There’s no question – the 2013 Cadillac ATS is a big deal for Cadillac, General Motors and the automotive industry. The BMW 3-Series has been hunted down by the competition for years. There are longtime competitors like the Audi A4 and Mercedes-Benz C-Class as well as newer competition such as the Infiniti G.
They’re all good cars, but none have matched the 3-Series’ near-perfect blend of style, power and handling. Reviews are in on the 2013 ATS and nearly all are unanimous that is the strongest competition the 3-Series has ever received, coming extremely close to the segment leader. This has to be a worrying development for BMW, as the ATS is Cadillac’s first real attempt at going after the 3.
The first CTS was pegged as a 3-Series competitor, but in reality it was larger and the 3 wasn’t benchmarked during its development. Adding further momentum for its launch, Esquire magazine has handed out the ATS its Car of the Year award. Esquire isn’t a magazine noted for its pull in the automotive world, and that’s part of award’s significance. Those following the auto industry know how good the ATS is , but it isn’t conventional wisdom. Last year Esquire picked the Audi A7 Sportback as its car of they year. Esquire said the ATS was “perhaps the single most important thing Detroit has built in years.”
Other awards were handed out to the Range Rover Evoque for SUV of the Year( we’ll agree with that) and BMW 640i Gran Coupe for luxury Car of the Year. Debut of the year went to the 2013 Scion FR-S and Subaru BRZ twins. The question about ATS until now has been about market acceptance – Cadillacs have had a stodgy image in the past. That has changed over the past decade, and the ATS could be coming at just the right time. Somewhere the guys at Caddy’s marketing department are cheering. Way to go guys.