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2018 Cadillac XT5

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2018 Cadillac XT5 Expert Review

By Scott Oldham -- Contributing Editor

KBB Expert Rating: 8.1

The stylish 2018 Cadillac XT5 is a posh and powerful 2-row, 5-passenger luxury SUV. It offers extreme levels of active-safety technology and advanced in-cabin connectivity, including onboard Wi-Fi, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. Under the hood is a big 3.6-liter V6 making 310 horsepower, which makes it one of the most powerful vehicles in the midsize-luxury-SUV class, although there is no hybrid model. Front-wheel drive is standard, and all-wheel drive is available on all models. Four trim levels are available: base XT5, Luxury XT5, Premium Luxury XT5 and Platinum, with prices starting just over $40,000. A loaded XT5 will top $70,000. The new 2018 XT5 competes with the Lexus RX, Audi Q5, Lincoln MKX, BMW X5 and Mercedes-Benz GLE.

You'll Like This Car If...

With over 300 horsepower the Cadillac XT5 is one of the most powerful SUVs in its class. But it’s also surprisingly fuel-efficient, getting better fuel mileage than the Mercedes GLE350. The Cadillac’s big V6 also runs on regular gasoline instead of pricier premium to keep your operating costs down.

You May Not Like This Car If...

The new 2018 XT5 doesn’t offer a third row. Larger 7-passenger options in the class include the Audi Q7, Acura MDX and Infiniti QX60. If high city fuel economy is important, check out the hybrid versions of the Lexus RX, Acura MDX and BMW X5. BMW also offers a diesel.

KBB Expert Ratings

  • 8.1
  • 8.1
  • 8.9
  • 8.4
  • 8.6
  • N/A
How It Ranks

#7

out of 16

Fuel Economy

#1

out of 17

Horsepower
View all rankings
2018 Cadillac XT5 Low/wide front photo What's New for 2018

Cadillac’s XT5 was all-new just last year, so for 2018 Cadillac has made a few minor improvements to the SUV. All-wheel drive is now available on all models, including the base XT5. There’s also a new automatic heated steering wheel, which turns itself on at a predetermined interior temperature.

Driving the XT5
2018 Cadillac XT5 Front angle view photo
Driving Impressions

Our time behind the wheel of the XT5 was split between time in city traffic and some stretches through twisty canyons. In the city the XT5 is exceedingly comfortable and...

... visibility is excellent. The auto stop/start feature helps increase fuel efficiency, but you can feel the big V6 turning itself on and off. It would be nice to have the option to disable the system. The SUV also feels confident and well-planted in twists and turns. The XT5's electric power steering provides decent feedback. It isn't a sports car, but you can certainly have fun in it. It's powered by a 3.6-liter, 310-horsepower V6 with a very good 8-speed automatic transmission that felt as if it were programmed for fuel economy, not performance. The XT5 is by no means slow, and it certainly has ample power; it just takes hard throttle-mashing to get the transmission to downshift.

CADILLAC USER EXPERIENCE
Cadillac’s User Experience infotainment system offers quick response, clean graphics and an intuitive touch screen. It comes with 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.

FORWARD AUTOMATIC BRAKING
The 2018 Cadillac XT5 won’t drive itself, but it can help you avoid an accident by braking for you. If this system detects an imminent forward collision, and the driver has not applied the brakes, the system will apply the brakes automatically to avoid the collision or reduce its severity.

2018 Cadillac XT5 Details
2018 Cadillac XT5 Dashboard, center console, gear shifter view photo Interior

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
2018 Cadillac XT5 photo

In a sea of me-too lookalike SUVs with massive gaping grilles, the 2018 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.

Notable Equipment
Standard 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. Internet connectivity, 4G LTE with a built-in Wi-Fi hotspot, comes with the XT5, as do Apple CarPlay connectivity, 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. While a navigation system isn’t standard, one year of OnStar is, which can provide turn-by-turn directions.

Optional Equipment

In addition to the base XT5, trim levels for Cadillac's compact-luxury midsize-crossover SUV include Luxury and Premium Luxury and Platinum. Driver-assist options include adaptive cruise control, automatic park assist, automatic front braking, forward-collision warning, lane-departure warning, lane-keep assist and a safety seat that lets the driver know when there is a potentially dangerous situation. 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.

Under the Hood
2018 Cadillac XT5 Engine photo

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), 18/26 mpg (AWD)

The Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price (MSRP) for the 2018 Cadillac XT5 starts at around $41,000 with FWD. AWD costs an additional $3,000. The top-line Platinum starts at about $64,000, and with a few option packages, climbs to above $70,000. At about $56,000, the Premium Luxury model with AWD includes many standard luxuries such as navigation, 20-inch wheels and a huge sunroof. It represents a high value. 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.

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