2019 Cadillac XT4 Sport Review - The Caddy That Flops

Cadillac is a brand beleaguered. Part of the reason is its misadventures in Crossover Land.

In a world where Acura, Lexus, and others are serving up premium crossovers at premium prices, and building competitive vehicles while so doing, Cadillac has served up something that’s more like a glorified Chevy.

That, obviously, is a problem.

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2019 Cadillac XT4 First Drive - The Cadillac of Compact Luxury Crossovers

“Dare Greatly,” Cadillac’s slogan du jour, is open to a wide spectrum of interpretation.

Daring greatly could mean being the first to achieve something of note, like when Amelia Earhart became the first female pilot to fly solo across the Atlantic Ocean; it could mean being the first to not do something, like that one kid at school who talked to the new guy instead of making fun of him; it might even be refining or simplifying existing memetics, like Apple did when it changed the way we interact with music through the iTunes ecosystem. Then there’s the case of the late-arriving Cadillac XT4.

Sure, it may be the last of the major-branded luxury-compact crossovers to report for duty in a segment that has been glowing red hot for several years now, but Cadillac’s great dare in this space is a bet that consumers won’t really care which chicken came before the egg, just if there’s a vegan alternative to the omelette. As a late entrant, Cadillac claims it’s been able to study the segment, getting to know the intimate needs of the younger demographic it’s been working to understand and engage for the past five years. And if there’s one thing the thirty-something, upwardly mobile, cosmopolitan, condo-dweller loves more than engineering a career, spinning, and brunch, it’s a puppy.

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2019 Cadillac XT4: Yet Another Compact Crossover, But This One's a Caddy

Full disclosure, right up front: While I am in New York City for the auto show, neither myself or anyone from the TTAC team was invited to the XT4 unveiling the night before the show’s first media day.

I only mention this to point out that I can’t, as of this writing, judge the newest luxury compact crossover in the flesh, although I will likely see it 12 hours or so after I type this.

Hot takes aside, it’s common knowledge by now that crossovers are hot and just about every brand feels it needs to cover the subcompact, compact, and midsize classes. Cadillac has the midsize class covered with the XT5, so naturally, it’s time to go one smaller.

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Cadillac's Next Crossover Won't Be Here Until 2018

It didn’t take long after the North American debut of the 2017 Cadillac XT5 for people to ask, “What’s next?” for the crossover-starved luxury brand.

At the Los Angeles Auto Show, Cadillac chief Johan de Nysschen told Automotive News that the next Caddy crossover will come in two years and would likely slot below the XT5, in terms of name — but not necessarily in terms of size.

Cadillac’s next crossover, the XT4, will likely go on sale in 2018 with a bigger, three-row crossover coming one year later to bookend the XT5. The battleship-sized Escalade will remain, and a smaller, subcompact crossover could arrive at the end of the decade to give the brand a full range to offer a crossover-crazed market.

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  • Michael In your research you may have found that after 2024 this model will no longer be part of MINI lineup. I wish you would have driven JCW version. Over an additional 100hp. With launch control it will go 0 to 60 in about 4.6 seconds. Outstanding car.
  • RHD A hybrid small pickup is a no-brainer. Let's go, already! Price it reasonably and every one will fly off of the lot.
  • RHD This is a $3,500 car (assuming you can get a good junkyard transmission and install it yourself) that, once back in usable condition, will be worth about $1,000. Hopefully the guy that spray-painted the wheels black didn't attempt to rebuild the engine himself. That would make it a $5,500 car that's worth $1,000.
  • CEastwood They should , but they won't being fearful of losing those sales of near 30 grand base Tacomas . People thought Hyundai could do this then they did it at laughably expensive prices . And try to get a base Maverick at advertised prices . Go ahead I dare you .
  • Jpurcha Nice. I had bought one from my dad's friend for my first car. University/model airplane hauler.