up the rear," has not a shred of negative connotation
for Cadillac. Not when it refers to the rear in its rear-drive
SRX crossover vehicle that has jumped to the head of the
honors pack since it debuted a scant year ago as a performance-proven
sporty car disguised as a sports utility.
is the vehicle so anticipated by Caddy fans that they flagged
us down during a test drive to figuratively drool all over
its stand-alone crisp, edgy lines, its spacious interior,
its panoramic sky with roof open, its thunder-charged Northstar
V8 powerplant we found exhilarating to drive. Yeah. Dreaming
finally paid off.
many competitive vehicles with front-drive foundations,
the base for SRX is GM's performance-oriented, rear-drive
Sigma architecture, also available as all-wheel drive. Besides
the 4.6-liter, 320-HP V8 is a 3.6-liter, 255-HP V6, both
with variable valve timing, maximum performance five-speed
automatics and standard StabiliTrak. Trailering capacity
is increased for '05, and now is available with the six.
for '05, Cadillac has made some subtle changes both inside
and out. A major plus is the addition of magnetic ride control
for rear-drive, a GM suspension phenomenon that adds rigidity
when more definition is needed in handling maneuvers. Privacy
glass a shade or two darker adds mystique.
that starts in the high 30s, including $695 destination,
easily matches the European hierarchy it was designed to
obliterate. A wide array of stickers tease any taste, topping
out at $57,750 for the luxury package SRX with all available
bells and whistles including seating boosted from five to
seven. A most popular, well-appointed rear-drive V6, with
wood trim among amenities, is $41,675. Adding a sunroof
and 18-inch wheels puts it in the competitive $44,000 range.
a subtle change in exterior color tells the SRX tale the
best of all. "Cashmere" is gone, replaced by "Sand
Storm." Somehow we feel that better exemplifies how
SRX might feel to the competition.