In the lead-up to the 2019 New York International Auto Show, Cadillac has officially introduced its all-new compact 4-door sedan. The 2020 CT5 is a fastback-shaped sports sedan that offers turbocharged 4-cylinder or twin-turbo V6 engines, a choice of rear-wheel drive or all-wheel drive, and a host of high-tech available features.
The CT5 will be offered in Luxury, Premium Luxury, and Sport trim levels, with a Platinum Package available on the latter two models. A turbocharged 237-hp 2.0-liter 4-cylinder is standard on the Luxury model, and a twin-turbo 335-hp 3.0-liter V6 is available on Premium Luxury and Sport models. Both engines come paired with a 10-speed automatic transmission, and all-wheel drive is available on all models.
Sport models are distinguished by performance-themed touches such as 19-inch wheels in place of the standard 18s, Brembo-brand front brakes, rocker-panel extensions, a rear spoiler, and other special trim features. The Platinum Package’s upgrades include 18-way adjustable front seats with additional bolstering and heat, ventilation, and massage; a thicker-rimmed steering wheel with magnesium paddle shifters; and upgraded semi-aniline leather upholstery with contrasting piping and decorative chevron accents.
The CT5 uses the latest generation of the Cadillac User Experience (CUE) control interface, which includes a console-mounted rotary-knob controller. A standard Adaptive Remote Start feature can automatically activate climate control systems, including the heated/ventilated seats and heated steering wheel if equipped.
Available features include a hands-free power trunk release, head-up display, cabin air purification ionizer, HD Surround Vision camera display, GM’s Rear Camera Mirror with zoom and tilt adjustment, and Cadillac’s Super Cruise hands-free driving system.
Forward collision alert with low-speed automatic emergency braking and pedestrian detection is standard on all CT5s, but oddly, the entry-level Luxury model can’t be had with adaptive cruise control, blind-spot monitor, rear cross-traffic alert, lane keep assist with lane departure warning, rear automatic braking, front and rear park assist, or automatic emergency braking that can function at highway speeds. Getting those features requires stepping up to the Premium Luxury or Sport models, where they’re either standard or optional. Given that some of these features come standard on some mainstream brand vehicles, it’s disappointing that getting them on the CT5 requires springing for a higher trim level.
The 2020 Cadillac CT5 is slated to go on sale by the end of the 2019 calendar year, with availability of the Super Cruise system slated to follow in the 2020 calendar year on select models.
Cadillac’s traditional passenger cars have been especially hard hit in the marketplace as buyer tastes have shifted to crossover SUVs. The ATS and CTS are now history, and the CT6 has been selling below initial expectations. The new CT5 borrows the basics of the CT6’s sophisticated structure, and its relatively long 116-inch wheelbase should help it stand out in its class in terms of passenger room. The availability of Cadillac’s excellent Super Cruise system is another high point. Pricing is everything here. If Cadillac can make the CT5’s MSRPs competitive with cheaper front-drive rivals (and based on the decontented base Luxury model, that looks like the strategy), the CT5 could turn out to be a compelling value.