Roadshow Video Reviews
2013 Cadillac XTSCadillac's all new XTS
-Congratulations Caddy. You're now at the point where grandpa doesn't recognize anything you make. Let's take a look at a new large Cadillac, the XTS Premium all-wheel drive and check the tech. So, here it is, the XTS, an all-new model for Cadillac up on the big end of their range. But it's not the old grandpa Cadillac big, it's more BMW 5, Mercedes E, Audi A6 big. Obviously, it's a four-door only, very much of a fastback Roof. That's something that the other competitors don't have. But it's got rather unfortunate proportioning in the front to my eye. It screams front wheel drive with the fact that it's got a stubby hood and the back of the front tire is actually rear of the front of the dash and it is front-wheel drive or all-wheel drive. Now, let's get inside where I think you're gonna be impressed. Now, this is not only a whole new Cadillac. That's a whole new interface 4 Cadillac. It's called CUE, the Cadillac User Experience. Here's your main home screen. You got all your key functions there, very cleanly laid out, but there's more. If you go ahead and toss like this, you can flick between screens like you want in a tablet and they're very big on this being tablet like. And I gotta give it to him more or less is. Now, notice this little zip-up icon right here. If I press that, I'm gonna get some additional functions and that kind of persist throughout the interface. See what they're doing here. They've got some persistent strips as well as flickable home screens that's taking a page out of, let's say, your status bar on top of your Smartphone as well as your home screen on your tablet. They've really done a pretty good job of channelling the mobile devices we carry and put them into a car interface. Oh, by the way, you can't see this, but when I press on these buttons, I'm getting haptic feedback, you know, a little brrr-- a little bump on the screen. Now, it's a little bit busy when I have all these ribbons up. Here are my tools for nav. Here are my radio presets below that. And up here are my three persistent functions. Audio, phone, and navigation are always kind of on the top ribbon. It doesn't leave a lot in there for the navigation screen. They got a little video on the Cadillac site that shows some dude driving alone and he just hits the voice button and just talks and this thing figures out that the destination. Let's put it to the test. -Command please. -Navigate to 1000 Van Ness Avenue in San Francisco. -1000 DM, correct? -No. No! -Sorry. Command please. -Cancel for the love of God. -Goodbye. -The only command she got right was cancel for the love of God. So, I gotta him that. At least, there's some response. Bottom line is you can't just talk to this thing. Don't buy it. No car is there yet. You gotta go and get an Android phone for that. Let's go to the media sources. You got just about everything you want here obviously. This is kind of a high-trimmed car. Aside from the usual broadcast sources- AM, FM, and satellite radio- you've got the interesting stuff. You've got the CD slot kind of inelegantly housed over here on the glove box. I expected something better, but you'll never use it this day and age. Here is my iPod Touch. Your iPhone would go there. Look. Nice read out by the way of the text, really good. And if you wanna take a look at what you can do with that, the browse button here is also very clear-- playlist, artist, album, songs, all that without having to scroll through a list or unbury a list. I like how they surfaced. Again, this is a pre-useful ribbon that they put together here. This ontology works. Now, let's play a little game. It's called hide the iPod. It's not dirty. Don't worry. You actually hit this little piece of chrome down here and you get this very useful, little charging bin. USB is in there for USB device. It could be a thumb drive or, in this case, my iPod Touch and it gets things out of the way. So, this junk isn't hanging out in the console or even here in the center console. It goes into a bin where everything is focused, its location, its tidy cord management, and its power and data. I like that. Here's my bluetooth streaming off my Android phone. I like the fact that I'm getting good meta tag information and they're using enough real-estate where things aren't arbitrarily kind of cut-off halfway. I've seen a lot of cars with big screens that don't use them. Our tone settings reflect that all Cadillac XTS's have Bose audio, but there's the Bose news, The Better Bose, with surround and 14 speakers. If you get the better system, you're gonna have all-- I think a lot more body in the sound. And you've got these various staging options here in the Bose surround system. In other words, who gets the best staging of the audio sort of placement? Now, that screen isn't the only interesting one. This one is too. The instrument panel is all video. It has four different modes. Right now, I can show you. Let's see. Here's performance. It brings in a bunchy gauges that are performance-oriented speedometer, tachometer right there big and obvious. Here's enhanced. This kind of is the most nontraditional of their instrument panel lay-outs. And if grandpa likes it simple, that's available too. -Now, after CUE, the biggest innovation in the XTS is decidedly low tech, seats that vibrate your ramp to indicate if you're close to something on the left, the right, the front, or the rear. To indicate that, different parts of the seat rattle your butt rather disturbingly. You never really get used to it. I guess that's the idea. -Okay, now, Cadillac's got a 3.6-L direct injection V6 in here, the only choice at least so far on the XTS, and you're saying to yourself, "I got it, that's the engine out of the CTS Sedan." Kind of but not quite. Same displacement and architecture, but different output, less in this car, 304 horsepower, 264-foot pounds of torque, 0 to 60, and about 6.7 seconds for what is a 2-ton car. MPG is 17/28. We have front-wheel drive in this car. That's right. This car is front-wheel drive or all-wheel drive, and if you do get all-wheel drive, you save just 1 MPG on the highway and all power goes out of the same 6-speed automatic with pedals on the wheel and a manual mode of the gate. Now, unfortunately, if you're thinking that this XTS is a BMW 5 series killer, it isn't in terms of being a sheer road car. In fact, the relationship between the throttle, the accelerator pedal on this car, and what the car does is almost nonexistent. It's one of the truly great vague driving experiences in automotive today and that's not a great thing. Okay, here's how to order an XTS to go CNET style. Skip the bottom two trim levels and go up to number 3 and 4 Premium. Don't go Platinum. That just adds 20s that you need to get a harsher ride, a bunch of power rear shades. You're not a celebrity. Don't be a dick. And then add 1450 for the Ultraview sunroof which is part of the Platinum package, but get it cheaper by going a la carte.