The new Cadillac ATS is designed to be a lean, mean sports machine. It is a smaller car than the CTS, XTS, or my STS-V, by which it gains agility, handling, acceleration, and fuel economy. But now it must face the Cadillac ATS roadtrip test — is it a capable touring sedan?
Is it too small? A Cadillac needs to be a capable touring car. This can mean a couple of different things in my family — there needs to be enough rear seat room and comfort for a 20-something passenger, and the trunk needs to be large enough for Gigantor.
Cadillac ATS Roadtrip Test — 6′ tall rear passenger
For the first test, I invited my 20-something son to dinner and put him in the back. I asked him to test for leg room, comfort, and sleep-ability. This last is a test if the ATS would work well for him on long trips which he tends to spend with a laptop & headphones or asleep. The ATS does have center rear air flow, which I have come to believe is very desirable for rear comfort.
After careful consideration, Son ruled the Cadillac ATS is approved as a family touring car. The leg room was fine with the passenger seat pushed up to where his Mom would sit, and was also just enough for him at 6′ if he sat behind the driver’s seat with it in my preferred place.
Headroom is good in the front and the back.
Cadillac ATS Touring Test — ATS vs Gigantor
Gigantor is my nickname for my Wife’s oversize suitcase — shown above. We have to keep an eye on it or it tends to eat the other luggage. Although they seem small by comparison, the black and red luggage next to it are full size roller bags — designed to hold 3-5 days of gear for trips. Gigantor is around 50% larger in both dimensions as compared to a normal roller bag.
The Gigantor Test — can the ATS hold both Gigantor, and 2 normal roller bags all in the trunk?
This photo shows all three suitcases in the trunk, and I could easily close the trunk. Success. The trunk space is formed by the rear wheel hubs, but has a nice space in the center that fits Gigantor, and enough room besides to handle the two rollers and leave plenty of other room for miscellaneous other.
Cadillac ATS Roadtrip Test — Conclusion
We knew coming in that the Cadillac ATS has good fuel economy and performance. It passed these family touring tests with flying colors. If the ATS is small enough to be agile and sporty, but big enough to be a good touring sedan, it certainly seems a good fit for a wide audience.