Skip to main content

Cadillac has a long-standing reputation for producing luxury cars unequaled by any American-based automaker. Given the price point, it seems logical that Cadillac would also make reliable luxury cars. However, while there are some reliable Cadillac models, there are two that buyers should avoid.

Skip these Cadillac models

In the luxury car segment, affordability doesn’t make the front page of most sales brochures, but often neither does reliability. While the ultra-rich may not concern themselves with such mundane issues since they’ll probably trade their 2022 model for a 2023 version soon enough, the rest of us would like to buy a Cadillac that at least lasts beyond the warranty period. If so, you’ll want to skip these two Cadillac models.

Cadillac CTS 

Cadillac’s history overflows with tales of automotive engineering advances, such as engines running without coolant for up to 100 miles. A 2009 Cadillac CTS completed a 14.189-mile lap at the Nürburgring race course in seven minutes and 59.32 seconds, a record for a “production sedan on factory-spec street tires.“ 

Although a 2009 CTS performed well on the race course, Car Complaints lists it as the worst model year. Timing chain failure ranks highest among 2009 CTS problems, with an average failure occurring under 100,000 miles and costing around $3,400 to repair. The transfer case in all-wheel drive (AWD) CTS models is the second worst problem, with an average failure at 61,000 miles and a $3,500 average repair cost. Finally, transmission failure is the third worst CTS issue occurring at 18,000 miles on average, with a $4,000 average repair cost.

Cadillac XT4

The Cadillac XT4 attempts to provide luxury car aesthetics at an affordable price but fails. Not only is the XT4 “less spacious than it could be,” its ride is uncomfortable too. Additionally, Consumer Reports expects the 2023 XT4 will “be less reliable than other new cars.”

While only the 2019 XT4 presents enough data for Consumer Reports analysis, its most glaring issue revolves around “Major Engine” problems which could range from a broken timing chain to complete engine failure. In addition, the 2022 XT4 is under recall for “an improperly welded seat frame” that could cause serious injury in a crash. 

What are some reliable models from the luxury brand?

CoPilot reports that when determining the Cadillac models with the lowest cost of ownership, it found STS, SRX, DTS, and XTS Cadillac models were the most reliable. While Car Complaints has few owner-reported issues for the DTS and STS, it could stem from the models’ age, causing people not to report problems. The SRX has more complaints, but the worst issues relate to water intrusion in the headlight assembly and dim headlights. 

The Cadillac XTS debuted in 2013, its worst year, with problems related to the delamination of its infotainment screen and suspension system. The suspension issue is cause for concern as it creates a potential for losing control of the vehicle. While the 2013 model received the most complaints, the problem continued to cause trouble for XTS owners through the 2017 model year.

Additionally, the infotainment touchscreen or CUE (Cadillac User Experience) system problem is ongoing and the subject of a class action lawsuit involving 2013 to 2017 ATS, SRX, and XTS vehicles along with 2014 to 2017 CTS, ELR, and Escalade models. 

Related Forget the Tesla Cybertruck, Bring Back the Cadillac Escalade EXT

Forget the Tesla Cybertruck, Bring Back the Cadillac Escalade EXT