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General Motors South Africa has accelerated the introduction of its Cadillac range with the simultaneous launch of the SRX model together with the BLS sedan. The SRX, initially slated to debut later in the year, is immediately available alongside the new mid-size Cadillac BLS sedan.

The Cadillac SRX is one of a new breed of luxury SUVs, a genuine all-rounder, combining the advantages of two vehicle classes that are equally at home in suburban and rural motoring conditions where all wheel drive provides a welcome degree of extra flexibility. The SRX provides a combination of a sporty exterior, excellent driving dynamics and on-road safety expected of a luxury station wagon with the off-road capabilities and interior space of a Sport Utility Vehicle.

Unmistakeable Cadillac styling

Cadillac styling cues immediately identify the SRX as a member of the Cadillac family, albeit slightly emboldened. The strong family resemblance derives from Cadillac signature vertical headlights, classis Cadillac grille, and ‘V’ shaped front end. This is the first ever crossover vehicle from Cadillac. Its introduction has placed the company in a position to compete in an all new segment of the market. In March 2006 the Cadillac SRX was named as “Best Luxury SUV” by the influential Car and Driver magazine in the United States.

Based on GM’s renowned Sigma large car architecture, as designated by the ‘S’ in SRX (the ‘R is for reconfigurable, and the ‘X’ for crossover), the SRX is designed to deliver excellent performance and ride characteristics. A near 50:50 weight distribution, low centre of gravity, outstanding powertrain, independent suspension all round and a host of vehicle stability technologies contribute to making the SRX a luxury SUV vehicle that is, at its core, fun to drive.

Ample space and comfort

The SRX interior provides space for seven in comfort in a 2/3/2 seating configuration with a luggage area behind the third row of seats. When not in use this third row of seats can be stowed in a compact form below the luggage area in the rear of the vehicle at the touch of a button. The second row of seats has a 60:40 split and fold down feature that extends the luggage area to a cavernous 1960 litre capacity for those occasions when utility space takes precedence over passenger carrying capability. The seats in the Cadillac SRX are arranged in a theatre style with the second row mounted five centimetres higher than the front seats and the third row 12 centimetres higher again to allow for enhanced feeling of spaciousness and excellent all round vision.

To further extend the functionality of the third row of seats Cadillac offers the “Ultraview” option as an on cost extra. This adds a power glass sunroof to the specification for an open air driving experience.

Seat trim is full leather in either Grey with Ebony accents or Cashmere with Cocoa accents.  The plush leather trim is complimented by wood grain trim detail. Both front seats are heated and offer eight-way power adjustment with memory. Armrests are provided for both front and rear seats with dual cup-holders mounted in the rear armrest.

Superb ergonomics and elegance define the Cadillac SRX interior. Soft-touch surfaces and flush mounted controls are combined with “cut-and-sew” technique that combines advanced technology with craftsmanship for surface coverings such as the instrument panel, centre console and door trims. These are cut, sewn and wrapped mostly by hand for a superbly tailored appearance.

Air conditioning features automatic dual-zone climate control with individual settings for the driver and front passenger. The rear compartment is also airconditioned.

Convenience features include power windows, a power operated tailgate and power operated third row of seats. Exterior side mirrors are power operated, heated and have a fold away feature. In addition to the wide range of seat adjustment for the driver, the pedals have power adjustment with memory for the brake and accelerator pedal positions.

Electronic park assist at the rear of the vehicle assists in reversing and parking manoeuvres by providing both audible and visual warnings. High intensity discharge Xenon headlamps with washer system provide for excellent night vision. Both front and rear fog lamps are provided as is a wash wipe system with intermittent setting for the rear windscreen.

A BOSE RDS radio/CD combination with eight speakers provides for quality sound. This system offers hands free mobile phone compatibility and is fully prepared for this option.

The steering wheel is leather covered and has satellite remote controls for the sound system and air conditioner. Steering is power assisted rack and pinion.

Suspension is four wheel independent with 7,5J X 17 alloy wheels fitted with P235/65 R17 tyres at the front and P255/60 R17 tyres at the rear. A tyre pressure monitor is standard equipment.

Safety and security

A full suite of airbags with automatic occupant sensing provides comprehensive impact protection. Dual stage frontal and side impact airbags provide protection for the driver and front seat passenger. Curtain side airbags provide side-on upper body protection for the front seats and rear outer seat positions. Three point seat belts are provided for all seating positions.

A theft deterrent system with electronic cut outs is provided. A remote keyless entry system with central locking is also a standard feature.

Powerful V6 engine

For South Africa the Cadillac 3,6 litre V6 VVT engine is specified for the SRX. This engine produces 190 kW @ 6500 r/min and 342 Nm @ 2800 r/min. This 60-degree dual overhead camshaft 24-valve V6 powerplant boasts electronic throttle control, variable valve timing for both intake and exhaust systems, multi-port fuel injection, and aluminium cylinder block and heads.

Drive is via an electronically controlled five-speed automatic transmission with ‘Driver Shift Control’ which offers manual shifting, electronically controlled engine braking, and downhill detection with brake assist. Full time all-wheel drive is standard. Under normal conditions the torque split is 50:50 front to rear via a centre differential. In the event that wheel spin is detected, torque is directed to the wheels, or individual wheel, that offers the best traction.

A full suite of electronic driver aids includes ABS brakes, traction control, and Cadillac’s StabiliTrak vehicle stability enhancement system provides a high level of active safety. Cruise control is an added convenience feature that is included in the electronic driver aids package.

Performance is swift for a large SUV with a top speed of 204 km/h and a 0-100 km/h sprint time of 8,1 seconds. Combined fuel consumption is 14,7 l/100km. Fuel tank capacity is 76 litres.

Key dimensions:

  • Overall length 4950mm
  • Width 1845mm
  • Height 1685mm
  • Wheelbase  2957mm
  • Ground clearance 208mm
  • Luggage capacity behind first row seats 1968 litres
  • Luggage capacity behind second row seats  918 litres
  • Luggage capacity behind third row seats  238 litres

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