The design of the SRX makes it instantly recognizable, but also uncomfortable for tall drivers and short on interior space. Much like the CTS sedan, I don't quite have enough room for my right knee due to the overstyled dash/center stack intersection. Despite the fact that the SRX is longer and wider than the Chevy Equinox or GMC Terrain, it has 4 fewer cubic feet of cargo storage and 3.6 inches less legroom for passengers in the back seat. Let's not forget the Cadillac is also at least 100 pounds heavier than a V-6 Terrain or Equinox.
So maybe opting for a turbocharged 2.8-liter V-6 will add enough sport to negate the compromised functionality of the regular SRX. Well, not quite. Even in sport mode, the SRX accelerates lazily and the transmission is reluctant to downshift even with significant pressure on the brake pedal. Perhaps that's because it takes an awful lot of pressure on the pedal for the brakes to begin biting.
Gas mileage is also disappointing. Despite the fact the turbo engine displaces fewer cubic inches than the standard (3.0-liter) V-6, it returns a mere 22 mpg on the highway. For reference, an all-wheel-drive Escalade with a 6.2-liter V-8 is rated at 20 mpg on the highway and has enough space inside to hold a soccer team.
What Cadillac has done well is sort out the suspension of the SRX - it feels very stable in high speed turns and the steering has nice weight. As David Zenlea pointed out, the SRX is every bit as buttoned down on the road as an Audi Q5, which is quite possibly our favorite small premium crossover. And the interior is finished as well as the Audi's, even if the infotainment system isn't quite as polished as the Q5's MMI system.
Despite my abundant criticism, the SRX is actually a very competent vehicle. Adding the hybrid system Mr. Zenlea suggests would certainly improve the SRX's appeal and give GM a bit of the green credibility it has been struggling to build. We know an Audi Q5 hybrid is on its way to market, so this would give Cadillac another chance to be right at the top of its (very competitive) class.
Phil Floraday, Senior Online Editor