2018 Cadillac Ats Balanced Performance Credits Picture

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The ATS will feature Cadillac’s next-generation user experience system that consists of My Driver Preferences (customizable cloud-based profiles) and predictive smartphone-like navigation. Apple Watch integration is now available and auto-heated seating is standard.

Vehicle Summary

2018 Cadillac Ats Balanced Performance Credits First Drive

The ATS is the smallest model offered by Cadillac, positioned below the CTS, XTS, and CT6 sedans. The high-performance ATS-V slots below the larger CTS-V.

Overview

The standard engine for the 2018 ATS is a 272-hp, 295-lb-ft of torque 2.0-liter turbo-four, with an available 335-hp, 285-lb-ft of torque 3.6-liter V-6. The 2.0-liter turbo-four delivers an EPA-rated 22/31 mpg city/highway when paired to the eight-speed automatic and rear-drive (22/30 with all-wheel drive) and 20/29 mpg with the six-speed manual. The naturally aspirated V-6 is rated at 20/30 mpg with rear drive and 19/27 mpg with all-wheel drive.  The ATS-V is powered by a 464-hp, 445-lb-ft 3.6-liter twin-turbo V-6 and is rated at 17/25 mpg with the eight-speed and 16/23 mpg with the six-speed manual.

2018 Cadillac Ats Balanced Performance Credits Picture

For 2018, the base ATS sedan comes standard with Brembo front brakes, a Bose Premium Surround Sound audio system, OnStar Guidance and Basic, an 8.0-inch touchscreen with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, three USB ports, six-way power adjustable front seats, and 17-inch alloy wheels. The Premium Performance model adds a full-color and reconfigurable head-up display, performance suspension with Magnetic Ride Control, a mechanical limited-slip differential, performance summer tires, power tilt and telescoping steering wheel, HID headlights and LED accents, illuminated door handles, power moonroof, performance-bolstered front seats, magnesium paddle shifters, alloy sport pedals and 18-inch bright forged alloy wheels. The high-performance ATS-V is equipped with active rev matching and no-lift shift features (only with the manual transmission), launch control, an electronic limited-slip differential, Michelin Pilot Super Sport summer tires, and the available carbon-fiber hood, six-piston Brembo brakes, Recaro performance seats, Performance Data Recorder, OnStar with 4G LTE and a Wi-Fi hotspot, and a Bose premium audio system with active noise cancellation and AudioPilot sound enhancement technology.

Safety

The 2018 ATS received the NHTSA’s highest rating of five stars for the sedan’s overall crash performance. The IIHS has not crash tested the ATS, but 2013-2017 ATS cars received the highest front crash prevention rating of Superior for properly warning the driver of a possible accident, avoiding a 12-mph collision, and reducing the speed of a 25-mph collision by 15 mph thanks to the optional automatic braking system. Without that system, the sedan scored the lowest rating of Basic for properly warning the driver of a possible collision. The Safety and Security package on the 2018 ATS consists of the Safety Alert Seat, forward collision alert with lane departure warning, Following Distance Indicator, lane keep assist, blind-spot monitoring, lane change alert, rear cross-traffic alert, automatic high-beam headlights, rain-sensitive wipers, and rear thorax air bags. For additional driver assist features, opt for the Driver Assist package that includes full-speed-range adaptive cruise control, automatic safety belt tightening, front and rear automatic braking, and a full-color head-up display.

What We Think

In a First Test review of the 2017 Cadillac ATS 2.0, we felt the Cadillac was more of a sports sedan than a luxury cruiser: “From the seriously bolstered Recaro seats to the surprisingly stiff suspension and finely tuned steering, the ATS has placed its bets in one area.”

However, performance numbers do not stand out from its competitors: “Although it feels like one of the best-handling cars in its class, its numbers aren’t quite at the top of the game.” The ATS’ transmission isn’t as responsive as it could be, the rear seat is very small, and  the sedan’s value depreciates quickly: “This is the car you’d buy if the driving experience is far more important than any other factor.”

In an eight-way premium sedan comparison, the Cadillac ATS 2.0T finished fifth place, we said, “The best sport sedan chassis in the class is let down by a useless back seat and barely acceptable infotainment system.”

Cool Fact

A 12-month OnStar subscription is included with every new Cadillac.

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