New 2020 Cadillac CT4 Still Has Some of the Old ATS' Problems

Cadillac is in the middle of launching a new sedan lineup with an all-new naming scheme, and the 2020 Cadillac CT4 compact luxury sedan takes over the entry-luxury territory formerly held by the now-discontinued ATS.

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2020 Cadillac CT4 Premium Luxury
6,108 mi.
$33,998 $1,000 price drop
Great Deal | $1,530 under
2020 Cadillac CT4 Sport
34,548 mi.
$35,488 $500 price drop
Fair Deal

The CT4 has a clean, tidy look, and though there are a few dramatic exterior cues like elongated headlights and a duckbill spoiler integrated with the trunk lid, the design overall is content to blend in rather than stand apart.

Like in the old ATS sedan, when you’re sitting in the CT4’s driver’s seat it feels like the car is wrapped around you; there’s acceptable headroom and the bucket seats are comfortable, but this is not an airy cabin.

The confined feeling is even more pronounced in the backseat; headroom and legroom are in short supply, and adults must deal with a knees-up seating position because of the bottom seat cushion’s low position. Even the rear door openings are small, which makes getting out of the backseat harder. A small footprint can offer real performance benefits, but compared to the BMW 3 Series and Audi A4, the Cadillac’s backseat is cramped and uninviting.

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The CT4 gets an all-new interior that drops the many touch-sensitive controls that were part of the old Cadillac User Experience system in the ATS. There’s a touchscreen atop the dashboard with conventional physical buttons below it. Even though there are a lot of similarly shaped buttons in the center of the dash, it’s still better than what the ATS had before with CUE. And while we’re all for including knobs for things like adjusting the volume, the two knobs below the CT4’s touchscreen look like they were added as an afterthought.

The new CT4 joins the CT5 and flagship CT6 in Cadillac’s sedan stable, but taken together the three-car lineup doesn’t put GM’s luxury brand in a better position to take on the German luxury brands. Considering GM has just launched two of these three cars, that’s shocking.’s Editorial department is your source for automotive news and reviews. In line with’s long-standing ethics policy, editors and reviewers don’t accept gifts or free trips from automakers. The Editorial department is independent of’s advertising, sales and sponsored content departments.

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Mike Hanley has more than 20 years of experience reporting on the auto industry. His primary focus is new vehicles, and he's currently a Senior Road Test Editor overseeing expert car reviews and comparison tests. He previously managed Editorial content in the Research section. Email Mike Hanley

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