The Cadillac ATS is the 2013 North American Car of the Year. It’s also Cadillac’s first all-out, no-holds-barred attempt to best the competition — an all-new, world-class, state-of-the-art luxury sport compact that’s been designed, engineered, and tested to take on the best from Germany, and win.
But despite the excellent driving dynamics and the vehicle’s other favorable qualities, some ATS models are riddled with a repellent excuse of an exhaust tip. In particular, what we’re referring to is found on the base 2.5 liter ATS — a single exhaust tip that sits in no-man’s land, being neither in the middle of the vehicle’s lower valance, nor off to the side — such as the dual-tip units found on the 3 series, C-class, or A4:
The single off-center outlet in the base 2.5 seems to be a cost-cutting measure, given that ATS models equipped with the 2.0 liter turbo or the 3.6 liter V6 mills sport a dual exhaust setup. The dual exhaust setup, in fact, have one pipe located off-center on the driver’s side, and the other located off-center on the passenger’s side. These dual units wrap the ATS’ back-up light and give the vehicle a unique look, since they are positioned slightly closer to the middle of the car when compared to traditional dual exhaust outlets. Like so:
Meanwhile, the base 2.5 liter ATS simply does away with the exhaust tip on the passenger’s side and doesn’t reposition the remaining one (on the driver’s side) closer to the edge, breaking the concerto of symmetry of a dual exhaust system and the center-mounted back-up light — leaving the remaining tip awkwardly placed in the rear bumper cover, all by itself. The whole exercise looks out of place, clumsy, and unfinished. Worst of all, it looks worse than the base models from the German three. Here’s another shot:
For a premium-level car, we find this level of incompletion (or inattention to detail) to be unacceptable. Here are two solutions that would solve the problem:
- Give all ATS models (regardless of engine) the sweet-looking dual exhaust treatment. Too expensive/cost ineffective? In that case…
- Reposition the single exhaust outlet to the left side, like so:
Now, there is the possibility that we’re making a mountain out of an molehill here, so we’ll leave it to you — dear reader — to decide whether this is a big deal or not. Vote in the poll, and talk to us in the comments below.