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Auto blogMon, 03 Jun 2013
Spy photographers have spotted something interesting. Cadillac engineers have taken to public streets with the upcoming ATS-V and a playmate: the current BMW M3 Sedan. The prototype seen here wears a more aggressive front fascia, flared fenders and beefy brakes. Quad exhaust tips and what looks to be a small lip spoiler on the trunk deck sum up the most obvious visual changes over the standard ATS outside. Word has it the ATS-V will bow with the same twin-turbo 3.6-liter V6 available in the nose of the XTS. In that application, the engine is good for a stout 410 horsepower, which should be more than enough to hustle the sedan around a track.
Other details are still murky, however. First and foremost: will GM offer the ATS-V with an honest manual transmission, like it does with its big brother, the CTS-V? Something tells us we won't have long to wait to find out - the machine will likely bow next year as a 2015 model. Until then, dig in on our newest bevy of spy photos.
There was already a rumor brewing that Cadillac might eschew the CTS as its racecar next season in favor of the ATS Coupe. It turns out that is absolutely the case, and now we know just what this 600-horsepower, future racer looks like. The coupe might not be limited to competing in just the US, though, because it's built to FIA GT3-specifications, meaning that this Caddy is also eligible to race in over 30 series worldwide against the likes of Bentley, McLaren, Audi and other premium brands.
The heart of this massively winged Cadillac is an engine dubbed the LF4.R. It's based around the unit in the production ATS-V and CTS Vsport but with larger turbos, bigger intercoolers, side exhausts and other tricks. Cadillac claims it makes a monstrous 600 hp and 520 pound-feet of torque in unrestricted form.
As the photo above shows, the ATS-V.R also wears an aggressive aero kit with a carbon fiber front splitter, and a wing at the back that could probably double as a picnic table in a pinch. The dry weight of the whole package is quoted at about 2,900 pounds, which is around 700 pounds less than the street version.
General Motors Vice President of Global Design, Ed Welburn, had some dismissive words for a certain cross-town luxury brand during an interview with Car and Driver. When asked about his thoughts on Lincoln, Welburn deflected, before saying, "I don't consider Lincoln to be a competitor for Cadillac."
"They're not a global luxury brand. I don't consider them a competitor. Are they a competitor for Buick? Quite possibly. But not for Cadillac," GM's head designer explained. Welburn, who's been at the helm of GM Design North America since 2003 and is the first to hold the position of VP of Global Design, has been instrumental in the styling renaissance at GM, so predictably, Car and Driver's interview with him focused on the design aspect of cars.
During the interview, Welburn explicitly denied plans for a reborn Cadillac XLR, even as a new Chevrolet Corvette is hitting the market and strides are being made with Cadillac's V-Series performance arm saying, "We have a lot of cars that we're working on for the Cadillac brand. The XLR is not one of them right now."