In the sports sedan segment, the BMW 3 Series is leading the standard for other sedans to follow. The Cadillac ATS, Mercedes-Benz C Class and Lexus IS have all set their benchmarks against the BMW 3 Series, but the followers are now catching up with the BMW 3 Series’ performance. Cadillac has made no secrets about trying to beat the BMW 3 Series at its home turf. The company has been benchmarking the Cadillac ATS sports sedan at the Nürburgring track in Germany throughout its development.
The last time we heard of a match up done with the fresh of the production line turbocharged four-cylinder-engine Cadillac ATS against the BMW 3 Series, the ATS came close. And now again, Motor Trend has given the latest Cadillac ATS sports sedan another chance with its V6 engine, but it is also adding the Mercedes-Benz C350 sedan to the mix.
Jonny Lieberman of Motor Trend compared the six-cylinder versions of the Cadillac ATS 3.6 ($49,185), the Mercedes-Benz C350 ($49,245), and the BMW 335i ($55,870). All three sports sedans are equipped with an automatic transmission, but the BMW has an 8-speed version instead of a six-speed. From the spec sheets, the Cadillac ATS 3.6 produces about 321 horsepower, the Mercedes-Benz C350 generates 302 horsepower, and the BMW 335i blasts out about 300 horsepower. As you can see, the Cadillac ATS sedan got a bit of an upper hand on the other two sedans, and it is also the cheapest. But as we know all too well, BMW tends to under report horsepower ratings in its cars.
The comparison test of these three sports sedans is just not based on performance alone, it includes the interior feel and the driving dynamics of each car. So, will the Cadillac ATS 3.6 take the helm this time? Jonny Lieberman has his own conclusion, what is yours?