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2019 Cadillac ATS Pros vs Cons

Reviewed & fact checked by
James Murdoch

Are You Considering a 2019 Cadillac ATS? Here Are Some Reasons For and Against

If you love the art of driving, be sure to check out the 2019 Cadillac ATS. This coupe's poised handling and fleet-footed acceleration promise to leave you impressed. It's a great alternative to a European sports coupe. Although Cadillac offers an extensive list of upgrades, even the base model surrounds you with a lot of nifty features. While this is definitely a cool ride, you can't ignore its weak points. Let's find out if the new 2019 Cadillac ATS is the right car for you.

What's New for 2019?

This year, Cadillac no longer offers a four-door version of the ATS. Aside from the high-performance ATS-V, all models now come equipped with an automatic transmission.

Ten Reasons You May Like the 2019 Cadillac ATS – The Pros

1. Fun, Economical Engines

Even the standard turbocharged four-cylinder delivers a healthy dose of performance. It kicks out a stimulating 272 horsepower and 295 pound-feet of torque. Fuel economy tops out at 31 mpg on the open road. Drivers craving more motivation should get the available V6 engine, which pushes out 335 horsepower. When tested on the track, the ATS sprinted to 60 mph in 5.6 seconds. Fuel economy doesn’t even take a big hit with the V6 engine.

2. High-Output ATS-V

Atop the lineup sits the thrilling ATS-V model. It comes equipped with a turbocharged V6 engine, which produces a rousing 464 horsepower. Unlike the standard 2019 Cadillac ATS, this exciting model allows you to choose between a six-speed manual and an eight-speed automatic gearbox. Not only does the ATS-V clock a 0-60 time of less than four seconds, but it also benefits from a number of other high-performance parts.

3. Handles Better Than Most Coupes

Although the 2019 Cadillac ATS is billed as a luxury coupe, it handles just as well as a full-blown sports car. In fact, many people consider the ATS to be more athletic than European favorites such as the BMW 3 Series. You’ll love ripping around curves in the new ATS. While the base model is a sweet-handling car, a sports-tuned suspension and a limited-slip rear differential enables the Premium Performance trim to deliver an especially nimble performance.

4. Track Package

As previously mentioned, the 2019 Cadillac ATS handles great on the street. However, it also proves to be a capable track machine. Drivers who plan to compete on a race course should opt for the Track package. It outfits the ATS with some important performance goodies. While an upgraded cooling fan helps keep the engine at an appropriate temperature, beefier brakes help ensure reliable stopping power throughout the day.

5. Classy Exterior Styling

The 2019 Cadillac ATS is a sleek car with a muscular stance. Up front, Cadillac’s cascading headlamps give the ATS a classy look. Meanwhile, vertical tail lamps and polished exhaust tips highlight the rear fascia. A set of 18-inch forged aluminum wheels are available as an option. Expect the ATS-V model to have an especially mean appearance. It features a hood extractor and a sporty mesh grille. Some of the available paint colors include Black Raven, Silver Moonlight Metallic, and Red Obsession Tintcoat.

6. Seats Are Great for Enthusiastic Driving

Folks who like to drive fast will appreciate the ATS coupe's eight-way power-adjustable front seats. When taking corners, these seats do a great job of keeping you buttoned down. They also provide a good degree of cushioning. When you decide to hit the highway for an out-of-town trip, the extra support will certainly come in handy. To experience more comfort on wintry days, take advantage of the available heated seats.

7. Popular High-Tech Features Come Standard

Luckily, Cadillac outfits the ATS with a fulfilling amount of standard technology. With so many people now needing to access the internet on a daily basis, the 4G Wi-Fi hot spot is a feature you’re bound to use regularly. Meanwhile, a Bose sound system with satellite radio seeks to amuse music fans. Some of the other standard tech includes wireless device charging, smartphone integration, and an 8.0-inch touch screen.

8. Advanced Driving Aids Offered

While the 2019 Cadillac ATS doesn’t come standard with any advanced driving aids, a Safety and Security package is found on the upper trims. When it’s safe to change lanes, the blind-spot monitor will give you the green light. Meanwhile, GM’s Safety Alert Seat vibrates to warn you of a potential road hazard. Some of the other safety technologies include lane departure mitigation, forward collision warning, and rear cross-traffic alert.

9. Teen Driver Technology

If you plan to share your new ATS with your child, Cadillac’s Teen Driver technology will give you an extra measure of control. Aside from disallowing teens to turn off any safety features, this system also enablees you to set a maximum speed. Most importantly, Teen Driver can generate a report card based on your teenager’s driving habits. You’ll be made aware of instances when your teen brakes hard or travels too fast.

10. Good Value for the Money

Prices for the new 2019 Cadillac ATS start at a tad less than $40,000. Not only does the ATS have a lower MSRP than most competitors, but it also comes standard with a more attractive list of features. Furthermore, you will appreciate the base model’s competitive level of performance.

Reasons You May Not Like the 2019 Cadillac ATS – The Cons

1. Not as Practical as the Discontinued Sedan Model

For business reasons, Cadillac decided to discontinue the four-door ATS. This means you only have access to a coupe body style. While the 2019 Cadillac ATS is comfortable, it’s definitely not a good choice for families. You’ll find its backseat to be very restricting. There’s also below-average space in the trunk. If you need more practicality, consider the larger 2019 Cadillac CTS.

2. Manual Transmission Dropped from Most Trims

Cadillac’s eight-speed automatic gearbox has a manual mode. Unfortunately, it does not work nearly as well as a traditional manual transmission. In order to get the 2019 Cadillac ATS with a traditional manual gearbox, you’re forced to step up to the range-topping ATS-V model. This issue may sadden the ATS fans who prefer the action of a stick-shift transmission.

3. CUE Infotainment System Still Trails the Competition

Over the course of the last year, Cadillac has significantly updated its CUE infotainment system. It’s quicker and operates a lot smoother. On the downside, the interface is still not the easiest to use. Because the CUE infotainment system lacks physical buttons, you’re are forced to use the touch screen’s virtual buttons. This can be a major distraction for drivers.

4. ATS-V Price Tag

If you have your heart set on the high-performance ATS-V model, prepare to spend nearly $68,000 before adding any options. Although the ATS-V is definitely one of the segment’s best performers, some drivers may not be able to afford it. The V6-powered Premium Performance model is a lot less expensive.

5. Base Engine Needs Premium Fuel

Cadillac recommends the use of premium gasoline for the standard turbocharged four-cylinder. Drivers who are looking to save money won’t like paying extra for the higher octane. Interestingly, the available V6 engine develops full power on regular unleaded. This means the base engine’s fuel savings will be negligible.

How It Stacks Up to the Competition

Before you make a final decision on the 2019 Cadillac ATS, first test drive the 2019 Audi A5 coupe. While the Audi A5 coupe has a more refined interior and a better infotainment system, the Cadillac ATS boasts a stronger base engine and a greater number of standard features.

The 2019 Lexus RC is another fun coupe. While you can expect the ATS to deliver sharper handling, some drivers will be won over by the Lexus RC’s outstanding comfort and excellent reliability.

Don’t’ forget about the 2019 BMW 4 Series. It provides a more spacious backseat and offers a manual gearbox as an option. In terms of driving dynamics, the Cadillac ATS takes the lead.


If you want the best-handling car in the segment, don’t hesitate to pick up a new 2019 Cadillac ATS. Strong acceleration also helps make the ATS a good choice for driving enthusiasts. While the ATS gives you plenty of reasons to drive it home, don’t overlook its weaknesses. Backseat space is certainly not a strong point. Car reviewers are also not be fond of its infotainment system.

Previous Cadillac ATS Buying Guides:

Why buy a 2018 Cadillac ATS? w/ pros vs cons