FASHIONABLY LATE: 2020 CADILLAC XT6
Being a little late to the party isn’t always a bad thing and for Cadillac, they’re pushing the limits of the timeline as their new XT6 is nearly the last one to arrive in the premium, luxury three-row crossover segment. Competing in an already heavily saturated market, the all-new XT6 see’s tough rivalry from nearly every luxury brand against the BMW X5, Volvo XC90, Mercedes-Benz GLE, Audi Q7, Lexus RX 350L, Infiniti QX60, Acura MDX, and all-new Lincoln Aviator.
With Cadillac being a part of the General Motors family, it’s not a surprise we see some of its underpinnings shared with other GM crossovers. Allocating similar dimensions with the GMC Arcadia, we can only assume the same platform was used. The Chevrolet Traverse and Buick Enclave carry larger dimensions and a stretch version of this platform. Under the hood we also find the same 3.6-liter V-6 that can be found in nearly all of General Motors product line. Some engineering finesse has been compiled in conjunction with their 9-speed automatic transmission that makes this one smooth operator. Developing 310-horsepower and 271 lb-ft of torque, the XT6 performs as well as one expects it to. At just under six and half seconds to sixty miles per hour, there is a suave velvetiness to its graceful tactic.
Some may say that the XT6 is lacking a certain power curve, but we have to disagree. The V-6 performer here is right on par for what we need this 4700lbs crossover to handle. All-wheel drive is offered at a $2000 premium and is an option we say should be applied – the all-wheel drive system manages the power distribution more evenly and less dramatic. The different drive modes between Tour, Sport and Off-Road mitigates the power flow allowing the transmission to work out the rest – leaving the drive mode in Tour however, places the XT6 in front-wheel drive only which only represents some unpleasant torque steer at full throttle. The transmission here is seamless and smooth – it provides appropriate responses to the demand of power displacement and never seems to falter.
On the road, the ride comfort isn’t as smooth as we expected from Cadillac – perhaps some of the ride quality is lost to the 20-inch wheels. With some harshness to the suspension, it’s never uncomfortable when hitting rough parts in the road. Being a large and in charge crossover, it handles surprisingly well for a shopping mall skipper. It may not be as spree in the elevated mountain roads, but all the fundamental components of an energetic chassis are there – it feels lively and well supported by the nicely weighted steering. The getaway chase from mall security will be half the entertainment.
There are only two trims available on the XT6, Premium Luxury starting at $53,690 and Sport at $58,090 – its premium capabilities is left to the packages with the available $4900 Platinum Package that includes an enhanced chassis with real-time dampering suspension and performance suspension – $2350 Enhanced Visibility and Technology Package that includes an upgraded 8-inch color driver information center, automatic parking assist, rearview camera mirror, heads-up display, night vision and adaptive cruise control – Super Cruise will be offered on the XT6 at a later time.
As for our tester, the only options concurred was the stylish 20-inch wheels, Garnet Metallic Paint and Comfort Package with heated rear seats, ventilated front seats and air ionizer – forgoing the other extra add-ons. What would be considered an entry level model, our XT6 was outfitted with nearly everything we would expect from a luxury crossover. The white leather upholstery suited the XT6’s interior with an elegant atmosphere contrasted with unique black gloss wood trim and a large panoramic sunroof.
Fitted to be a 7-passenger crossover, the option for second row captain’s chairs will cost an extra $800. Access to the third row may not be as aesthetically pleasing for a full size adult as it does take some wiggling – third row comfort is adequate for a crossover of its size but not for long as the seats are low to the ground like sitting in a toddlers lounge chair.
Scrubbing the Platinum Package can result in a few cheap corners when we start look beyond the glitz and the glamour of our XT6. The dashboard for instance consists of some hard plastic verses being wrapped in leather. The headliner is the same fabric material found in a generic GM vehicle verses the suede material. And even though Apple CarPlay and Android Auto is fitted to the high definition infotainment display – Navigation is a $1000 option, that was not fitted here. We will however find all the latest safety hardware standardly equipped such as blind spot monitoring, forward collision alert with emergency braking, lane departure warning with lane keep assist and rear-cross traffic and pedestrian detection with emergency alert and braking.
With our tester seeing the $60,000 price tag, it puts right in the middle of the harsh competition. Being a little fashionably late never hurt anyone. But with a drop dead gorgeous front end and a gracefully refined interior – the new Cadillac XT6 is sure to catch the attention of many crossover snappy shoppers.
Model: 2020 CADILLAC XT6
Trim: PREMIUM LUXURY AWD
Starting Price: $54,695
As Tested: $59160
Color: GARNET METALLIC
Engine: 3.6-LITER V-6
Horsepower/Torque: 310-HORSEPOWER / 271 LB-FT TORQUE
Transmission: 9-SPEED AUTOMATIC
Drivetrain: ALL-WHEEL DRIVE
Fuel Economy: EPA RATED: 17-CITY / 24-HWY / 20-COMBINED
AS TESTED: 17.8 MPG COMBINED
Fuel Range: 400 MILES
0-60 MPH: ±6.5 SECONDS