By KBB.com Editors
KBB Expert Rating: 7.1
Once the self-proclaimed "Standard of the World", Cadillac struggled over recent years to reclaim its notorious tagline, but there is a light at the end of the tunnel for the 110-year-old luxury marque. The long-awaited 2013 Cadillac XTS sedan possesses the right amount of modern technology, interior refinement and contemporary styling to compete head-on with the luxury segment's imported stalwarts. Cadillac cleverly designed the 2013 XTS with the clear intention of bridging the gap between mid-size and full-size luxury sedans. The result is a rather broad competitive set, though based on price point we feel the mid-size Audi A6, Lexus GS, Infiniti M and BMW 5 Series fit the role as the XTS's principal challengers. While it might not be the new sedan standard of the world, the 2013 XTS decidedly fits the critical role as Cadillac's newest flagship.
If nothing short of a full-size luxury sedan will suffice, but your budget is limited to a mid-size price, the 2013 Cadillac XTS could be the answer to your predicament.
If you are looking for a luxury sedan that provides you with an engaging driving experience and high levels of athleticism, the Cadillac XTS will leave you wanting more. The BMW 5 Series or the Audi A6 should satisfy your performance requirements.
The Cadillac XTS is a brand-new nameplate for the 2013 model year, and brings the Cadillac brand one step closer to once again offering consumers a full range of vehicles.
Driving Impressions On the road, the 2013 Cadillac XTS strikes an admirable balance between ride comfort and handling ability. The XTS tackles dilapidated pavement and other road deformities with incredible poise, thanks...in part to its standard Magnetic Ride Control suspension system that makes 1,000 dampening adjustments every second. Up to this point, Magnetic Ride Control was utilized exclusively for GM's high-end sports cars, but the platform's inherent flexibility permitted Cadillac engineers to custom tailor the suspension system for high levels of comfort. Because the 2013 XTS employs a conventional hydraulic-assisted steering system rather than an electromechanical setup, steering is precise and responsive. The lone engine choice, a 304-horsepower V6, delivers adequate acceleration, though a few extra ponies under the hood wouldn't hurt. In true Cadillac form, the strategically placed sound insulation combined with the active noise cancelling system worked so well, we found ourselves frequently checking the tachometer to confirm the engine was still running.
Although head-up displays are nothing new in the automotive world, the new XTS takes this fighter-jet-inspired feature to the next level with a full-color display, speed-limit reminders and navigation instructions.
8-INCH TOUCH SCREEN
The cornerstone of the 2013 XTS sedan's infotainment system is undoubtedly the 8-inch high-resolution touch screen. The display includes a myriad of cutting edge technology, such as haptic feedback that confirms your desired input with a light vibration, and proximity sensing, which displays command icons when the system detects a hand approaching the screen.
The 2013 Cadillac XTS' cabin is impeccably assembled and surrounds its occupants with rich leather and first-rate materials – but regrettably, that's where the good news ends. While the dash layout looks intuitive at first glance, the audio system and climate controls are operated by touch capacitive switches, which require a steep learning curve and heaps of patience to master. Similarly, the optional digital instrument cluster is excessively complex and quite distracting while driving. The front seats, however, are supremely comfortable and plenty supportive, and rear seat passengers are treated to ergonomically-designed seats and a generous amount of headroom. On paper, the Cadillac XTS boasts an additional four inches of legroom over competitors like the BMW 5 Series, however, the XTS' front seats are designed in a way that makes it nearly impossible to slide your feet under them, essentially nullifying the advantage.Exterior
The sculpted sheet metal of the 2013 XTS embodies Cadillac's latest iteration of their celebrated "Art and Science" design language. Although the XTS is considerably longer than its mid-size competitors, exterior dimensions are shorter than the superseded Cadillac DTS sedan. Since sizable proportions necessitate sizable wheels, the XTS rides on standard 19-inch 10-spoke wheels with 20-inch polished alloys as an option. Cadillac completes the exterior with a host of chrome adornments, including door handles, window frames and upper and lower grilles.
The 2013 Cadillac XTS is offered in four trim levels: Standard, Luxury, Premium and Platinum. Every XTS model includes Magnetic Ride Control suspension, Brembo front brakes, a Bose premium audio system, Cadillac's Cue infotainment system with conversational voice recognition, push-button start, and an iPad with a preloaded Cue instructional application. Safety comes in the form of 10 airbags, a full complement of electronic stability systems and GM's renowned OnStar emergency services.
While standard and luxury trims offer a basic version of the Cue infotainment system, Premium and Platinum models include the full-fledged rendition, complete with a 12.3-inch configurable instrument cluster and a robust navigation system with one-shot destination entry for quick, voice-activated address searches – even when the vehicle is in motion. Additionally, Premium and Platinum models include a full-color head-up display and an available Driver Awareness Package, comprised of lane departure, collision, blind spot and cross traffic alerts. To help mitigate infotainment-related driver distraction, we highly recommend the aforementioned Driver Awareness Package.
The 2013 Cadillac XTS sedan gets its motivation from a 3.6-liter, direct-injected V6 that produces 304 horsepower. Power is delivered smoothly through a 6-speed automatic transmission with a sporty sequential mode and steering wheel-mounted shift controls. Snowbelt residents will appreciate the available all-wheel drive (AWD) system, which incorporates an electronically controlled limited-slip differential and torque vectoring for increased traction on wet and dry surfaces.
2013 Cadillac XTS
304 horsepower @ 6,800 rpm
264 lb-ft of torque @ 5,200 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 17/28 mpg (front-wheel drive), 17/27 mpg (AWD)
By Walkin In on Friday, January 16, 2015
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 25,150overall rating 10 of 10rating details
Pros: "Fun to drive - comfortable and reliable"
Cons: "Neverused all features - little complicated"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9
"I am completely satisfied with the XTS. Anyone that has ridden in my car say it is like riding on a cloud. Had to take it to dealer once - CUE no working properly. Fixed and not problem since. People stop me to ask me about the car as they love the lines. This is my 5th Cadillac. I looked at BMW's and Audi's before deciding on the XTS and believe I made the right decision for me. No mechancial problems to date."
7 people out of 13 found this review helpful
By pc19 on Wednesday, January 14, 2015
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 5,087overall rating 10 of 10rating details
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10
"For the price and value the Cadillac XTS can't be beat. The ride is very comfortable. It have very good handling response. The speed is very responsive when I need it. Long road trip are easy going no road noise. The CUE display is top notch. I am very glad I brought this car"
2 people out of 3 found this review helpful
By ERNIE on Saturday, December 20, 2014
I owned and sold this car
Reason: G.M. TOOK IT BACK
Cons: "ALL ABOVE BUYER BEWARE"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 1
"I TRADED IN MY 2004 D.T.S IN 2013 FOR A BRAND NEW 2013 X.T.S. BEING TOLD X.T.S. WAS SAME CAR WHAT A MISTAKE, 6 TIMES BACK TO DEALER FOR RATTLES IN DASH. ALONG WITH SEATBELT SHOULDER BRACKETS, MAKING MORE RATTLES THAN A SHOPPING CART, FILLED WITH LOOSE PLUMBING FITTINGS IN HOME DEPOT, ALONG WITH QUATER PALELS SEPERATING. PLUS FOR ALL PEOPLE LIVING IN SUN BELT AREAS, THERE IS NO SUNSHADE FOR MOON ROOF. ONLY A SUN SCREEN WHICH LETS HEAT IN CABIN.. TRANSMATIN DOES NOT DOWNSHIFT PROPERLY, BETWEEN 2-1-GEARS.. RIDES VERY ROUGHF, MOTOR IS GREAT. BOTTOM LINE G.M. TOOK CAR BACK AFTER 6 TIMES OF TRYING TO FIX RATTLES, 51,000 DOLLARS AND NOTHING BUT AGERVATION..THEY WOULD NOT GIVE ME CASH BACK G.M. CREDIT TOWARDS ANOTHER G.M. CAR.. WORKED FOR ME..GOT A 2014 CHEVY IMPLA LTZ,,BLOWS CADDY AWAY PLUS RIDE-BRAKES-WINDSHIELD- FIT FINISH BETTER..AND THEY DID FINALLY WRITE ME A CHECK..FOR BLANCE.. IF YOU CAN GET OVER NOT HAVING CADY BADGE, PUT THE MONEY IN YOUR POCKET.. MUST HAVE REARVIEW CAMERA W/CHEY.. PLUS YES CADDY SERVICE IS TO ME JUST HAS GOOD, OR CLOSE TO MY LEXUS SERVICE.. JUST TRYING TO SHARE MY EXPERIANCE..GIVE THE CHEVY A LOOK.. OH YES HAS A SUNSHADE WHICH IS GREAT..."
22 people out of 41 found this review helpful
By ReneinMiami on Friday, December 19, 2014
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 2,000overall rating 10 of 10rating details
Pros: "An American Beauty and Very Elegant."
Cons: "The base 3.6L Engine is a bit underpowered"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10
"This is an excellent sedan. I meet allot of people and without question they all say how impressed they are with car. The car is elegant, rides high and you can be proud of the made in America (OK Canada) factor. And it rides and looks like a Cadillac should! Leave the foreigners behind, this is your car America."
6 people out of 9 found this review helpful
By Jerry on Tuesday, December 09, 2014
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 4,800overall rating 5 of 10rating details
Pros: "Good Looks... Fit and finish"
Cons: "This model is a major disappointment."
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 1
"This is my 2nd XTS, I purchased a 2013 with great expectations as my 8th new Cadillac. Right from the start the car was riddled with problems the dealer would fix, only to return over and over. Finally at 9000 miles Cadillac bought the car back and put me into a new 2014. The 2014 has fewer problems, but they're still there. The latest is a radio that can't be turned off, and Cadillac engineers have told me there's no fix, so live with it. The ride is very harsh,and the CUE System is needless technology. It's nothing like previous Cadillacs that were a dream to drive in as well as dependable. I've never regretted any car purchase as much as this one!"
14 people out of 27 found this review helpful
By Dr. JT on Thursday, November 27, 2014
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 27,800overall rating 8 of 10rating details
Pros: "A real sporty ride with lots of "Bell and Whistles"
Cons: "Tech. is a challenge to operate at times."
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 5
"I was quite disappointed in the actual size of this XTS. This is the largest of the Cadillac sedans and it is really small and the ride is not smooth. Beautiful car with lots of technology and "Bells and Whistles" but I would trade back to the 2012 DTS in a minute."
17 people out of 30 found this review helpful