If you’re looking for a fun coupe that makes driver comfort a big priority, take a serious look at the 2019 Cadillac ATS. While all versions of the new ATS are entertaining to drive, expect the high-performance ATS-V model to truly bring the excitement. A sexy exterior design gives you more reason to love the new ATS. You’ll also find the new ATS to be a bit less expensive than its German competitors. Let’s check out what each trim brings to the table.
Compare the 2019 Cadillac ATS Base vs Luxury - What is the difference?
With a starting MSRP of $38,995, the base ATS proves to be a strong value. Under the hood sits a boosted four-cylinder engine, which pushes out an entertaining 272 horsepower and 295 pound-feet of torque. In terms of fuel economy, expect to get an EPA-estimated 22 mpg in town and 30 mpg on the freeway. Remember, Cadillac recommends the use of premium gasoline for this engine.
You have the ability to choose between a eight-speed automatic transmission and a six-speed manual gearbox. All-wheel drive is also available on the automatic-equipped base ATS. If you desire a more exciting sound, opt for the performance exhaust system. You can also enhance handling with an optional sports-tuned suspension and performance tires.
Luckily, the base ATS doesn’t sacrifice much style. It comes standard with a rather attractive set of 18-inch alloy wheels. Twin exhaust outlets add another degree of sportiness.
On the inside, the base Cadillac ATS has a luxurious feel. Leatherette upholstery and a leather-wrapped steering wheel come standard. Meanwhile, eight-way power front seats help you to remain comfortable. You’ll also enjoy dual-zone automatic climate control.
Very few base models in the segment pack more standard technology than the base ATS. Featuring an 8.0-inch touch screen with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto device support, Cadillac’s CUE infotainment has improved significantly over the years. Meanwhile, a built-in Wi-Fi hot spot makes the internet only a click away. You’ll also enjoy OnStar, which is among the best communications system in the business. Some of the other standard features include Bluetooth connectivity, wireless device charging, and a nice-sounding Bose sound system.
Although no advanced driving aids are available on the base ATS, you’ll benefit from the standard backup camera. Cadillac also includes a Teen Driver system, which helps parents to keep tabs on their teenagers by compiling a driving report card.
Priced at $42,795, the ATS Luxury is a step above the base model. Power comes from the same turbocharged four-cylinder engine. You’ll also have access to the same transmission options and all-wheel drive. Although the ATS Luxury’s exterior styling isn’t much different, it does come equipped with adaptive xenon headlamps for improved visibility on secondary roads.
Leather-trimmed upholstery gives the ATS Luxury’s interior a more upscale character. You’ll also enjoy heated front seats, which feature more adjustments. Navigation benefits the drivers who love to travel. Parking sensors and a heated steering wheel are also featured on the ATS Luxury.
If you don’t mind spending an extra $1,500, you can upgrade the ATS Luxury with a Safety and Security package. When a potential road hazard is detected, the Safety Alert Seat vibrates to get your attention. Meanwhile, a following distance indicator helps you to avoid following too closely to the next vehicle ahead. Other safety features found in the package include forward collision alert, lane-keep assist, and blind-spot monitoring with rear cross-traffic detection.
Compare the 2019 ATS Luxury vs Premium Luxury Trims. What is the difference?
Unlike the ATS Luxury, the ATS Premium Luxury comes equipped with a more potent V6 engine. It’s rated to develop 335 horsepower and 285 pound-feet of torque. Fortunately, fuel efficiency only decreases slightly. According to the EPA, drivers can anticipate getting 19 mpg in the city and 29 mpg on the highway. Even better, you only need to fill the tank with regular unleaded gasoline. While the ATS Premium luxury has an MSRP of $48,395, opting for all-wheel drive tacks on an extra $2,000.
Adaptive high beams make the ATS Premium Luxury a more secure car at night. You’ll also benefit from rain-sensing wipers. A standard sunroof adds to this trim’s appeal. The ATS Luxury’s optional Safety and Security package comes standard on the ATS Premium Luxury. Furthermore, upgraded leather upholstery is available as a stand-alone option.
For around $1,300, you can equip the ATS Premium Luxury with a Driver Assist package. While forward and reverse automatic braking helps you to avoid crashing into obstacles, adaptive cruise control adjusts your speed when encountering traffic. Meanwhile, a color head-up display puts the gauge cluster’s information directly in your line of sight. You’ll also enjoy a power tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel.
Compare the ATS Premium Luxury vs Premium Performance - What is the difference?
Prices for the ATS Premium Performance start at $50,895. It’s designed to appeal to driving enthusiasts. Like the ATS Premium Luxury, the ATS Premium Performance comes equipped with a V6 engine. However, a standard Magnetic Ride Control suspension with driver-selectable settings and a limited-slip differential further enhance handling.
If you plan to take the ATS Premium Performance to the track, consider getting the optional Track package. It enhances the coupe’s durability with a heavy-duty engine fan and stronger performance brakes.
To give the ATS Premium Performance a more exclusive look, Cadillac equips it with a unique set of 18-inch alloy wheels. While the Driver Assist package remains an option, a color head-up display and a power tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel come standard.
Compare the ATS Premium Performance vs ATS-V Trims. What is the difference?
The high-performance Cadillac ATS-V is by far the most expensive trim in the lineup. Be prepared to shell out $67,795. Despite the ATS-V’s steeper price tag, it’s still considered to be a strong value when compared to its European rivals.
Motivating the Cadillac ATS-V is a twin-turbo V6 engine, which kicks out a heart-pounding 464 horsepower and 445 pound-feet of torque. The extra power ensures world-class acceleration. While the six-speed manual transmission features rev-matching downshifting, paddle shifters come with eight-speed automatic transmission. Keep in mind that all-wheel drive is not available on the ATS-V. Fuel economy drops to 17 mpg in traffic and 25 mpg on the highway.
Like the ATS Premium Performance, the ATS-V comes equipped with an adaptive Magnetic Ride Control suspension. It also comes equipped with an electronically controlled limited-slip differential. High-performance Brembo brakes provide enhanced stopping power.
As soon as you see the ATS-V, you’ll immediately notice its meaner exterior styling. A carbon-fiber hood and 18-inch forged alloy wheels help this high-output model to stand out. The coupe’s performance front fascia also makes a powerful statement. On the rear, quad exhaust tips enable the ATS-V to breathe freely. Available as an option, the Carbon Fiber package gives the ATS-V an even more attention-grabbing appearance. It lowers the coupe’s curb weight as well.
In terms of features, the ATS-V is equipped similar to the base ATS. You’ll enjoy niceties like a 4G Wi-Fi hot spot and an 8.0-inch touch screen. However, plenty of exciting options are available. Drivers who plan to hit the track will be interested in the available Recaro sport seats. A Performance Data Recorder is also on the ATS-V’s list of options. Not only does this cool feature keep you aware of performance statistics like 0-60 mph times and g-force, but it can also record your driving experience from a first-person perspective.
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Which One Should You Choose?
Great handling and a punchy performance make the base ATS a sweet deal. Although its turbocharged four-cylinder engine may not be as powerful as the available V6 engine, you won’t be missing much performance. You’ll find the base ATS to be a quick performer. Featuring a sports-tuned suspension and performance tires, the optional V-Sport Performance Suspension Upgrade package transforms the base ATS into a more agile driving machine.
You also can’t forget about base model’s long list of attractive features. Most competitors don’t provide standard niceties like a Bose sound system and a 4G Wi-Fi hot spot.
If you simply crave more luxury on the road, the leather-trimmed ATS Luxury may prove to be worth the extra money. It also gives you access to the popular Safety and Security package, which brings valuable driving aids like forward collision alert and blind-spot detection.
While the ATS Premium Luxury comes loaded with a lot of goodies, it’s not the best bang for the buck. Don’t expect it to feel much plusher than the ATS Luxury. However, you can deck out the ATS Premium Luxury with a color head-up driving display and forward/reverse automatic emergency braking.
With a starting MSRP of more than $50,000, the ATS Premium Performance is a lot more expensive than the base ATS. Nonetheless, you will enjoy upgrades like GM’s highly recommended Magnetic Ride Control Suspension. Because the optional Track package is only $695, it’s a must for anyone who wishes to drive on the track.
Of course, the high-performance ATS-V will get the attention of serious sports car lovers. If you crave a high level of driving excitement, don't let the ATS-V's higher price tag scare you away. It’s fast, powerful, and aggressive. Although the ATS-V is not as efficient, a 25-mpg fuel economy rating makes it worthy of an out-of-town road trip.