque. It has a six-speed manual transmission with active rev matching. According to Car and Driver, the ATS-V accelerates from 0 to 60 mph in 3.9 seconds, far less time than it takes to figure out how to do anything on the CUE “information and media” control system that you access through an 8-inch full color display.  (C’mon: you’re busy driving this car, which is clearly meant to be driven.)

When it comes to the boxes, it ticks them off, one after the other:

· The aforementioned engine

· The aforementioned transmission

· A top speed of 189 mph

· Brembo braking system

· Magnetic Ride Control

· Tri-compound tires

· 18-way front seats that will hold your bottom in place even if you only use three ways

· ZF rack-mounted electric, power assisted and variable assist steering

· Carbon fiber trim on the inside and a carbon fiber hood with air extractor on the outside

And on it goes.

The point is that the ATS-V is the proverbial pocket rocket, at least in the context of its bigger brother, the CTS-V.

This car is a bat-out-of-hell, but it is more nicely appointed than a bat and it is more comfortable by a long shot than hell.

Oh, and as this is a contemporaneous performance vehicle with four doors, know that it has more than a measure of technology, whether this takes the form of wireless phone charging, Bluetooth, Bose audio with active noise cancellation, pushbutton start, an electroluminescent information cluster, and an eight-inch display for the CUE infooperationalentertainment control interface.

For those who are (1) performance oriented and (2) interested in even more tech, there is an optional $1,300 data recorder that permits one to collect performance data on track and off. And while the stock seats are snuggling, the optional Recaros will keep you in place as those side G-forces try to knock you off your keister (which doesn’t make physical sense per se, but you know what I am getting at).

I’m not exactly sure what the “V” stands for, but it could be “Vroom,” although that might be a bit common for this Cadillac. Maybe vite.

Anyway, while this is arguably a daily driver, I’d argue that it really is a second car in the garage, with the other vehicle being something more staid.

One way of considering this is from the simple point of view that if you regularly use the ATS-V in a way that the machinery is setup to be used, you’re going to be regularly collecting speeding tickets, which will then lead to a place where you’ll have to avail yourself of Uber or the city bus.

Another way of looking at it is that if you live in a metropolis of any size, chances are good that you’re going to be finding yourself stuck in traffic jams on a more frequent basis that you’re going to be on those two-lane words with sweeping turns and elevation changes so common to advertisements for luxury compact performance sedans. As much fun as it is to shift when you’re on one of those roads in northern California or wherever, it is a pain in the left calf muscle to be sitting stuck in traffic with this car. (There is the automatic transmission option for the ATS-V, of course, but that doesn’t negate the issue of speeding tickets.)

Heretofore the German marques (e.g. BMW M3 sedan; Mercedes AMG C63 sedan) have pretty much had dibs on this segment of the market. Cadillac is now solidly in the mix.

Selected specs

Engine: 3.6-liter, twin-turbocharged DI VVT V6

Material: Aluminum block and heads

Horsepower: 435 @ 6,500 rpm

Torque: 400 lb-ft @ 4,250 rpm

Transmission: Tremec TR6060 six-speed manual

Steering: ZF rack-mounted electric

Wheelbase: 109.3 in.

Length: 184 in.

Width 73.1 in.

Height: 55.7 in.

EPA passenger volume: 83.9-cu. ft.

EPA fuel economy: city/highway/combined: 17/23/19 mpg