New Car Previews

2024 Cadillac XT4 Preview

Mention Cadillac, and many think of an oversized land yacht.

In reality, the brand’s bestseller is its smallest crossover. And it’s getting updated, with the 2024 Cadillac XT4 featuring refreshed styling and updated technology – most notably, a 33-inch curved-glass infotainment screen borrowed from the all-electric Lyriq.

My experience with the overhauled XT4 was just a look, not a chance to drive it, but the makeover indicates Cadillac is serious about regaining the loftier status it enjoyed way back when, before it stumbled and lost market share to German and Japanese competitors.

The XT4 is the entry model amongst Cadillac’s SUVs, and it attracts the highly coveted demographic of younger buyers moving up from mainstream brands. Styling, technology, and safety are top-of-list for them, according to Cadillac’s reps, and so they’re the focus of this makeover.

Old Meets New

What’s under the hood is unchanged: a 2.0L turbocharged four-cylinder engine making 235 hp and 258 lb-ft of torque, mated to a nine-speed automatic transmission. The entry Luxury trim starts in front-wheel drive (FWD), but can be optioned with all-wheel drive (AWD). The Premium Luxury and Sport trims are AWD-only.

There are new front fenders, hood, and fascia; new LED headlights; and two new grilles, with mesh for the Sport and a ripple pattern for the Premium Luxury. The rear end is redesigned, and now with a single back-up light replacing the previous twin units; the exhaust tips get new trim surrounds; and there are new wheel designs, with 18- or 20-inch choices.

The interior refresh is dominated by that 33-inch screen with 9K resolution, and it’s standard in all three trims. Borrowing from the Lyriq, which starts around $70,000, it’s going to be the primary talking point. It seamlessly integrates the infotainment system and instrument cluster in a single piece of curved glass, and is touch-capable but can also be operated via a console-mounted controller.

It’s equipped with Google Built-In that includes Google Maps and Play Store, where apps such as Spotify can be downloaded into it. Saying “Hey, Google” wakes up the assistant, and it can interact with some of the vehicle’s functions, such as setting the cabin temperature and fan speed. Google Built-In is part of a data package that also includes a Wi-Fi hotspot and is included for three years. Plans are $15/month after that, but if owners don’t renew, the standard wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto remain.

Amazon Alexa Built-In is also available. There are four USB ports in all trims, but a wireless charger is unavailable in the base Luxury and part of an optional package in the two upper trims.

Luxurious-ish Features

Other cabin updates are new climate control buttons, refreshed seat trim design, standard ambient lighting, and an available 14-speaker audio system. Leather upholstery is standard, and the wood or carbon fibre accent trims are the real deal. The general configuration remains the same, with generous legroom in both the front and rear seats. Cargo volume is 637 L with the rear seats up, and 1,384 L when folded down.

All trims include blind-spot monitoring with rear cross-traffic alert, emergency front braking with pedestrian and cyclist detection, automatic high-beam headlights, lane-keep assist, and so-called Safety Alert Seat, which vibrates a warning in addition to any lights or chimes when the assist systems detect a problem.

Cadillac is a luxury brand but the XT4 is its entry-level model, so not everything is included. All trims can be optioned with a towing package that increases maximum pull to 1,588 kg (3,500 lb), but most upscale options are limited to the Premium Luxury and Sport trims. That includes a safety package for $2,105, which adds adaptive cruise control, rear pedestrian alert, intersection emergency braking, speed limit assist, and a feature that detects a cyclist alongside even if the vehicle is shut off, to help avoid collisions if an occupant opens a door.

A technology package, for $1,895, includes a camera-based rearview mirror, wireless charger, head-up display, and power-adjustable steering wheel; while a comfort package, for $2,685, adds massaging and ventilated front seats and a power passenger seat.

GM’s Super Cruise hands-free driving system comes on several Cadillac vehicles, but while Cadillac’s reps hinted that it might one day be a possibility on the XT4, it isn’t here yet. According to them, the competition doesn’t offer anything similar, and leaving it off keeps the price down on a vehicle that’s primarily intended as a downtown dweller rather than a long-distance highway hauler.

Final Thoughts

The lineup starts at $43,999 for the Luxury FWD, including a non-negotiable delivery fee of $2,300 – an increase of $3,700 over the 2023 model – and $47,399 in AWD. The Premium Luxury and Sport trims both start at $51,199. The 2024 models are on their way to dealers now.

The XT4 debuted as a brand-new model for 2019, and didn’t take long for it to climb the sales ladder among Cadillac’s models. This updated version will likely do just as well. The price increase from 2023 is substantial, but to Cadillac’s advantage, the major upgrade isn’t a hidden technology, but that massive 33-inch curve of glass that’s the first thing anyone sees. The person at Cadillac who said, “Let’s take this out of the Lyriq and put it in our entry model” definitely earned their paycheque.