2013 Cadillac XTS FWD Platinum Review


2013 Cadillac XTS

When I heard that I would be reviewing a 2013 Cadillac XTS FWD Platinum, I was pretty darned excited. When I mentioned it to my husband, he was equally ecstatic. In fact, he drove the car as much as I did. It was thoroughly enjoyed by both of us.

Cadillac XTS

cadillac xts,review

cadillac xts rear view

My thoughts:
First things first – this car is a beauty. I have never owned or driven a Cadillac before, but now I know why everyone raves about them. I remember when I was a kid, we used to “oooh” and “ahhh” every time a Cadillac passed us. I wanted one!

The Cadillac XTS that I reviewed was pretty darned fancy! I have to admit that it took me awhile to figure a few things out, but I quickly got the hang of it.  It offers a keyless entry and start system (push start and stop) as a standard feature, as so many cars do have these days.

cadillac xts

The 2013 Cadillac XTS was the smoothest ride I have ever experienced. The moment I first sat in it I knew I would love it. The leather seats are were so comfortable – I didn’t really want to get out.  The seats were a luxurious white leather (as was most of the interior) which heated, if desired, and it was just dreamy.

cadillac xts

All of the controls were conveniently located, and within easy reach.  The stereo could be controlled right from the steering wheel (love this feature), as well as the bluetooth controls.

cadillac xts,stereo,review

There were so many speakers and the sound was amazing.  I was intrigued with this little speaker right on the seat:

cadillax xts,speaker,seat

Let’s talk speed!  As you know, I am the Eighty MPH Mom.  That means that everything I do is fast (well, with the exception of a few things).  One thing I love is fast cars, and this beauty is definitely quick.  One light touch on the gas pedal and I was on my way.

I was very impressed with the touch-screen navigation system  and had a bit of fun playing around with it.  The whole “media center”, as I like to call it, was a blast, but it had so many features that I didn’t get a chance to play with them all.  Another feature that I think is a must-have on every car is the dual climate control.  Since I am middle-aged and frequently experience hot flashes, I tend to keep the interior temperature set at “arctic”.  The rest of my family, does not necessarily appreciate this. My teenage daughter thought it was pretty neat that she could choose her own temperature when she was sitting in the passenger seat.

cadillac xts passenger side

One feature that I did not especially like (and I don’t know the name of it), but your speed is reflected onto the windshield instead of displayed traditionally on the dashboard.  I found it to be a bit distracting.

EPA Fuel Economy – 17 city, 28 highway.

The hubby’s point of view:
Recently at the request of Eighty MPH Mom, I had the opportunity to drive the new Cadillac 2013 XTS Luxury Sedan. I have mentioned in past reviews that I am more of an old-school performance car kind of guy. However when I saw the Sapphire Blue metallic XTS in the driveway, I found it hard to say no. I have driven a few older Cadillacs in the past, and while I found them comfortable, I hardly would have considered them fun to drive. In the past I had found them to be under powered and the handling characteristics less than desirable.

As I sat and looked at this car, however, I could tell this one would be different. The XTS takes it styling cues from Cadillac’s recent desire to step into the 21st century. The cars lines are as contemporary as they are visually appealing. This vehicle came with the optional 20” platinum collection wheels which set the exterior looks off nicely. As I walked around the car, I also noticed that the beautiful paint was complimented by the excellent fit and finish of all the body panels. Every seam was flush and the panel gaps looked perfect.

This attention to detail continued on when I looked under the hood. While I might have preferred to see the 556 HP supercharged V-8 that comes in the CTS-V, I saw one of the cleanest engine compartments I have ever seen. The XTS comes equipped with the 304 HP 3.6L direct-injection V6. While I am not a huge V-6 fan, 300+ HP is nothing to scoff at.

I did a little reading and found that the XTS comes with Cadillac’s dual-mode Magnetic Ride Control. I figured if it was good enough technology for Ferrari to buy it from Cadillac I could certainly give it a try.

cadillac xts back seat
When I sat in the car, I felt like Ferris Bueller sitting in Cameron’s father’s car. I felt compelled to look around and make sure the luxury car police were not going to put the grab on me for being in a much nicer car than I should be allowed to be in. Needless to say, the seats were really comfortable and supportive, and of course since it is a Cadillac, the interior was nothing short of first class with lots of leather and wood. There was also “CUE Information and Media Control System” which allows you to talk on the phone, get directions to your destination, play your MP3s and possibly pilot the space shuttle at the same time. I’m not much of a techno kind of guy, but suffice to say it has a really nice sound system.

2013 cadillac xts tires,review,

So when Eighty MPH Mom wasn’t looking, I took the Cadillac XTS out for a spin. The car has an incredibly smooth ride in normal driving which one would expect from a Cadillac. But what I was not expecting was how effortlessly the suspension of the car coped with a more aggressive driving style. After getting a feel for the car, I turned off as many of the computer controlled gizmos as I could, selected “sport mode” and started playing with the “Tap shift control” on the 6-speed automatic transmission. One of my gripes about front wheel drive cars is “torque steer”, that annoying desire of a front wheel drive car to make a turn when you accelerate. Cadillac has done an excellent job of nearly eliminating “torque steer” in the XTS. Except under the most aggressive of acceleration scenarios, you wouldn’t even know the car was front wheel drive. The transmission shifted very smoothly and accurately making the manual mode of the automatic transmission almost as much fun as driving a manual transmission. I pushed the XTS through some corners, did a little aggressive accelerating and braking and it handled better than many smaller performance minded cars I have driven.

I have never been much for luxury sedans, however this is one of the nicest vehicles I have ever driven. It was spacious, comfortable, very well appointed and performed at a level much higher than one would expect.

*We received this car, free of charge, to test drive for several days.  All opinions are our own.


About Author

Jennifer Regan is the owner/editor-in-chief of Eighty MPH Mom, a family-friendly blog. She is active in Brand Ambassadorships and campaigns, and is active in social media, helping brands promote!


  1. We have the 2009 Platinum Escalade truck ….and its freaking awesome! Although I hate driving it because the mister is so picky with it that Im afraid i might scratch it somehow ..lol

  2. this looks amazing! what a sweet ride. i drove a cadillac when my grampa and i would go on dates. he had me drive – man, that was a sweet ride. sounds like a fun week for you guys!

  3. Oh. My. I am soooo jealous! I have never driven a Cadillac but would love to go for a spin. It’s definitely one of those luxury cars that I grew up loving. LOL.

  4. I love my Beauty (yes, my car has a name!) and will keep her for a while yet, but have been getting a new car itch. Cadillac is on my list, surprisingly enough since I am still stuck in that Japanese or German cars rule mentality! I love the Cadillac “faces” – would be curious to know the price range of the xts. I saw a 2 seater cadillac I fell in love with on sight but it was a bit out of the price range starting at about 80K 😉

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