This week, I’ve got a real head-turner for review, the 2019 Cadillac ATS-V coupe. This is a beast of a car that is track-capable but would make an exceptional daily driver as well.
2019 Cadillac ATS-V Coupe
Check out the razor-sharp lines of the ATS-V. It’s low and wide for performance handling. Look at the carbon fiber hood complete with functional vents. There is also a front carbon fiber splitter, all of this to feed air to the big engine. A rear spoiler and quad exhaust surrounded by carbon fiber complete the non-Cadillac look. Also, don’t miss the 18” Alloy wheels with a V stamped in them, and dark gold brake calipers for the Brembo big brakes.
Under the Hood
The big story here is under the hood. Sitting underneath the beautiful carbon fiber engine cover lies a 3.6-liter V6 with twin-turbos that kick out 464-horses and 445-pound feet of torque. Although you can get it in a manual, my tester has an 8-speed automatic with shift paddles. Check out the under hood bracing necessary to reduce twist under heavy acceleration. This powertrain will take you from 0-to-60 in 3.8 seconds, and if you can find a place, it will take you to 189-miles per hour.
Open the large driver’s door and you’ll reveal heavily bolstered, yet very comfortable, Microfiber suede Recaro seats. Hit the start button and first, take in the deep melodic exhaust sound of the ATS-V. Then check out the extremely colorful gauges and configurable driver info readout. There is a great head-up display that you can also configure.
Carbon fiber and soft-touch materials flow throughout the cabin. There is a nice center console, and the center stack is well laid out, leading to the Cadillac User Experience, or CUE screen, which is a colorful 8” touchscreen that works quickly and easily.
The screen operates the Bose audio system, Bluetooth, navigation system, climate controls, settings, Apple Car Play, and Android Auto. Swipe the screen to the left for loadable apps, OnStar usage, and to operate the 4G LTE Wi-Fi hotspot. My only complaint on the CUE system is the volume bar is cumbersome, but you quickly learn to change the volume on the steering wheel. On the cool side, you can raise the climate controls to reveal a hidden cubby and to expose the built-in cell phone charger.
Bear in mind a couple of things: the back seat is not inhabitable for adults, and if you are more than around 6-feet tall, the headroom is going to get tight.
The drive modes on the center console dramatically change the car’s handling and performance. You can choose from Tour, Sport, my personal favorite: Track, or choose ice and snow.
Standard and Optional Equipment
The ATS-V comes with a lot of standard equipment, like keyless entry, rear camera, parking sensors, and power tilt wheel.
However, you have to purchase a surprising amount of options to make this car truly fully loaded.
The Recaro seats are $2300 and are not air-conditioned. There is a $2100 luxury package, which includes the navigation system, Bose stereo, and HID and LED headlights. The automatic transmission is $2000, the upgraded wheels are $800, the upgraded grill is $495, the paint is $625, and that beautiful engine cover is $1295, but I’d just have to have it.
The last option is the $1800 Safety and Security package, which in my opinion should come as standard equipment on a Cadillac. In it, you get the head-up display, lane-change alert, blind spot alert, lane departure warning, forward collision alert, and rain-sensing wipers.
Ride and Drive
The ATS-V is a blast to drive, it has many characteristics of the Corvette. Acceleration is insane in track mode, although I wish it had all-wheel drive, but that is not available.
Fuel Economy and What You’ll Pay
I have to say the MSRP gives me some heartburn at $80,775 but I suspect there will be some hefty incentives to get that price down since we know this is the last year for the ATS-V.
Fuel economy is overstated if you drive this car like it was intended, but the ratings are 17 in town, 25 on the highway. I never got close to that.
Price aside, this Cadillac is a beast and a true joy on the tollway or the track.