Cadillac – Automobile http://www.automobilemag.com No Boring Cars - Automotive Magazine Wed, 27 Jul 2016 18:39:03 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.5.3 GM: Super Cruise Semi-Autonomous System Won’t Launch Until it’s Ready http://www.automobilemag.com/news/gm-super-cruise-semi-autonomous-system-wont-launch-until-its-ready/ http://www.automobilemag.com/news/gm-super-cruise-semi-autonomous-system-wont-launch-until-its-ready/#respond Wed, 27 Jul 2016 14:16:04 +0000 http://www.automobilemag.com/?p=970919 General Motors was previously bullish about introducing semi-autonomous driving features, readying its Super Cruise system to launch with the CT6 this fall. GM pushed the technology’s introduction back to 2017, and now the automaker is apparently re-evaluating its self-driving plan. At a cybersecurity conference in Detroit on Friday, GM Chairman and CEO Mary Barra said...

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General Motors was previously bullish about introducing semi-autonomous driving features, readying its Super Cruise system to launch with the CT6 this fall. GM pushed the technology’s introduction back to 2017, and now the automaker is apparently re-evaluating its self-driving plan. At a cybersecurity conference in Detroit on Friday, GM Chairman and CEO Mary Barra said that the company is taking another “look at what technology is in the best interest of consumers.”

The comments come on the heels of the fatal Tesla Model S crash involving Autopilot that occurred in May. Super Cruise is said to be similar to Autopilot, which could be why GM is taking its time with the launch. According to The Detroit Bureau, Barra told reporters in Detroit regarding Super Cruise, “We aren’t putting a specific date on it.” However, Cadillac spokesman Donny Nordlicht told us in an email, “Right now, the plan continues to be that we will introduce [Super Cruise] in the Cadillac CT6 in calendar year 2017.”

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“We want to make sure it is safe for our customers to use and we’ll launch it when we’re confident in the technology,” Nordlicht said. “Our engineers have been testing and validating the technology for the past several years to make sure all of our systems are focused on providing the customer among the most intuitive and safe solutions. We’re not driven by a deadline, we’re driven to make the system customer-friendly and safe so the exact month of introduction cannot be announced at this time.”

Super Cruise may have a leg up on Tesla’s current Autopilot system when it launches. The system uses forward-facing cameras and radar just like Autopilot, but it also relies on a high-definition map that’s more detailed than those used in today’s cars. Super Cruise also has a retina detection system that knows when a driver isn’t paying attention, and will shut off if it sees the driver is not ready to take control.

Though the May 7 fatal crash has certainly affected Tesla, NHTSA director Mark Rosekind doesn’t believe the incident should affect autonomous car development as a whole.

“If we wait for perfect, we’ll be waiting for a very, very long time,” Rosekind said at a recent conference. “How many lives might we be losing while we wait?”

2016 Cadillac CT6 promo 2016 Cadillac CT6 side 2016 Cadillac CT6 front three quarters 2016 Cadillac CT6 front three quarter1 2016 cadillac ct6 front three quarters close 2016 Cadillac CT6 interior 2016 Cadillac CT6 rear center console 2016 Cadillac CT6 front interior seats

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Cadillac Adds Carbon Black Sport Package to 2017 ATS and CTS lineup http://www.automobilemag.com/news/cadillac-adds-carbon-black-sport-package-2017-ats-cts-lineup/ http://www.automobilemag.com/news/cadillac-adds-carbon-black-sport-package-2017-ats-cts-lineup/#respond Tue, 05 Jul 2016 17:03:36 +0000 http://www.automobilemag.com/?p=963643 Cadillac has announced the Carbon Black sport package for the 2017 ATS and CTS lineup, which add a host of blacked-out cosmetic updates inside and out. Opting for the package, however, limits your exterior color choices to four on the standard ATS, five on the ATS-V, and four on the entire CTS range including the...

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Cadillac has announced the Carbon Black sport package for the 2017 ATS and CTS lineup, which add a host of blacked-out cosmetic updates inside and out. Opting for the package, however, limits your exterior color choices to four on the standard ATS, five on the ATS-V, and four on the entire CTS range including the high-performance CTS-V. Interior color choices for both ATS and CTS are Jet Black and Light Platinum if you want the Carbon Black sport package.

For the 2017 ATS and ATS-V, the Carbon Black sport package adds a black chrome grille, black-finished side window moldings, body-colored door handles, After Midnight dark finish wheels, V-Series spoiler and low-gloss carbon fiber interior trim. The most noteworthy feature is the Recaro V-Series front seats, which come as part of the package in the ATS and ATS-V.

In the 2017 CTS, the Carbon Black sport package adds a black chrome grille, After Midnight dark finish wheels, the V-Series spoiler, low-gloss carbon fiber interior trim and upgraded performance front seats. The Recaro V-Series front seats are an optional extra on the CTS and CTS-V.

Exclusive to the ATS-V and CTS-V is the Carbon Fiber package adds a more aggressive front splitter, hood vent trim, rear diffuser, and a taller rear spoiler with exposed carbon fiber in the CTS-V or body-colored in the ATS-V. The Carbon Fiber package in the ATS-V also gets composite rocker extension panels, which isn’t added on the CTS-V.

The new appearance package will be available when the 2017 Cadillac ATS and CTS go on sale later this summer, but dealers are taking orderes now.

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2017 Cadillac ATS, CTS Get New Multimedia Tech, Revised Trim Levels http://www.automobilemag.com/news/2017-cadillac-ats-cts-get-new-multimedia-tech-revised-trim-levels/ http://www.automobilemag.com/news/2017-cadillac-ats-cts-get-new-multimedia-tech-revised-trim-levels/#respond Wed, 29 Jun 2016 15:59:43 +0000 http://www.automobilemag.com/?p=962141 Cadillac announced changes to the ATS and CTS lineup and trim levels for 2017. The 2017 ATS is now available in Luxury, Premium Luxury and Premium Performance grades, while the 2017 CTS comes in Luxury, Premium Luxury, V-Sport, and V-Sport Premium trims. Cadillac’s CUE multimedia interface has finally received a much needed update in the form...

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Cadillac announced changes to the ATS and CTS lineup and trim levels for 2017. The 2017 ATS is now available in Luxury, Premium Luxury and Premium Performance grades, while the 2017 CTS comes in Luxury, Premium Luxury, V-Sport, and V-Sport Premium trims.

Cadillac’s CUE multimedia interface has finally received a much needed update in the form of Apple Car Play and Android Auto integration, allowing you to use your mobile phone’s own interface instead of CUE, which can be a bit frustrating to use with its touch-sensitive controls.

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Additional updates to CUE include the myCadillac mobile app and the Teen Driver feature. This first appeared on the 2016 Chevrolet Malibu so that nervous parents could keep an eye on their marauding teenage driver. The 2017 Cadillac CTS also gets a new grille design and a revised rear fascia with exhaust tips positioned vertically. A rear camera mirror, like the one found in the XT5 SUV, has also been added to the CTS for 2017.

The anemic 2.5-liter naturally aspirated four-cylinder has been discontinued on the ATS, making the 272-hp 2.0-liter turbo-four the new entry-level engine choice. All ATS variants also come standard with 4G LTE connectivity for 2017. Cadillac also says in the press release that both the CTS and ATS gain two new alloy wheel designs and an unrevealed Carbon Black package, which looks like a group of cosmetic upgrades that add black trim pieces through the car inside and out. The package should also be available on the high-performance ATS-V and CTS-V.

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Cadillac Is Serving Up Fancy Coffee, Concerts, Fashion at NYC Brand Showroom http://www.automobilemag.com/news/cadillac-serve-up-fancy-coffee-concerts-fashion-at-nyc-brand-showroom/ http://www.automobilemag.com/news/cadillac-serve-up-fancy-coffee-concerts-fashion-at-nyc-brand-showroom/#respond Mon, 23 May 2016 20:05:25 +0000 http://www.automobilemag.com/?p=946311 Cadillac will open a new permanent showroom and brand cultural space on the ground level of its New York City headquarters. In addition to a permanent vehicle display, the new 12,000-sq-ft Cadillac House will feature rotating exhibits and events highlighting the lifestyle the brand hopes to convey. The new Cadillac House will be used for...

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Cadillac will open a new permanent showroom and brand cultural space on the ground level of its New York City headquarters. In addition to a permanent vehicle display, the new 12,000-sq-ft Cadillac House will feature rotating exhibits and events highlighting the lifestyle the brand hopes to convey.

The new Cadillac House will be used for a variety of things, including interactive art displays and pop-up fashion retail spaces. The showroom can also host events like concerts and parties. Initial collaborations will include the Council of Fashion Designers of America (CFDA), Visionaire, and New York-based brand Joe Coffee.

“Cadillac has built its nearly 114-year history by being at the forefront of automotive design, technology and style,” said Uwe Ellinghaus, Cadillac Chief Marketing Officer, in a release. “With Cadillac House, we have an exciting opportunity to bring to life the brand’s unique passion and perspective for beyond the automotive space.”

Cadillac House Rendering 3

Cadillac House will be home to CFDA’s Retail Lab – a collaboration between the two brands. The Retail Lab will help up-and-coming fashion industry designers gain retail experience to help their businesses grow. Timo Weiland will be the first designer to benefit from Retail Lab.

“The CFDA is excited to extend its partnership with Cadillac through Retail Lab and to be part in the launch of Cadillac House,” said Steven Kolb, President and CEO of the CFDA. “By merging fashion, art, design and automotive, Cadillac House will be a new, dynamic destination in Hudson Square.”

Visionaire, an art and culture magazine, will bring new interactive art galleries to Cadillac House. The magazine will showcase a new gallery every quarter.

“We are excited to partner with Cadillac. We feel that both Cadillac and Visionaire strive for history-making design and we both push the boundaries of what is possible” said James Kaliardos of Visionaire.  Co-founder Cecilia Dean adds, “The opportunity to have a space within Cadillac House is a thrilling opportunity for us to connect with a larger audience and to experiment with new mediums and technology.”

In addition to the rotating retail space and art exhibits, Cadillac House will also feature Joe Coffee, a local New York-based specialty coffee shop, offering drinks and snacks.

Cadillac House opens June 2 at the brand’s New York City headquarters.

Cadillac House Rendering 1

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A Tale of Two Video Data Loggers for the Track http://www.automobilemag.com/news/tale-two-video-data-loggers-track/ http://www.automobilemag.com/news/tale-two-video-data-loggers-track/#respond Wed, 04 May 2016 19:50:58 +0000 http://www.automobilemag.com/?p=936414 Racing teams have long used data logging and in-car video to gather invaluable information for drivers and their crews. So it’s no surprise the concept has trickled down to club-racing and track-day enthusiasts. With the popularity of social media and online video sites like YouTube, interest in documenting track-day outings continues to grow. Just look...

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Racing teams have long used data logging and in-car video to gather invaluable information for drivers and their crews. So it’s no surprise the concept has trickled down to club-racing and track-day enthusiasts. With the popularity of social media and online video sites like YouTube, interest in documenting track-day outings continues to grow. Just look at how many GoPro ads circulate on television and the Internet.

Now automakers want in on the action—and the profits. GM offers a Performance Data Recorder on certain Chevrolet and Cadillac performance models. Porsche’s Track Precision App is available on certain 911 and Cayman models. I tried both to learn which is a better fit for the casual track-day enthusiast looking to document and share his or her circuit circulating experiences. Here is what I discovered:

GM Performance Data Recorder

Price: $1,795 on Chevrolet Corvette Stingray, Z06 and Camaro 1LE; $1,300 on Cadillac ATS-V and CTS-V

2015 Chevrolet Corvette Performance Data Recorder SD Card 2015 Chevrolet Corvette Performance Data Recorder homepage1 2015 Chevrolet Corvette Z06 performance data recorder 2015 Chevrolet Corvette Performance Data Recorder sport mode

The key advantage of GM’s Performance Data Recorder (PDR) is full integration. A high-definition camera lives near the rearview mirror and an in-vehicle microphone captures audio. The driver can watch recorded video (and listen to audio) through the car’s touchscreen infotainment system or on a computer. Recordings transfer to an SD card, which can be plugged into a computer for easy viewing or saved onto a hard drive or to cloud-based storage.

PDR comes with both a Track Mode and a Touring Mode, the latter for spirited drives on public roads. Track Mode allows users to set a start/finish line so the system logs lap times as well as speed, rpm, and g-forces. The Performance Mode records acceleration times, including 0-100-0 mph runs. You can download the program, Cosworth Toolbox, to your computer for more in-depth analysis of saved track data (Cosworth and GM partnered on PDR). One nice extra feature is Valet Mode, which records how a parking attendant handles your car as you enjoy a meal at a fancy restaurant. Handy for preventing—well, at least documenting—Ferris Bueller-like adventures.

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I played around with PDR in a Cadillac ATS-V at Circuit of the Americas. Event organizers set the start/finish line into the system before I arrived, but it’s a simple process of positioning the car at the correct spot on the track and tapping a button on the touchscreen. The integrated GPS antenna triggers the lap timer each time you pass that logged spot. Using the system was as simple as plugging an SD card into the slot in the Cadillac’s glovebox and touching the start button on the touchscreen. When my laps were done, I simply hit the stop button and removed the card. I plugged the SD card into my computer and watched a video with a data overlay showing lap times, RPM, track map, speed, g-forces, and more. It’s a very impressive system, clearly developed by a group of engineers who know what owners need and want. Impressive. Well done, GM.

Porsche Track Precision App

Price: $1,850 for 911 GT3, 911 GT3 RS, and Cayman GT4; $1,920 for 911 R. Standard on Cayman GT4 Clubsport

Porsche’s Track Precision App lacks integration. Its only real function is to communicate car data to a smartphone via Wi-Fi. Users must purchase a windshield mount for their smartphones, download the free app, and, ideally, keep their smartphones plugged into the USB or 12-volt plug, or risk a dead battery. The Porsche Track Precision App comes with no directions or a dedicated owner’s manual. The only way to learn how to connect your smartphone to the system through Wi-Fi is to read the instructions noted in the app. Then there’s the issue of buying a suitable windshield mount that secures your phone and gives the camera a clear view of the track, and position the phone in a place where you can still reach it without blocking your view of the track. Not easy.

Porsche Track Precision App

I first tried the Track Precision App on a 911 GT3 RS and a Cayman GT4 at Grattan Raceway near Grand Rapids, Michigan. Grattan isn’t among the selection of tracks preloaded into the app, but the system was able to plot the layout after I lapped the circuit and marked the start/finish line. After the first hot session, I reviewed the footage and found the windshield mount was shaking far too much for a clear picture. For the second session, I forgot to put my phone into airplane mode (make sure to manually turn Wi-Fi back on) and an incoming phone call disrupted the recording. Run three finally allowed some decent footage, but the windshield mount was still compromising the quality. Once I got home, I used iTunes to extract the video from my iPhone to my computer but the data overlay—rpm, speed, lap times, etc.—didn’t stay with the video. If you want to see the complete video with data, you need to view the recording on your iPhone. So, the first round with Porsche Track Precision App was rather unimpressive.

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I did more research before my next track day, which was in a Porsche Cayman GT4 Clubsport race car (full story coming soon). I read other complaints online about Porsche’s system but I persevered, determined to get the app to work correctly.

I bought a windshield mount that had good reviews on Amazon and used a dedicated iPod Touch instead of my iPhone, so I didn’t have to worry about incoming calls. Unfortunately, the new windshield mount kept bumping the side buttons on the iPod. Once I got that sorted with a modified iPod case, the GPS on the iPod wasn’t talking with the Porsche app. That’s when I figured out that the iPod Touch doesn’t have GPS. So, I switched back to my iPhone, which didn’t have enough storage space remaining. Deleting a load of photos fixed that, and I finally got some footage and data during a warm-up session before running into further storage space issues. Once I got home, I used a trick I found on the internet and used QuickTime on my Mac to take a screen recording of my iPhone as I played the video. This allowed me to extract the video with the data overlay onto my computer. Well, at least until another phone call interrupted that process. Frustrating.

GM vs. Porsche

Porsche has a lot of catching up to do in regards to OEM video and track data systems. GM deserves kudos for developing a fully integrated system that is simple to use and has a load of features. Certain aspects of Porsche’s Track Precision App are impressive, such as its ghost car feature, the ability to log multiple drivers, and an optional motorsports-like lap trigger, but the German company needs to incorporate it into the main touchscreen and fit an integral camera and SD card slot. Porsche’s brilliant, track-friendly cars deserve better.

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Rumors: Cadillac Planning $300K Sedan and SUV, Cancelling CT8? http://www.automobilemag.com/news/rumors-cadillac-planning-300k-sedan-and-suv-cancelling-ct8/ http://www.automobilemag.com/news/rumors-cadillac-planning-300k-sedan-and-suv-cancelling-ct8/#respond Wed, 06 Apr 2016 16:00:07 +0000 http://www.automobilemag.com/?p=918705 Cadillac is the latest subject of the auto-industry rumor mill, with sources saying the company will go all-in on ultra-luxury models, while also canceling a planned luxury sedan. According to GM Inside News, Cadillac has plans for a hyper-luxury sedan and SUV in the $250,000-$300,000 range. The report pegs the primo SUV as sitting above the forthcoming...

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Cadillac is the latest subject of the auto-industry rumor mill, with sources saying the company will go all-in on ultra-luxury models, while also canceling a planned luxury sedan.

According to GM Inside News, Cadillac has plans for a hyper-luxury sedan and SUV in the $250,000-$300,000 range. The report pegs the primo SUV as sitting above the forthcoming Cadillac XT8 Escalade replacement, trading blows with the Bentley Bentayga, Rolls-Royce Cullinan, and Aston Martin DBX. GM Inside News reports the SUV will likely wear the XT9 badge, and will be priced around $250,000. According to Inside News, the XT8 isnt due until 2020, with the mysterious XT9 arriving sometime around 2027.

The hyper-luxe sedan will apparently follow the same formula, with a halo model sitting above the upcoming CT8, Cadillac’s planned Mercedes-Benz S-Class competitor. The halo sedan will reportedly arrive with world-class luxury in 2029, likely powered by a hybrid or all-electric drivetrain.

Aside from the fact that there are no firm facts to back up this report, it would be a huge stretch for Cadillac to leapfrog, say, the $100,000-$160,000 car range to go straight to competing with Bentley and Rolls-Royce. Based on its most recent cars, including the XT5 and CT6, it seems Cadillac is more interested in competing with the Japanese and German luxury mainstays that entering the hyper-competitive but low-volume ultra-lux segment.

In a seemingly contradictory move, other reports suggest the Cadillac CT8, the brand’s planned S-Class competitor, has been mothballed. In a tweet, Autoline claims the market shift to crossover and SUVS played a role in the reported cancellation. While the market has shifted, it seems unlikely that Cadillac would cancel the CT8 project so close to the projected release, especially with Cadillac’s plans to release 11 new models by 2020.

A Cadillac spokesperson declined to comment on the report, telling AUTOMOBILE that, “CT6 is at the moment top of the range but not the limit of our dreams. We are still on track to introduce 11 new vehicles by 2020. We’re just not ready yet to talk about what they will be.”

Stay tuned to see whether either of these rumors proves true.

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2016 Cadillac ATS and CTS Add Black Chrome Package http://www.automobilemag.com/news/2016-cadillac-ats-and-cts-add-black-chrome-package/ http://www.automobilemag.com/news/2016-cadillac-ats-and-cts-add-black-chrome-package/#respond Tue, 15 Mar 2016 18:33:41 +0000 http://www.automobilemag.com/?p=902379 Cadillac is introducing a new “Black Chrome” package for the ATS and CTS. This package adds special darkened chrome trim and wheels to the exterior of both the ATS and CTS sedan, and the ATS coupe. Checking the box next to the “Black Chrome” package on the 2016 Cadillac ATS order form adds an “After Midnight”...

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Cadillac is introducing a new “Black Chrome” package for the ATS and CTS. This package adds special darkened chrome trim and wheels to the exterior of both the ATS and CTS sedan, and the ATS coupe.

Checking the box next to the “Black Chrome” package on the 2016 Cadillac ATS order form adds an “After Midnight” paint finish to the 18-inch wheels, along with Black Chrome accents on the upper and lower front grilles, and on the rear fascia. The window moldings are painted in gloss black, with the door handles painted in the body color. Black Chrome is offered on four different paint colors, including Black Raven (no cost), Phantom Gray Metallic ($495), Red Obsession Tintcoat ($995), and Chrystal White Tricoat ($995).

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The Black Chrome package is available on both the ATS sedan and coupe equipped with either the Luxury Collection or the Performance Collection equipment group. For both the Luxury Collection and the Performance Collection, Black Chrome will add $795 for the sedan and $595 for the coupe.

While the ATS adds a number of visual upgrades, the Black Chrome package for the bigger 2016 Cadillac CTS includes only two exterior changes: “After Midnight” dark paint on the 18-inch wheels, and black accents on the front grille.

2016 Cadillac ATS Coupe Black Chrome rear three quarter

As with the ATS, exterior and interior color choices are limited. On the inside, colors are restricted to just Jet Black and Light Platinum/Jet Black. Equip the CTS with sport seats, and the color range is extended to Jet Black, Jet Black/Morello Red, and Kona Brown/Jet Black. On the outside, there are three available colors, including Black Raven (no charge), Phantom Gray Metallic ($495), Crystal White Tricoat ($995).

The Black Chrome upgrades are available for the Luxury, Performance, and Premium Collection CTS. Prices begin at $1,095 for Performance and Premium trims, and $1,295 for CTS’ outfitted with the Luxury Collection package.

The 2016 Cadillac Dark Chrome packages are ready for order on dealer lots.

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Cadillac XT5 Could Soon Gain Four-Cylinder Turbo http://www.automobilemag.com/news/cadillac-xt5-soon-gain-four-cylinder-turbo/ http://www.automobilemag.com/news/cadillac-xt5-soon-gain-four-cylinder-turbo/#respond Mon, 14 Mar 2016 15:07:14 +0000 http://www.automobilemag.com/?p=901563 The 2017 Cadillac XT5 is already on sale, but here in the U.S. it comes exclusively with a new 310-hp, 3.6-liter V-6 engine. That could soon change, according to CEO Johan de Nysschen, who hinted to Automotive News that the midsize luxury crossover would soon gain a turbocharged four-cylinder engine. “I actually think we would...

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The 2017 Cadillac XT5 is already on sale, but here in the U.S. it comes exclusively with a new 310-hp, 3.6-liter V-6 engine. That could soon change, according to CEO Johan de Nysschen, who hinted to Automotive News that the midsize luxury crossover would soon gain a turbocharged four-cylinder engine.

“I actually think we would do well to consider that for the U.S.,” de Nysschen told AN in an interview. When exactly  this will happen is unclear, but Cadillac already uses a 2.0-liter turbo-four in the ATS, CTS, and upcoming CT6.

2017 Cadillac XT5 front three quarter 03

Chinese dealerships already offer the 2017 Cadillac XT5 with that same engine, good for 258 hp, mated to the same eight-speed automatic gearbox as in the six-cylinder version. It makes sense for Cadillac to offer a more entry-level version of the XT5, especially considering that many of its competitors, from the Mercedes-Benz GLC300 to the Audi Q5 and BMW X3, all offer four-cylinder turbos with similar power output.

The four-cylinder would be a good fit for the 2017 Cadillac XT5, which is 185 pounds lighter than the Cadillac SRX it replaces. With an estimated 295 lb-ft of torque, the proposed engine would be more than enough motivation while also, in all likelihood, improving fuel economy. The front-wheel-drive XT5 currently gets a 19/27 mpg city/highway rating from the EPA, and an 18/28 mpg rating for all-wheel-drive versions.

The 2017 Cadillac XT5 starts at $39,990, including destination.

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2017 Cadillac XT5 Review http://www.automobilemag.com/news/2017-cadillac-xt5-review/ http://www.automobilemag.com/news/2017-cadillac-xt5-review/#respond Wed, 09 Mar 2016 13:00:16 +0000 http://www.automobilemag.com/?p=898788 DANA POINT, California — The latest fashion in resort wear is the Cadillac XT5, a crossover that turns every drive into a tour of Tuscany. Or, you know, California. So when you burst through the lobby doors and come out beneath the big roof of the hotel’s porte cochére, you’ll always be happy to find...

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DANA POINT, California — The latest fashion in resort wear is the Cadillac XT5, a crossover that turns every drive into a tour of Tuscany. Or, you know, California.

So when you burst through the lobby doors and come out beneath the big roof of the hotel’s porte cochére, you’ll always be happy to find a Cadillac XT5 waiting for you. Why not, since everyone else seems pretty pleased to see it, too? This isn’t the usual German-brand crossover, and you’re not the usual sullen, self-important person that you meet too often at fancy resorts like this. The hotel staff turns toward you expectantly, since you’re clearly a little different from everyone else.

Of course, the other reason the valet and bell staff seem happy to see you is because they know the process of loading up the XT5 with family and bags and vacation stuff will go swiftly and smoothly, and you’ll soon roll out of the way so they can keep things moving on a busy morning. Make no mistake, a crossover’s primary business is to carry stuff, and this Cadillac crossover’s wide doors, useful storage cubbies, 40-20-40-split folding rear seat, and flat cargo floor all make the loading process far less tortuous than what we’re used to, which is usually kind of like packing for the Oregon Trail, only with plastic grocery bags.

2017 Cadillac XT5 side in motion

The 2017 Cadillac XT5 occupies the same size space on the ground as the former SRX, only it’s as if the old, frumpy SRX was kidnapped by aliens and this beautiful artifact was left in its place. After the all these years since designer Kip Wasenko introduced Cadillac’s Art & Science styling vocabulary with the 1999 Evoq show car, his angular, aggressive look has been softened and refined, and now it gives the XT5 a surprisingly beautiful composure. We love the vertical theme for the front fenders, which also allows the array of front lights to stack upright instead of horizontally, and when the sky darkens you’ll find the LED’s nighttime glow makes the XT5 look purposeful instead of mindlessly garish.

Beneath the sheetmetal, you’ll find a new, lightweight vehicle platform. We expected Cadillac engineers to tell us a story about using exotic lightweight materials from distant continents to accomplish this, but with some embarrassment they admitted they just decided to think really, really hard and use computerized analysis instead. As a result, the XT5 is 185 pounds lighter than the SRX it replaces, and it doesn’t even have to use an expensive aluminum hood to do so.

2017 Cadillac XT5 front interior seats

More important for us is the space within this new interior package. The XT5’s overall length is virtually identical to that of the SRX it replaces, yet the new crossover’s wheelbase is stretched 2.0 inches. Moreover, all of this stretch is behind the front seats, so it benefits rear-seat passengers with 3.2 inches more legroom. The rear seat also reclines and slides rearward, though not by much, affording better living quarters for the kids, though without dedicated ventilation ducts.

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Altogether we’re liking our drive today, even though the view through the glass is not Tuscany but instead the faux Tuscan architecture of Southern California. (It’s like a plague, isn’t it?) The sweep of horizontal architectural elements across the XT5’s dash is a great relief from the cockpit-style interior of German crossovers, and the Cadillac’s mix of real cut-and-sewn leather upholstery, real aluminum flourishes, and real wood is impressive. The front seats are meant to be sporty rather than squishy, but we wonder if they are large enough for a good number of potential drivers.

Finally we find ourselves beyond the city limits, heading for the little town of Julian on top of the mountains far above San Diego. If we were in a German crossover, probably it would be one of the coupe-style ones, such as the BMW X6 or Mercedes-Benz GLE350. Yet the Cadillac already seems to drive with coupe-style speed and enthusiasm. For this, we have to thank two things. First, the XT5 weighs a lot less than a German crossover, some 3,985 pounds for the front-wheel-drive XT5 and 4,257 pounds for the all-wheel-drive model. And second, the 310-hp, 3.6-liter V-6 revs toward its redline of 7,200 rpm through its eight-speed transmission with a solidity you don’t find in German crossovers, though we must say the manual-shift mode in the XT5’s new shift-by-wire transmission linkage swaps ratios with a trace of clumsiness.

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If you’re looking for the kind of cornering dynamics that give you a thrill, it’s easy to gravitate to the $63,495 all-wheel-drive Platinum model, since it’s got those P235/55R-20 Michelin tires, fast-acting ZF-built dampers, and even special rear suspension bushings to insulate you from tire harshness. It didn’t snow in the mountains during our drive, but if it had, we could have called upon the AWD system’s GKN-built Twinster differentials at the rear (one at each wheel). Nevertheless, we also really like the $39,990 front-wheel-drive XT5, as the P235/65R-18 Michelins deliver noticeably better ride comfort, while the XT5’s standard chassis-mode selector toggles the dampers between Touring and Sport with sufficient effectiveness to give you plenty of each.

So we arrived in Julian, having made good speed and enjoying the drive for more than just the scenery. The Cadillac XT5 is a vehicle with real style, not only in the way it looks but also in the way it drives. Sure, it has the daily utility you can find in soccer-mom crossovers, yet we like it because it has the potential for grand touring that makes you want to drive to distant places and stay at fancy resorts. Cadillac keeps telling us the brand has a bright future, and the XT5 proves to us that it is making good speed in the right direction.

2017 Cadillac XT5 front three quarter 03

2017 Cadillac XT5 Specifications

On Sale: Now
Price: $39,990/$48,385 (FWD/AWD base)
Engine: 3.6L DOHC 24-valve V-6/310 hp @ 6,700 rpm, 271 lb-ft @ 5,000 rpm
Transmission: 8-speed automatic
Layout: 4-door, 5-passenger, front-engine, FWD/AWD SUV
EPA Mileage: 19/27 mpg (FWD); 18/26 mpg (AWD) (city/hwy)
L x W x H: 189.5 x 75.0 x 66.0 in
Wheelbase: 112.5 in
Weight: 3,895/4,257 lb (FWD/AWD)
0-60 MPH: 6.7/7.1 sec (FWD/AWD)
Top Speed: 130 mph

 

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Roar of 34: Bose Develops a High-End Sound System for the Cadillac CT6 http://www.automobilemag.com/news/roar-of-34-bose-develops-a-high-end-sound-system-for-the-cadillac-ct6/ http://www.automobilemag.com/news/roar-of-34-bose-develops-a-high-end-sound-system-for-the-cadillac-ct6/#respond Mon, 07 Mar 2016 13:00:26 +0000 http://www.automobilemag.com/?p=888783 With tire roar, wind noise, and an engine rumbling in the background, you might think a car is a horrible environment to enjoy a high-end audio system. But back in the 1980s, Amar G. Bose—yes, that Bose—believed car interiors were better for accurate sound reproduction than, say, a living room. In 1979 Bose approached General...

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With tire roar, wind noise, and an engine rumbling in the background, you might think a car is a horrible environment to enjoy a high-end audio system. But back in the 1980s, Amar G. Bose—yes, that Bose—believed car interiors were better for accurate sound reproduction than, say, a living room.

In 1979 Bose approached General Motors about creating a sound system for a Cadillac Seville, developing a high-quality aural solution in just 90 days. GM soon approved production of the setup, which debuted in the ’83 Seville. The $895 option was a hefty expenditure for a car that cost less than $22,000, but it proved that an automaker and a sound company could collaborate to deliver a factory system with better audio quality than many thought possible.

Bose and GM have been partners ever since, and now Bose is rolling out the most ambitious system it has developed for the automaker, the all-new, 34-speaker Panaray, which debuts in the 2016 Cadillac CT6. Cadillac and Bose worked for the better part of four years to fully integrate Panaray into the CT6’s interior design.

Sound 05

Any major project at Bose’s Stow, Massachusetts, automotive lab starts with technicians modeling a sound system via computer before hacking apart an existing car and developing mounting brackets, speaker enclosures, wiring harnesses, and the like to create a demonstration audio system.

“I believed it would be possible to produce better sound in an automobile than in the home.”
-Amar G. Bose, Automobile, November 1998

Listening to the concept car is the most important part of pitching an audio system to a car company, says engineering support manager Bud Mac­Lellan: “I can show you anything on paper, but you don’t know what that sounds like.”

Bose Panaray Sound System 1 ALL 1

The first concept Bose presented to Cadillac for the CT6 had 49 speakers. While that got toned down to “just” 34 for the production car, it’s still the most speakers Bose has ever installed in a car. (Its previous high, in the Maybach 57 and 62, was 21 speakers.)

Bose worked with Cadillac to get each speaker best situated, knowing the interior’s design limitations. Two “bass box” subwoofers are integrated into the front floor pan, and the 10-inch woofer in the parcel shelf is offset from center so it will fit around the battery pack in the coming plug-in hybrid.

Speakers and electronics must be as small and light as possible, part of the reason why the Panaray system has multiple smaller speakers rather than a few big ones. The speakers on the dashboard and in front of the rear seats, as well as the A-pillar speakers, angle in different directions, which provides a wraparound effect and minimizes localization, an unwelcome effect whereby listeners can hear which speaker a sound originates from.

In addition, car audio systems must tolerate far more abuse than ones meant for your living room. During testing, speakers must play for 24 hours while being sprayed with water and withstand 100-g impacts (to simulate hitting a pothole or slamming a door). Adhesives must hold up against UV rays that stream in through the windows. “The car is a pretty harsh environment,” says Bose Automotive’s Martin Dluzansky.

After all the physical parts were finished, engineers tuned the Panaray’s electronic signal processing. They used microphones to measure sound reproduction at each of the car’s seats, then programmed the amplifier to compensate for any deficiencies. Bose says its tuning process is so specific that it produces different maps for cars with cloth versus leather interiors and for when convertible tops are up or down.

Bose Panaray Sound System 3 ALL COMPONENTS REAR PASS 1

The CT6’s 34 speakers meant a more involved fine-tuning process. Joe McCabe, Bose Automotive’s technical lead, recalls spending more than a month of 100-hour weeks programming the digital signal processing for the car before traveling to GM’s Detroit-Hamtramck factory to double-check that everything sounded as intended prior to production.

Despite all the innovation and engineering involved, at only $3,700 to start, the CT6’s Panaray system will be priced reasonably compared to some of its closest rivals.

“We were literally trying to get perfection in all four seats,” McCabe says. “When you’ve got 34 speakers and 19 equalizers, there’s a lot of complexity.”

Listening to It

While the CT6 wasn’t available for our full car-audio test, we had a chance to listen to a prototype at Bose’s office in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan. It’s a great experience, with pure and clear sound that wraps around the entire cabin. Deep bass has the booming, shake-the-seat feel of a movie theater; surround-sound effects seem to fly through the Cadillac’s cabin. We’ll have to get Sabin’s expert ears to listen to the Panaray system for an official verdict, but our initial impressions of the CT6’s system are very positive.

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