December 6, 2023

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Review: Test Driving the 2021 Cadillac XT6 Sport

6 min read

There’s just a thing about a 3rd row. Folding up those people back again seats to haul a gaggle of young ones is a benefit gargantuan SUVs have, but they typically arrive with extra authentic estate than some folks have to have or want. That rear bench is not typically an option with lesser automobile-dependent crossovers. So, to feed the American need for third rows—which has develop into a bona fide research filter—Cadillac rolled out its 2nd iteration of the XT6 midsize SUV. GM handed more than the keys for a 900-mile New York to Virginia loved ones road trip. Here’s what we figured out about the 2021 Cadillac XT6 Activity.



The Cadillac XT6’s rear seat is roomier than you’d expect. Our Sport trim tester had a middle row of captain’s chairs, instead of an optional bench.
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Day 1: That third row

While it could seem to be mundane to start at the 3rd row, it’s an critical difference with the XT6. The Cadillac’s rear seat is roomier than you’d count on. Our Activity trim tester experienced a middle row of captain’s chairs in its place of an optional bench. This decreases the full seating from 8 to 7, but offers enough leg space. Continue to, this orientation helps make it substantially a lot easier for little ones to get in and down a center aisle. After they get into the again, they’ll have just about the most headroom in the course. Taller older people can squeeze back again there much too without experience claustrophobic.

Managing the rear split bench is effortless. Switches on the rear doors and in the trunk give you accessibility no make any difference where you are. Anyone in the rear has entry to demand ports and their honest share of the HVAC. Where by matters can get tight is the cargo place at the rear of that 3rd row. At about 12 1/2 cubic ft, it’s more than enough for a few have-on suitcases, a mid-week grocery retail store operate, or maybe some baseball gear from little league. That all modifications if you fold each rows down. Then you can effortlessly toss in a mountain bike—not that you’d want to muddy up a Cadillac’s interior, but the principle is great.

My wife and I are evening packers. We folded the rear seats down the night just before our early-morning begin and had ample place for two have-on luggage, a entire-dimension duffle, a number of totes of odds and ends, treats, equipment for the canine we were dropping off together the way, and even a admirer (we’re critical about slumber cleanliness, Alright?).

An intuitive console upfront that makes controlling the 8-inch infotainment screen a snap. The XT6 syncs with Apple and Android pretty seamlessly and USB ports are sprinkled throughout the cabin, as there is a handy wireless charger port.
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Day 2: Settling into the styling

The XT6 is correct at property with the same intense styling stretched across Cadillac’s 2021 lineup. These fashionable, clean up strains are all over the exterior. Nevertheless, it’s most predominant upfront with the huge grille, slender horizontal headlights, and vertical fog lights. The rear finish is less extraordinary nevertheless it does a intelligent career tucking the windshield wiper up into the spoiler. The glossy black accents and dark paint within the 20-inch wheels—which also enable visually fill the wheel well—give the motor vehicle a quite avenue-ahead search from the control.

Inside, the style and design and seating is quite comfortable—even seven hrs in. An intuitive entrance console makes managing the 8-inch infotainment display screen a snap. The XT6 syncs with Apple and Android quite seamlessly and USB ports are sprinkled through the cabin there is also a helpful wireless charger port. Managing the infotainment is a properly-positioned click on wheel. It is in ideal putting length for these who like to hang their right hand down off the padded centre armrest to spin, shift, and press absent. While the colour and graphics are crisp, and the data is conveniently seen (aka not cramped), it’s common to see screens upwards of 12 inches in this class.

The soft surfaces like the seats, wheel, and sprint are a buttery leather with contrasting stitching. Our Activity tester had carbon fiber accents spread close to the cabin. The huge two-pane glass roof stretches almost totally in excess of the middle row, introducing a good deal of sunlight. A retractable sunscreen requires the edge off really hard mid-day solar, and temperature-controlled seats continue to keep absolutely everyone snug in a much more private way than twin climate controls can.

We identified the interior to be tranquil when buzzing along at highway speeds, and our tester arrived equipped with 16 Bose speakers (as an alternative of the regular 8), which done properly with decent clarity and bass.

But an SUV of this size needs the 3.6-liter V6, which gets the XT6 to 60 mph in 7.3 seconds.
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Working day 3: Hitting the open street

For 2021, Cadillac paired the XT6 with either a four-cylinder motor or the V6, which powered our tester. The lesser motor is new for 2021 and is only out there in one of three trim amounts. Our guess is that it can help provide the starting up cost down. But an SUV of this sizing needs the 3.6-liter V6, which gets the XT6 to 60 mph in 7.3 seconds. Evaluate the specs and that is decent for a ride of this dimension, but it is considerably from a pace demon. You can uncover extra nimble selections in this class. It’s also not a thing you are going to want to consider off-roading. For a single, the front stop may scrape pulling out of some suburban driveways. There is an AWD alternative, but it calls for manual implementation when you imagine you’ll have to have it in snow, ice, or rain, in its place of mechanically changing at a luxurious ride’s price position.

On the I-95, our Sport tester did well easing the dingy highway surfaces for a supple journey. There was a contact of bounce in the cabin we could see getting a consolation difficulty, but it proved soft for cruising about town and lengthy stretches of windy backroads. Are there seats with a lot more changes on the sector? Yes, but the XT6 had ample lumbar assist to preserve us satisfied. It has adequate guts to move at highway speeds to boot. If you spin the dial to activity manner and mash on the pedal, there’s a satisfying sum of throaty suggestions. Visibility is fantastic as effectively, with a suite of cameras masking just about every angle.

In locations the place the XT6 lacks in comparison to the domestic and imported 3rd-row segment—like towing, infotainment display screen size, what may feel like an underwhelming drivetrain—it tends to make up for with protection tech. As mom and dad are the likeliest customers of the XT6, that carries a large amount of pounds. The Cadillac’s an IIHS top rated security select and acquired a 5-star NHTSA ranking for front and side crash score. Our tester arrived with Cadillac’s regular bag of basic safety tech which include cruise manage with length help, automatic emergency braking, and cross-targeted visitors inform. The length control function was a snap to alter from the steering wheel’s controls. But there is an optional Driver Aid bundle (about $1,300 further) if you want functions like adaptive cruise manage with braking down to zero, substantial-speed automatic emergency braking, and rear automatic crisis braking.

Bottom line: The XT6 has major-notch security characteristics, cozy seats, and far more area in the 3rd row than you’d assume. But topping out at about 310 horsepower, we wish GM equipped the XT6 with a punchier engine. It commences at $56,890 and the Sport trim we tested clocked in at over $72,000, which places it in a class with German imports and Lincoln.

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