February 28, 2013
The rear seats are not the ATS’ strong point. There’s a shortage of legroom, though I was able to fit comfortably. Headroom is at a premium too, but was acceptable for my height. This is one of very few vehicles where we couldn’t get all three of our kids in comfortably.
The 328i’s rear seats, although surprisingly hard, were significantly more roomy, providing more leg and headroom. All three kids fit in there just fine.
Both rear seating areas provide two sets of LATCH anchors for kids’ seats if you need them.
2013 Cadillac ATS 2.0T AWD. Click image to enlarge
The ATS’ trunk is small but useable at 290 L. Everything is trimmed nicely and the trunk lid arms are shrouded, keeping it clean. The 328i’s trunk is significantly bigger (481 Liters) and is finished equally well. The trunk lid arms are also shrouded, and won’t end up pinching any of your cargo/luggage. Both cars’ rear seats fold down, but I preferred the flexibility that the BMW’s 40/20/40 split offered.
Both of these cars are great, and it’s hard to nitpick much. I do hate how BMW bends you over the options barrel, where things that should be standard equipment aren’t. Things like an alarm system or satellite radio. Also, I thought our 328i tester’s “Luxury” badge on the cowl looked pretty lame and cheap.
I simply loved the Cadillac ATS. It offers great looks, luxury, excellent in-car tech and is well built. I appreciated how balanced it was in every situation, and how controlled every motion was. It doesn’t lie when it sells itself as a sport sedan.
However, that sportiness might be more than some want, and that ride might be a bit too firm for some – but I can’t imagine anyone taking an ATS out for a spin and not agreeing that it is a great driver’s car.
The ATS, for Cadillac’s first serious shot in the category, has brought some serious ability to the table. It’s competitive, to be sure. I love that it’s available in a number of configurations, including engine choices, manual and automatic transmissions, and rear- and all-wheel drive. You can make the ATS into what you want. And what you need.
2013 BMW 328i xDrive. Click image to enlarge
The new 328i is also a fantastic car. There is much to like, and standing on its own, it’s a great vehicle. The changes on the outside are nice, and the revised interior is better in virtually every way, including the welcome increase in size.
I found some of the sharper edges I expect from a 3 Series to be missing, but it makes up for that in comfort. It just depends on what you’re looking for. There are other trim lines too, one of them being Sport. That might be the answer for some.
The 328i equals the ATS in terms of being luxurious, well put together and relatively efficient and it’s responsive, agile and balanced on the road.
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