The 2019 Cadillac CTS is a gradual update of the third generation design of the car that traces back five years. With these updates, however, the current CTS leaps into the future and stakes its luxury sports car claims against anything that European competitors offer. For 2019, there are five trim levels which we compare. Also included is a high-performance version of the sedan, the CTS-V. While this is technically a separate model from, not a trim of, the regular CTS sedan, it shares many of the same dimensions.
The base trim of the 2019 Cadillac CTS is simply (or confusingly) titled the "CTS." At an MSRP of $47,990, the car has a 2.0L turbo 4-cylinder engine capable of 268-hp and 295 lb-ft of torque. Other mechanical features include an automatic transmission with auto stop/start. The engine also has a remote start using the integrated key fob sensor. The vehicle drives on all-season run-flat tires and 17" 10-spoke painted aluminum wheels.
Inside the cabin, drivers will find the Cadillac user experience (the Bluetooth and smartphone connectivity features) with a Bose audio system. Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility are standard. There is an included wireless charging pad, along with high-gloss Sapele wood trim, 4G LTE built-in Wi-Fi hotspot, rear park assist, and a rear-vision camera.
The 2019 CTS Luxury trim also has the 2.0L turbo 4-cylinder engine, though buyers can upgrade to a 3.6L V6 for an added fee. Other standard features include leather seating with heated and ventilated front seats, a navigation system, and Bose 13-speaker Centerpoint surround sound system. The cabin also comes with ambient interior lighting and an Ultraview power sunroof.
The trim also sees the addition of further safety features like forward collision alert, following distance indicator, and lane keep assist with lane departure warning. For even more safety, there are side blind zone alerts and rear cross traffic alerts. HID headlamps with LED vertical light signatures illuminate the road ahead. The wheels are upgraded from painted aluminum to ultrabright machined alloy. The MSRP for the CTS Luxury is $53,690.
While the V-Sport MSRP of $62,690 is higher than that of the Premium Luxury, it's better to think of the V-Sport as more akin to the Luxury trim with sporty enhancements. For example, there are no rear heated seats in the V-Sport like there is in the Premium Luxury models. That's because the additional price point goes toward an upgraded engine.
The 2019 Cadillac CTS V-Sport features a 3.6L V6 engine, similar to upgradable options on other trims. However, being the sports-focused offering, the V6 on the V-Sport is a twin turbo capable of 420 hp and 430 lb-ft of torque. That's good enough to go from 0 to 60 mph in 4.4 seconds. To complete the sports focus, the V-Sport also has magnesium paddle shifters and enhanced ZF premium steering.
As stated before, the 2019 Cadillac CTS Premium Luxury trim is cheaper than the V-Sport while offering more features. The drop in price is mainly due to a less capable engine, a standard 3.6L V6 instead of the V-Sport's twin turbo. The Premium Luxury engine is capable of 335 horsepower and 285 pound-feet of torque. The Premium Luxury trim also loses the sporty enhancements of the V-Sport. Instead, the focus here is on refinement and comfort.
Additional, standard offerings include magnetic ride control with track-specific driver-selectable modes. Inside the vehicle, drivers will notice a full-color head-up display and the choice of authentic carbon fiber or wood accents. There are also manual side sunshades and a power rear window sunshade. Backseat passengers will enjoy the addition of rear heated seats. Surround vision, automatic parking assist, and rear camera mirror are new standard safety offerings. Wheels are also updated to an 18-inch size with a premium painted finish. The Cadillac CTS Premium Luxury MSRP is $61,190.
V-Sport Premium Luxury
If the V-Sport trim was the sportier option of the Luxury trim, the V-Sport Premium Luxury is the performance-focused equivalent of the Premium Luxury trim. For an MSRP of $72,790, drivers see the paddle shifters and enhanced steering return. The full-leather front seats also add 20-way adjustable options. On the instrument panel, the high-definition gauge cluster is reconfigurable and has a unique V-Sport theme. The gas and brake pedals feature aluminum alloy, giving them a premium racing feel. An Ultraview power sunroof and advanced security package are also features that come standard on this trim.
Cadillac's V series is a line of high-performance models based upon the brand's regular vehicles. Technically, the V series offerings are separate models, not trims. However, we've included the CTS-V Sedan in this CTS trim comparison because it shares such similar dimensions with its comfort-focused siblings. With a starting MSRP of $87,990, the 2019 CTS-V Sedan houses a 6.2L V8 engine. This V8 engine is a hallmark of the V series and is not an available option on CTS trims. The supercharged V8 is capable of 640 horsepower.
Other notable features of the 2019 Cadillac CTS-V Sedan include 19-in Michelin pilot super sport tires, unique V grille, carbon fiber hood with hood vent, and automatic heated steering wheel. Additionally, there is also adaptive remote start, 12.3-inch diagonal color reconfigurable gauge cluster, and full-color head-up display. Safety features include forward collision alert, following distance indicator, and lane change alert with side blind zone alert, among others.
(Image via Facebook.)