The three-row luxury crossover segment is crowded with great options from Acura, Audi, BMW, Mercedes-Benz and Volvo. How does the Cadillac XT6 stack up against heavyweights like the Acura MDX, BMW X5 and Volvo XC90? Well its a handsome large SUV, but there are a few misses, like its interior and thirsty V6 that keep it from grabbing the crown.
On the outside the Cadillac XT6 is attractive with its angular styling that hides the fact that under the skin it shares most of its DNA with GM’s other three-row crossovers, like the Chevy Traverse and GMC Acadia. The XT6 looks great from the front with its vertical LED daytime running lights and slim headlights. From the side the design is a bit less distinctive and at the rear its vertical taillights resemble Cadillac’s sedan models.
Inside the overall design of the interior is clean and simple, but it doesn’t really stand out compared to its rivals, which feel more luxurious. We also wish the interior had more modern touches like the new Escalade. In the XT6, the interior has some low quality materials and overall the design of the interior is largely forgettable – something we don’t expect in a Cadillac.
In the center of the dashboard there’s an eight-inch touchscreen infotainment system with wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. An eight-speaker Bose audio system is standard, while a 14-speaker Bose audio system is optional. A rear-seat entertainment system with two eight-inch screens is also available. If you opt for the Enhanced Visibility and Technology Package, you’ll get an 8.0-inch screen in the instrument cluster, a head-up display and a rearview mirror camera.
The XT6 offers room for up to six or seven passengers, depending on if you choose the second-row captain chairs. As is the case with most three-row crossovers, the third row is a bit cramped and best suited for children or your shorter friends. The XT6 has 29.5-inches of rear legroom compared to 31.9-inches in the XC90. Fortunately the first and second row seats are comfortable.
Behind the third row seat there’s only 12.6 cubic feet of cargo space, which is less than you’ll get in the MDX with its 16.3 cubic feet of space. With both the second and third rows folded, the XT6 has 78.70 cubic feet of cargo space. One feature we do like is the power-folding third row, which is something you can’t get on the MDX.
Under the hood there are two engines to choose from. The XT6 comes standard with a turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder with 237 horsepower and 258 pound-feet of torque. If you want more power, there’s the 3.6-liter V6 with 310 hp and 276 lb-ft. Both engines are mated to a smooth nine-speed automatic transmission. Front-wheel drive is standard, while all-wheel drive is optional.
The front-wheel drive 2.0-liter is rated at 21 mpg city, 27 mpg highway and 23 mpg combined, while the all-wheel drive version is rated at 21/26/23 mpg. The FWD V6 is rated at 19/26/21 mpg, while the AWD version is rated at 18/25/21 mpg.
The V6-equipped XT6 can tow up to 4,000 pounds, but the four-cylinder version can only tow 1,000 pounds.
Our tester had the 3.6-liter V6, which packs enough power to get the family around town with ease. The V6 does a good job of picking up speed on the highway, but at the end of the day we wouldn’t call the XT6 fast. It takes 6.9 seconds to reach 60 mph. On the road, the XT6’s suspension does a great job of keeping the bumps from disturbing the peace, but without the extra body roll that plague some of its rivals. Its steering also has good feedback, but if you’re looking for a sportier three-row crossover you’ll want to check out the Acura MDX or BMW X5.
On the safety front the XT6 comes standard with automatic emergency braking, adaptive cruise control, lane keeping assist and cross traffic alert. If you opt for the Driver Assistance package, the adaptive cruise control can bring the XT6 to a full stop and rear automatic emergency braking is added.
Our tester also came with the cool Night Vision package that adds an infrared night vision image in the gauge cluster that highlights and provides alerts when it detects pedestrians and large animals.
Sadly we wish the XT6 was available with Cadillac’s Super Cruise hands free tech.
The 2021 Cadillac XT6 is available in three trim levels: Luxury, Premium Luxury and Sport. The pricing starts at $48,990 for the four-cylinder XT6 and $53,790 for the V6-equipped version. That price jumps up when you select the Sport version, which starts at $58,190. A fully equipped XT6 Sport tops $70k.
The 2021 Cadillac XT6 is the Cadillac of three-row crossovers with its handsome exterior and spacious and comfortable interior. The V6 engine packs more than enough power and there are plenty of tech features available to satisfy. If only the interior felt a bit more luxurious to go with its lofty price tag.