The new two-door has a 50/50 weight balance and should be a bit more planted thanks to a 20 mm wider front track and a 40 mm wider rear track, which Leone explains, "enable us to get power to the ground more quickly."
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The new model ATS Coupe will offer buyers a choice of a 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder or a 3.6-liter V-6. The smaller displacement engine has been upgraded from the version in the current ATS sport sedan, now delivering the same 272 horsepower but an extra 14% more torque, at 295 pound-feet, which will allow it to launch from 0 to 60 in just 5.6 seconds.
The 3.6-liter package turns out 321 horsepower and 275 horsepower. Both engines are paired to a six-speed automatic gearbox.
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Like the sedan, the new ATS Coupe is available with the Magnetic Ride Control system, an electronically controlled suspension that can respond to changes in road conditions and driver command in milliseconds. The basic suspension design features a five-link rear and multi-link double-pivot MacPherson strut up front.
Big Brembo brakes and 18-inch wheels round out the ATS Coupe package, while a mechanical limited slip differential and upgraded engine cooling, as well as adaptive headlights are optional.
Cadillac has yet to provide details, but a Vsport version of the new ATS Coupe is likely to follow. An even more high-performance V-Series package, for both coupe and sedan, is expected, as well.
—By CNBC Contributor Paul A. Eisenstein. Follow him on Twitter @DetroitBureau or at thedetroitbureau.com.