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Review of the 2023 Cadillac XT4: Stylish, Yet Not Exceptional

Image Source: Steve Lagreca / Shutterstock

When it comes to Cadillac, the conversation often revolves around the grand Escalade. But what if you desire something on the opposite end of the size spectrum? That’s where the compact Cadillac XT4 steps in. It’s a sleek small crossover that promises a luxurious encounter similar to that of the Escalade. In a fiercely competitive market, the XT4 competes against heavyweights such as the Audi Q3, BMW X1, and Mercedes-Benz GLA. Does the XT4 fulfill its objective? To a certain extent, yes, but in some areas, Cadillac’s smallest crossover could use some enhancements.

Externally, the XT4 displays a stylish design that sets it apart from its German competitors. The sharp angles offer a distinctive appearance, and even though the XT4 has been on the market for a few years, its look remains modern. The 2023 XT4 has not undergone any major exterior changes for the new model year, but it now comes in two additional colors: Argent Silver Metallic and Radiant Red Tintcoat.

While the exterior catches attention, the interior of the XT4 may benefit from upgrades to elevate its luxury feel, as one would expect from Cadillac. The interior features materials that do not exude a premium vibe. The dashboard is adorned with synthetic leather, and various interior components are constructed from hard plastic. The overall interior design lacks memorability, and the shared parts from other GM vehicles fail to make it feel unique. On the positive side, there is ample space in both seating rows, but the cargo area may be tight when accommodating a weekend’s worth of gear.

Regarding technology, the 8-inch touchscreen appears basic, lacking a fully digital instrument cluster that has become customary among most automakers nowadays. While it offers a head-up display and wireless connectivity for Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, a feature akin to the Escalade’s sizeable curved screen could enhance its appeal.

Under the hood, the XT4 is equipped with a single engine option – a turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder delivering 235 horsepower and 258 pound-feet of torque, paired with a nine-speed automatic transmission. Initially, it comes with front-wheel drive, with the option for all-wheel drive. The engine delivers sufficient power for city driving, but it lacks refinement in terms of sound quality. Although the XT4’s performance with 235 hp is competent, it falls short in terms of sportiness and driving engagement.

The suspension offers a smooth and comfortable ride; however, on winding roads, the XT4 reveals a lack of agility. The steering lacks feedback, and the braking performance is unremarkable. Overall, the driving experience in the XT4 does not leave a lasting impression, nor does it challenge its German rivals. While the XT4 may appeal to those seeking a competent and comfortable crossover, there are other more enjoyable options available at lower price points.

In terms of fuel efficiency, the XT4 receives average ratings of 23 mpg in the city and 30 mpg on the highway with front-wheel drive, and 22/29 mpg with all-wheel drive.

On the safety front, the XT4 includes standard features such as blind-spot monitoring, rear-cross traffic alert, lane-keeping assist, and automatic emergency braking. To access adaptive cruise control and “enhanced” automatic emergency braking, one must opt for the Driver Assist package, priced at $1,100. It would be desirable for the XT4 to offer GM’s Super Cruise hands-free technology, similar to the Escalade.

The 2023 Cadillac XT4 is offered in three trim levels: Luxury, Premium, and Sport. The base Luxury trim with front-wheel drive starts at $37,490, providing good value on paper. However, additional packages such as Driver Assist ($1,100), Technology ($1,400), Enhanced Visibility ($1,500), and a panoramic sunroof ($1,500) can quickly escalate the price. A fully loaded XT4 Sport with all-wheel drive can exceed the $50k mark.

In conclusion, the 2023 Cadillac XT4 stands out for its stylish appearance in the luxury crossover segment, yet it lags behind its rivals due to its uninspiring driving dynamics and forgettable interior experience.

Image Source: Steve Lagreca / Shutterstock

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