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GM boss tests Caddy ATS

Former Holden chief takes Cadillac’s 3 Series rival for a quick spin

20 Sep 2011

GENERAL Motors North America president and former Holden chief Mark Reuss has taken to the test track and declared Cadillac’s forthcoming ATS sedan to be “an outstanding” driver’s car as development continues ahead of the crucial new model’s 2013 launch.

A mechanical engineer who is a certified industry pool test driver on Germany’s famed Nurburgring Nordschleife road course, Mr Reuss was renowned for his driving talent and high-level feedback on Holden-developed vehicles during his time as chairman and managing director of the Australian car-maker.

In a teaser video of the ATS released last week, taken while Mr Reuss was driving a prototype, he said: “How do you put a metric on what the soul of the car is?“I think that what we’re creating that’s very unique here is a soul for Cadillac in this segment that we haven’t had before.

“This is going to be an outstanding car from a dynamic and performance standpoint.”

Cadillac has confirmed that its new sporty four-door sedan – which will be a direct rival for the BMW 3 Series – will come in both rear-wheel drive and all-wheel drive variants.

The ATS will go into production in Lansing, Michigan, around the third quarter next year for the 2013 model year, and a high-performance variant called the ATS-V is expected to follow in 2014.

Being pitched at German rivals such as the Audi A4 and Mercedes-Benz C-class as well as the 3 Series, Cadillac is expected to add coupe, convertible and wagon body styles to the ATS range further down the track.

In the video, Mr Reuss and several of the development team members talk about the car, which is built on GM’s Alpha platform and borrows heavily from the underpinnings of the larger 5 Series-size Cadillac CTS sedan.

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