The 2015 BMW X5 M and 2016 Mercedes-AMG GLE63 are proof that there is a healthy market for high-performance luxury SUVs, but don’t expect Cadillac’s upcoming 2017 Cadillac XT5 crossover to flex its muscles too much. During the recent launch of the 2016 Cadillac CTS-V, Cadillac President Johan de Nysschen told reporters that the brand has no plans of developing a sportier XT5-V model.

Looking at the spec sheets, it isn’t hard to see why Cadillac isn’t interested in making an XT5-V. The BMW X5 M is a beast of an SUV with 567 horsepower and a 0-60 time of just four seconds, and the upcoming Mercedes-AMG GLE63 could be even better with an available S model that produces 585 horsepower. And lest we forget about the 550-horsepower 2015 Range Rover Sport SVR. Even if Cadillac used the 2016 Cadillac ATS-V’s twin-turbo V-6, that engine is only rated at 464 horsepower.

In lieu of an all-out V-tuned XT5 crossover, though, Cadillac could still be planning a Vsport model with a sportier appearance and a slight bump in handling, including the likely addition of magnetic suspension dampers. The Cadillac Vsport trim has become similar to the Audi S line products in this regard, and Mercedes is even launching similar models with its new AMG Sport lineup. The 2017 Cadillac XT5 is expected to make its global debut next spring at the 2016 New York Auto Show.

Similarly, de Nysschen also hinted at a Vsport model being added to the Escalade lineup. A bump in the 2015 Cadillac Escalade’s 420-horsepower doesn’t seem like too much of a stretch, and the big SUV’s styling would look menacing with a few performance-inspired styling cues.

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Why it matters

Although enthusiasts might be disappointed by this announcement, it is actually a really good sign for Cadillac. Like the 2014 Cadillac SRX crossover it replaces, the 2017 Cadillac XT5 will have a front-wheel-drive layout with available all-wheel drive, which certainly wouldn’t be able to offer the performance to rival Mercedes and BMW. In this regard, it’s commendable that Cadillac is reportedly willing to not enter such a segment rather than being completely uncompetitive.

2017 Cadillac XT5

2014 Cadillac SRX Exterior
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You can read our speculative review of the XT5 here.

Source: Automotive News

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