The Cadillac CT4 Is the Brand's Future Entry-Level Sedan—and There Will Be a CT4-V

Daniel Golson
Photo credit: Brian Williams - Car and Driver

From Car and Driver

UPDATE 5/23/19: The Cadillac CT4 will make its official debut May 30, and it will first be shown in CT4-V form. This high-performance version of the new compact sports sedan should either be powered by the ATS-V's twin-turbo 3.6-liter V-6, or by a version of the twin-turbo 3.0-liter V-6 found in the CT5 and CT6 sedans.

What It Is: Cadillac's new CT4 compact sedan, the replacement for the aging ATS. Like its counterpart, the CTS-replacing CT5 sedan, the CT4 will be smaller than the car it supplants in the Cadillac lineup. These spy photos are our first look at the car, and even though it is still covered in heavy camouflage (including a fake Dodge Charger–like taillight panel), we can see an attractive greenhouse, proportions similar to those of the ATS, lights with vertical and horizontal elements, a wide grille, and a set of tailpipes.

Why It Matters: The ATS was always a little too small to truly compete with the Audi A4 and the BMW 3-series, but too big to go up against cars one size below. With the CT5 now fully taking up that mantle (instead of being a too-small competitor for the next-size-up A6 and 5-series), Cadillac is positioning the CT4 to do battle in the growing entry-luxury sedan segment. Designing the CT4 from the outset to compete in a specific segment should be a more successful strategy than making tweener cars like the ATS and CTS-especially in such an important and profitable segment. And, along with the CT5, it will help usher in Cadillac's new design language, which was first seen on the Escala concept car.

Platform: The CT4 will ride on General Motors' well-regarded Alpha platform, which currently underpins Cadillac's ATS and CTS sedans as well as the Chevrolet Camaro. Rear-wheel drive will be standard, with all-wheel drive available as an option.

Photo credit: Brian Williams - Car and Driver

Powertrain: The standard engine will most likely be the new turbocharged 2.0-liter inline-four that debuted in the XT4 crossover. In that application it makes 237 horsepower and 258 lb-ft of torque and is paired with a nine-speed automatic transmission; in the CT4, it could be mated to an eight-speed. The ATS was available with a six-speed manual transmission, and we're keeping our fingers crossed that the CT4 gets a stick, too. A more powerful version of the turbo four is expected as an upgrade for the CT4's higher trim levels, and a high-performance V-series model could appear later with a twin-turbo V-6.

Competition: Acura ILX, Audi A3, BMW 2-series, Mercedes-Benz A-class.

Estimated Arrival and Price: We expect the CT4 to debut sometime in 2020 as a 2021 model, with a starting price of around $35,000.

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