2021 Volvo XC60 vs. 2020 Cadillac XT5

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/10/27

For enhanced safety, the front and rear seat shoulder belts of the Volvo XC60 have pretensioners to tighten the seatbelts and eliminate dangerous slack in the event of a collision and force limiters to limit the pressure the belts will exert on the passengers. The Cadillac XT5 doesn’t offer pretensioners for the rear seat belts.

Both the XC60 and XT5 have child safety locks to prevent children from opening the rear doors. The XC60 has power child safety locks, allowing the driver to activate and deactivate them from the driver's seat and to know when they're engaged. The XT5’s child locks have to be individually engaged at each rear door with a manual switch. The driver can’t know the status of the locks without opening the doors and checking them.

The Volvo XC60 offers optional built in child booster seats. They’re more crash worthy than an added child seat because of their direct attachment to the seat. Cadillac doesn’t offer the convenience and security of a built-in child booster seat in the XT5. Their owners must carry a heavy booster seat in and out of the vehicle; XC60 owners can just fold their built-in child seat up or down.

The XC60 has a standard Whiplash Protection System (WHIPS), which use a specially designed seat to protect the driver and front passenger from whiplash. During a rear-end collision, the WHIPS allows the backrest to travel backwards to cushion the occupants and the headrests move forward to prevent neck and spine injuries. At the same time the pretensioning seatbelts fire, removing slack from the belts. The XT5 doesn’t offer a whiplash protection system.

The XC60 has standard Automatic Braking After Collision, which automatically apply the brakes in the event of a crash to help prevent secondary collisions and prevent further injuries. The XT5 doesn’t offer a post collision braking system: in the event of a collision that triggers the airbags, more collisions are possible without the protection of airbags that may have already deployed.

The XC60’s driver alert monitor detects an inattentive driver then sounds a warning and suggests a break. According to the NHTSA, drivers who fall asleep cause about 100,000 crashes and 1500 deaths a year. The XT5 doesn’t offer a driver alert monitor.

Both the XC60 and the XT5 have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver knee airbags, side-impact head airbags, front wheel drive, height adjustable front shoulder belts, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, crash mitigating brakes, daytime running lights, lane departure warning systems, rearview cameras, available all wheel drive and around view monitors.

For its top level performance in IIHS driver-side small overlap frontal, moderate overlap frontal, side impact, rear impact and roof-crush tests, its standard front crash prevention system, its “Good” rating in the new passenger-side small overlap crash test, and its headlight’s “Acceptable” rating, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety grants the XC60 the rating of “Top Pick” for 2019, a rating granted to only 132 vehicles tested by the IIHS. The XT5 was last qualified as a “Top Pick” in 2017.

Warranty

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The XC60’s corrosion warranty is 6 years longer than the XT5’s (12 vs. 6 years).

Volvo pays for scheduled maintenance on the XC60 for 3 years and 36,000 miles. Volvo will pay for oil changes, lubrication and any other required maintenance. Cadillac only pays for the first scheduled maintenance visit on the XT5.

Reliability

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The battery on the XC60 is in the trunk, which protects it from hot underhood temperatures that can degrade battery life. By keeping the XC60’s battery 20 to 30 degrees cooler, its life is increased by years. The XT5’s battery is in the hot engine compartment.

From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ December 2019 Auto Issue reports that Volvo vehicles are more reliable than Cadillac vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks Volvo 6 places higher in reliability than Cadillac.

Engine

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The XC60 has more powerful engines than the XT5:

Horsepower

Torque

XC60 T5 2.0 turbo 4-cylinder

250 HP

258 lbs.-ft.

XC60 T6 2.0 turbo/supercharged 4-cylinder

316 HP

295 lbs.-ft.

XC60 T8 2.0 turbo/supercharged 4-cylinder hybrid

400 HP

472 lbs.-ft.

XC60 T8 P.E. 2.0 turbo/supercharged 4-cylinder hybrid

415 HP

494 lbs.-ft.

XT5 2.0 turbo 4-cylinder

237 HP

258 lbs.-ft.

XT5 3.6 DOHC V6

310 HP

271 lbs.-ft.

As tested in Motor Trend the XC60 T5 is faster than the Cadillac XT5 V6:

XC60

XT5

Zero to 60 MPH

6.2 sec

6.5 sec

Quarter Mile

14.7 sec

15.1 sec

Fuel Economy and Range

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On the EPA test cycle the XC60 Recharge running on electricity gets better fuel mileage than the XT5:

MPGe

XC60

AWD

Electric Motor

56 city/57 hwy

XT5

MPG

FWD

2.0 turbo 4-cyl.

21 city/28 hwy

3.6 DOHC V6

18 city/26 hwy

AWD

2.0 turbo 4-cyl.

21 city/26 hwy

3.6 DOHC V6

18 city/25 hwy

On the EPA test cycle the XC60 running its gasoline engine gets better fuel mileage than the XT5:

MPG

XC60

FWD

T5 2.0 turbo 4-cyl.

22 city/29 hwy

AWD

T8 2.0 turbo/SC 4-cyl. Hybrid

26 city/28 hwy

T5 2.0 turbo 4-cyl.

21 city/28 hwy

T6 2.0 turbo/SC 4-cyl.

20 city/27 hwy

XT5

FWD

2.0 turbo 4-cyl.

21 city/28 hwy

3.6 DOHC V6

18 city/26 hwy

AWD

2.0 turbo 4-cyl.

21 city/26 hwy

3.6 DOHC V6

18 city/25 hwy

The XC60 T8 can drive on battery power alone for up to 19 miles. The XT5 must run its internal combustion engine to move.

Regenerative brakes improve the XC60 T8’s fuel efficiency by converting inertia back into energy instead of wasting it. The XT5 doesn’t offer a regenerative braking system.

Brakes and Stopping

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For better stopping power the XC60 T8 Polestar Engineered’s front brake rotors are larger than those on the XT5:

XC60 T8 P. E.

XT5

Front Rotors

14.6 inches

13.6 inches

Rear Rotors

12.6 inches

12.4 inches

The XC60 stops much shorter than the XT5:

XC60

XT5

70 to 0 MPH

169 feet

174 feet

Car and Driver

60 to 0 MPH

115 feet

128 feet

Motor Trend

Tires and Wheels

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For better traction, the XC60 T8 Polestar Engineered’s optional tires are larger than the largest tires available on the XT5 (265/35R22 vs. 235/65R18).

The XC60’s standard tires provide better handling because they have a lower 60 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the XT5’s standard 65 series tires. The XC60 T8 Polestar Engineered’s optional tires have a lower 35 series profile than the XT5’s optional 55 series tires.

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the XC60 offers optional 21-inch wheels. The XT5’s largest wheels are only 20-inches.

Suspension and Handling

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The XC60 T6/T8 has a standard automatic front and rear load leveling suspension to keep ride height level with a heavy load or when towing. The XC60’s height leveling suspension allows the driver to raise ride height for better off-road clearance and then lower it again for easier entering and exiting and better on-road handling. The XT5 doesn’t offer a load leveling suspension.

The XC60 T6 AWD R-Design handles at .88 G’s, while the XT5 AWD pulls only .84 G’s of cornering force in a Car and Driver skidpad test.

The XC60 T5 AWD Momentum executes Motor Trend’s “Figure Eight” maneuver quicker than the XT5 AWD (26.6 seconds @ .64 average G’s vs. 27.1 seconds @ .65 average G’s).

For better maneuverability, the XC60’s turning circle is 1.3 feet tighter than the XT5’s (37.4 feet vs. 38.7 feet). The XC60’s turning circle is 1.6 feet tighter than the XT5 w/20” wheels’ (37.4 feet vs. 39 feet).

For greater off-road capability the XC60 has a greater minimum ground clearance than the XT5 (8.5 vs. 7.8 inches), allowing the XC60 to travel over rougher terrain without being stopped or damaged.

Chassis

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The XC60 is 5 inches shorter than the XT5, making the XC60 easier to handle, maneuver and park in tight spaces.

Passenger Space

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The XC60 has .3 inches more front legroom, .3 inches more front hip room and .6 inches more rear hip room than the XT5.

Cargo Capacity

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The XC60 has a larger cargo volume with its rear seat folded than the XT5 with its rear seat folded (63.3 vs. 63 cubic feet).

Towing

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The XC60’s standard towing capacity is much higher than the XT5’s (3500 vs. 1000 pounds).

Ergonomics

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Unlike the driver-only memory system in the XT5 Premium Luxury/Sport, the XC60 R-Design/Inscription has a passenger memory, so that when drivers switch, the memory setting adjusts the driver’s seat and outside mirror angle and the front passenger seat also adjusts to the new passenger’s preset preferences.

If the windows are left open on the XC60 the driver can close them all at the outside door handle or from a distance using the remote. On a hot day the driver can lower the windows from a distance using the keyless remote. The driver of the XT5 can only close the windows from inside the vehicle, with the ignition on.

The XC60’s rain-sensitive wipers adjust their speed and turn on and off automatically based on the amount of rainfall on the windshield. This allows the driver to concentrate on driving without constantly adjusting the wipers. The XT5’s standard manually variable intermittent wipers have to be constantly adjusted.

Heated windshield washer nozzles are optional on the XC60 to prevent washer fluid and nozzles from freezing and help continue to keep the windshield clear in sub-freezing temperatures. The XT5 doesn’t offer heated windshield washer nozzles.

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) conducts detailed tests on headlights for their range both straight ahead and in curves and to be certain they don’t exceed acceptable amounts of glare to oncoming drivers. The XC60’s headlights were rated “Acceptable” by the IIHS, while the XT5’s headlights are rated “Marginal.”

In poor weather, headlights can lose their effectiveness as grime builds up on their lenses. This can reduce visibility without the driver realizing. The XC60 offers available headlight washers to keep headlight output high. The XT5 doesn’t offer headlight washers.

The XT5’s cornering lamps activate a lamp on the front corner when the turn signal is activated. The XC60’s standard adaptive cornering lights turn the actual headlight unit up to several degrees, depending on steering wheel angle and vehicle speed. This lights a significant distance into corners at any speed.

The XC60 Inscription offers optional massaging front seats in order to maximize comfort and eliminate fatigue on long trips. Massaging seats aren’t available in the XT5.

Economic Advantages

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The XC60 will cost the buyer less in the long run because of its superior resale value. The IntelliChoice estimates that the XC60 will retain 45.65% to 49.07% of its original price after five years, while the XT5 only retains 38.6% to 39.93%.

According to The Car Book by Jack Gillis, the XC60 is less expensive to operate than the XT5 because it costs $346 less to do the manufacturer’s suggested maintenance for 50,000 miles. Typical repairs cost much less on the XC60 than the XT5, including $30 less for a water pump, $462 less for a muffler, $714 less for a timing belt/chain and $333 less for a power steering pump.

Recommendations

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Consumer Reports® recommends the Volvo XC60, based on reliability, safety and performance.

J.D. Power and Associates rated the XC60 third among compact premium SUVs in owner reported satisfaction. This includes how well the vehicle performs and satisfies its owner’s expectations. The XT5 isn’t in the top three.

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