For its last model year, the Cadillac ATS boasted rear-wheel drive, a turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder, and an MSRP of $35,495 plus destination. Two years later, the newest and smallest addition to the Cadillac range keeps the recipe more or less the same, only the starting price of the 2020 CT4 rings in a couple grand lower.

Less power, less price, but perhaps more buyers?

That's what Cadillac would like to see, though the saga of the old ATS and CTS was not an especially happy one. Despite ballsy V-badged models boasting Dodge-worthy horsepower figures, the brand's lesser sedans faced an uphill battle. Declining passenger car sales, poor residual values, and the ever-present menace of the Germans made for a bumpy ride.

It hasn't exactly been smooth sailing for the just-revealed CT4 and CT5, either. Comments about questionable styling choices and less-than-fearsome engine offerings greeted Cadillac's new crop of four-doors, but that's Cadillac's problem. Other performance shoes could drop.

For bottom-rung CT4 Luxury buyers, expect a 2.0L turbo four generating 237 hp and 258 lb-ft and an MSRP of $33,990 after destination. Your only transmission choice is an eight-speed automatic. This places the entry-level RWD Caddy well below the $35k barrier, making it more than $7,000 less expensive than the cheapest BMW 3 Series or Mercedes-Benz C-Class. Adding all-wheel drive to the base CT4 pushes the model's price to $36,590.

Opting for the Premium Luxury trim adds cost, as well as a four-cylinder most closely associated with a large truck. General Motors' new-for-2019 2.7-liter turbo four (GM press materials avoid listing the cylinder count) makes 309 hp and 348 lb-ft, inflating the CT4's starting price to $38,490. Swap RWD for all-wheel motivation, and you're looking at a price tag of $41,690. The only tranny offered with the 2.7-liter is a 10-speed automatic.

While the Sport model doesn't add any ponies, it does don an appearance package and Brembo brakes, pushing the price a tick higher ($39,590 with RWD, $41,190 with AWD). Note that ticking the AWD box nets buyers a cold-weather package featuring heated front seats (ventilated on Premium Luxury) and a heated steering wheel.

If memories of the defunct ATS-V linger, buyers enamored with moar powah can opt for the CT4-V, a sedan that retains the 2.7-liter but bumps things up a bit. That variant makes 325 hp and 380 lb-ft, still significantly less than Cadillac's former hot compact. Starting price for the CT4-V is $45,490; for this tab, you'll find Brembo brakes with four-piston front calipers, a limited-slip differential, and 18-inch wheels shod in summer rubber. Adding AWD to the mix takes things to $46,590.

If any of this appeals to you, you'll get a crack at the CT4 when it arrives early next year.

a version of this story first appeared on TTAC