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STYLING | 7 out of 10
The SRX's exterior styling left most of our staffers cold
distinctive, edgy styling
With a jewel-like analog clock, high-end materials and the massive (and we mean truly huge) retractable nav screen in our tester, it's hard not to stare.
the new SRX looks like the CTS on stilts
The 2013 Cadillac SRX shows a somewhat different, more distinctive personality on the inside than it advertises on the outside. While it fits right in with other luxury crossovers on the outside, its uniquely Cadillac interior continues to stand out in its class--both in the details and in the overarching design.
Cadillac has managed to keep the SRX from looking too cookie-cutter on the outside. Compared to the top seller in the class, the Lexus RX 350, the SRX has strongly sculpted, dramatic sides to complement the sharp front and rear appearance and make sure there's absolutely no boring angle—but no ungainly one either. Its relatively short front and rear overhangs, vertically stacked headlights, and a trapezoidal chrome grille give it a combination of nice proportions and fine details.
Especially of note is the powerful character line that runs from the trailing edge of the front wheel well through to the taillight lens, while the tail lamps themselves extend—to aerodynamic advantage—like vestigal tailfins. An integrated spoiler on the rearward edge of the roof also extends the sleek lines and further improves aerodynamics; although we see the exposed rear wiper, which could have been tucked underneath, to be a design miss on a luxury vehicle. Eighteen-inch wheels are standard and 20-inch wheels are offered, and when the doors are opened an illuminated logo shows through the sill plates.
Inside, the SRX feels top-lux and distinctly American. Its hand-cut-and-sewn coverings on the instrument panel and ambient lighting make for a rich environment that continues Cadillac's commitment to excellent cabin appointments. This year the cabin gets a futuristic overtone as well, with the incorporation of the Cadillac User Experience (CUE) touch-screen interface, as well as special capacitive controls for climate and audio just below, plus a reconfigurable gauge cluster. Last year's partially concealed screen is gone, but the end result is a more uniform, less cluttered look.
The 2013 Cadillac SRX is more distinctive inside than most other crossovers, though it's not all that attractive on the outside.