These days cars of this kind are sprouting like mushrooms, and one wonders how an American brand, not very popular with us, can face the sacred monsters of Audi, BMW, Mercedes, Jaguar, Volvo. Warning, spoilers! The new Cadillac XT4 350D has good cards to play by focusing on innovation: a trait engraved in its DNA.
Forget Mercedes, Jaguar, but also Rolls Royce, Bentley, and so on. If you ask me which rock star car is par excellence, my answer is Cadillac. Leonard Chess of the Chicago record company of the same name, the one who hired Elvis Presley, the Rolling Stones, Etta James, Chuck Berry, and many others, used to give one of these cars to his singers.
Because Cadillac was synonymous with quality, luxury, and innovation: even compared to European standards, it was she who introduced in 1902 the standardized production of automotive components and with it the concept of auto parts; and, subsequently, electric lighting and starting. And in the 1950s and 1960s, the golden age of Rock & Roll, Cadillac was the pinnacle of technology, introducing self-leveling suspension, electric seats, automatic climate control, and automatic headlamp shutdown via a light sensor.
Cadillac was a symbol of excellence and success: so much so that Elvis made his ’55 pink Fleetwood the protagonist of a very famous song and Chuck Berry used to sleep in it, in his Cadillac, when he went on tour in the southern states, where the racism closed the doors of several hotels to him.
2021 Cadillac XT4 Dimensions
Here Cadillac, General Motors group, has always remained a niche brand, which now arrives on the market with the XT4 350D, the Diesel version of its latest compact SUV.
The XT4 350D abbreviation should not be misleading: the displacement is two thousand. 4.59 m long and with a trunk that goes from 637 to 1,385 liters, it offers a lot of space, you say. And indeed, it is, even if the value indicated for the capacity is measured at the roof and not at the parcel shelf, as is usually used.
However, the shape is regular and easy to use, with the threshold perfectly aligned with the loading surface. There are only commands to pull down the rear seats’ backs directly from the luggage compartment: a device that we find on several less famous cars. Onboard four people are in first class and the fifth, albeit a little tight, has plenty of space above the head.
2021 Cadillac XT4 Interior
The interiors are well cared for, with the bonus of a striking dashboard. It has a personal design. As well as the bodywork, for that matter, and is made with quality materials, with leatherette covering most of the dashboard and artisan-style stitching (but certainly not such) to underline it.
The buttons for the main functions on board are comfortable and perfectly assembled. The perfectly integrated display solution in the center of the dashboard is appreciated: in contrast to the cantilevered “tablet effect” screens of many competitors. And it doesn’t matter if its dimensions are not record-breaking: 8 inches is more than enough. Infotainment? It is compatible with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.
In general, the Cadillac’s environment reinterprets the classic style in a contemporary way, avoiding modernity at all costs. And the orderly arrangement of the controls almost manages to give a minimalist touch to a dashboard that, on closer inspection, is not at all.
Comfortable seats, from the original adjustment system completed with touch functions on the infotainment display, are perhaps not entirely intuitive.
2021 Cadillac XT4 Diesel Engine Specs
The engine is a two thousand 174 horsepower and 381 Nm turbodiesel, proposed both in combination with the front-wheel-drive only and with the integral.
An innovative integral develops a concept already seen on Audi’s Quattro Ultra drive. With 3 automatic clutches, the Cadillac releases the driveshaft from the engine, and the rear wheels from the differential eliminate friction when the 4×4 is not needed. For the benefit of consumers.
The gearbox is a 9-speed automatic, and the driving modes change according to the type of traction: there are three with the front-wheel-drive XT4, four with the 4×4.
2.0-liter, 4-cylinder turbodiesel
|Power and torque||174 HP – 381 Nm|
|Speed||200 km / h; from 0 to 100 km / h in 10.4 “(10.6”)|
|Dimensions||4.59 x 1.88 x 1.61 m|
|Trunk||from 637 to 1.385 liters|
|Price||from 37,710 euros|
A lot of Equipment
The equipment lives up to the luxury ambitions, which include discounted features, such as:
- adaptive cruise control,
- automatic braking,
- head-up display,
- automatic parking,
- the boot lid with hands-free opening
- to features that we take less for granted in Europeans.
Driver’s also equipped with Safety Seat Alert. What is it about? A system that can replace the acoustic alarm for driving aids with tactile signals. Practically vibrates the seat, the backrest, or one of the side bolsters, depending on the direction from which the danger comes, to alert the driver.
The vibration is felt strong and clear: I have not yet decided whether it is more or less comfortable and effective than traditional sounds. On the Cadillac, a command on the menu is enough to switch from one solution to another.
Test Drive, Fuel Economy & Performance
At the wheel of the Cadillac XT4 350D, the first thing that strikes me is the engine’s responsiveness: just touch the gas pedal to hear it react promptly and vigorously. And even with a slightly strong voice, it must be said, with the somewhat rough tones of the Diesel, that is always an integral part of the driving experience.
Things improve if I help the automatic transmission drive with an extra gear via the paddles behind the steering wheel.
Performance & Fuel Economy. The diesel of the XT4 is forgiven with a remarkable determination both in recovery and acceleration, even if the cold numbers do not do justice to the sensations.
200 mph is top speed, and 0-100 takes 10.6 seconds with this all-wheel drive XT4, which drops to 10.4 seconds with the front-wheel-drive XT4.
Consumption, according to the WLTP cycle, is 6.9 l/100 km for the all-wheel-drive version and 6.4 l/100 km for the front-wheel-drive one, but from what I was able to measure with the on-board computer during my short test drive, in the real world, it is more likely to stay around 7.5 l/100 km on average.
Comfort remains of a high level, however, thanks to the set-up that combines excellent absorption of the ground’s unevenness with the ability to counteract the inclination of the car when cornering effectively and braking, to the benefit of stability.
This is combined with direct and precise steering, perfect for satisfying European tastes. The feeling it transmits is very positive, enhanced by the small-diameter steering wheel with a sporty flavor.
2021 Cadillac XT4 Release Date & Price
Cadillac XT4 is already available at the dealership; the price starting at 37,710 euros.
|CADILLAC XT42.0 TD LUXURY FWD||MY 2020||€ 37,710|
|CADILLAC XT42.0 TD LUXURY AWD||MY 2020||€ 39,860|
|CADILLAC XT42.0 TD PREMIUM LUXURY FWD||MY 2020||€ 43,760|
|CADILLAC XT42.0 TD SPORT FWD||MY 2020||€ 44,780|
|CADILLAC XT42.0 TD LAUNCH EDITION||MY 2020||€ 44,990|
|CADILLAC XT42.0 TD PREMIUM LUXURY AWD||MY 2020||€ 45.910|
|CADILLAC XT42.0 TD SPORT AWD||MY 2020||€ 46,940|
|CADILLAC XT42.0 TD LAUNCH EDITION SPORT||MY 2020||€ 49,290|
The new XT4 is proposed with the right measures to break through the Italian market, with an advantageous drive and a look with a high level of personality. If anything, the question we can ask ourselves is whether the diesel engine’s arrival is not out of time, given the times that run, especially since the introduction of any hybrid variant is not planned. But beyond that, the new Cadillac compact SUV remains a highly desirable car for those who like to stand out.