Cadillac Should Increase Fuel Efficiency With the Updated SRX or Its Replacement XT5

What changes will make it different?

Depending on your point of view, this midsize crossover is either being redesigned or replaced for 2016. It appears as if an all-new vehicle is being tested by Cadillac, and despite the heavy camouflage, it certainly looks like a new midsize crossover. The confusion is caused because Caddy is currently following a number of other manufacturers by renaming its model lineup. The vehicle that looks like it could be a ’16 SRX will apparently be called the XT5, and it may also have a new platform that is going under the codename C1XX.

Why should I wait for the 2016?

Since the ’16 appears as if it will bring a complete redesign, you might want to at least hear more about it before committing to the ’15 offering. On the other hand, the upcoming model might bear little resemblance to its predecessor. But we still think you should at least wait until it starts to appear at auto shows early in 2015.

Should I buy a 2015 model instead?

Despite having the oldest existing design in the Cadillac lineup, it’s the company’s best-selling model, and has been for the past four years. A vehicle doesn’t hold this status for no reason, so the ’15 is obviously a winner. Even though there’s an all-new offering on the horizon, you can’t go wrong with the current edition.

Will the styling be different?

The new model will be a midsize crossover, but that’s about where its similarities to its successor could end. It will be based on a short wheelbase version of a platform that the next generation of Buick Enclave and Chevrolet Traverse will share. It will probably look a bit like a big ATS, with a similar grille that will be the signature of these and future caddy models.

Any mechanical changes?

This looks to be the rare case where everything will change. As well as a new chassis and body, we expect the ’16 to feature a four-cylinder turbocharged engine in base models, with an optional pair of V-6 units to choose from if the four isn’t to your taste. Another expected upgrade should be the new nine-speed automatic transmission that has been in the pipeline for a while.

Will fuel economy improve?

Fuel consumption—this car’s biggest shortcoming—is likely to be addressed for 2016. We’re sometimes unrealistic about our expectations for gas mileage with new vehicles these days, especially with SUVs and crossovers. However, the SRX’s model-year ’15 figures of 16 to 17 mpg in the city and 23 or 24 mpg on the highway, depending on whether you choose all-wheel drive, really aren’t good enough anymore.

Will it have new features?

The 2015 version is jam-packed with safety, infotainment and connectivity features, so expect the new offering to have all that and more. A lot of cutting-edge safety equipment is coming through from work being done by manufacturers like GM on driverless vehicle technology, which means this new midsize crossover could be one of the safest vehicles of its kind.

How will 2016 prices be different?

Although this will be an entirely new vehicle, it still needs to fit into the same segment as its predecessor price-wise. There was no increase in the base price for the ’15, so the upcoming model could be a little more expensive. However, it would be a big surprise if the entry price broke through the $40,000 barrier.

When will it come out?

Production will move to GM’s Spring Hill, Tenn. facility. The 5-passenger luxury midsize crossover will have a release date at the end of 2015 or early 2016.

Best competitors

Audi Q5, BMW X5, Lexus RX350, Mercedes GLK Class, Volvo XC60

What changes would make it better?

Though it has the oldest design in the Cadillac lineup, the ’15 SRX looks remarkably current. Nevertheless, a fresh new look is probably overdue. The biggest issue that needs to be sorted out, though, is the shockingly poor fuel efficiency.

Quick hit

Cadillac was expected to introduce an all-new crossover into its range in addition to a new SRX, but it appears that idea has been dropped in favor of an all-new vehicle to take the place of the SRX. If rumors are true of it being bigger and having an optional third-row of seating, there still could be room in the future for another nameplate to fill the gap between this and the ATS.

About Chuck Giametta

This nationally recognized, award-winning writer brings to two decades of automotive testing and reporting for newspapers, books, magazines, and the Internet. The former Executive Auto Editor of Consumer Guide, Chuck has covered cars for, Collectible Automobile magazine, and the Publications International Ltd. automotive book series. This ex-newspaper reporter has also appeared as an automotive expert on network television and radio. He’s a charter member of the Midwest Automotive Media Association, the president of the Rocky Mountain Automotive Media association, and a juror for the annual Active Lifestyle Vehicle of the Year awards. Chuck writes from Colorado Springs, Colo. If you have a question for Chuck, write to him at [email protected]