News Column

Cadillac Unveils ATS Pricing; It's 'the New Kid on the Block'

May 9, 2012

Nathan Bomey

Cadillac ATS

The Cadillac ATS, General Motors' bid to compete in the compact luxury sedan segment, will start at $33,990, the automaker said Monday.

The rear-wheel drive vehicle will range up to $42,090 for a model with a 3.6-liter, 320-horsepower, V-6 engine, Cadillac's new CUE digital connectivity system, adaptive start and other features.

An ATS with a 2.0-liter turbocharged engine will carry a base price of about $35,795. All-wheel drive is optional on the vehicle.

GM plans to start selling the ATS this summer. The vehicle will be assembled at GM's Lansing Grand River plant.

Cadillac is aiming the ATS at buyers of the BMW 3 series, the Mercedes-Benz C-Class sedan and the Audi A4. The car will mark Cadillac's first U.S.-engineered foray since the 1980s into compact cars, which have the most sales of any luxury segment.

The vehicle undercuts the pricing for some of its competitors, including the BMW 328i sedan, which starts at $35,795.

"At the end of the day, ATS is the new kid on the block going up against more established nameplates so it's up to Cadillac to tell the story of why people should consider it," said Jessica Caldwell, an analyst for research firm, in an e-mail.

Smaller than Cadillac's CTS sedan, the ATS was developed in GM's Warren Tech Center. It features a curb weight under 3,400 pounds.

"The ATS enters a vehicle segment this year that's one of the most competitive in the market, from both a price and performance standpoint," said Don Butler, Cadillac vice president of marketing, in a statement. "ATS will bring a distinctive presence and compelling value while offering quick, nimble, fun-to-drive dynamics."

The ATS faces a challenge in the luxury compact segment. For example, BMW sold 93,000 of its outgoing 3 series last year in the U.S., and it is launching an updated version.

Source: (c) 2012 the Detroit Free Press

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