Cadillac's new luxury SUV, the XT5, is a Lexus RX fighter


Cadillac is in the midst of a comprehensive production overhaul, and few of its new arrivals will be as pivotal as the new XT5.

From the outside, there's a real intermingling of the big and brash Escalade and the more streamlined aesthetic of Cadillac's recent sedans. Other powertrains are on the way including a plug-in hybrid, which should make the XT5 a stronger competitor to the current segment leaders like the Audi Q5 and Lexus RX. Rear seat legroom is up 3.2-inches, too, and there's more flexibility since the second row reclines and slides. Like all Cadillacs, it is assembled with cut-and-sewn wrapped panels and rich materials. The video feed also reduces glare and delivers a crisper image in low-light situations compared to standard electrochromatic glass.

Cadillac has also applied a hydrophobic coating to the camera in order to keep it clean regardless of driving conditions.

The all-wheel-drive system has the ability to send 100% of the power to the front or rear axle if needed, and drivers can actually use the system to drive only the front wheels to save on gas.


The only real disappointment is in the engine bay.

The new luxury crossover joins Cadillac's lineup immediately following the new range-topping CT6 Sedan, as the brand enters a new phase of product growth.

There, the XT5 will come with a 2.0-liter, four-cylinder turbo. It's a punchy little engine and would suit a feisty crossover well. Cadillac is expecting to sell loads of XT5s in China, and will even build the crossover there for the local buyers, while continuing to build in the US for customers over here.