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2012 Cadillac SRX Review By John Heilig

2012 Cadillac SRX (select to view enlarged photo)
2012 Cadillac SRX

Cadillac Specs, Comparisons, Prices and Reviews - 1997-2012 Cadillac Buyers Guide

By John Heilig

Model: 2012 Cadillac SRX
Engine: 3.6-liter V6
Horsepower/Torque: 308 hp @ 6,800 rpm/265 lb.-ft. @ 2,400 rpm
Transmission: 6-speed automatic
Wheelbase: 110.5 in.
Length x Width x Height: 190.3 x 75.2 x 65.7 in.
Tires: P235/55R20
Cargo: 29.2/61.1 cu. ft. (behind 3rd row/3rd row folded)
Economy: 17 mpg city/24 mpg highway/16.2 mpg test
Fuel capacity: 21.0 gal.
Curb Weight: 4,277 lbs.
Sticker: $36,000 (base)

Top 5 Reasons to Buy the 2012 Cadillac SRX:
1. Very nice package
2. Good performance for a CUV
3. Cadillac comfort in a SUV package

4. Excellent heater
5. Good handling

The Bottom Line: Cadillac has expanded into different areas. The SRX is a crossover utility vehicle that breaks new ground for the luxury American carmaker. The SRX’s performance is in a league with all its competitors, and it’s the only American nameplate in the group.

There are those of us who don’t think a car is a Cadillac unless it has fins, or at least pseudo fins. The CSX, for example, has vertical taillights that look like fins, so that passes.

But the SRX has real fins. True, they’re the top end of the taillights, but they are small fins.

The SRX is more Cadillac than just fins. It has a V6 engine with a smooth 6-speed automatic transmission and is a physical part of the CSX family with its grille shape and angular fenders.

We drove the SRX in some horrendous weather. It snowed in October in our town and environs. With the leaves still on the trees, many branches were overstressed and broke. The branches that were near electric wires took down the wires, shutting down electricity for a lot of people, including us. So we were out of lights and heat for more than two days.

But with the SRX we were able to drive around and survey all the damage. We also were able to stay warm in the SRX and charge our cell phones. We then drove, in warmth, over to Starbucks and charged up the laptop. All we really needed was a 110-volt outlet in the SRX for complete control, but you can t be too piggy.

The SRX has an excellent navigation/radio screen that can get HVAC insets if you need them. I also liked the fact that you can lower the screen so it’s less obtrusive. All you can see then is the song that’s playing on SiriusXM.

Interior styling is very Cadillac, with a Camaro twist. As in the Camaro, there’s a light spear, except in the SRX it runs from the seats across the dash and back to the seats on the other side. In the SRX it’s also not as bright as in the Camaro.

Ride quality in the SRX is very good. It isn’t boaty, but it isn’t harsh either. Because of our unique situation, we put a lot of local miles on the SRX, but we did add enough highway miles to judge ride quality pretty well.

The brakes are excellent. Again, in our damage tour, I was looking at a downed pole on the side of the road when my wife screamed “Stop!” The SRX stopped inches from a downed wire that had no waning around it.

Visibility is good all around, although the rear headrests do intrude on rearward vision. The front seats are comfortable, but firm. There is minimal side support.

In the rear there is good leg room with a flat floor in the center.

Cargo capacity is excellent, and doubles in volume when you lower the rear seat backs. There’s also a small box under the cargo floor. Four tie-downs in the cargo area help to secure anything back there.

My favorite feature was in the seat belts. The SRX is one of the few cars I’ve driven where the seat belt was always where I wanted it to be when I sat in the car. I didn’t have to twist it or fiddle with it before I put it on.

There’s a fairly standard instrument panel. One unique feature is that the turn signal arrows also light up the surround on the speedometer, so you get a double notice that the light is on.

The Cadillac SRX competes favorably with the Lexus RX350, Audi Q5, BMW X3 and Mercedes GLX, and it does it well. Unlike the others, it is blessed with modern Cadillac design, which isn’t too bad.

2011 The Auto Page