Used 2013 Cadillac SRX SUV Review & Ratings | Edmunds
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Used 2013 Cadillac SRX SUV Review

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2013 Cadillac SRX SUV

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Edmunds Summary Review of the 2013 Cadillac SRX SUV

  • Some significant interior and feature upgrades make the 2013 Cadillac SRX even more of a compelling luxury crossover choice.

  • Pros

    Abundant features; capable handling; classy cabin design; smart infotainment interface.

  • Cons

    Limited backseat headroom; compromised outward visibility.

  • What's New for 2013

    The 2013 Cadillac SRX receives a new electronics interface. Called CUE, this touchscreen system operates via voice command or smartphone-like hand gestures. The 2013 SRX also has new safety features, an active noise-cancellation system to reduce wind and road noise, and subtly restyled front and rear fascias.

Full Edmunds Expert Review: 2013 Cadillac SRX SUV

What's New for 2013

The 2013 Cadillac SRX receives a new electronics interface. Called CUE, this touchscreen system operates via voice command or smartphone-like hand gestures. The 2013 SRX also has new safety features, an active noise-cancellation system to reduce wind and road noise, and subtly restyled front and rear fascias.

Introduction

You'll probably be surprised to learn that the best-selling model line under the Cadillac umbrella is the Cadillac SRX crossover. GM's luxury-vehicle division has worked diligently at making the formerly forgettable SRX utility into a serious player since its redesign a couple years ago, and the 2013 Cadillac SRX is unquestionably the best version yet.

For 2013 the Cadillac SRX receives a revised interior centered around the introduction of the brand's "Cadillac User Experience" (CUE) infotainment interface. The heart of the CUE system is an interactive screen with gesture controls similar to those that made Apple products so ubiquitous. If you're a fan of simpler controls and a minimalist aesthetic, it's all for the better. Probably no interface approach is ever going to be perfect for everyone, but CUE is quite effective for many tasks. Also, adopting CUE has definitely cleaned up what before was a virtual shotgun blast of buttons on the SRX's center stack.

Meanwhile, Cadillac isn't standing still with the SRX's safety profile, either. The new-for-2013 Driver Assist and Driver Awareness packages introduce automatic-braking technologies that help to reduce the chance of low-speed impacts. The 2013 SRX also joins Cadillac's XTS and ATS sedans in using the new, vibrating Safety Alert Seat to warn that the car's sensors have detected an impending dangerous situation. The optional wiggle-my-seat warning system might not appeal to everyone (it can be turned off), but it is a unique approach.

These upgrades for 2013 certainly make the SRX even more appealing. But this makeover can't totally eradicate a couple of this luxury crossover's basic shortcomings. The SRX is markedly heavier than just about any crossover, meaning performance and fuel economy aren't as competitive as they could be. Also the SRX's sharply creased styling makes for cramped headroom and some challenging sight lines.

Still, Cadillac's focus on upgrading the 2013 SRX's interior and slightly freshening its sheet metal has largely put the SRX on equal footing with other top compact luxury crossovers. We do suggest shopping around some, perhaps taking a look at the less expensive 2013 Acura RDX, the sportier 2013  BMW X3 or the roomier 2013 Volvo XC60. Even so, though it was once an also-ran to the best luxury crossovers, the 2013 Cadillac SRX now deserves serious consideration.

Body Styles, Trim Levels, and Options

The 2013 Cadillac SRX is a compact luxury crossover SUV available in four trim levels, including Base, Luxury, Performance and Premium.

The base model comes equipped with 18-inch alloy wheels, automatic headlights, roof rails, keyless entry, remote engine start, dual-zone automatic climate control, premium vinyl upholstery, an eight-way power driver seat, a reclining and 60/40 split-folding rear seat, cruise control and a tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel. The CUE infotainment-control system with an 8-inch display is also standard, as are OnStar, Bluetooth phone and audio connectivity and an eight-speaker sound system with a CD player, satellite and HD radio, two USB ports and an auxiliary audio jack.

Move up to the SRX Luxury and you get front and rear parking sensors, blind-spot and cross-traffic alert, a rearview camera, rain-sensing wipers, a panoramic sunroof, keyless ignition/entry and a power liftgate with adjustable opening height. Inside the cabin there's leather upholstery, adjustable thigh support for the driver seat, an eight-way power passenger seat, heated front seats and steering wheel, driver memory functions, power-adjustable pedals, an auto-dimming rearview mirror, interior accent lighting and a cargo management system. A voice-activated navigation system and a 10-speaker Bose surround-sound audio system are optional.

Optional on the Luxury trim level is the optional Driver Awareness package -- with forward-collision alert, lane departure warning and the safety alert driver seat. Also available is the Driver Assist package, which incorporates adaptive cruise control, automatic collision preparation and automatic braking.

The SRX Performance model adds 20-inch alloy wheels, a sport-tuned suspension, adaptive dampers (all-wheel drive only), variable-effort power steering, adaptive xenon headlights, foglamps, the navigation system and the Bose surround-sound audio system.

The top-of-the-line SRX Premium adds the Driver Awareness package plus a few extra goodies that include tri-zone climate control, ventilated front seats, heated rear seats and rear seat audio controls.

A towing package and a rear-seat entertainment system with dual seatback-mounted screens are available on all but the base model.

Powertrains and Performance

The engine choice for the 2013 Cadillac SRX is simple, since every model features a 3.6-liter V6 that generates 308 horsepower and 265 pound-feet of torque. A six-speed automatic is the only transmission offered. Front-wheel drive is standard, but all-wheel drive is available for any SRX trim. When Edmunds tested a front-drive SRX Performance, it ran from zero to 60 mph in 7.1 seconds, an average time for compact luxury crossovers.

In terms of fuel economy, the SRX's heft helps put it slightly below average, with an EPA-estimated 17 mpg city/24 mpg highway and 19 mpg combined for front-drive models and 16/23/18 for AWD. There is a switchable Eco driving mode that Cadillac claims can improve fuel economy by up to 1 mpg.

Safety

The 2013 Cadillac SRX comes standard with antilock disc brakes, stability and traction control, front side airbags and side curtain airbags. The OnStar system includes automatic crash notification, on-demand roadside assistance, remote door unlocking, stolen vehicle assistance and turn-by-turn navigation. Standard on most SRXs are blind-spot monitoring and cross-traffic alert systems.

The optional Driver Awareness package (standard on the SRX Premium) adds forward-collision alert, lane departure warning and the safety alert driver seat. The latter vibrates on the left or right side of the seat, based on which direction a potential hazard looms. The optional Driver Assist package features automatic collision preparation and automatic low-speed braking, both when going forward and when in reverse.

In Edmunds brake testing, a front-drive SRX Performance came to a stop from 60 mph in 120 feet, a good number in this class. In crash testing by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, the SRX received the top rating of "Good" in the frontal-offset, side-impact and roof strength tests.

Interior Design and Special Features

Fitting Cadillac's CUE infotainment-control system redefined the 2013 SRX interior to become one of the most interesting and enabling in any luxury crossover. Gone is the touchscreen that rose from the dash and always looked like something of an afterthought. Gone is the sea of buttons -- not all logically arranged -- spread out over the SRX's center stack. In their place is a crisp and clear LCD screen that offers mostly intuitive control over the audio, phone (and other electronic devices) and climate control functions.

Amazingly, there now are just four buttons: power, volume up/volume down and "home." Most of the functions can be voice-commanded, but the CUE screen responds to familiar touch commands such as swipes and pinches -- and includes tactile feedback to let you know when a command has been accepted. The effect of removing the center stack's button clutter is further enhanced by the ability to reconfigure the information in the instrument cluster to a variety of driver preferences. No longer are you locked into looking at the same speedometer, tachometer and ancillary gauges.

The visual impact from the CUE cleanup and the new instrument-cluster capabilities helps to impart a serious high-tech overtone for what already was one of the better luxury crossover interiors. Some new interior color combinations lend an airy vibe and the high-quality look and feel of the SRX's interior trim is highlighted by generally good fit and finish. We wish some of the wood accents didn't look quite so polished, but the overall impression is an excellent blend of technology-meets-luxury.

There's ample (if not overly generous) room for four adults, although the roof line -- particularly if the optional panoramic sunroof is in place -- definitely can pinch those in the rear. Cargo room is about average for the class: 30 cubic feet behind the rear seats and 61 cubic feet with both sections of the 60/40-split rear seatbacks folded down.

Driving Impressions

The driving dynamics of the 2013 Cadillac SRX are as all-around responsive as most would want, with the 3.6-liter V6 handling the job of moving the SRX with assurance in most situations, although this crossover's plumpness means acceleration is best described as satisfying rather than exhilarating. The six-speed automatic transmission is a good companion, though, and fairly unobtrusively keeps the V6 ready for response, although downshifts sometimes can be slower than you'd like.

You're likely to be surprised by the crispness of the 2013 SRX's handling and cornering demeanor. Many luxury crossovers tend to be oriented toward the soft side, sacrificing some nimbleness for a more comfortable ride, but the SRX doesn't really require such trade-offs. The standard suspension tuning allows for responsive cornering, while those seeking serious back-road ability will find the quicker steering and adaptive dampers that come with the all-wheel-drive model's sport suspension an almost perfect blend of sport-oriented cornering capability and acceptable ride comfort.

What Others Are Saying

Customer Reviews

Average Consumer Rating (See all 10 reviews) Write a Review

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

A great little suv

by on
Vehicle: 2013 Cadillac SRX Performance 4dr SUV (3.6L 6cyl 6A)

A great over the road car.... Good mileage, 24-26 highway and 20-21 city... Comfortable for 400 mile runs and great looking.... It drives great with very little correction needed to keep it straight.



11 of 12 people found this review helpful

Cadillac srx review

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Vehicle: 2013 Cadillac SRX Performance 4dr SUV AWD (3.6L 6cyl 6A)

We were looking for a late model used CTS sedan when we came across this 2013 SRX Performance model. The car was a lease return and had only 11,300 miles on it. The car is also Certified, meaning we get an extended warranty for no additional cost. The Cadillac salesman was very helpful and came down to meet our offer without making us go through annoying back and forth with a sales manager. Overall, a very good experience. The car is primarily for my wife and met her requirement for AWD and outward visibility. Having a very positive experience with the 3.6 engine in my older CTS, I was pleased to see that this car had the same motor. This motor has proven its performance and reliability for more than 10 years on tens of thousands of GM cars and trucks, including the Chevy Camaro. After more than two months, we are very pleased with the car. We enjoy the XM radio on the CUE system and the back up camera and parking assist features work flawlessly. The car even brakes automatically to prevent backing into a bush (or worse). While it does not afford an overly generous amount of space in the rear cargo area, few SUV's of this size do. The auto power lift gate opens the door well out of head bumping range and is adjustable should you prefer less of a lift height. The front seats are very supportive and appear to be made of quality materials and craftsmanship. The heated power seats will adjust to any reasonable position and provide very good support. The sun roof is very impressive, opening up directly overhead for front passengers and having a fixed roof window for those in the rear. Overall a very comfortable and solid ride car. The performance is the best part of this car. It goes fast and shifts authoritatively. The car will carve turns at speeds twice that of those posted with no noticeable body roll. Steering is taught and braking superb. Acceleration is outstanding for a two ton SUV. It should be noted that the Performance model does require that you give up that softer, quieter Cadillac ride to a noticeable degree. If that's a concern, you should consider one of their world class sedans. We are very happy with this car and would buy it again. If you're concerned about buying a Cadillac, you needn't be. Cadillac has come a long way in ten years and is making great cars. And you will have the added benefit of knowing that you are supporting an American company.



4 of 4 people found this review helpful

Not quite there

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Vehicle: 2013 Cadillac SRX Luxury 4dr SUV (3.6L 6cyl 6A)

The SRX handles well, especially on highways; but visibility is an issue. The rear view mirror is too small. Probably the worst I have dealt with but I suspect the size is such because of the side "pillars" which can obscure your view. So you really need those side mirrors that light up to warn you when a car is passing. Having the defensive driving add in helps. Plus my model has a driver's seat that vibrates should you start to drift into another lane. On the highway I have managed to get 24 mpg. The CUE system needs some major improvements as it is totally non-intuitive nor can apps be added to it which I believe is a big mistake. And the HD radio can drift which makes it difficult to hold on to a station. Storage in the rear compartment is excellent. No spare tire, just a can of stuff that you use to halt a leak/puncture as you then limp in for help.



3 of 17 people found this review helpful

Srx-disapointed

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Vehicle: 2013 Cadillac SRX Luxury 4dr SUV (3.6L 6cyl 6A)

I am very disappointed in my SRX. It is uncomfortable, visibility is poor, road noise is high, the transmission shifts rough, and the CUE system is difficult to use in traffic.



13 of 13 people found this review helpful

First cadillac

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Vehicle: 2013 Cadillac SRX Performance 4dr SUV (3.6L 6cyl 6A)

'We bought this Performance fwd model for the Mrs' daily "around town" car about six months ago. Our friends and family love its snappy looks which draws a lot of attention. It's exciting to drive and ride in. Powerful engine/transmission drive line. Sporty handling, comfortable seats and ride. Lots of room in front, but legroom in rear is tight when front seat(s) are all the way back. Beautiful, luxurious, quiet interior. The CUE system? Well, just like our iPhones it's a fun challenge, and we are conquering both. We wouldn't want to do without either.



21 of 22 people found this review helpful

Spare tire vs tire repair kit

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Vehicle: 2013 Cadillac SRX Performance 4dr SUV (3.6L 6cyl 6A)

a metal plate struck one of the rear tires. got a flat tire. when called for roadside assistance (RSA), I was asked do your car came with a donut spare tire or with a compresor repair kit? To my surprise, it came with the C-repair kit ;-( It was a nightmare!!! RSA was no helpful, a tow truck was going to take 1.5 to show up,...4hrs later I went home, left the car in my work place parking overnight. How come when the dealer sell you the car does not tell you about the NO spare tire ;-( This is ridiculous!!! I am so disappointed that a so expensive luxury car does not come with a spare tire. Today the dealer is going to hear me... sorry, I am really upsep ;-(



Talk About The 2013 SRX

2013 Cadillac SRX Discussions See all Started By

Edmunds.com
Edmunds.com
09-26-2012
2013 Cadillac SRX Gets Tech Upgrade...


Edmunds.com
Edmunds.com
09-27-2013
Seven vehicles received top marks in a new Insurance Institute for Highway Safety crash avoidance test. They include the 2013 Cadillac ATS and SRX; the 2013 Volvo S60 and XC60; the 2013 Subaru Legacy ...


CarMan@Edmunds
CarMan@Edmunds
08-31-2005
Hi everyone. Please use the following discussion to post any questions that you have about leasing a Cadillac SRX. Thanks....



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