Cadillac builds capable, fun-to-drive sedans. But the brand's SUVs lack the same magic. The XT5 is competitive but it's challenged in a crowded field of worthy competitors. It isn't as rewarding to drive as a German luxury SUV, nor does it pamper owners like a Lexus RX.
With the uplevel 3.6-liter V6 engine, we got 20 mpg overall with the older eight-speed automatic. Power is linear and the engine revs smoothly, but it lacks the effortless motivation afforded by competitors' turbocharged engines, such as the Lincoln MKX's available 2.7-liter V6. The XT5 always feels a bit lethargic. The base 2.0-liter turbo four-cylinder actually feels more responsive in daily driving.
While the XT5 is impressively quiet inside, the ride is firm but the suspension manages to absorb bumps decently. The XT5 feels solid and planted through corners. Body lean is kept in check, and the SUV remained secure even when pushed to its limits around our test track.