Performance sedans are a tricky bunch these days. Manufacturers have gotten incredibly good at offering up sports car thrills in luxurious, four-door packages.
That’s why Motor Trend rounded up the latest trio for a good ‘ol fashioned comparison test. The contenders were the king of sports saloons, the BMW M3, BMW’s bavarian competition, the Mercedes-Benz C63 AMG and the American party-crasher, the 2016 Cadillac ATS-V.
We’ll spoil some of the writeup for you. The 2016 ATS-V hits its target in taking down the BMW M3, but doesn’t cinch the win for the home team this round.
MT cites only a little more tweaking would make the Cadillac ATS-V the all-around, luxury sports sedan champion. Critiques of the car fell on a low engine redline, as the engine was out of breath towards the end of the quarter mile. Engine refinement was a biggie, too, with a desire for a better exhaust note. But, let’s get serious, it’s very difficult for a TTV6 engine to sound better than the C63 AMG’s twin-turbo V8.
We can’t help but wonder what the enthusiast publication would have ranked the ATS-V if it had a similarly-powered, but better sounding/revving 6.2L LT1 V8 from the Corvette Stingray (or 2016 Camaro SS), instead of the force-fed LF4. Some of us internally also have similar feelings about the engine after wheeling the 464 hp Bavarian bunker buster after a day, as well.
But, the 2016 ATS-V hits the bullseye in nearly every category. Braking is better, acceleration is better, chassis feel is superb. As MT puts it, “For better or worse, it seems that Cadillac engineered the ATS-V to be sport sedan first and a luxury car second.”
Meanwhile, the Mercedes C63 AMG seems to have won because of its overall creature comforts, while offering the meanest drivetrain of the lot. Even though it was by far the heaviest.