March 3, 2013
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The Cadillac ATS continues to deliver intrigue and surprises daily. Today I accidentally touched just below the face of the centre console and it flipped up! There is a large storage bin behind the touch sensitive controls — hidden from view and away from Customs’ prying eyes. [What is it exactly that you need to hide from Customs, James? --Ed.]
The volume control also works better if you use it as a slider instead of attempting to adjust by tapping the button over and over to adjust the volume.
I agree with most of my automotive journalist colleagues that love the driving dynamics that the ATS offers. It feels light, nimble and eager to please and is so toss-able it really is fun to drive. Too bad for me the weather is not offering me any chance to explore the dynamics as much as I would hope, but I have explored the limits at low speed on snow.
The 3.6L engine is smooth, powerful and the dual exhaust offers a nice roar as you tromp on the throttle pedal. The six-speed automatic transmission shifts extremely quickly and smoothly — and unlike most newer vehicles the transmission is not shifting so early as to bog the engine down, it is tuned perfectly.
Power is ample; with 321-horsepower the ATS rockets away from a stop and passing is a breeze. On the highway I expected a quieter ride — the tuning is certainly aimed more on the sports side and tire noise is evident. But the suspension soaks up imperfections beautifully and passengers will certainly not be complaining about ride harshness.