2020 BMW M2 Competition vs. 2019 Cadillac ATS-V

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

The M2 Competition has standard City Collision Mitigation, which use forward mounted sensors to warn the driver of a possible collision ahead. If the driver doesn’t react and the system determines a collision is imminent, it automatically applies the brakes at full-force in order to reduce the force of the crash or avoid it altogether. The ATS-V offers an available collision warning system without the automated brake feature that would prevent or reduce the collision if the driver fails to react.

The M2 Competition’s driver alert monitor detects an inattentive driver then sounds a warning and suggests a break. According to the NHTSA, drivers who fall asleep cause about 100,000 crashes and 1500 deaths a year. The ATS-V doesn’t offer a driver alert monitor.

Both the M2 Competition and the ATS-V 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 and rearview cameras.

Warranty

The M2 Competition’s corrosion warranty is 6 years longer than the ATS-V’s (12 vs. 6 years).

BMW pays for scheduled maintenance on the M2 Competition for 3 years and 36,000 miles. BMW will pay for oil changes, lubrication and any other required maintenance. Cadillac only pays for the first scheduled maintenance visit on the ATS-V.

Reliability

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2018 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that BMW vehicles are better in initial quality than Cadillac vehicles. J.D. Power ranks BMW 11th in initial quality, above the industry average. With 3 more problems per 100 vehicles, Cadillac is ranked 12th.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that BMW vehicles are more reliable than Cadillac vehicles. J.D. Power ranks BMW 7th in reliability, above the industry average. With 44 more problems per 100 vehicles, Cadillac is ranked 23rd.

From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ December 2018 Auto Issue reports that BMW vehicles are more reliable than Cadillac vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks BMW 20 places higher in reliability than Cadillac.

Fuel Economy and Range

On the EPA test cycle the M2 Competition Manual gets better fuel mileage than the ATS-V Manual (18 city/25 hwy vs. 16 city/23 hwy).

Regenerative brakes improve the M2 Competition’s fuel efficiency by converting inertia back into energy instead of wasting it. The ATS-V doesn’t offer a regenerative braking system.

In heavy traffic or at stoplights the M2 Competition’s engine automatically turns off when the vehicle is stopped, saving fuel and reducing pollution. The engine is automatically restarted when the driver gets ready to move again. (Start/Stop isn’t accounted in present EPA fuel mileage tests.) The ATS-V doesn’t offer an automatic engine start/stop system.

Transmission

The M2 Competition offers an optional sequential manual gearbox (SMG). With no clutch pedal to worry about and a fully automatic mode, an SMG is much more efficient than a conventional automatic but just as easy to drive. The ATS-V doesn’t offer an SMG.

To help the driver achieve optimum performance and fuel economy, the M2 Competition has a standard up-shift light to indicate when to shift based on power needs and conditions. The ATS-V doesn’t offer an up-shift light.

Brakes and Stopping

For better stopping power the M2 Competition’s brake rotors are larger than those on the ATS-V:

M2 Competition

ATS-V

Front Rotors

15.7 inches

14.5 inches

Rear Rotors

15 inches

13.3 inches

Tires and Wheels

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the M2 Competition has standard 19-inch wheels. Only 18-inch wheels are available on the ATS-V.

Suspension and Handling

For better handling and stability, the track (width between the wheels) on the M2 Competition is 1.7 inches wider in the front and 1.6 inches wider in the rear than on the ATS-V.

The M2 Competition Coupe handles at 1.01 G’s, while the ATS-V pulls only .98 G’s of cornering force in a Motor Trend skidpad test.

Chassis

The BMW M2 Competition may be more efficient, handle and accelerate better because it weighs about 150 to 200 pounds less than the Cadillac ATS-V.

The M2 Competition is 8.5 inches shorter than the ATS-V, making the M2 Competition easier to handle, maneuver and park in tight spaces.

Passenger Space

Because it has more passenger and cargo room, the EPA rates the M2 Competition a Compact car, while the ATS-V is rated a Subcompact.

The M2 Competition has 5.8 cubic feet more passenger volume than the ATS-V (89.7 vs. 83.9).

The M2 Competition has 2.5 inches more front headroom, .3 inches more front shoulder room, 1.4 inches more rear headroom and 2.3 inches more rear shoulder room than the ATS-V.

Cargo Capacity

The M2 Competition Coupe has a much larger trunk than the ATS-V (13.8 vs. 10.4 cubic feet).

With its coupe body style, valet key, locking rear seatbacks and remote trunk release lockout, the M2 Competition offers cargo security. The ATS-V’s non-lockable folding seat defeats cargo security.

Ergonomics

If the windows are left open on the M2 Competition the driver can close them all at the outside door handle. On a hot day the driver can lower the windows from a distance using the keyless remote. The driver of the ATS-V can only operate the windows from inside the vehicle, with the ignition on.

The M2 Competition’s rain-sensitive wipers adjust their speed and turn on and off automatically based on the amount of rainfall on the windshield. This allows the driver to concentrate on driving without constantly adjusting the wipers. The ATS-V’s standard manually variable intermittent wipers have to be constantly adjusted.

On extremely cold winter days, the M2 Competition’s optional heated steering wheel provides comfort, allowing the driver to steer safely and comfortably before the car heater warms up. The ATS-V doesn’t offer a heated steering wheel.

Recommendations

The M2 Competition was chosen as one of Car and Driver’s “Top Ten” for 2 of the last 3 years. The ATS has never been a Car and Driver “Top Ten” pick.

The M2 was chosen as one of Automobile Magazine’s “All Stars” for 2 of the last 3 years. The ATS has never been an “All Star.”

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

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