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Cadillac XT4, XT5, XT6 Performance Variants A No-Brainer

General Motors has not yet introduced mild V-Series performance variants of its XT4, XT5 and XT6 crossovers – despite the likely fact that these products would help draw more attention to the luxury brand’s growing crossover portfolio.

As our sister site Cadillac Society pointed out in a recent opinion piece, Cadillac’s new two-tier V-Series strategy means that making a V-badged crossover much more realistic than before. Under the old strategy, in which the ‘V’ sub-brand only pumped out hardcore, high-horsepower mode variants, making a V-Series SUV or crossover would be quite difficult. In order to justify the presence of the V badge, Cadillac would have had to inject the vehicles with at least ~450 horsepower and include things like robust performance brakes and stiff track-ready suspension.

The new two-tier V-Series strategy, however, means a V-badged crossover could have a little more than 300 horsepower on tap, along with more pliable suspension and regular brakes. So why hasn’t GM developed such vehicles yet? We know it has all the right components sitting in its parts bin, as evidenced by the Cadillac CT4-V and CT5-V, and we believe that demand for such vehicles would be decent. Furthermore, they may help avert attention to the new luxury crossover models.

We should note that Cadillac already offers a Sport trim level on all three of these crossover models, but they aren’t performance packages. Rather, the Sport trim adds sportier bodywork, bigger alloy wheels, and – on the XT5 and XT6 – sport-calibrated suspension and a dual-clutch all-wheel-drive system. While those upgrades should suffice for many customers, they aren’t real performance upgrades and the Sport models have no extra power on tap.

Back in August, we brought you exclusive photos of a potential Cadillac XT4-V variant, complete with V-Series badging and carbon-fiber trim bits. While Cadillac has yet to confirm or deny plans to build such a vehicle, the photos may potentially hint that it is on the way. As the title of this article suggests, we think such a model would be a no-brainer, especially when rival brands like BMW and Mercedes-Benz offer M and AMG badged versions of virtually every crossover model they currently sell.

The Cadillac XT4, XT5 and XT6 are still relatively recent products, so perhaps we should remain patient and give GM some time to develop V-Series variants of these respective vehicles. If they don’t arrive, however, we’d see it as a major missed opportunity for the automaker. Feel free to let us know if you agree in the comments down below.

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Source: Cadillac Society

Sam McEachern: Sam loves to write and has a passion for auto racing, karting and performance driving of all types.

View Comments (18)

  • (Yawn)
    GM and performance crossover is an oxymoron.

    Unfortunately GM takes the Walmart approach in developing products.
    They want to sell a variety of vehicles to the middle of the market.
    They are extremely conservative in their thinking and fearful of taking any risk at all.

    The result is a very boring menu.

    They also are against allowing for any one model to be more powerful or higher performing than any model above it.

    GM is all talk when it comes to developing performance vehicles.

    They think that the only performance vehicles should be variants of Camaro, Corvette, and the now dumbed-down V series at Cadillac.

    Another problem is that they may mistakenly focus resources on electrified performance vehicles and ignore the internal combustion side and suffer from poor sales in future because most people are just not ready for the current state of electric vehicles.

    Future electric vehicles that have a range of 300+ miles and can be charged at any gas station within 10 minutes would be practical and I would buy one today.

    Until then I am in no hurry to get an electric vehicle.

    • I've been saying this about Cadillac CUVs ever since the first spy shots of the XT5 surfaced.

      As long as it's on a FWD/AWD GM platform, it will ALWAYS be a mediocre performer at best. GM, especially now, doesn't do FWD performance well.

      All of GM's most impressive vehicles are RWD/AWD

      • I just picked up a new 2019 Blazer V6 AWD and its very sporty considering the FWD base design. 0-60 in 6.1 seconds and 1/4 mile in 14.78 seconds at 95.5 mph is not too bad for a SUV or even most sedans. My everyday driver is a new 2019 Stingray with 8 speed auto and MRC suspension upgraded to Z51 brakes. So I am not comparing a slow car to the way the Blazer behaves. The Blazer is amazingly well handling, no sway, smooth power in AWD Sport and very quiet with a nice comfortable ride a bit on the firm side but surprisingly compliant on RR track and rough road surfaces. I am not sure how Chevy did this as conventional design theory says a FWD base chassis with most weight forward of the front axle should not handle so well? It looks pretty nice and sporty as well. My only criticism is the auto engine off that has no off switch, but I am working on a go around. I believe if you put it in L and go up to the 9th speed it goes away until you go back to D and/or you hook up a trailer tester and leave it in making the computer think you are towing something, that may do it as well. will let you know.

  • Yep,
    I dislike this V series stepping stone !
    I would much prefer that a Cadillac was a Cadillac !!
    Meaning that the lowest Cadillac vehicle be a step up from the highest GM vehicle !!
    So these lesser V series vehicles should be the base or standard Cadillac !!

    And I'm ok if Cadillac offers a lesser performance engine as an option !!
    If you want a lesser 2.0T fine order one !!
    If you want a lesser 3.6 V6 fine order one !!

    That way most Cadillacs on the road would be a better vehicle than a Chevrolet, and in time would drive the Cadillac is a wanted better GM vehicle, and promote higher sales numbers !!

    In my opinion!!

  • As a "middle of the market" customer and a first time Cadillac (18 XT5 AWD) owner, I look forward to a V series badge on the XT5 or XT6. I've liked my current ride so much that I'll likely plunk down the extra cash for one of them in the future.

  • Hold on....wasn't the whole point of the V-Sport trim level, to be the "lesser V-Series"?

    I would love to see a V-Sport XT5/6 with an XT4-V.

    I would also like to point something out.....How come people can whine, and cry and b!tch about Lincoln and Cadillac using FWD biased platforms and such, when MB is using FWD quite a bit now. If I'm not mistaken, the last 2 all new MB models are FWD (the A-class and the new GLB). What gives?! Where are the torches and pitchforks over on the Benz forum?? Didnt BMW also make a small vehicle with FWD too?

    • The people on the MB and BMW forums aren't crying and b!tching because they're too busy pointing and laughing at FWD MB and BMW cars AND their owners.

      The FWD Mercedes (like a GLA Class) is seen as a joke played on people who are so thirsty for a Benz, but can't afford a REAL Benz like a GLC.

      Mercedes uses FWD ONLY for their bottom rung. FWD/AWD on a subcompact model family like the BMW 1 Series/X1 is one thing, but what GM has done with Cadillac is akin to Mercedes Benz switching the GLC/GLE/GLS to FWD.

      No RWD/AWD layout?

      No TTV6
      No Inline 6
      No V8
      No V12 (or W12 in Audi's case)
      No towing capacity worth respecting
      No bragging rights
      NO CHOICES

    • To "lifelongGMowner":

      Why do you keep buying Cadillacs since you seem to hate them so much? I, too, am a life long GM owner. I've owned several pre-owned Cadillacs (can't afford a new one) and have only been disappointed in one - a 1978 Seville. If you are going to badmouth a product, pick a forum that exists soley for that purpose. This is NOT that forum. I firmly believe GM vehicles compare favorably with any other manufacturer's vehicles - but that is really just my educated (but subjective) opinion.

      Now, to GM:
      Build a V-series XT4. The customers are out there.
      Build the Buick Acosta. Again, the customers are out there.

      THANKS!!

      • GMFan,
        How did you get that I hate them so much?
        Didn't I say out of 6 that the last one was junk. You said you had one bad one. And actually my mom's North star we had to do the headbolts so there's that.
        And why do you guys keep telling owners who want GM and Cadillac to be better to go buy something else or go tell someone else?
        That's why GM is looking market share and Cadillac keeps trying to be relevant again, people listened to you and went somewhere else with their money.
        I am just trying to do my part to offset you guys who say GM is always right and good enough because if that's all GM hears is their stuff is good enough they will always be behind the competition.
        In my opinion.

        • It's hard to misinterpret your comments "their engines are $hit, their transmissions are $shit, their interiors are $hit and their customer service is $hit". If you were joking, I'm sorry for my response. A lot of people read these posts - maybe I'm the only one that took offense but I doubt it.

  • What gives, Henry, what gives is have you driven any of the brands you are naming here in a one on one comparison ?

    And maybe you have, if so , give us what you think !!

    And I for one, think the new " twin clutch " in the " new " FWD Cadillac mid sized average GM blah, is better, OK !!

    But here is where we are at.
    If Cadillac would have stuck with FWD, and improved on it, I would hope we would have had these kind of systems years ago.
    I am going to use Audi, because now after 5 Cadillacs, and our piece of $hit ATS, I have driven some, Audis.
    Are they FWD ---- Yes they are !!
    Are they smooooooothe as silk to drive ---- Yes they are !!!!!
    Do they have 2.0T--------- Yes they do !!!!

    So what gives, you ask !!

    First off Cadillac just in 2019-2020 offer what they call the " twin clutch ", as its a marvel. And it is somewhat !!! But Audi has been that for years now !!! When did the Audi quattro first hit the market ? Audi was improving steadily, and still is !!
    First off Cadillac just in 2019-2020 offer a better 2.0T, as its a marvel, and it is somewhat " for GM " to offer a refined engine, and not a " REV Rattler " as I like to say !! Remember the small blocks of the 70s, you could hold them at 7000 RPM and they were smooth and quite !! It took GM 50 years to engineer a smooth engine again, listen to the 5.3 - 6.0, smooth !!
    So " what gives " is this!

    The Cadillac reputation today, is a Cadillac is low quality, unreliable, expensive, Chevrolet junk !!!! Its the laughing stock of true luxury buyers and owners. IF Cadillac did not have the Suburban - Escalade, nobody would take them serious at all anymore, and that's because its the only reliable one because its a Suburban, and that's reliable !!!! The engines, have been $hit, the interiors have been $hit, the transmissions have been $hit, and the customer support has been $hit !!!

    Now in the year 2020, Cadillac has some better than the past Cadillacs, I AGREE !!!
    But NOT better than the competition !!!!!!
    Maybe equal ------ maybe !!!!! AS with GM, only time will tell.
    So as we know GM now days is a cheap quick buck business with no long term plan, at least with Cadillac.
    Why didn't they offer MORE than the competition to get back in the door of good graces with the customer !!

    You see GM is trying to sell the Cadillac name !!
    The competition is selling their reputation!!!!

    And today the Cadillac name is cheap junk and laughable !!
    And today the reputation of the competition is steady improvements over years to be the best !!

    That's what gives.
    In my opinion.

  • It's interesting how many Cadillac haters there are on this thread. Go tell everyone how wonderful your glorified VW is on the Audi thread.

    • Cadillac is aiming at soccer moms and people who's next wheels will be a wheelchair. I am sad to read this and I feel sad writing it, but after an ATS midnight package, an ATS V and now a XT5, today I bought a BMW X3 M40i.

      After extensively looking into the MercedesGLC AMG40 and the Audi SQ5 we went with the BMW. I tried the XT4 and it definitely felt more quick and nimble than my current frumpy and sluggish Xt5, and the black trim was a big step up, it was worth spending a bit more for the real thing.

      In Toronto, there are Sports SUV's everywhere. And after years of this Cadillac is still not fully in!? When I engage "sport" mode there is no noticeable difference in the Xt5. In the other cars, when you hit performance mode you can feel the difference big time. The exhaust suddenly pops and roars. Then when you want hit comfort and its all cushy again. And I know , not everyone will buy these models, but they give the brand prestige.

      You walk into the Caddy dealers in Toronto and you see the SUV's in basic plain form. No blackout trim, or 20 inch rims etc. The put the grey powder 18 inch rims... sexy!!! When I serviced my midnight package, more then once salespeople came up asking where I got it customized?? If sales doesn't know the package existed, no wonder it failed.

      Our sales girl was wonderful though. I really feel bad for her. Not because she lost us to BMW. More because she is selling a brand that's core customer are starting to die from natural causes. And it seem no one in charge wants to do anything to change that. After years of pushing and educating people about the "new Cadillac" I have pretty much given up. I told my rep, they remind me of Pandas. An animal that won't mate to keep it's species alive.

  • Brian M,

    First off I AM a Cadillac owner 2 in the garage, have owned 6, and my mother still owns one !!
    Second, I have never owned a VW or an Audi----------YET !

    So I'm not familiar with Brian W, not sure yet if your a Cadillac dealer person, or just another Cadillac or GM customer support person that should be doing something to help the Cadillac customer other than spending time here ridiculing a REAL 6 or you could say 7 time Cadillac owner!!

    And yes I have NOW driven some Audis !!
    Because our last, out of 6 Cadillacs, is a piece of $hit, and your customer support, or should I say, lack of customer support, is horrible !!!

    The last 5 Cadillacs I have owned, I never had to comment once on, great cars !!!!!!
    Never had to go see how much better the competition was, as I was happy with the last 5 !!!

    But you see, if you would read my posts, you would know that my uncle now drives RAM and Mercedes !!
    And my cousin now drives Toyota Tundra and Audi A7 !!

    All do the recent past of the $hit Cadillacs and the horrible customer support of GM !!!

    And I LOVE A GOOD CADILLAC !!!!! the CT6 with the Blackwing is just an awesome vehicle. to big for my wife though.
    Otherwise a Chevrolet 2.0T 8 speed junk Cadillac is not the car for me and thus the reason Cadillac has to play catch up in the first place !!!

    You just continue to sit there and puff your chest as if a Cadillac is any better than a Chevrolet, I however will wait and see !!!
    Because just one more time, the last piece of $hit Cadillac and the horrible customer support , has taught me that, I will wait and see !!!

    Good day !

  • I have owned 13 gm vehicles in my life. My favorite 1 was my 2006 STS4 with the northstar and magnetic ride. I'm following these blogs to hope Cadillac can return to pumping out products that move my soul... But on that note the last 3 vehicles I have purchased were BMW x5m, Hyunda Sfi, and Audi s4. And I can tell u the x5m is definitely a performance SUV! It just wasn't practical enough to drive at 15mpg and a pain in ass to work on(why it was traded for the s4) My point is the initial quality/price/performance was better on these cars when pitted against GM counterparts. If a vehicle doesn't move me on the inside GM/Cadillac, I'm not opening my wallet.

  • Wow. You're a different kind of person lifelong GM owner. The original blog was about a possible V badge for the XT's and u write a 1000 word essay on how Cadillac sucks now. You strike me as a person that wouldn't be happy with an ice cream in each hand. Dork.

    • Well thats right Brian M,
      Because I never eat ice cream.
      But thanks for the personal attack.
      Seems to be a standard for your type.
      Good day.