2019 Cadillac ATS Coupe vs. 2020 BMW 2 Series

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

The ATS Coupe V6’s optional pre-crash front seatbelts will tighten automatically in the event the vehicle detects an impending crash, improving protection against injury significantly. The 2 Series doesn’t offer pre-crash pretensioners.

For enhanced safety, the Cadillac ATS Coupe’s rear seat shoulder belts have child comfort guides to move the belt to properly fit children. A better fit can prevent injuries and the increased comfort also encourages children to buckle up. The BMW 2 Series doesn’t offer height adjustable seat belts.

Over 200 people are killed each year when backed over by motor vehicles. The ATS Coupe V6 offers optional Rear Automatic Braking that uses rear sensors to monitor and automatically apply the brakes to prevent a rear collision. The 2 Series doesn’t offer backup collision prevention brakes.

The ATS Coupe’s optional blind spot warning system uses digital cameras monitored by computer to alert the driver to moving objects in the vehicle’s blind spots where the side view mirrors don’t reveal them. The 2 Series doesn’t offer a system to reveal objects in the driver’s blind spots.

To help make backing safer, the ATS Coupe’s optional cross-path warning system uses wide-angle radar in the rear bumper to alert the driver to vehicles approaching from the side, helping the driver avoid collisions. The 2 Series doesn’t offer a cross-path warning system.

Both the ATS Coupe and the 2 Series have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver and front passenger knee airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, plastic fuel tanks, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights, rearview cameras, available all wheel drive, crash mitigating brakes, lane departure warning systems and rear parking sensors.

Warranty

Cadillac’s powertrain warranty covers the ATS Coupe 2 years and 20,000 miles longer than BMW covers the 2 Series. Any repair needed on the engine, transmission, axles, joints or driveshafts is fully covered for 6 years or 70,000 miles. Coverage on the 2 Series ends after only 4 years or 50,000 miles.

There are almost 3 times as many Cadillac dealers as there are BMW dealers, which makes it much easier should you ever need service under the ATS Coupe’s warranty.

Reliability

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that Cadillac vehicles are better in initial quality than BMW vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Cadillac 17th in initial quality. With 2 more problems per 100 vehicles, BMW is ranked 20th.

Engine

The ATS Coupe’s standard 2.0 turbo 4 cyl. produces 24 more horsepower (272 vs. 248) and 37 lbs.-ft. more torque (295 vs. 258) than the 230i’s standard 2.0 turbo 4 cyl.

Fuel Economy and Range

An engine control system that can shut down half of the engine’s cylinders helps improve the ATS Coupe V6’s fuel efficiency. The 2 Series doesn’t offer a system that can shut down part of the engine.

To lower fuel costs and make buying fuel easier, the Cadillac ATS Coupe uses regular unleaded gasoline (premium recommended with the 2.0 turbo 4 cyl. engine for maximum performance). The 2 Series requires premium, which can cost 20 to 55 cents more per gallon.

The ATS Coupe has 2.3 gallons more fuel capacity than the 2 Series (16 vs. 13.7 gallons), for longer range between fill-ups.

Brakes and Stopping

For better stopping power the ATS Coupe’s standard brake rotors are larger than those on the 2 Series:

ATS Coupe

2 Series

Front Rotors

12.6 inches

12.3 inches

Rear Rotors

12.4 inches

11.8 inches

Tires and Wheels

For better traction, the ATS Coupe has larger tires than the 2 Series (F:225/40R18 & R:255/35R18 vs. 205/50R17).

The ATS Coupe’s 225/40R18 front and 255/35R18 rear tires provide better handling because they have a lower 40 series front and 35 series rear profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the 230i’s standard 50 series tires.

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the ATS Coupe has standard 18-inch wheels. Smaller 17-inch wheels are standard on the 230i.

Suspension and Handling

The ATS Coupe has standard front and rear stabilizer bars, which help keep the ATS Coupe flat and controlled during cornering. The 2 Series’ suspension doesn’t offer a rear stabilizer bar.

For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the ATS Coupe’s wheelbase is 3.4 inches longer than on the 2 Series (109.3 inches vs. 105.9 inches).

The ATS Coupe handles at .91 G’s, while the 230i Coupe pulls only .89 G’s of cornering force in a Motor Trend skidpad test.

Chassis

The ATS Coupe uses computer-generated active noise cancellation to help remove annoying noise and vibration from the passenger compartment, especially at low frequencies. The 2 Series doesn’t offer active noise cancellation.

Passenger Space

The ATS Coupe has .8 inches more front legroom and .5 inches more rear legroom than the 2 Series Coupe.

Cargo Capacity

The ATS Coupe’s standard folding rear seats are split to accommodate bulky cargo. The 2 Series Convertible’s standard single piece folding rear seat is not as flexible; long cargo and a passenger can’t share the rear seat.

Towing

The ATS Coupe V6 offers up to a 1000 lbs. towing capacity. The 2 Series has no towing capacity.

Servicing Ease

J.D. Power and Associates surveys of service recipients show that Cadillac service is better than BMW. J.D. Power ranks Cadillac third in service department satisfaction. With a 33% lower rating, BMW is ranked 11th.

Ergonomics

The ATS Coupe has a standard remote vehicle starting system, so the vehicle can be started from inside the driver's house. This allows the driver to comfortably warm up the engine before going out to the vehicle. The climate system will also automatically heat or cool the interior. The 2 Series doesn’t offer a remote starting system.

The ATS Coupe’s optional easy entry system glides the driver’s seat back when the door is unlocked or the ignition is switched off, making it easier for the driver to get in and out. The 2 Series doesn’t offer an easy entry system.

The ATS Coupe V6 offers an optional heads-up display that projects speed and navigation instruction readouts in front of the driver’s line of sight, allowing drivers to view information without diverting their eyes from the road. The 2 Series doesn’t offer a heads-up display.

To shield the driver and front passenger’s vision over a larger portion of the windshield and side windows, the ATS Coupe has standard extendable sun visors. The 2 Series doesn’t offer extendable visors.

To quickly and conveniently keep personal devices charged without cables tangling and wearing out, the Cadillac ATS has a standard wireless phone charging system (Qi) in the center console. Wireless charging costs extra on the 2 Series.

The ATS Coupe offers an optional 115-volt a/c outlet on the center console, allowing you to recharge a laptop or run small household appliances without special adapters that can break or get misplaced. The 2 Series doesn’t offer a house-current electrical outlet.

Economic Advantages

According to The Car Book by Jack Gillis, the ATS Coupe is less expensive to operate than the 2 Series because typical repairs cost much less on the ATS Coupe than the 2 Series, including $27 less for a water pump and $557 less for a timing belt/chain.

Recommendations

A group of representative automotive journalists from North America selected the ATS as the 2013 North American Car of the Year. The 2 Series has never been chosen.

The Cadillac ATS outsold the BMW 2 Series by 18% during 2018.

© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.

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