Let’s get this out in the open right from the start. Full-sized Cadillac’s are no longer for the elderly, meek or the “I’m going to move to Florida and die crowd”, so please get that out of your head immediately. Over the past 20 years Cadillac has made great strides in changing the way the buying public views their brand. Gone are the massive land yachts of yesteryear, and in their place are beautifully engineered road machines capable of competing with the best from around the globe. The 2014 Cadillac XTS VSport AWD Platinum is a perfect example of this, and if your Grandfather does decide to get one, you best rest assured that he knows a bit more about cars than you’re probably giving him credit for.
2014 Cadillac XTS VSport AWD Platinum Specifications:
|Engine:||3.6L Twin-Turbo DOHC V6 - 410-hp / 369 lb-ft of Torque|
|Transmission:||6-Speed Automatic - AWD.|
|0 to 60 mph:||5.2-seconds.|
|Curb Weight:||4,215 lbs.|
|Fuel-economy (city/highway):||16/24 mpg or 19 combined|
Sometimes style has a way of sneaking up on you, and that’s exactly the case with the 2014 XTS VSport. In fact, if you could encapsulate the XTS in one word, it would have to be “distinguished.” This is a good looking automobile with bold, masculine lines that cater to those with salt and pepper in their hair and a tendency to lean towards luxury rather than all out performance. A long swooping nose, high-fender arches and a highly stylized rear-end with integrated exhaust ports let people know that, while this is a car that’s capable of cruising in comfort, it’s also up for the occasional drag race if the opportunity presents itself. In short, the XTS VSport could care less about what you think and instead prefers to make its own on-road statement.
Where the exterior of the XTS is bold and distinguished, the interior jumps ship and goes right to ultra-modern. From a design standpoint Cadillac has done a wonderful job of incorporating leather, wood, soft-touch plastics and aluminum into a space that is very inviting. However, and this is where they take a step back, they’re still in favor of using shiny gloss plastics and that, in my opinion, cheapens what is an otherwise beautifully laid out interior.
From a comfort standpoint the Caddy is top-notch. The front seats are 20-way adjustable, extremely comfortable and provide you with great lumbar and lateral support. I drove this XTS VSport over 600 miles in one week and never once did I wish that I were somewhere else. Rear passengers are treated to vast amounts of head and legroom, heated seats and a separate climate control system that will ensure that they’re comfortable regardless of the distance traveled.
We’re now going to talk about Cadillac’s CUE system with haptic feedback technology. This is the brands all-in-one navigation, media and climate control unit and it’s one of the least intuitive systems that I’ve used in quite some time. First impressions will have you believe that everything is right were it should be, however this is not the case. It took quite a while to get the systems settings to finally behave the way I wanted them to. And when paired with the annoying haptic feedback touch controls, well, lets just say that I would’ve paid big money for some good old fashion buttons and knobs. I get what they’re trying to do here, but simply stated, the CUE system needs some work.
As mentioned earlier the XTS VSport lends itself more to luxury then all out performance. That however doesn’t mean that it can’t perform. The 3.6L Twin-Turbo V6 delivers 410-hp and 369 lb-ft of torque through a 6-speed automatic transmission and AWD drive train. That means 0-60 mph runs of around 5-seconds and a limited top speed of 137 mph. Combine that with 6-piston Brembo brakes, magnetic ride control and slightly stiffer suspension settings and you’ve got yourself a great full-sized sedan that has all the major basis covered. Understand though that this is not a canyon carver, nor will it compete with vehicles that sport an M or an AMG badge, so if that’s what your after then look elsewhere, because this is not the car for you.
The 2014 Cadillac XTS VSport is a car that most people will love. It’s not targeted at grandparents, although they will love it. It’s not targeted at 20-somethings, as they won’t. It is however aimed at those who want a great luxury sedan that’s built in America and that offers something a bit different than its European counterparts.