2012 CADILLAC SRX REVIEW
Jagged Little Jewel of a Pill
This article is from our archives and has not been updated and integrated with our "new" site yet... Even so, it's still awesome - so keep reading!
Published on Wed, Oct 19, 2011
By: The LACar Editorial Staff
By John-Fredrik Wright The entire Cadillac line-up nowadays looks like it’s from the future. Not in a bad way, but this might be an acquired taste. Very bold exterior lines, including brake lights that protrude many inches from the car, and a very space-age looking overall appearance accentuates the Caddy’s of today. Compared to an older Cadillac, where the styling might still be called just a little unique with abruptly ending lines, the sheer jagged edges that now adorn the vehicles definitely are a large step forward. Or in some direction anyway. I happen to like what the new Cadillacs have become, but I know many who have yet to adjust. But let’s focus, shall we, on a particular model. The Cadillac SRX, the crossover of the family, bridging the gap between those who don’t want the hugeness of an Escalade, but still want a hint of SUV. This market (the crossover market) has become fairly saturated. Now there are good contenders just from GM in the mix (think Chevrolet Equinox), and if you want to upsize your crossover there are options for that as well (think Chevrolet Traverse and GMC Acadia). The latter straddles the line between SUV and crossover. A true SUV more your style? The Tahoe/Yukon may be more of what you are looking for.
But back to the SRX. Given that the SRX is from the top of the GM hierarchy, the SRX comes with high expectations and large shoes to fill. And the SRX does a good job at filling those shoes. Hopefully, you like the styling of the exterior, because it carries over very nicely into the interior. The leather has that luxurious feel to it, and the double stitching does its part as well. Seats are comfortable throughout (I expect nothing less from a Cadillac). However, the back seat is not going to be accommodating for three adults for any long drives. For two, maybe, given that the seats are comfortable and the ride is smooth. The exterior of space-age looks is coupled with the feeling of sitting in a spaceship once you’re inside. The interior light that alerts the driver that the turn signals are on are accentuated with a large spaceship looking light that blinks green. At first, this is a neat feature, but I was a little apprehensive to how bright this was going to light up the interior when driving in the dark. Fear not, however, someone at Cadillac thought of this as well. The huge interior blinkers do not turn on when driving in the dark. And while on that note; I know there are a couple of drivers out there who could use a large signal so that they stop leaving their turn signal on.
Driving-wise, the SRX has plenty of power. Almost too much, it seems. The car has a hard time keeping from squeaking the front tires when accelerating from a stand-still. The automatic transmission is a little jerky, with rough shifts and rather harsh downshifts. I suppose this is the power of the engine showing its true guts. Then again, when driving a little more civilized, the engine and the transmission seem to get along fine. And in Sport mode, they seem to put their differences aside as well, for the time being at least. Driving this vehicle can at times be a little intimidating. The third windows, seen from the outside, make this car look awesome, but from the inside it creates the mother of all blind spots. This is the kind of car where a blind-spot-warning-system would be a great idea to add on. To assist while reversing, the back-up camera is a must. However, I would like for it to turn on faster when I engage reverse, and preferably stay on for a couple of seconds even if I shift to drive. This would be a great help when parallel parking, and not only Cadillac should take note of this; a very select few manufactures have this feature.
So, for a crossover in an already crowded segment, the SRX does its thing pretty well. Driving it will make you get used to a little SUV yaw (front-to-back motion), and mashing the accelerator will make front tire noises that usually don’t come from a large car like this (our test vehicle is front wheel drive). Fun features include the adjustable foot pedals, something usually found in much larger trucks. The Bluetooth is easy to use and the OnStar system is always appreciated. The one downside with the navigation system: We can’t use it while the car is in motion. This seems to be a GM thing (among some other manufacturers), and I guess it also increases the usage of the OnStar system, which instead is voice activated. For more information on Cadillac products, go to cadillac.com
SPECIFICATIONS Name of vehicle: 2012 Cadillac SRX FWD Performance Collection Price: $43,530 (base) $45,800 (as tested with entertainment system) EPA fuel economy rating: 17 mpg (city) 24 mpg (highway) Engine size and type: 3.6L SIDI DOHC V6 VVT Horsepower: 308 @ 6800 rpm Torque: 265 pound-feet @ 2400 rpm Transmission type: 6-Speed Automatic Transmission with performance shifting and Driver Shift Control Drive configuration: Front wheel drive Steering (type): Power steering, rack-and-pinion Suspension (front and rear): Four-wheel independent suspension system. Rear Linked H-Arm Brakes: 4-wheel anti-lock, 4-wheel vented disc Dimensions: Length: 190.3 in Width: 75.2 in Height: 65.7 in Curb weight: 4277 lbs