2019 Cadillac XT5 vs. 2019 BMW X1

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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The XT5’s optional pre-crash front seatbelts will tighten automatically in the event the vehicle detects an impending crash, improving protection against injury significantly. The X1 doesn’t offer pre-crash pretensioners.

For enhanced safety, the front and rear (child comfort guides) seat shoulder belts of the Cadillac XT5 are height-adjustable to accommodate a wide variety of driver and passenger heights. A better fit can prevent injuries and the increased comfort also encourages passengers to buckle up. The BMW X1 doesn’t offer height-adjustable seat belts.

In the past twenty years hundreds of infants and young children have died after being left in vehicles, usually by accident. When turning the vehicle off, drivers of the XT5 are reminded to check the back seat if they opened the rear door before starting out. The X1 doesn’t offer a back seat reminder.

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety tests front crash prevention systems. With a score of 6 points, IIHS rates the Forward Automatic Braking optional in the XT5 as “Superior.” The X1 scores at most only 4 points and is rated only “Advanced.”

Over 200 people are killed each year when backed over by motor vehicles. The XT5 offers optional Reverse Automatic Braking that uses rear sensors to monitor and automatically apply the brakes to prevent a rear collision. The X1 doesn’t offer backup collision prevention brakes.

The XT5 Platinum has a standard Surround Vision to allow the driver to see objects all around the vehicle on a screen. The X1 only offers a rear monitor and front and rear parking sensors that beep or flash a light. That doesn’t help with obstacles to the sides.

The XT5’s optional blind spot warning system uses digital cameras monitored by computer to alert the driver to moving objects in the vehicle’s blind spots where the side view mirrors don’t reveal them. The X1 doesn’t offer a system to reveal objects in the driver’s blind spots.

To help make backing safer, the XT5’s optional cross-path warning system uses wide-angle radar in the rear bumper to alert the driver to vehicles approaching from the side, helping the driver avoid collisions. The X1 doesn’t offer a cross-path warning system.

Both the XT5 and the X1 have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver knee airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, front wheel drive, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights, rearview cameras, available all wheel drive and lane departure warning systems.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration does 35 MPH front crash tests on new vehicles. In this test, results indicate that the Cadillac XT5 is safer than the BMW X1:







5 Stars

4 Stars




Neck Injury Risk



Neck Stress

198 lbs.

360 lbs.

Neck Compression

20 lbs.

60 lbs.

Leg Forces (l/r)

122/416 lbs.

257/329 lbs.

New test not comparable to pre-2011 test results. More stars = Better. Lower test results = Better.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration does side impact tests on new vehicles. In this test, which crashes the vehicle into a flat barrier at 38.5 MPH and into a post at 20 MPH, results indicate that the Cadillac XT5 is safer than the BMW X1:





Front Seat


5 Stars

5 Stars




Abdominal Force

151 G’s

154 G’s

Hip Force

184 lbs.

486 lbs.


Rear Seat


5 Stars

5 Stars




Spine Acceleration

43 G’s

65 G’s


Into Pole


5 Stars

5 Stars

Max Damage Depth

12 inches

13 inches

Hip Force

799 lbs.

815 lbs.

New test not comparable to pre-2011 test results. More stars = Better. Lower test results = Better.


Cadillac’s powertrain warranty covers the XT5 2 years and 20,000 miles longer than BMW covers the X1. Any repair needed on the engine, transmission, axles, joints or driveshafts is fully covered for 6 years or 70,000 miles. Coverage on the X1 ends after only 4 years or 50,000 miles.

There are almost 3 times as many Cadillac dealers as there are BMW dealers, which makes it much easier should you ever need service under the XT5’s warranty.


To reliably power the ignition and other systems and to recharge the battery, the XT5 has a standard 155-amp alternator (170-amp - XT5 optional). The X1’s 150-amp alternator isn’t as powerful.


The XT5’s 3.6 DOHC V6 produces 82 more horsepower (310 vs. 228) and 13 lbs.-ft. more torque (271 vs. 258) than the X1’s 2.0 turbo 4 cyl.

As tested in Motor Trend the Cadillac XT5 is faster than the BMW X1:




Zero to 60 MPH

6.4 sec

6.8 sec

Quarter Mile

15 sec

15.2 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

91.4 MPH

90.5 MPH

Fuel Economy and Range

An engine control system that can shut down half of the engine’s cylinders helps improve the XT5’s fuel efficiency. The X1 doesn’t offer a system that can shut down part of the engine.

The XT5 FWD’s standard fuel tank has 3.3 gallons more fuel capacity than the X1 (19.4 vs. 16.1 gallons), for longer range between fill-ups. The XT5 AWD’s standard fuel tank has 5.6 gallons more fuel capacity than the X1 (21.7 vs. 16.1 gallons).

The XT5 has a standard cap-less fueling system. The fuel filler is automatically opened when the fuel nozzle is inserted and automatically closed when it’s removed. This eliminates the need to unscrew and replace the cap and it reduces fuel evaporation, which causes pollution. The X1 doesn’t offer a cap-less fueling system.

Brakes and Stopping

For better stopping power the XT5’s brake rotors are larger than those on the X1:




Front Rotors

13.6 inches

13 inches

Rear Rotors

12.4 inches

11.8 inches

The XT5 stops much shorter than the X1:





70 to 0 MPH

174 feet

180 feet

Car and Driver

60 to 0 MPH

111 feet

122 feet

Motor Trend

Tires and Wheels

For better traction, the XT5 has larger tires than the X1 (235/65R18 vs. 225/50R18).

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the XT5 offers optional 20-inch wheels. The X1’s largest wheels are only 19-inches.

The Cadillac XT5’s wheels have 6 lugs for longer wheel bearing life, less chance of rotor warping and greater strength. The BMW X1 only has 5 wheel lugs per wheel.

Suspension and Handling

The XT5 offers an available driver-adjustable suspension system. It allows the driver to choose between an extra-supple ride, reducing fatigue on long trips, or a sport setting, which allows maximum control for tricky roads or off-road. The X1’s suspension doesn’t offer adjustable shock absorbers.

For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the XT5’s wheelbase is 7.4 inches longer than on the X1 (112.5 inches vs. 105.1 inches).

For better handling and stability, the track (width between the wheels) on the XT5 is 2.9 inches wider in the front and 2.8 inches wider in the rear than on the X1.

For greater off-road capability the XT5 has a greater minimum ground clearance than the X1 (7.8 vs. 7.2 inches), allowing the XT5 to travel over rougher terrain without being stopped or damaged.


As tested by Car and Driver while cruising at 70 MPH, the interior of the XT5 AWD is quieter than the X1 xDrive28i (68 vs. 70 dB).

Passenger Space

The XT5 has .8 inches more front legroom, 2.7 inches more front shoulder room, 2.5 inches more rear legroom and 1 inch more rear shoulder room than the X1.

Cargo Capacity

The XT5 has a much larger cargo volume with its rear seat up than the X1 with its rear seat up (30 vs. 27.1 cubic feet). The XT5 has a much larger cargo volume with its rear seat folded than the X1 with its rear seat folded (63 vs. 58.7 cubic feet).

Pressing a switch automatically lowers the XT5’s rear seats, to make changing between passengers and cargo easier. The X1 doesn’t offer automatic folding seats.


The XT5 has a 1000 lbs. towing capacity. The X1 has no towing capacity.

Servicing Ease

J.D. Power and Associates surveys of service recipients show that Cadillac service is better than BMW. J.D. Power ranks Cadillac third in service department satisfaction. With a 14% lower rating, BMW is ranked 8th.


The XT5 has a standard remote vehicle starting system, so the vehicle can be started from inside the driver's house. This allows the driver to comfortably warm up the engine before going out to the vehicle. The climate system will also automatically heat or cool the interior. The X1 doesn’t offer a remote starting system.

The XT5’s optional easy entry system raises the steering wheel and glides the driver’s seat back when the door is unlocked or the ignition is switched off, making it easier for the driver to get in and out. The X1 doesn’t offer an easy entry system.

The XT5’s instruments include an oil pressure gauge and a temperature gauge – which could save your engine! Often ‘idiot lights’ don’t warn you until damage has been done. The X1 does not have an oil pressure gauge.

To improve rear visibility by keeping the rear window clear, the XT5 has a standard rear fixed intermittent wiper with a full on position. The rear wiper standard on the X1 only has an intermittent setting, so in a hard rain visibility isn’t as good.

Both the XT5 and the X1 offer optional heated front seats. The XT5 also offers optional heated rear seats to keep those passengers extremely comfortable in the winter. Heated rear seats aren’t available in the X1.

Standard air-conditioned seats in the XT5 Premium/Platinum keep the driver and front passenger comfortable and take the sting out of hot seats in summer. The X1 doesn’t offer air-conditioned seats.

Economic Advantages

According to The Car Book by Jack Gillis, the XT5 is less expensive to operate than the X1 because typical repairs cost much less on the XT5 than the X1, including $254 less for a water pump, $108 less for a muffler, $38 less for front brake pads, $294 less for a starter, $114 less for fuel injection, $253 less for a fuel pump, $257 less for front struts, $246 less for a timing belt/chain and $376 less for a power steering pump.


The Cadillac XT5 outsold the BMW X1 by over two to one during 2018.

© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.

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