We drove a $52,000 Cadillac XT4 crossover to see if the 2019 Car of the Year runner-up is worth the money
- The 2019 Cadillac XT4 fills out the brand's luxury crossover lineup, joining the XT5 compact SUV and the just-launched XT6 three-row midsize.
- At $52,000, my subcompact-ish test vehicle was pricey, but worth it.
- The XT4 is a critical vehicle for Cadillac, which is moving decisively away from a long history of big luxury sedans.
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Editor's note: Business Insider will name its 2019 Car of the Year on November 23. Each day this week, we're taking another look at the five vehicles that were runners-up selected from a pool of 16 finalists. Thus far, we've named the Lamborghini Urus and the Nissan Leaf SL Plus. Our third runner-up is the Cadillac XT4.Cadillac is getting its crossover game together, and the excellent XT4 is the latest example.
The argument is that Caddy is now equipped to take on Audi, BMW, and Mercedes - all these brands have a portfolio of crossovers, and with the XT4 and the XT6, Caddy matches up pound-for-pound.Of course, there's a catch. While the Germans favor performance, Cadillac has focused more on easy-to-live-with luxury and technology. It's a good-drivin' SUV. But not a great one.
Read on to find out why we thought this crossover earned its place as a contender in our 2019 Car the Year roundup.Photos by Hollis Johnson.
Our "Twilight Blue Metallic" 2019 XT4 landed on the mean streets of New York City and looked sharp in the process.
This compact/subcompact luxury crossover followed the compact XT5, which Caddy rolled out in 2015. Our tester's base price was around $42,000, but a substantial number of options brought that up to $52,000.Advertisement
Cadillac has toned down its so-called "Art and Science" design language, which was originally angular and aggressive. But the XT4 still has plenty of edge.
The cheapest XT4 is about $35,000, which is pretty good for an elegant, premium, small SUV. The XT4 is that rare crossover that looks as good from the back as it does from the front. The SUV is on the large side of subcompacts, really more or a hybrid subcompact/compact.Advertisement
Overall, the XT4 presents an appealing package. It might be too small for some luxury buyers, but alongside the XT5 and the just-debuted XT6 three-row midsize SUV, it gives Caddy a 1-2-3 crossover punch.
The cargo area offers 25 cubic feet of capacity with the rear seats up. Fold the rear seats down and you have double that.Advertisement
The LED headlights are almost absurdly bright. They're easily among the best I've seen on a luxury vehicle in the past few years.
Under the hood, the heart of the XT4 is this superb 2.0-liter, four-cylinder turbocharged engine, making 237 horsepower with 258 pound-feet of torque.Advertisement
That power is piped through this annoying joystick-activated, 9-speed transmission. The transmission and the motor get along quite well. Shifts are smooth, and power delivery to the all-wheel-drive system is blissful.
Inside, the XT4 is pleasantly snug. It's not as tight nor as "cockpit"-like as, say, a BMW X1. Our test vehicle had a lovely "Light Wheat/Jet Black" combo interior.Advertisement
The seats can be heated and cooled, if you check that option box. The interior exudes a premium vibe without overdoing it. We're not dealing with a Mercedes interior here.
What about the rear seat? Well, this is a smallish SUV, so large adults shouldn't expect long-range comfort. But a huge, dual-panel sunroof ($1,550 extra) can fill the space with natural light.Advertisement
Cadillac Cue is among the best infotainment setups in the industry. The eight-inch touchscreen is responsive, and Cue benefits from 4G LTE Wi-Fi connectivity and GM's OnStar services.
Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are available.Advertisement
So what's the verdict on this 2019 Car of the Year runner-up?
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