It’s well-built, comfortable, easy to own if slightly uninspiring to drive, which is exactly what some people want.
Price. It starts at $35k but tops over $50k. Not sure the Cadillac badge can justify that.
What is it?
This XT4 might not look significant but it is the first vehicle in a new product offensive which is going to see Cadillac launch an all-new or refreshed product every six months between now and 2021. A lot of that product will be SUVs. Next year sees a freshening of the XT5 and the launch of the bigger XT6. A fully redesigned Escalade will debut in 2020, as will a mini crossover XT2. Then in 2021 we’ll get a redesigned XT5 and another small crossover, the XT3.
Plenty to chew on there, but what can this new, long awaited XT4 tell us about the new crop of Caddys coming down the pipeline? The first thing is that the company is rationalising each model offering into two distinct spec channels: Sport and Premium Luxury.
Despite what a first pass at the specs might suggest, the XT4 rides on its own platform – a shortened version of the XT5’s, not a Chevy derived number. Likewise it gets its own version of 2.0-litre turbocharged engine, which produces fewer horsepower and less torque (230bhp/258lbft) than the unit used elsewhere in the GM family. The net is a car which is slightly bigger than the current crop of small SUVs, such as the excellent Volvo XC40. So it occupies its own position in the automotive space.
What's the verdict?
In the sea of new small crossovers coming to market right now, the XT4 distinguishes itself as being one of the more agreeable premium SUVs to spend time with. Not the fastest, the best handling or the best value. It blends in rather than stands out. It fulfills its role as a smaller XT5, but it’s hard at this point to see the need for anything with a Cadillac badge to be much smaller. The forthcoming XT3 and XT2 would suggest Cadillac thinks otherwise.