By on December 12, 2018

2019 Cadillac XT4

It’s no wonder the Cadillac brand is having a rocky time of late — the marque fields only two crossovers, and one of those, the XT4, only reached lots at the end of September. Having pledged to return its headquarters to its ancestral homeland of Detroit, Cadillac also plans to unveil a new vehicle there in January.

The XT6, not to be confused with the marked-for-death CT6 sedan, will bow at NAIAS 2019, the automaker has stated. With this vehicle, Cadillac gains considerable coverage of the light truck field.

Confirmed by Automotive News, news of the XT6’s Detroit debut comes on the heels of spy shots of the three-row crossover that revealed a longer body (obviously) than the two-row XT5 and an interior that bears a striking resemblance to that of its smaller stablemate.

Narrow, horizontal headlights are part of the deal, though the overall package doesn’t seem that dissimilar to the XT4, though the taillights appear in a traditional location. It’s very, very likely the XT5’s 3.6-liter V6 and nine-speed automatic will find its way into the entry-level XT6, though Cadillac might have something else in mind for its topmost trim. Maybe there’ll be a “V” badge to affix, who knows.

More than ever, a brand’s future lies in trunkless vehicles, and that’s what Cadillac needs. After car sales plunged in the middle part of this decade, one of former president John de Nysschen’s gripes was that GM brass wasn’t greenlighting the products Caddy needed to grow in a timely manner. One would think that Cadillac would have filled this product gap by now. Still, better late than never.

The lion’s share of Cadillac volume comes from the XT5 and range-topping, body-on-frame Escalade, which is nowhere near the midsize XT5 in terms of size or price. Of the 113,240 vehicles Cadillac sold in the U.S. in the first three quarters of 2018, 65.7 percent came from these two models. The XT4’s arrival should further skew the take rate towards light trucks.

The XT6 arrives as GM pushes the ATS, CTS, XTS, and CT6 towards the grave, with two yet-unseen sedans to serve as replacements. By showing up at NAIAS, Cadillac won’t have to worry about rival Lincoln taking some of the spotlight away from it — the Aviator, which will occupy the same segment as the XT6, appeared in L.A. last month.

[Image: General Motors]

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46 Comments on “Gap-filler: Cadillac to Debut XT6 in Detroit...”


  • avatar
    carguy

    From the specs, the XT6 sounds like a really expensive Chevy Traverse.

  • avatar
    ajla

    Lincoln gives consumers a RWD vehicle with 450 standard horsepower and a cool name.

    Cadillac gives consumers the Traverse Brougham.

    • 0 avatar
      Lie2me

      But, but… Escalade

      • 0 avatar
        whynot

        Yes, you are right. Lincoln gives consumers 2 RWD ~400 HP vehicles with two cool names, Cadillac gives consumers the street ballin’ gangsta Escalade and a Traverse Brougham.

    • 0 avatar
      dwford

      Exactly. Lincoln seems to be looking past Cadillac for competition now, while Cadillac is building fancy Buicks.

    • 0 avatar
      28-Cars-Later

      I’m trying to contain the DW style hateorade but I really, really want this whole marque to fail and go away completely.

      • 0 avatar
        Jerome10

        I don’t want it to go away. It shouldn’t. It is an American icon, despite NEVER being an actual icon in my lifetime.

        I just want GM to treat Cadillac like it deserves. They certainly have the finances, engineering talent, and designers to do it. Why they haven’t, I can’t say.

        I honestly believe, deep in my soul, that a TRUE Cadillac, even one that is horribly horribly horribly expensive, still would have pull in this world, provided the car looked like a Cadillac in every detail, with the most Cadillac of styling, the best leathers on the planet, the finest woods, all top notch materials, powered by the best powertrain on earth (of which I might argue GM already has with its V8 engines).

        Do Cadillac right. Cuz this mediocre try to coast through with tarted up models just doesn’t cut it for one of the most iconic brands ever created.

        • 0 avatar
          Middle-Aged (Ex-Miata) Man

          Too much has been done wrong for Cadillac to ever be made “right” again. That includes its latest efforts that, although dynamically impressive, still fall woefully short in basic luxury parameters as materials quality and fit and finish.

          The indisputable truth is that GM has no right to position Cadillac against genuine luxury marques. No matter how often Cadillac laughably markets itself as an upscale brand, it remains rightfully shunned by upscale people.

          It’s time for Cadillac to die a well-deserved death… or at least become ChiCom exclusive.

        • 0 avatar
          NoID

          GM missed their chance to reclaim their status as ‘Standard of the World’ when they failed to ‘Dare Greatly.’ They brought several stunning concepts to Pebble Beach, any of which they could have produced, but in the end they played it safe with the CT6.

          I have no doubt that these Chevrolacs will sell well, and I’m sure they’ll be competitive in their segment. But nobody will ever be excited about them.

      • 0 avatar
        NormSV650

        28CL, I wouldn’t be commenting unless you have spent time in a Cadillac in the last couple of years.

        Most everything today is better than your Saturn.

    • 0 avatar
      JohnTaurus

      Not to be a stickler, but Aviator will have 400 hp standard, 450 in the PHEV. But, you’re right, it does seem like Lincoln is putting forth a lot more effort. Yes, Explorer will eventually move to the same platform, but it seems as though it was designed with a Lincoln product in mind to start with, instead of it being an afterthought (like this).

  • avatar
    Lie2me

    XT4, XT5, XT6, CT6, CTS, ATS, XTS, no problem keeping all that sorted

  • avatar

    It was not long ago that the ATS and CTS won North American car of the year. However, the Cadillac renaissance really started with the 2003 CTS. I guess that renaissance is pretty much over now. It seems Cadillac is now becoming just another Lincoln. I am not encouraged by the lukewarm reviews the CT4 is getting. Motor Trend basically called it an undeveloped vehicle in need of refinement. If lenient Motor Trend gives you a mixed review things must be bad.

    Well, nothing lasts forever. It was a good run.

    • 0 avatar
      NormSV650

      This will be the 2nd of the twice a year releases from Cadillac through 2020. SUVs are where the money is right now. The Escala sedans that come near the end should be stunning.

      • 0 avatar
        cognoscenti

        If they actually build an Escala that even approaches the beauty of the concept, it could change the game for Cadillac globally. Right now, though, it sure looks like just another Buick Avista, Ed Welburn’s retirement swan song that GM did not have the guts to build.

  • avatar
    Tele Vision

    I was quite taken with the Art & Science era when it began. It was a great foil to the wind tunnel jelly beans and the Bangle-bum. I liked it so much that I eventually bought a 2007 CST-V. The fact that my friend’s 2006 M5 developed 100 more horsepower with one less Litre of displacement, and was 40 MPH faster with it, didn’t bother me. It has the aerodynamics of a house but it’s distinctive, which is more than one can say for the wind tunnel fodder. Who ever hits top speed, anyway?

    • 0 avatar
      NormSV650

      I had a 2004 CTS-V also. My friend liked it so much he bought one too and we did a few road course days together.

      Never was Lincoln this performance level.

    • 0 avatar
      wooootles

      I owned an 2007 V. Nice car. Guys in a 2006 E60 M5 are still paying $5k/yr on “preventative” maintenance.

      • 0 avatar
        Tele Vision

        @ wooootles

        My friend sold his M5 after nine months with it. I drove it a few times and I understood why he did so: it really only worked well at 7/10s or more. The SMG was a dog in traffic when in auto-mode and would occasionally refuse to shift out of 1st gear, I’m told. 8000 RPM in 1st gear got my friend a few glances, he said ( some of them envious; most of them scornful, I’d imagine ). He quickly tired of wondering what the transmission would do after every full stop and traded it, straight across, for a 2013 330iX. This happened three years ago. I still have the V ( see avatar! ).

  • avatar
    sportyaccordy

    “Still, better late than never.”

    Sometimes, it’s better never than late. Def the case with the “dead German fighting” ATS/CTS. Might be the case with this too. Obviously nobody is going to cross shop this Traverse Brougham with the likes of the X5/GLE… but even the second tier of midsize luxury crossovers is stacked. RX, MDX, XC90, hell GM’s own Acadia Denali, CX-9 etc. What is the raison d’acheter for someone in this segment, especially after all the bad blood GM has generated recently?

    • 0 avatar
      NormSV650

      Cadillac will be well ahead of Genesis in 18 months in SUVs and probably passing the Japanese in product in two years.

      • 0 avatar
        el scotto

        Fun Fact: Genesis doesn’t make any SUVs so you can take comfort that this is outselling nonexistent south Korean products. Three, no four Marketing Facts: 1. Almost none of these will be conquest sales from “the Japanese”. 2. “the Japanese” will sell for more profit per unit than this thing. 3. “the Japanese” will attract more well educated buyers than Cadillac. 4. It will be a matter of 90-120 days until they are advertised with deep discounts. “the Japanese? not so much. Or your average GM dealer would give their teenage daughter to biker gang for a chance of buying one of “the Japanese” dealerships. Talk to those who floor plan them.

        • 0 avatar
          NormSV650

          Poor el scotto drunk on Japanese Koplaid again.

          The fact is Japanese buyers are amongst the lowest income of all buyers and and the Japanese cars average the lowest transaction prices of $28,000-29,000, when the national average is $36,000. Ford and GM having the highest over $40K.

          “INCOME BREAKDOWN OF NEW CAR BUYERS
          In the US, the median household that buys a new car earns $108,000 a year, according to statistics from Wards. The highest earners are households who buy European luxury cars. They make a median income of $173,000, while those who buy Asian cars are at the low end of the list with earnings of $81,000 a year.” Autoline

  • avatar
    wooootles

    I wonder why the internet cares so much about a 400hp, RWD-based Lincoln people-mover, when none but two of them is the target market, and the actual target market doesn’t care about such specs?

    But ‘cool names sell’ is what I learned here, so that’s why the XT6 will fail, the Lincoln Continental is setting the sales charts on fire, and the Aviator would too. Because cool name.

  • avatar
    ajla

    “and the actual target market doesn’t care about such specs?”

    So why is Ford doing it? The Aviator isn’t just internet comment wankery. It’s an actual product Hackett & crew opened their tightly-held wallets to create. Lincoln of 2019 is building better products than Cadillac of 2019. You better start getting your talking points together now for when the Aviator shreds the XT6 in every metric except manufacturer incentives.

    Also nice job comparing sedan sales to a CUV.

    • 0 avatar
      wooootles

      I don’t know, the same reason GM built the ATS-V and CTS-V, for spec bragging rights that ultimately doesn’t matter to the consumers that actually buy such cars. It really doesn’t matter if Lincoln is “shredding” Cadillac in whatever metric, because the only thing that matters in the end is sales. And Lincoln is lagging far behind Cadillac (which is pretty bad already).

      The name comment is me just comparing the overblown fanwankery of names > alphanumerics, because as far as I’m concerned naming it the “Continental” didn’t make it overtake CTS/XTS sales.

      Again, if the XT6 is FWD based, would its target consumers really care??

    • 0 avatar
      wooootles

      I don’t know, the same reason GM built the ATS-V and CTS-V, for spec bragging rights that ultimately doesn’t matter to the consumers that actually buy such cars. It really doesn’t matter if Lincoln is “shredding” Cadillac in whatever metric, because the only thing that matters in the end is sales. And Lincoln is lagging far behind Cadillac (which is pretty bad already).

      The name comment is me just comparing the overblown fanwankery of names > alphanumerics, because as far as I’m concerned naming it the “Continental” didn’t make it overtake CTS/XTS sales.

      Again, if the XT6 is FWD based, would its target consumers really care??

  • avatar
    cognoscenti

    There will always be people who love GM vehicles, and there will always be people who hate them. I’m curious, however, about people who out of one side of their mouths say that Cadillac should be allowed to die, but out of the other side of their mouths say that Pontiac, Oldsmobile or Saturn should not have been shuttered. Is it just trolling?

  • avatar
    pb35

    My CTS-V is 3 months old today. Sedan-wise, nothing Lincoln (or Ford) builds comes close. F**k Lincoln!

    That Aviator is pretty sweet though. One may wind up in our garage next year to replace our 11 yo XC90. I do like the idea of the concierge service too. Does anyone actually use it I wonder?

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