Dan Wiese is a freelance automotive writer. He is a regular contributor for Brand Ave. Studios and to AAA Midwest Traveler magazine's online Web Bonus.

Soon to join CT5 and CT6 in Cadillac's revamped luxury/sport sedan lineup, the new, compact CT4 can be seen as a continuation of Caddy's mission to debunk the notion that only the Germans can produce lively, driver-oriented, high-tech, rear-drive four-doors.

2020 Cadillac CT4

2020 Cadillac CT4 in Sport trim. Photo provided by Cadillac

Back in May, with a sneak-peek unveiling of the high-performance V-Series version of the 2020 CT4, Cadillac gave us a hint of what was to come in its ongoing challenge to BMW and Mercedes. Now V's CT4 siblings have stepped into the spotlight, revealing trims of Luxury, Premium Luxury and Sport.

Riding the same 109.3-inch wheelbase as the outgoing ATS, which this car replaces, the CT4, at an overall length of 187.2 inches, stretches 4.4 inches farther than its predecessor -- but just an inch-and-a-half farther than archrival BMW 3 Series. And, like 3 and Mercedes's C-Class, CT4 will boast standard rear-wheel drive, although every CT4 will offer all-wheel drive as an option.

Also found in every CT4 will be turbocharged four-cylinder power, although that power will be offered in three different flavors.

Luxury, Premium Luxury and Sport will be motivated by a standard 2.0-liter blown four that makes 237 hp and 258 lb.-ft. of torque through an eight-speed automatic. The high-performance V, meanwhile, will get a 2.7-liter turbo four that generates 325 hp and 380 lb.-ft. of twist through a 10-speed automatic. That latter drivetrain will be optional on Premium Luxury, although in PL models the engine will be detuned to 309 hp and 348 lb.-ft. of grunt so as not to upstage V.

Regarding other performance hardware, Brembo front brakes will be standard on Sport and V-Series models; GM's much-lauded Magnetic Ride Control 4.0 adaptive suspension wizardry will be included on the rear-drive CT4-V; and driver-selectable performance modes will be standard on all models.

Those modes on every CT4 include Tour, Sport, Snow/Ice, Track and the driver-configured My Mode, all of which alter the calibrations for transmission shift points, suspension response, steering and brake feel and, in AWD models, front/rear torque split. The V adds a unique, more aggressive "V Mode" to the mix.

On the outside, CT4's profile reflects the nearly perfect front/rear weight balance the car achieves thanks to its front-engine/rear-drive layout. At the same time, that outward appearance incorporates traditional Cadillac cues like severely vertical lighting elements and sharply sculpted lines.

2020 Cadillac CT4

Photo provided by Cadillac

Inside, a center-mounted, high-definition, 8-inch-diagonal touchscreen is the centerpiece and focal point for CT4’s connective talent -- talent that is, needless to say, a must for modern luxury/performance vehicles. The system benefits from GM’s new digital vehicle platform on which CT4 rides, enabling the adoption of future technologies, along with faster signal transmissions, over-the-air updates and enhanced cybersecurity measures.

Standard on every CT4 are keyless entry and start, HD rearview camera, dual-zone climate control and premium audio with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility. Premium Luxury adds 18-inch wheels (up from 17s on Luxury), leather, and such safety nannies as Forward Collision Alert, Front Pedestrian Braking and Rear Park Assist. The similarly equipped Sport adds a performance steering wheel, sport buckets and Brembo front brakes. V, of course, is the hot-rod.

Look for the new CT4, in all its iterations, to arrive early next year. Not long thereafter, GM will make available on CT4 the option of Cadillac's Super Cruise semi-autonomous driving technology. CT4 prices will start at $33,990. At press time, the EPA had not released fuel-economy numbers.


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