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Cadillac XLR

(2003 - )  Rating

Cadillac XLR

The Cadillac XLR is fast, solid and handles nicely

Engine Engine power Fuel consumption Fuel type 0-100 (0-60) Top speed
4.6 i V8 32V 325 hp 11.2 l/100km Petrol 5.9 s 250 km/h
4.6 i V8 32V XLR-V 443 hp ? Petrol 4.7 s 250 km/h

Body type Roadster
Number of doors 2
Number of seats 2
Engine position Front
Driven wheels Rear
Length 4 513 mm
Width 1 836 mm
Height 1 279 mm
Wheelbase 2 685 mm
Ground clearance 168 mm
Weight (normal) 1 690 kg
Weight (max) ?
Boot space (min) 125 l
Boot space (max) 328 l
Fuel capacity 68 l


   The Cadillac XLR is produced since 2003.

   It comes with a 4.6-liter engine, delivering 325 hp. The XLR weights less than it's closest rival - the Mercedes-Benz SL, but has even stronger engine. This Cadillac certainly isn't short on acceleration, but some power is absorbed by a 5-speed automatic gearbox. Despite that the XLR still has plenty of low-down pull to coupe with long gearing. It seems that 325 hp were not enough for the car designers, so another model was introduced. The XLR-V, comes with a supercharged engine, delivering 443 hp. This car is outright fast without any doubt and accelerates form 0 to 100 km/h in under five seconds. The XLR-V is coupled with a six-speed automatic transmission.

   The Cadillac XLR has a number of electronic aids to saddle it's huge power. Thanks to that despite it's bulk, the Cadillac has little body roll going through the corners. The XLR has an incredibly stiff structure and sophisticated springs and dampers, but the ride is firm on most of the surfaces. This car comes with a speed-sensitive power steering.

   The Cadillac XLR's engine sounds great when it is revved hard, but it's noise fades into the background at the motorway speed. Wind noise is noticeable above 120 km/h with the roof up, but there is plenty of wind roar when the roof is down. Big tyres also kick up some road noise.

   The XLR is produced only in limited numbers and it is rather too expensive. It shares a number of components with the Chevrolet Corvette, but outside the USA it's servicing is pricey and resale values are weak.

   At least you know what you're paying for. The XLR unlike most of the American cars is well built and it's quality shouldn't disappoint anyone. Wood and aluminum are nicely fitted together, while leather and other materials have an expensive look. The head-up display of vital information on the wind screen helps a lot, but many of the controls are not intuitive to use.

   The Cadillac XLR is cramped for it's size. Headroom is limited, while the forward view is limited because of the low windscreen header rail.

   Car's folding metal roof is similar to the Mercedes SL, but it's design is not as sophisticated. With the roof down there is pathetic luggage space. Even with the roof up shallow floor limits boot usability, considering that this car already comes without a spare wheel.

   The Cadillac XLR comes with four airbags, anti-lock brakes and stability control. There is also a clever cruise control, that acts like some sort of passive safety aid.

   The XLR comes only in one trim variant. The only one decision you can make buying it is it's color. Standard trim has everything what you can expect from a high-performance roadster, including leather upholstery, satellite navigation and much more.

   Production of the Cadillac XLR still continues.


   Advantages: Fast solid and handles nicely. This coupe or convertible also comes with generous equipment level.

   Disadvantages: Too expensive and it is not offered with a left-hand drive. Limited boot space.

   Verdict: High performance well matched with everyday usability.

   Also consider: Mercedes-Benz SL, Lexus SC.


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Cadillac XLR

Cadillac XLR

Cadillac XLR

Cadillac XLR

Cadillac XLR

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