The 2017 Cadillac ATS-V Coupe is Two Doors Short of Perfect
No matter what the gearheads say, the extra doors make for a better car.
When I drove the Velocity Red Cadillac ATS-V Sedan in Detroit last fall, I was smitten. Detroiters who spotted the car as I plowed around downtown were smitten. Even my 94-year-old grandmother, a lapsed member of the Cadillac faithful and one of my first passengers, was smitten.
When I drove the Velocity Red Cadillac ATS-V Coupe in New York this summer, the response was more muted. I blame a genetic mutation, and a dirty secret: I don’t like coupes.
I know this is sacrilege in the world of automotive enthusiasts, for whom the lighter weight, lower center of gravity, greater structural rigidity, enhanced dynamics, and more aerodynamic design language inherent to two-doors privileges them over their four-door siblings. But you know who's not sensitive enough to discern these differences? Me. You who else can't? About 97 percent of American drivers.
What they—and I—can easily detect is the diminished headroom and legroom and more difficult ingress and egress that coupes feature. They’ll notice the minimized light and visibility coming from chopped or sealed windows. And if they order the $2,300 Recaro sport seats with which my V-Coupe was equipped, they will also easily notice the sueded microfiber inserts, which have the benefit of adhering to your pants like a mating praying mantis, but look like they were hand-stitched from a cosplay cowboy vest. How great is your affection for Sheriff Woody? (That being said, I do dig the black wheels.)
I’ll gladly accept these liabilities in a convertible, because a convertible offers an equal or greater tradeoff: the top retracts.
The Cadillac ATS-V is marvelous piece of engineering, and a wonderful car, with poise, balance, power, and appropriate dollops of luxury and tech. My friends and I shouldn’t have to be in Cirque du Soleil to get in and out. The solution is simple: Make mine a four-door.
2017 Cadillac ATS-V Coupe
PRICE (AS TESTED): $62,665 ($78,905)
POWERTRAIN: 3.6-Liter twin-turbo V6, 464 hp/445 lb-ft
PERFORMANCE: 0-60 4.2 seconds, Top speed 189 mph
NUMBER OF DOORS: Two few