The Best of the Best 2003: Coupes - Cadillac XLR

<< Back to Robb Report, June 2003

I approached the Cadillac XLR with high expectations, imagining that the engineers on GM’s most prestigious project would have gone to great lengths to deliver a car capable of competing with some very stiff competition: the Mercedes-Benz SL, the Jaguar XK, and the Lexus SC. It surpasses each on a number of counts. The XLR, estimated to sell at $75,000, is easily the best-handling car of the four—it is 400 pounds lighter than the SL, for example—with a perfect 50/50 weight distribution thanks to a Ferrari Maranello–style rear-mounted transmission. Acceleration and braking are superb, as is the novel Magnetic Ride Control suspension.

 

The Evoq-inspired body design—controversial to be sure—should be applauded in a world of me-too retromobiles. And as with the best convertibles, a fully retractable hard top obviates the vulnerable canvas of yore.

Ultimately, convincing an SL owner to take a serious look at the XLR is Cadillac’s biggest challenge, but this car can certainly stand on its own merits. The XLR’s design, performance, fit, and finish are equal or superior to its competition.

Cadillac, www.cadillac.com

From Around the Web...
Richard Petty
The titan of the track discusses why he won, where he competes now, and how he defines luxury…
Robb Report's Car of the Year contest ended in a tie between the Lamborghini Huracán Spyder and the Porsche 911 Turbo S.
The results mark a first in the annual event’s history and bode well for the industry…
More than 150 Robb Report readers convened in Napa Valley to judge 13 extraordinary automobiles…
Watch video profiles of each of the Car of the Year 2017 contenders...
Robb Report Car of the Year 2017
During Robb Report’s annual competition to determine which sport or luxury car best deserves to be...
The Giulia Quadrifoglio, the high-performance variant of Alfa Romeo’s new sedan, went on sale in December with a starting price of $72,000.
The top-of-the-line sedan is powered by a biturbo V-6 that churns out more than 500 hp…
The 2018 Porsche 911 GT3
Next year, the model comes with a new engine, a revised chassis, and plenty of performance…
The 2017 Ruf CTR at the 87th Geneva International Motor Show.
With 700 hp and a top speed of 223 mph, this two-door tears it up…
If the DB11 were less of a looker, it might earn more attention for being the Best-performing, best-handling Aston Martin yet
The company’s first all-new car in 13 years was worth the wait…
The Lexus LC 500 will arrive at U.S. dealerships this spring sporting a bold new look for the brand…