2019 Cadillac XT5 Expert Review

4.0 Overall Score
Performance 4.0 Comfort 4.4 Styling 4.1 Value 4.2

Editor's Overview

Posh and powerful, the 2019 Cadillac XT5 is a stylish 2-row, 5-passenger luxury SUV with extreme levels of safety technology and in-cabin connectivity, including onboard 4G LTE Wi-Fi. Under the hood is a big 3.6-liter V6 making 310 horsepower, and all-wheel drive is available. The 2019 XT5 competes with the Lexus RX, Audi Q5, Lincoln MKX and Mercedes-Benz GLE.

You'll Like The 2019 Cadillac XT5 If...

The Cadillac XT5 has plenty going for it, starting with its exterior design. It's loaded with upscale touches and offers one of the most powerful engines in its class.

You May Not Like The 2019 Cadillac XT5 If...

The XT5 lacks a third row, either as an option or standard gear, a surprising shortfall in this segment. It's also just mid-class when it comes to mileage.

What's New

For 2019, the Cadillac XT5 undergoes only modest updates, Caddy focusing on the all-new XT4. There are a handful of new paint colors, and high trim levels get more standard features -- the Driver Assist Package now standard on the Platinum grade. The rear DVD entertainment package also will be dropped.

Interior Features

The cabin of Cadillac's XT5 is quiet and elegant. The quality of the materials -- including carbon fiber, aluminum and real open-pore wood -- and the fit and finish are excellent. That, plus the roomy, sliding second row and tasteful color schemes ensure the interior holds its own against the competition. It's also wonderfully comfortable and offers more cargo space than many of its 5-passenger rivals. The split-rear seat also folds flat for hauling larger items. Setting it apart are its standard Apple CarPlay, its excellent infotainment system, a color head-up display and the terrific gotta-try-it-to-appreciate-it Rear Camera Mirror.

Exterior Features

In a sea of me-too look-alike SUVs with massive gaping grilles, the 2019 Cadillac XT5 stands out with a crisp and clean set of lines, hard-edged elegance and a hint of wedge in its shape. It’s aggressive, and it gets noticed, but the XT5 refuses to shout for attention. It’s understated, unadorned and beautifully detailed. Although it bears a family resemblance to Cadillac’s other models, the new XT5 advances the brand’s design language with jeweled headlights and tighter, stronger proportions. The XT5 with the most visual appeal is the top-of-the-line Platinum, with its unique exhaust and 20-inch wheels.

Driving Impressions

We've spent plenty of time behind the wheel of the XT5, both on the highway and in town, as well as on some twisty back roads. The Cadillac crossover SUV never fails to impress. It offers plenty of comfort, especially on long trips, yet it retains good steering feel and a solid grip on the road, even when being driven aggressively. And all-wheel-drive models are particularly adept at handling wet and wintry conditions. The 3.6-liter powertrain is quick and responsive, though we'd prefer it if the Stop/Start system were a little less obvious when restarting the V6.

Pricing Notes

The Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price (MSRP) for the 2019 Cadillac XT5 starts at around $42,600 with FWD. AWD costs an additional $3,000. The top-line Platinum starts at about $67,000, and with a few option packages, climbs above $70,000. At about $57,700, the Premium Luxury model with AWD includes many standard luxuries such as navigation, 20-inch wheels and a huge sunroof. It represents the high-value XT5 proposition. That pricing falls in line with that of its competitors, but keep in mind that in many cases, those top-line models are diesels or hybrids, such as the Lexus RX 450h, powertrains that aren't offered on the XT5. To get your best deal on a new XT5, take a look at KBB.com's Fair Purchase Price to find out what others in your area are paying for theirs. Over time, the XT5's resale value remains average, comparable to the BMW X3, shy of the Audi Q5 and well shy of the industry-leading Lexus RX.

Notable Equipment

All XT5s come with cruise control, electric parking brake, power front seats, power express up/down windows, 18-inch wheels, a power liftgate, keyless entry, dual-zone climate control, a power tilt-telescopic steering column and a leather-wrapped steering wheel. A 4G LTE Wi-Fi hotspot is standard, along with an 8-speaker Bose audio and a wireless smartphone charging pad. Also standard are a rearview camera and dual front, front and rear head-curtain and driver’s-knee airbags. Navigation isn’t standard, but one year of OnStar is, and it can provide turn-by-turn directions. You can also use your smartphone navi with the XT5's standard Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.

Notable Options

Advance driver-assistance features, such as forward and reverse auto braking are offered as options on lower trims and standard on the Platinum grade. Instead of warning you with jarring beeps, you're alerted through subtle buzzing in the driver's seat. Tri-zone climate control is available, as are an UltraView sunroof, ventilated seats, head-up display, hands-free power liftgate and DVD rear-seat entertainment. Cadillac also offers 20-inch wheels, a reconfigurable digital gauge cluster and a 14-speaker audio system. All-wheel drive is available on every trim level.

Favorite Features

The XT5 has an updated version of the Cadillac User Experience, or Caddy CUE, which is now quicker and more intuitive to use. It is paired with a standard 8-inch screen, onboard Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, voice activation and Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility. Navigation is available, but it’s standard on the top trims. Wireless phone charging is standard on all models.

The 2019 Cadillac XT5 features an array of Advanced Driver Assistance Systems, including forward-collision warning with automatic braking, as well as reverse auto braking, both able to help a driver avoid, or at least the severity of, a crash.

Under the Hood

Unlike many of the Cadillac’s competitors, which now use smaller turbocharged engines, the new XT5 boasts a large naturally aspirated 3.6-liter V6. It makes over 300 horsepower and features such technologies as variable-valve timing, Active Fuel Management cylinder deactivation, direct injection and auto stop/start technology. It also runs on regular gasoline to keep operating costs down. The V6 is backed by a smooth-shifting 8-speed electronically controlled automatic transmission, and the combination provides surprising fuel economy considering its power output. The XT5 is available with either front-wheel or all-wheel drive (FWD, AWD).

3.6-liter V6
310 horsepower @ 6,700 rpm
271 lb-ft of torque @ 5,000 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 19/26 mpg (FWD), 18/25 mpg (AWD)

Editors' Notes

Like its European and Asian rivals, Cadillac is rushing an assortment of SUVs to market, including the new XT4. But many buyers will continue to seek the added space and features offered by the more upscale XT5. There aren't many changes for 2019, but that doesn't mean you should ignore this posh and stylish model. The XT5 offers good performance from its 3.6-liter V6, at 310 horsepower one of the most powerful engines offered in the segment. It also features an array of advanced driver-assistance systems, technology like wireless charging, onboard Wi-Fi and both Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. Four XT5 trim levels are available, with a loaded version of the crossover SUV topping out around $70,000.

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