2013 CADILLAC ATS CHALLENGES THE WORLD’S BEST COMPACT LUXURY CARS
The all-new 2013 Cadillac ATS compact luxury sports sedan is the brand’s entry into the world’s most significant luxury car segment and is designed to challenge the world’s best premium cars. Its sophisticated driving experience is enhanced with Cadillac CUE, a comprehensive, in-vehicle user experience that merges intuitive design with industry-first controls and commands for information and entertainment.
Developed on an all-new, lightweight rear-drive architecture, the ATS reflects a new expression of Cadillac’s Art & Science execution philosophy, centered on a foundation of driving dynamics and mass efficiency. It is the most agile and lightweight Cadillac, with one of the lowest curb weights in the segment –1,504 kilograms (3,315 lbs). All-wheel drive is available.
Germany’s famed Nürburgring served as one of the key testing grounds, along with additional roads, race tracks and laboratories around the globe, where ATS engineers balanced performance with Cadillac’s trademark refinement. Contributing components and features include:
- 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
- Driver-adjustable FE3 sport suspension with Magnetic Ride Control real-time damping
- Underbody aerodynamic shields
- Premium (belt driven) electric variable-effort steering gear from ZF Steering Systems
- Four-channel ABS with available Brembo performance brakes
- Available all-wheel drive.
The ATS is offered as a well-equipped standard model and in 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 structure to complement its performance with efficiency. The optional engines include an all-new 2.0L turbocharged four-cylinder rated at 272 horsepower (203 kW) and Cadillac’s award-winning 3.6L V-6, rated at 321 horsepower (239 kW).
ATS design and exterior features
The 2013 Cadillac ATS interprets Cadillac’s Art & Science design language in a new proportion, tailoring the signature styling and refinement cues for the most compact Cadillac while upholding – and advancing – the exemplary attention to detail and technological elements for which the brand is known.
A long, 109.3-inch (2,775 mm) wheelbase and wide front/rear tracks are the cornerstones of the ATS’s firmly planted stance, which is enhanced by short overhangs and taut sheet metal that appears to wrap tightly around the tires. Seventeen-inch wheels are standard and 18-inch wheels are available.
Bold vertical lighting elements – including new LED front signature lighting detail – as well as illuminating door handles and active grille shutters lend technologically advanced style and function to the ATS. The grille shutters close at certain highway speeds to reduce aerodynamic drag and enhance fuel economy.
High-intensity discharge headlamps with Adaptive Forward Lighting are available on models with the 2.0L turbo and 3.6L V-6 engines.
Exterior colours include: Radiant Silver Metallic, Black Raven, Black Diamond Tricoat, Crystal Red Tintcoat, White Diamond Tricoat, Thunder Gray ChromaFlair, Opulent Blue Metallic, Glacier Blue Metallic, Silver Coast Metallic and Summer Gold 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 seats have 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 centre stack in the mid-instrument panel that flows into the centre console. LED lighting for 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 fibre trim and Cadillac’s cut-and-sew instrument panel, console and doors enhance the emotional connection to the ATS. Choices of many interior colour themes, each with unique accent trim material, cover a wide range of flavours – from light, open and warm to black and serious, to bold, technical and sporty.
Interior colour and trim choices include: Jet Black with Jet Black accents, Morello Red with Jet Black accents, Light Platinum with Brownstone accents, Caramel with Jet Black accents and Light Platinum with Jet Black accents.
Additional interior features include:
- Bluetooth phone connectivity with voice recognition
- USB, auxiliary and SD memory card ports
- SiriusXM Satellite Radio with three-month trial subscription
- Keyless access and keyless push-button start
- Reconfigurable 5.7-inch instrument panel cluster display
- Full-colour reconfigurable head-up display
- Leatherette or leather seating surfaces.
A seven-speaker Bose® sound system is offered on the standard model, as well as Luxury and Performance Collections. It is standard with the Premium Collection. A navigation system is also available with Luxury and Performance Collections and standard with the Premium Collection.
Cadillac CUE details
The ATS is offered with Cadillac CUE (with or without navigation) – a comprehensive, in-vehicle experience that merges intuitive design with auto industry-first controls and commands for information and entertainment data. It is designed to be unique for each consumer, from the “simple user” to the fully connected “super user.”
CUE (Cadillac User Experience), pairs entertainment and information data from up to 10 Bluetooth-enabled mobile devices, USBs, SD cards and MP3 players with a vehicle infotainment system that reduces complexity through customized information, voice commands and fewer buttons and larger icons. For example, most of today’s luxury cars have approximately 20 buttons controlling the radio and entertainment functions. CUE has only four.
The heart of CUE is the eight-inch LCD multi-touch sensitive screen, seamlessly integrated into the top of the central instrument panel and a motorized, fully capacitive faceplate at the bottom concealing a 1.8L storage area. The vibrant LCD screen displays CUE’s home page, which resembles a smart phone’s screen, by using large, easy-to-target icons to execute commands. Capacitive technology refers to using electrodes to sense the conductive properties of objects, such as a finger.
The engine lineup starts with a standard 2.5L four-cylinder; a 2.0L turbocharged four-cylinder and the 3.6L V-6 are available. The four-cylinders are next-generation engines, with the 2.0L turbo offered with a manual transmission – a choice that’s unavailable in some luxury cars.
Increased efficiency was a priority for the new four-cylinders. It was achieved partly through lower engine friction, which was reduced by up to 16 percent using new technologies such as a variable-displacement oil pump and, with the 2.5L, an actively controlled thermostat. Cadillac proprietary computational fluid dynamics (CFD) analysis techniques were used to develop an all-new combustion system with a higher compression ratio, which also helps boost efficiency.
The 2.5L is rated at 202 horsepower (151 kW) and 191 lb.-ft. or torque (259 Nm), while the 2.0L turbo – the latest in a series of technologically advanced, high-output turbo engines – is rated at 272 horsepower (203 kW) and 260 lb.-ft. of torque (353 Nm). 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 new 2.0L turbo is one of the most power-dense engines in the industry, topping engines from European competitors.
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 six-speed manual available with the turbo engine.
ATS driving experience
Proportion and balance are on the ATS’s side, with a low curb weight of 1,504kilograms (3,315 lbs) and power-dense powertrains that are also lightweight to achieve a 50/50 weight distribution and a greater power-to-weight ratio. They complement wide front and rear tracks – 59.5-inch/1,512mm (front) and 60-inch/1,548mm (rear) – for a lower centre of gravity that promotes greater stability.
Low vehicle mass and optimal brake sizes are expected to 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 metres).
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 for reduced spindle length, significantly reducing steering wheel feedback due to wheel impacts and imbalance. 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. It’s a design that helps reduces roll centre 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 manoeuvres.
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.
Seventeen-inch (17x8-inch) wheels used with 225/40-series tires are standard and 18x8-inch wheels and 255/35-series rubber are offered on the ATS, with run-flat tires. Models with the FE3 suspension feature 18x9-inch rear wheels.
A mechanical limited-slip differential is a feature 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 sport suspension package. It is housed in a robust 8.6-inch carrier. Other models feature a 7.67-inch carrier.
Supporting the ATS’s new suspension designs are advanced damping, steering and braking systems, including Magnetic Ride Control, which is the heart of the FE3 Sport Suspension package (included on the Premium Collection) that also includes a mechanical limited-slip differential, high-capacity 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 every millisecond and can change damping in only five milliseconds.
Adjustable settings for the FE3 suspension allow the driver to select different ranges of damping for Magnetic Ride Control, including a competitive mode that also adjusts the intervention of the stability control and traction control systems.
All ATS models come with a premium electric, variable-assist power steering gear from ZF Steering Systems. It is designed to deliver excellent response and on-centre 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 steering gear has great torsional stiffness and lower 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 are standard on all models, with Brembo performance brakes available on the standard model and included on the Luxury, Performance and Premium collections. They are matched with a four-channel ABS system that is integrated with standard StabiliTrak stability control and full-function traction control.
ATS safety features
Safety in the ATS is 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 intervenes to help the driver avert potential crashes. In some cases, Cadillac’s advanced crash-avoidance systems will act without the driver, such as automatic braking, which will activate based on information indicating potential hazards.
Among the most sophisticated of the features is Front and Rear Automatic Brakes. This relies on short-range radar technology and ultrasonic sensors to help the driver prevent front and rear low-speed collisions via a progression of alerts that extend to complete braking, if necessary.
Optional advanced safety features include:
- Full Speed Range Adaptive Cruise Control
- Intelligent Brake Assist
- Forward Collision Alert
- Brake Pre-Fill Automatic Collision Preparation
- Lane Departure Warning
- Side Blind Zone Alert
- Rear Vision Camera With Dynamic Guidelines
- Adaptive Forward Lighting
- Hill Hold/Start Assist (Standard, manual transmission)
The advanced technology safety features complement the ATS’s roster of other safety features, including eight standard air bags (10 with optional features), safety belt pretensioners and load limiters, StabiliTrak electronic stability control system with traction control and four-wheel disc brakes with four-channel ABS.
ATS and OnStar
One year of OnStar Directions and Connections service is standard on ATS. OnStar is the global leading provider of connected safety, security and mobility solutions and advanced information technology.
OnStar’s RemoteLink Mobile App allows smartphone users to control vehicle functions, access vehicle information and send directions directly to the vehicle. A new, opt-in service called FamilyLink allows subscribers to stay connected to loved ones by checking the location of their vehicle online or by signing up for vehicle location alerts.
ATS features new OnStar button icons. Drivers will notice an updated look for the Hands-Free Calling button, blue OnStar button and red Emergency button.
More information about OnStar can be found at www.onstar.com.
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