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    Spying: Cadillac ATS-V Plays Cat & Mouse With An M3


    William Maley

    Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com

    June 4, 2013

    The Cadillac ATS was conceived to beat the Germans at the compact luxury sedan game. Now it appears that Cadillac is upping its game by taking on high performance models with the ATS-V.

    A spy photographer caught what appears to be an ATS-V mule playing around with the benchmark of the class, the BMW M3. Judging from the shots, we can make out a more aggressive front fascia, flared fenders, quad exhausts, and larger brakes.

    As for power, that's anyone guess at the moment. It could be the new TwinTurbo 3.6L V6 that will be appearing in the 2014 CTS and XTS, or a V8 engine.

    Source: Automotbile Magazine

    William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.com or you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster.

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    I figured once BMW announced the M3 would get a 6 cylinder, that the ATS-V would also. The CTS V-sport powertrain is my guess, but you wonder if 420 hp is enough. It will be if it can beat the M3 in the corners, but the M3 since the day it was born has won in the corners.

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    I figured once BMW announced the M3 would get a 6 cylinder, that the ATS-V would also. The CTS V-sport powertrain is my guess, but you wonder if 420 hp is enough. It will be if it can beat the M3 in the corners, but the M3 since the day it was born has won in the corners.

    It all depends on how much GM can squeeze ouf of the TTV6, I guess... If they can match or surpass whatever the expectation is for the NG M3 with the ATS-V, and then offer a detuned TTV6 making some 380bhp-400bhp in a possible ATS V-Sport, the only issue might be engine build cost and how that affects the unit margin on the V-Sport...

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    Who says the TTv6 will only have 420 hp.

    It is so easy to add boost to today's engines with a simple flash and map sensores.

    Edited by hyperv6
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    I would still take a V8 over V 6 any day. Small engines especially turbo charged other than Subaru, just do not seem to have had a long life in the US that I have seen.

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    ZL-1, on 05 Jun 2013 - 18:58, said:

    smk4565, on 05 Jun 2013 - 09:09, said:

    I figured once BMW announced the M3 would get a 6 cylinder, that the ATS-V would also. The CTS V-sport powertrain is my guess, but you wonder if 420 hp is enough. It will be if it can beat the M3 in the corners, but the M3 since the day it was born has won in the corners.

    It all depends on how much GM can squeeze ouf of the TTV6, I guess... If they can match or surpass whatever the expectation is for the NG M3 with the ATS-V, and then offer a detuned TTV6 making some 380bhp-400bhp in a possible ATS V-Sport, the only issue might be engine build cost and how that affects the unit margin on the V-Sport...

    The problem with a turbo V6 -- or turbocharged anything -- is that optimal power delivery for a RWD super sedan requires that the engine be operated with very low boost (less than 10 psi), high compression (>10:1) and the consequently minimal lag and exceptional responsiveness. However, such a tune (very similar to what BMW uses on the 3.0L Inline-6 Turbos/Bi-turbos) is only good for about 360 hp. However, for a 3.6L engine to be competitive in output, it has to operate at about 16~18 psi of boost. A Supercharger offers a compromise between the two trading fuel efficiency for the elimination of turbine induced response lag. The more you squeeze out of a V6TT the worse the driving characteristics of the power train. At about 22 psi you get to about 500 hp and something that spools like a Lancer Evolution.

    Another thing is that while it is easy to say that cost shouldn't matter. Reality is that it does -- a lot -- when you are trying to slot the ATS-V in a price bracket under that of the current CTS-V ($65K). It's hard to make the ATS-V a cheaper car when you saddle it with a more expensive engine. You cannot get the ATS-V under $60K unless you drop the two turbos (or a supercharger) and the air-to-water after cooler circuit. Even if you are comfortable with a $65K ATS-V, the savings on the engine front easily equals an active rear differential, a carbon fiber roof panel and magnetic ride control combined. Hence, there's always a trade off.

    It really comes down to this...

    • ATS-V with 3.6L DOHC V6 Bi-turbo (LF3) @ 420 hp / 430 ft-lbs with some turbo lag, a little bit more weight up front and a $65K price tag.
    • ATS-V with 6.2L Pushrod V8 Naturally Aspirated (LT1) @ 460 hp / 465 lb-ft (SAE) with no turbo lag, a little less weight up front and a $60K price tag.
    Edited by dwightlooi
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    My guess is the ATS-V bases around $60k, they'll keep it lower than the M3 because they have to to get people to consider it. And in reality, the ATS-V should be as fast as a CTS-V in a straight line or around the Nurburring, or the M3 is going to blow it away. If the ATS-V runs like a current CTS-V, I see no problem in charging $65k for it. It is Cadillac, not Chevy, it isn't supposed to be cheap.

    Let's also remember that most BMW's make more power than they claim, and they get a lot of acceleration out of their cars. Car and Driver had the 335i at 4.6 seconds 0-60 and Motor Trend had 4.8 seconds. So either that engine is underrated or the drivetrain is full of smoke and mirrors and witch craft.

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    It really comes down to this...

    • ATS-V with 3.6L DOHC V6 Bi-turbo (LF3) @ 420 hp / 430 ft-lbs with some turbo lag, a little bit more weight up front and a $65K price tag.
    • ATS-V with 6.2L Pushrod V8 Naturally Aspirated (LT1) @ 460 hp / 465 lb-ft (SAE) with no turbo lag, a little less weight up front and a $60K price tag.

    Just asking: wouldn't putting the LT1 in the ATS engine bay (which I assume is smaller than the Corvette's) create some restriction issues for both intake and exhaust?

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    It really comes down to this...

    • ATS-V with 3.6L DOHC V6 Bi-turbo (LF3) @ 420 hp / 430 ft-lbs with some turbo lag, a little bit more weight up front and a $65K price tag.
    • ATS-V with 6.2L Pushrod V8 Naturally Aspirated (LT1) @ 460 hp / 465 lb-ft (SAE) with no turbo lag, a little less weight up front and a $60K price tag.

    Just asking: wouldn't putting the LT1 in the ATS engine bay (which I assume is smaller than the Corvette's) create some restriction issues for both intake and exhaust?

    Intake maybe. Exhaust, no.

    On the intake side it won't be the plenum or throttle body though. If anything is potentially more restrictive, it'll be the need to use a different filter and air box design with a 90 degree turn to the side upstream from the throttle body. On the other hand, if they decide to redesign the intake plenum, the ATS-V's intake system can potentially be less restrictive than the Vette's. The ATS-V, even without a hood bulge, will have a much taller hood line than the Vette. They can use a much taller plenum with straighter runners and greater reserve air volume if they want to.

    The 4:1 collectors on the LT1 are unitary and basically as compact as can be even on the corvette. It is already designed for packaging first, performance a close second. The only difference between the 455 hp and 460 hp installations in the Vette is downstream of the cats, and basically a trade off between noise/cost and flow. It really isn't much though -- just a 5 hp / 5 lb-ft difference.

    LT1_flipper.jpg

    Regardless, whatever differences the intakes and exhaust makes is unlikely to be more than 5~10hp. 450 hp being the worst case is adequate for the ATS-V.

    Edited by dwightlooi
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    It really comes down to this...

    • ATS-V with 3.6L DOHC V6 Bi-turbo (LF3) @ 420 hp / 430 ft-lbs with some turbo lag, a little bit more weight up front and a $65K price tag.
    • ATS-V with 6.2L Pushrod V8 Naturally Aspirated (LT1) @ 460 hp / 465 lb-ft (SAE) with no turbo lag, a little less weight up front and a $60K price tag.

    Just asking: wouldn't putting the LT1 in the ATS engine bay (which I assume is smaller than the Corvette's) create some restriction issues for both intake and exhaust?

    The engine will have no issue with intake or exhaust. Remember the car was designed also to be a Camaro and CTS with V8. But I do not expect the ATS to get the V8 due to marketing. If they put the V8 in the ATS it would cut into the CTS market. Since there is no real Cadillac engine they have to use particular engines in models to set them apart and drive different buyers.

    Edited by hyperv6
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    The CTS-V has a SUPERCHARGED V8 with 556 bhp -- the next gen CTS-V will likely get a SUPERCHARGED V8 with DI making north of 600 bhp.

    I don't see how an ATS-V with a NATURALLY ASPIRATED V8 with 450~460 bhp will cut into the CTS-V market. Any buyer who cares about the power train at all sees a big difference between a supercharged and normally aspirated engine and/or a 100~150 bhp difference in output.

    That is like saying that a 385 hp V8 Jaguar XF Premium cuts into a V8 SUPERCHARGED 470 bhp Jaguar XF Supercharged's market, or that a M-B C55 AMG with its 362 hp NA 5.5 V8 cuts into the market of an E55 or S55 AMG of the same period with their 510 bhp Supercharged 5.5 V8s. Or that use of the 3.2L V6 in Audi A4 cuts into the market of the 3.0L Supercharged V6 in the S4. Or that the use of a 2.0L NA engine in the run of the mill Ford Focus eats into the market of a 2.0T Focus ST. In short, that's utter rubbish.

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    The CTS-V has a SUPERCHARGED V8 with 556 bhp -- the next gen CTS-V will likely get a SUPERCHARGED V8 with DI making north of 600 bhp.

    I don't see how an ATS-V with a NATURALLY ASPIRATED V8 with 450~460 bhp will cut into the CTS-V market. Any buyer who cares about the power train at all sees a big difference between a supercharged and normally aspirated engine and/or a 100~150 bhp difference in output.

    That is like saying that a 385 hp V8 Jaguar XF Premium cuts into a V8 SUPERCHARGED 470 bhp Jaguar XF Supercharged's market, or that a M-B C55 AMG with its 362 hp NA 5.5 V8 cuts into the market of an E55 or S55 AMG of the same period with their 510 bhp Supercharged 5.5 V8s. Or that use of the 3.2L V6 in Audi A4 cuts into the market of the 3.0L Supercharged V6 in the S4. Or that the use of a 2.0L NA engine in the run of the mill Ford Focus eats into the market of a 2.0T Focus ST. In short, that's utter rubbish.

    Why do you use the same models with a different engine? XF NA XF SC? A4 NA S4 SC? Focus and Focus ST. We are talking about a different cars and different sizes and different weights in the ATS and CTS should they get different options to make the two models less alike? You are already taking a car built on the same platform and trying to convince it is different what better way than to offer a performance model with a different engine.

    How do you get some one to buy the heavier and more expensive CTSV you offer a V8.

    The key to marketing is to offer appealing but different packages to different models.

    Since Cadillac has nothing as for its own engine it take some extra effort to set their models apart.

    I also wish you would be more factual on the turbo engines. Yes there is some lag but it is pretty much a non factor anymore. It is nothing like the GN days, Also you seldom speak of the flat torque curve that even the LT1 is still not as wide or flat.

    Finally GM also can sell tune kits to bump up power easily with any of these engines. There was a report the other day they are at work with new kits for the 2.0 cars that will push them over 300 HP and torque already on the Solstice kit was 340 FT LBS so it will be interesting to where they will set the new kits. I expect the 3.6 TT will see a similar kit. GM made a lot of money on the first 2.0 kit.

    Also hold back the V8 for the ATS till later and add it as a special edition as the car ages to keep the car appealing longer as vs. just adding a flat paint job as they are doing today.

    .

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    The ATS-V will have 6 cylinders because the M3 does. The M3 decides what the rest do, Cadillac basically copied every dimension of the last-gen 3-series when developing the ATS. BMW has the formula down, Cadillac (and the others) are trying to copy it. But the original always seems to be better.

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    The CTS-V has a SUPERCHARGED V8 with 556 bhp -- the next gen CTS-V will likely get a SUPERCHARGED V8 with DI making north of 600 bhp.

    I don't see how an ATS-V with a NATURALLY ASPIRATED V8 with 450~460 bhp will cut into the CTS-V market. Any buyer who cares about the power train at all sees a big difference between a supercharged and normally aspirated engine and/or a 100~150 bhp difference in output.

    That is like saying that a 385 hp V8 Jaguar XF Premium cuts into a V8 SUPERCHARGED 470 bhp Jaguar XF Supercharged's market, or that a M-B C55 AMG with its 362 hp NA 5.5 V8 cuts into the market of an E55 or S55 AMG of the same period with their 510 bhp Supercharged 5.5 V8s. Or that use of the 3.2L V6 in Audi A4 cuts into the market of the 3.0L Supercharged V6 in the S4. Or that the use of a 2.0L NA engine in the run of the mill Ford Focus eats into the market of a 2.0T Focus ST. In short, that's utter rubbish.

    Why do you use the same models with a different engine? XF NA XF SC? A4 NA S4 SC? Focus and Focus ST. We are talking about a different cars and different sizes and different weights in the ATS and CTS should they get different options to make the two models less alike? You are already taking a car built on the same platform and trying to convince it is different what better way than to offer a performance model with a different engine.

    How do you get some one to buy the heavier and more expensive CTSV you offer a V8.

    The key to marketing is to offer appealing but different packages to different models.

    Since Cadillac has nothing as for its own engine it take some extra effort to set their models apart.

    I also wish you would be more factual on the turbo engines. Yes there is some lag but it is pretty much a non factor anymore. It is nothing like the GN days, Also you seldom speak of the flat torque curve that even the LT1 is still not as wide or flat.

    Finally GM also can sell tune kits to bump up power easily with any of these engines. There was a report the other day they are at work with new kits for the 2.0 cars that will push them over 300 HP and torque already on the Solstice kit was 340 FT LBS so it will be interesting to where they will set the new kits. I expect the 3.6 TT will see a similar kit. GM made a lot of money on the first 2.0 kit.

    Also hold back the V8 for the ATS till later and add it as a special edition as the car ages to keep the car appealing longer as vs. just adding a flat paint job as they are doing today.

    .

    If you want to insist that a 450 hp NA V8 and a 556~600 hp Supercharged V8 will be viewed as a similar engine, I cannot dissuade you from that opinion. But, nobody out there sees it that way. An NA V8 in one car and an SC V8 in another as big of a separation as a Bi-turbo V6 and a SC V8. There is no positioning issue whatsoever.

    As far as turbolag is concerned, it is ALWAYS there the only question is one of magnitude. And the high the specific output you demand out of a turbo-ed engine the worse the problem gets. But, even a 3.0L bi-turbo with a "mere" 300 hp and a torque peak at 1200 rpm like the BMW 335i engine is laggy compared to naturally aspirated engine.

    The point here is that there is very little technical reasons to prefer a 3.6 Bi-turbo over a Pushrod 6.2 V8. It costs more, it makes similar or less power. It is no more fuel efficient. It is heavier. It takes up more underhood space. It has more things to leak and/or break. And, in the eyes of most of the existing Cadillac customers it is a downgrade in terms of desirability. In the eyes of would be customers, it is really a toss up. About the ONLY thing it has going for it is a lower displacement tax in countries that have them. But, the typical clientele for cars like the M3, C63, RS4 or Cadillac-Vs do not really care about that. If they do, they'll be buying the lesser renditions of the same model -- perhaps one overloaded with luxury bits -- rather than the monster sedan edition,

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    The ATS-V will have 6 cylinders because the M3 does. The M3 decides what the rest do, Cadillac basically copied every dimension of the last-gen 3-series when developing the ATS. BMW has the formula down, Cadillac (and the others) are trying to copy it. But the original always seems to be better.

    Which begs the question... do you believe that GM will be able to render a better Turbo 6 than BMW is putting in the new M3? FYI, by starting with a conventional V6 the GM engine already has some disadvantages -- not being able to use one larger turbo instead of two smaller ones for greater efficiency and responsiveness, not being able to use a sequential twin-turbo setup efficiently because the exhaust exits from both sides, etc.

    On the other hand, GM already has a V8 engine that is better than BMW's Turbo 6 or Turbo V8s. Better as in -- lighter, smaller, similarly powerful, no turbo lag, no less efficient and cheaper to build. To not use it in the ATS-V will be like folding a pair of aces in a poker game when the flop has no pairs and is not a flush magnet. But then, people have been known to do that... LOL

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    The CTS-V has a SUPERCHARGED V8 with 556 bhp -- the next gen CTS-V will likely get a SUPERCHARGED V8 with DI making north of 600 bhp.

    I don't see how an ATS-V with a NATURALLY ASPIRATED V8 with 450~460 bhp will cut into the CTS-V market. Any buyer who cares about the power train at all sees a big difference between a supercharged and normally aspirated engine and/or a 100~150 bhp difference in output.

    That is like saying that a 385 hp V8 Jaguar XF Premium cuts into a V8 SUPERCHARGED 470 bhp Jaguar XF Supercharged's market, or that a M-B C55 AMG with its 362 hp NA 5.5 V8 cuts into the market of an E55 or S55 AMG of the same period with their 510 bhp Supercharged 5.5 V8s. Or that use of the 3.2L V6 in Audi A4 cuts into the market of the 3.0L Supercharged V6 in the S4. Or that the use of a 2.0L NA engine in the run of the mill Ford Focus eats into the market of a 2.0T Focus ST. In short, that's utter rubbish.

    Why do you use the same models with a different engine? XF NA XF SC? A4 NA S4 SC? Focus and Focus ST. We are talking about a different cars and different sizes and different weights in the ATS and CTS should they get different options to make the two models less alike? You are already taking a car built on the same platform and trying to convince it is different what better way than to offer a performance model with a different engine.

    How do you get some one to buy the heavier and more expensive CTSV you offer a V8.

    The key to marketing is to offer appealing but different packages to different models.

    Since Cadillac has nothing as for its own engine it take some extra effort to set their models apart.

    I also wish you would be more factual on the turbo engines. Yes there is some lag but it is pretty much a non factor anymore. It is nothing like the GN days, Also you seldom speak of the flat torque curve that even the LT1 is still not as wide or flat.

    Finally GM also can sell tune kits to bump up power easily with any of these engines. There was a report the other day they are at work with new kits for the 2.0 cars that will push them over 300 HP and torque already on the Solstice kit was 340 FT LBS so it will be interesting to where they will set the new kits. I expect the 3.6 TT will see a similar kit. GM made a lot of money on the first 2.0 kit.

    Also hold back the V8 for the ATS till later and add it as a special edition as the car ages to keep the car appealing longer as vs. just adding a flat paint job as they are doing today.

    .

    If you want to insist that a 450 hp NA V8 and a 556~600 hp Supercharged V8 will be viewed as a similar engine, I cannot dissuade you from that opinion. But, nobody out there sees it that way. An NA V8 in one car and an SC V8 in another as big of a separation as a Bi-turbo V6 and a SC V8. There is no positioning issue whatsoever.

    As far as turbolag is concerned, it is ALWAYS there the only question is one of magnitude. And the high the specific output you demand out of a turbo-ed engine the worse the problem gets. But, even a 3.0L bi-turbo with a "mere" 300 hp and a torque peak at 1200 rpm like the BMW 335i engine is laggy compared to naturally aspirated engine.

    The point here is that there is very little technical reasons to prefer a 3.6 Bi-turbo over a Pushrod 6.2 V8. It costs more, it makes similar or less power. It is no more fuel efficient. It is heavier. It takes up more underhood space. It has more things to leak and/or break. And, in the eyes of most of the existing Cadillac customers it is a downgrade in terms of desirability. In the eyes of would be customers, it is really a toss up. About the ONLY thing it has going for it is a lower displacement tax in countries that have them. But, the typical clientele for cars like the M3, C63, RS4 or Cadillac-Vs do not really care about that. If they do, they'll be buying the lesser renditions of the same model -- perhaps one overloaded with luxury bits -- rather than the monster sedan edition,

    I suspect as normal when the cars come to market GM will show again they have other major considerations in the project and will not agree with you findings just based on assumed numbers.

    Won't be the first time.

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    The ATS-V will have 6 cylinders because the M3 does. The M3 decides what the rest do, Cadillac basically copied every dimension of the last-gen 3-series when developing the ATS. BMW has the formula down, Cadillac (and the others) are trying to copy it. But the original always seems to be better.

    Which begs the question... do you believe that GM will be able to render a better Turbo 6 than BMW is putting in the new M3? FYI, by starting with a conventional V6 the GM engine already has some disadvantages -- not being able to use one larger turbo instead of two smaller ones for greater efficiency and responsiveness, not being able to use a sequential twin-turbo setup efficiently because the exhaust exits from both sides, etc.

    On the other hand, GM already has a V8 engine that is better than BMW's Turbo 6 or Turbo V8s. Better as in -- lighter, smaller, similarly powerful, no turbo lag, no less efficient and cheaper to build. To not use it in the ATS-V will be like folding a pair of aces in a poker game when the flop has no pairs and is not a flush magnet. But then, people have been known to do that... LOL

    I agree Dwight that I would rather have a naturally aspiration V8 over Turbo anything as I have not seen solid long term reliability in the Turbo it to the moon world of 4 & 6 bangers. I think the ATS V can do better with a V8 than a bi-turbo V6. Yet Europe's Cast control system of taxing on Size makes that hard to do for a global car. BMW has sold the world on their Turbo system and as such the Lemmings Marketing people are just following along and have sold GM executives that this is how they have to go.

    Yet GM could have broke new ground by using a proper V8 with 8 spd tranny and done a creative job of marketing to show that this is the better way to go.

    At this point, the direction is set so it will be interesting to see how it falls out. If the Bi-Turbo V6 shows itself to be reliable and hold up to abuse, then Caddy will have another winner on it's hands. I personally want the V8, but then the ATS is not built for me, but the average 5'8" tall person as it fails the interior test. I cannot sit up straight in the car and no one can sit behind me so it is not useful as a 4 door sedan.

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    The ATS-V will have 6 cylinders because the M3 does. The M3 decides what the rest do, Cadillac basically copied every dimension of the last-gen 3-series when developing the ATS. BMW has the formula down, Cadillac (and the others) are trying to copy it. But the original always seems to be better.

    Which begs the question... do you believe that GM will be able to render a better Turbo 6 than BMW is putting in the new M3? FYI, by starting with a conventional V6 the GM engine already has some disadvantages -- not being able to use one larger turbo instead of two smaller ones for greater efficiency and responsiveness, not being able to use a sequential twin-turbo setup efficiently because the exhaust exits from both sides, etc.

    On the other hand, GM already has a V8 engine that is better than BMW's Turbo 6 or Turbo V8s. Better as in -- lighter, smaller, similarly powerful, no turbo lag, no less efficient and cheaper to build. To not use it in the ATS-V will be like folding a pair of aces in a poker game when the flop has no pairs and is not a flush magnet. But then, people have been known to do that... LOL

    GM's engine won't be better, an you mentioned many of the reasons. A straight six is going to beat a V6 in smoothness and vibration every day of the week, and the BMW inline six has been the gold standard of engines for about 30 years. Most automakers want a V6 though so they can use it in FWD cars, so Toyota, Ford, VW, GM, etc aren't going to make an inline 6, thus they are always fighting with 1 arm tied their back so to speak.

    I think Cadillac so wants to be like BMW and Mercedes they will copy anything they do, but really they need to be Cadillac. At the same time, I think they could put the 550 hp CTS-V engine in the ATS-V and the M3 will still outsell it and sell for a higher price simply because of the badge on the hood.

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    The reliability issue is not as much if a issue at all anymore. The first thing most people need to do is realize this is not 1985 anymore and most turbo systems are very reliable anymore. I know with the many on the HHR sites and Solstice that if there are issues often it is due to someone playing around with a tune or a sensor failure. But sensor failures can happen on NA engines too and do fail just as often. GM has had a Turbo on the market since 2008 and many of the Cobalt's and others are well over 100,000 miles in many cases and have not had any more issue than any other NA engine. The new turbo units are good and the head gaskets have generally not been an issue. Have there been some issues yes but not anything unusual or in great numbers.

    Back in the GN days the engines and turbos were not really up to standard. Too often GM would try to slap on a Turbo with the least amount of development they could to the engine. The T types were a mess with no water cooling and while the GN was better it still had great amounts of lag and the lack of a good synthetic oil from the factory generally would hurt the bearings in time.

    There are only a few turbo MFGs out there and most companies source them from the same ones. The engines have been redone to deal with the stress and wear and tear. Just looking at the 2.0 vs. 2.4 or 2.5 will show how the oiling, valves, block and head casting are all different. Addition of oil cooling and sodium valves are now common now.

    The 3.6 turbo engine is nothing new at GM. It has been in development since before 2005 or earlier since that is only when the public first saw it. GM has a lot of time in it and I am sure they know what they are doing. They do thing not just based on a bunch of guesstimated numbers and consider the many issues and reason to offer and even build this kind of engine.

    It I not so much that GM wants to be BMW or Benz. It is more they want the people who buy their cars and they want that golden image that the others have. What people receive of there other brands as being more advance and higher quality is a bunch of BS but the general public has no clue.

    While a V8 may be easier and cheaper it does not always reflect what many of these buyers are wanting. Lets face it the manager of Jaguar loves the new LT engine and how low it sits but still he has his company in other directions as he knows what his buyers want.

    This is about giving people what they want and look for not so much what GM knows or thinks is best for them. You need to appeal to their thinking and vanity as that is why people buy expensive cars. They all could easily get by with a Impala or Cruze but that would not enhance their image. Even years ago did Cadillac really need a V16 or V12? Not really but it was one upmanship for the owners of these cars.

    When catering to the affluent you appeal to what they perceive is great and they will spend a lot more for it.

    Cadillac is not going to over take BMW and Benz any time soon as it takes time to build an image and even longer to rebuild an image. Cadillac is taking the steps not one model at a time. It may take the next gen to even catch up in the publics eyes. But generally they are doing it right. BMW was not the yuppie darling in the first 5 years of the 3 series. It took time and later models to take hold.

    The real trick for GM at Cadillac is if they plan to use the Alpha for two different car they need to make them different in more than size and price. Doing different engines that are not based on the same engine will help make a larger difference. The Base engine in the CTS in a ATS is a good place to start. Offer the V8 in the CTSV and then make it more common in the LTS as the next step up. You have to lead these people to spend more money.

    Also if the VF replacement ends up on the Alpha and the new SS comes with a V8 at a lower price than the ATSv what do you do then?

    There is just a lot to consider than trashing just a bunch of assumed numbers.

    The key to Cadillac is to give each model the ATS, CTS and LTS their own personality and Soul. You want them to appeal to many different people for differ reasons. The STS failed as it was just a larger and more expensive CTS. It has little appeal over the CTS that did it all and better in a smaller package. That does not mean a larger car can not be successful but it has to have its own set of details that makes it appealing in its own right.

    When it comes to these classes the details matter and the price gives you more room to be creative do you damn well better take advantage of it. It is more difficult to build a Chevy as you have limitations vs. a Cadillac as price gives you more options and paths to choose.

    Owning a Chevy is all about how much can I get for what I can afford. Owning a Cadillac needs to be what it can do for me in comfort, performance and image. The latter is the most important as seldom so people buy a BMW or Benz for economy. At least not here in the states.



    Edited by hyperv6
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    Problem with trying to have unique cars, is Alpha will underpin the CTS and ATS, thus the CTS becomes a bigger, more expensive ATS, and the Camaro and maybe a Buick get that chassis too. So now you have a shared platform, an 8-speed bought of ZF that everyone else had 3 years ago, and the 3.6 V6 that is in every GM product, just with turbos added. AMG has hand built engines and carbon ceramic brakes.

    Alpha is a great chassis, but GM seems to always default back to the parts bin, rather than developing an all new engine, all new transmission, and spending the money on all the little details that make the difference to make the car whole. You can't get the reputation the Germans have by taking shortcuts, Cadillac needs perfection, otherwise the people buying the German cars will keep on buying them. You have to give them a reason to switch, or just keep stealing sales off Lincoln, Infiniit and Acura, which works too.

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    The 7 series is just a bigger, more expensive 5 series, but that seems to work fairly well.

    Audi runs the Volkswagon 2.0 4-banger in the A2, A3, A4, A5 AND the A6 aaaaaand that seems to work fine, too.
    The way you spin things, you give the impression audi couldn't move more than a few dozen A6s annually based on that lil' factoid.

    Most consumers --and this certainly includes the average dolts that buy bmw/mb on badge alone-- have very little car knowledge. In other words, the fact that this 3.6L is the same basic motor as that 3.6L over there doesn't register.

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    Problem with trying to have unique cars, is Alpha will underpin the CTS and ATS, thus the CTS becomes a bigger, more expensive ATS, and the Camaro and maybe a Buick get that chassis too. So now you have a shared platform, an 8-speed bought of ZF that everyone else had 3 years ago, and the 3.6 V6 that is in every GM product, just with turbos added. AMG has hand built engines and carbon ceramic brakes.

    Alpha is a great chassis, but GM seems to always default back to the parts bin, rather than developing an all new engine, all new transmission, and spending the money on all the little details that make the difference to make the car whole. You can't get the reputation the Germans have by taking shortcuts, Cadillac needs perfection, otherwise the people buying the German cars will keep on buying them. You have to give them a reason to switch, or just keep stealing sales off Lincoln, Infiniit and Acura, which works too.

    Actually, the C63 does not have Carbon Ceramic brakes at the ATS-V's assumed price point. You need to shell out $100K for a Black Edition for that. This is also one of those things which are for the most parts unnecessary and a poor value for money. Carbon Ceramic brakes actually do not stop any better than cast iron. They are just lighter and last about 3 times as long. With street acceptable pads fade resistance is about the same as properly sized cast iron rotors. At about $10K they are a waste of money given that traditional rotors are only about $200 a pair.

    Anyway, back to the engine issue... the 420hp LF3 is in many ways, not particularly impressive. For one this is a parallel twin turbo engine. Which means that it will be less responsive than a sequential twin turbo or a single turbo mill. Unfortunately, given that it is not a reverse flow engine (which has exhaust exiting in the middle of the V), there isn't much they can do about it. If power is bumped to 450 bhp lag will get worse. If it is not, it won't be competitive with the C63 or the M3.

    Regardless of the power plant of choice, the Aisin TL80 8-speed is an overdue upgrade. And, I believe they'll use it on the ATS-V (automatic) whether they had chosen a V8 or the TTV6. This application is a lot more stratight forward than the vette since it uses a traditional front located transmission rather than a torque tube and rear mounted transaxle which the Aisib box is not designed to accommodate without a new casing.

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    The real trick for GM at Cadillac is if they plan to use the Alpha for two different car they need to make them different in more than size and price. Doing different engines that are not based on the same engine will help make a larger difference. The Base engine in the CTS in a ATS is a good place to start. Offer the V8 in the CTSV and then make it more common in the LTS as the next step up. You have to lead these people to spend more money.

    Also if the VF replacement ends up on the Alpha and the new SS comes with a V8 at a lower price than the ATSv what do you do then?

    Nothing! That's perfectly fine, just like it is perfectly fine for the CTS-V and the Camaro ZL1 to use basically the same engine (with the Camaro's louder exhaust treatment actually making 24 more horsepower). I won't buy a Camaro ZL1 because of the cheap, tacky interior and the "retro" exterior. That the CTS-V's engine is also found in a Chevy costing $6K less doesn't even register as a concern. Another way to look at it is that I'll rather have an ATS-V which shares it's engine with the Corvette than one which shares it with the CTS 3.6T.

    What really should happen is that the 2.5L should be dropped altogether. With the ATS carrying three engines across the lineup -- the 2.0T and 3.6NA for "normal" ATSes while the ATS-V packs the 450~460hp LT1 V8 for the enthusiasts. The CTS will then carry the 3.6NA, 3.6TT and a 600 hp Supercharged version of the LT1.

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