Cadillac’s new flagship XTS, entry-level ATS

It’s a “you had to be there” moment if there ever was one. General Motors design chief Ed Welburn unveiled full-size styling bucks of two new Cadillac models after cameras were banned from the room, and anyone who wasn’t there is just plain out of luck.GM’s premium division desperately needs the two new models, the first due to its entry-level placement and sport-oriented, image-boosting role, and the second because of high profitability and luxury-oriented, yet still image-boosting role. The first is a true BMW 3-Series fighter dubbed ATS, smaller than the CTS that already targets 3-Series, Audi A4 and Mercedes-Benz C-Class buyers, to name a few. While the CTS will likely grow in size to more directly go after the 5-Series, A6 and E-Class customers, the new model will allow Cadillac to expand into global markets that buy smaller cars more effectively.

Currently that market is being serviced by Cadillac‘s Euro-only BLS sedan, a front-drive derivative of Saab’s 9-3. It’s not a true Cadillac, but it serves a purpose for the time being. The new ATS will be rear- and all-wheel drive, however, so it appears that Cadillac has its priorities right. It will likely be based on the next-generation CTS architecture, which is already under development according to Cadillac general manager Brian Nesbitt. Power will certainly include an updated version of GM’s 3.6L V6, while its new fuel-efficient 3.0L V6 may also be offered, as could possibly be an even more efficient four-cylinder.

 

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