Originally published Nov 10, 2015.
The market is going cuckoo for crossovers, a recent phenomenon automakers have welcomed with arms wide open. Carried by an important wind of change, Cadillac has unveiled their new player in this increasingly popular segment, scheduled for production in 2016. Introducing the Cadillac XT5, the second model to adopt Cadillac’s new nomenclature, following the CT6.
This addition to the Caddy family is the first of a series of four upcoming crossovers, all part of the brand’s ongoing expansion plan. “The all-new XT5 not only enters the most popular segment in the worldwide luxury auto market, it is the first of four new crossovers from Cadillac,” explained Cadillac President Johan de Nysschen.
The design follows in the footsteps of the CT6, introduced earlier this year, with the hexagonal grille and the boomerang-shaped LED band hugging the headlamps. The XT5 boasts a brand new lightweight platform that gets you a little more of everything riding on a lot less weight. Thanks to the use of laser welding and ultra-high strength steel, the newcomer is both stronger and 126 kg lighter than the current SRX. And though the wheelbase is 50 mm longer, increasing the rear legroom by 8.1 cm, the overall dimensions of the XT5 make it smaller than the SRX.
The interior design of the crossover is inspired by the maker’s evolving design language. The overall feeling of the cockpit is meant to be a visual representation of the dynamic and lightweight structure underneath. The materials and the lines showcase a higher level of sophistication meant to appeal to the high-end target audience. Hence the use of quality materials, sleek design lines and cut-and-sewn wrapped panels. Andrew Smith, Cadillac executive director of global design, explains: “Our focus for the interior was sophistication and simplicity, ensuring an economy of lines to reduce visual noise and clutter. A feeling of space is the ultimate luxury, so we sought to emphasize that.” The crossover will also boast a wide range of safety and entertainment technologies, including the Rear Camera Mirror system, 4G wireless connectivity with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, an optional color HUD and an electronic liftgate.
The XT5 will be available with the all-new 3.6L V6, previously introduced on the ATS and CTS. The 310-hp and 270 lb-ft of torque engine is teamed with an eight-speed automatic transmission with Electronic Precision Shift technology, Cadillac’s first electronically controlled shifter. And thanks to the Active Fuel Management cylinder deactivation technology, six cylinders automatically turn to four when less power and torque are required, which helps improve the fuel economy. The XT5 will also be offered with optional all-wheel drive and optional adaptive suspension.
The XT5 is second in line to adopt Cadillac’s new nomenclature, following the CT6. Production of the compact crossover will begin in the Spring of 2016 at the Spring Hill Manufacturing plant in Tennessee.