Cadillac XT6 arrives, fills midsize gap

Cadillac XT6 arrives, fills midsize gap

The 2020 Cadillac XT6 Premium Luxury AWD arrived in time for October’s first cold and wind and snow; it was built for days like that.

The Cadilllac on a bright Saturday carried Jan and me 70 miles south to Parker for great-granddaughter Tessa’s 5th birthday; the roominess of the three-row XT6 impressed granddaughter Kara, who for the past four years has driven a Jeep Cherokee Trailhawk.

It’s a midize, seven-passenger SUVcrossover, sharing General Motors’ C1XX platform designed for the Buick Enclave and Chevrolet Traverse. The XT6 fills a gap for Cadillac between the compact XT5 and the large Escalade.

In its all-wheel-drive version, the XT6 lists curb weight of 4,644 pounds on a wheelbase of 112.7 inches and overall length of 198.8 inches. Its relatively wide track is 66.4 inches in front and 66.2 at the rear.

Among competitors in the midsize luxury field are Audi Q7, Volvo XC90, Lincoln Aviator, Lexus RX-L, Acura MDX, BMW X7, Infiniti QX60 and others.

Its exterior color, listed as garnet, changes from a dark gray to a reddish purple, depending on the amount of light shining its way. Inside, well-bolstered seats are finished in jet black leather, and the dash front features bronze carbon fiber. 

Navigation direction is one of simplest and quickest to set; it is part of the Cadillac User Experience (CUE), which includes an 8-inch color display screen for phone integration with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. Bose Performance sound with 14 speakers is pleasant.

The Cadillac is loaded up with safety advances, including standard forward precollision alert, lane-keeping assist and rear cross-traffic alert. Heading almost $6,000 of optional safety advances are adaptive cruise control with full-speed automatic emergency braking, night vision, rear camera mirror and automatic parking assist that can steer and brake while guiding itself into a space.

The 3.6-liter V-6 develops 310 horsepower and 271 lb.-ft. of torque, with a 9-speed automatic transmission and all-wheel drive. Off the line, its low-end torque is impressive. In a variety of driving situations, including in the cold and snow, the Cadillac averaged 22.1 miles per gallon (EPA estimate is 17-24).

A drive mode button will shift the Caddy from Tour (two-wheel drive) to All-Wheel Drive to Sport to Offroad. Tow capacity for the Cadillac is 4,000 pounds, when properly equipped. The new Lincoln Aviator will tow 7,000 pounds. 

The XT6 delivers a smooth, fairly soft ride, with an upgraded performance suspension of MacPherson struts in front, five-link independent rear and coils all around. Body roll is felt on sharp turns.

Front seats are well-bolstered; the middle-row seats will slide far forward to accommodate access to the third row.  Only 12.6 cubic feet of cargo space is available behind the third row; fold the rear seats, though, and that grows to 43 feet.

Base price of $54,695 for the XT6 Premium Luxury AWD swells to $71,585 with a load of options, including automatic emergency braking, reverse automatic braking, adaptive cruise control, night vision, cooled leather seats in front row, microfiber suede headliner, head-up display and an air ionizer for delivering fresher air and eliminating odors.

A sunroof, wireless device charging, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are standard, along with safety items forward collision warning, front and rear parking sensors and lane-keep assist.