One of the many new technologies and features introduced by the 2017 Cadillac XT5 is Electronic Precision Shift — an electronically-controlled transmission shifter.
A first for a Cadillac and for a General Motors vehicle, Electronic Precision Shift essentially digitizes a vehicle’s shifter, improving the driving experience by:
- Reducing noise and vibration
- Delivering smooth, precise and responsive shifting
- Allowing further use of cabin space
In the Cadillac XT5, the “further use of cabin space” translates to the “floating” center console, defined by a storage space beneath the shifter that isn’t only utilitarian, but also gives the interior a unique design element.
As for the shifter, it’s shorter and of a different, more modern shape compared to traditional gear selectors found in today’s Cadillac vehicles such as the SRX that the new XT5 replaces. But the Electronic Precision Shift shifter isn’t so much a shifter as it is a multi-directional joystick of sorts.
Using the new Electronic Precision Shift shifter is fairly simple, though it might take some getting used to by those accustomed to a traditional shifter. The concept, however, is the same: to select a gear, the driver simply depresses and holds a small button on the shifter while moving the joystick to the spot on the legend:
- Drive is selected by pulling the joystick back
- Neutral is selected by pushing the joystick forward
- Reverse is selected by first pushing the toggle to neutral and then moving it to the left
- Park is accomplished by a press of the “P” at the top of the joystick
And though other luxury automakers have already been using the technology, we’re glad Cadillac and GM are finally bringing their shifters into the 21st century. We expect to see this technology propagate across the GM lineup over the next several years, give or take.