Smaller luxury crossover perfect for urban dwellers
There’s nothing a business loves more than reeling in a customer early on to build a relationship over time. And Cadillac is hoping to do just that —introducing a new generation of premium automobile buyers to the brand — with the launch of the all-new XT4.
“The first-ever Cadillac XT4 expands our successful SUV lineup to a segment where Cadillac has never been before,” says former Cadillac president Johan de Nysschen in a news release when the model was launched in 2019. “And it sets off a dramatic expansion and elevation of the product range, that will see a new Cadillac virtually once every six months through 2021.”
Short for “Cross Touring 4,” the compact SUV slots underneath the XT5 and gives vehicle shoppers a slightly smaller choice perfectly suited towards city driving — yet doesn’t compromise on performance as both utilize the same standard powertrain.
Really, the crossover just looks like a slightly shrunken down version featuring similar headlights sporting the signature LED “light blade” daytime running lamps and gloss black mesh pentagon grille, although at the back the upside-down L-shaped taillights are larger and flipped upwards. All-black under body cladding provides a touch of toughness.
The luxuriousness of the XT4 really shines through in cabin. The three-spoke leather steering wheel has some girth to it and feels great in hand, and the bolstering on the leather-upholstered seats with optional front massage function keeps occupants snug and supported.
Cadillac is introducing a rotary controller to navigate the eight-inch high-definition Cadillac User Experience infotainment system, which is ergonomically easier to manipulate than reaching across the dash for a tuning knob.
Though the overall length is some 200 millimetres shorter than its bigger brother, second row passengers still have an above-average 1,004 millimetres of legroom. Or fold the bench flat and there’s 1,385 litres of cargo space ready to use.
All grades receive the same engine: a 2.0-litre turbocharged four cylinder, mated to a nine-speed automatic gearbox, producing 237 horsepower and 258 lb-ft of torque. Spooling lag is minimal and power delivery is quite linear so the XT4 is pleasant to drive around town or on the highway.
Thanks to the smaller size, five-link independent rear suspension and twin-clutch all-wheel drive (non-base only) the vehicle handles better than one might expect given the segment. The available Active Sport Suspension improves things further with an ability to monitor road conditions in real time, via onboard electronic sensors, and make changes to the damping stiffness on-the-fly for optimal comfort and cornering stability.
Three trim levels are sold, and aside from the base model consumers can select Premium Luxury focusing on upscale features such as satin chrome and wood accenting, or Sport, that bundles performance-oriented accoutrements including darkened taillight lenses, carbon fibre interior pieces and more.
The 2021 Cadillac XT4 is built in the U.S. at the company’s Fairfax Assembly facility in Kansas City and has a sticker price of $36,098.
MSRP: $36,098 (base)
Motor: 2.0-litre turbocharged four cylinder
Horsepower: 237 @ 5,000 rpm
Torque (lb-ft): 258 @ 1,500 rpm
Gearbox: Nine-speed automatic
Layout: Front engine, all-wheel drive
Fuel economy: 8.7 L/100 km city/7.8 highway (manufacturer estimate)