The 2020 Cadillac XT5 carves out a unique niche for itself among smaller compact luxury SUVs and larger mid-size luxury models. Compared to most of its compact rivals, the XT5 delivers more room for occupants and better cargo capacity. Pitted against many class rivals, the XT5 is noticeably less expensive and doesn’t require a diet of premium gasoline.
Related: 2020 Cadillac XT5 Sport Review: Not Really Sporty, but That’s OK
The XT5 Sport is meant to inject some excitement into this otherwise sensible, if not exactly exhilarating, Cadillac SUV. This new trim comes with a quicker steering ratio, 20-inch alloy wheels, retuned suspension settings, and the XT5’s optional 310-horsepower, 3.6-liter V-6 paired to a nine-speed automatic transmission. While the XT5 is available in front- and all-wheel-drive formats, the XT5 Sport comes with AWD as standard.
Do all these parts add up to a five-occupant SUV that earns a spot on your list of vehicles to test-drive? We recently spent time with a 2020 XT5 Sport to uncover whether this new trim delivers on its promise. You can find our complete review by following the link above; for a recap of our main pros and cons, keep reading below.
Things We Like
1. Strong Acceleration With V-6
The XT5 Sport comes standard with a 3.6-liter V-6 that delivers a total of 310 hp and 271 pounds-feet of torque to all four wheels via a nine-speed automatic transmission. This is a smooth and effective powertrain. During our time with it, we noted how nicely the XT5 Sport’s gearbox works in cooperation with the V-6. When you punch the gas, it won’t push you into your seat like some high-performance rival luxury SUVs; then again, many of those competitors cost thousands more than the XT5 Sport.
2. Cabin Room and Cargo Space
The XT5 Sport has plenty of space for everyone. By Cadillac’s estimation, there’s more than 30 cubic feet of cargo space behind the rear seat. Fold the second row down and cargo volume expands to 63 cubic feet.
3. Improved Infotainment System
The control layout of the Cadillac User Experience infotainment system has sometimes left us frustrated and confused. The good news is that CUE has been improved and provides a more user-friendly experience. Granted, we noticed the 8-inch touchscreen is starting to look relatively small and the touch-sensitive climate controls remain aggravating — especially while trying to adjust them while driving. At the end of the day, however, the XT5 Sport’s updated CUE system performs solidly and is more intuitive than before.
4. Standard Safety Features
Safety is a major consideration for many car shoppers so, with that in mind, it’s worth noting the XT5 Sport comes with several active-safety features as standard equipment. These include automatic emergency braking, forward collision warning, lane keep assist, lane departure warning, rear-seat reminder and a rearview camera. Additional items like adaptive cruise control, surround-view camera, head-up display and blind spot monitoring are also available.
5. Relaxing Ride
The Cadillac XT5 Sport is a relaxing and comfortable means of accomplishing any drive. Even when fitted with the standard 20-inch alloys found on our tester, the XT5 felt nicely controlled during city and highway driving. If long road trips are a big part of your driving routine, this Cadillac’s cosseting behavior can help melt away those miles.
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Things We Don’t
1. Sport in Name, Not in Attitude
While this Cadillac SUV has “sport” in its name, it’s more “comfy loafer” than “high-intensity sneaker.” The 20-inch alloys, quicker steering ratio and adaptive suspension sound impressive, except they don’t make the XT5 Sport feel much different from other trims. The handling can feel vague and there’s still noticeable body roll in tight corners.
2. Infotainment System Has Quirks
Credit to Cadillac for tweaking its CUE system. It’s certainly better than before, and we commented that it’s easier to use than Mercedes-Benz’s MBUX or Audi’s MMI systems. Yet, in terms of its overall level of tech, the XT5 Sport is merely middle-of-the-road among other luxury SUVs.
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