Are Cadillacs Good Cars? Can They Be Reliable?

Cadillac is a world-famous luxury brand and one of the oldest carmakers. While the brand’s image has changed over the years, there has always been a diverse lineup to choose from. Are Cadillacs reliable and good-looking cars?

According to reliability ratings, Cadillac ranks in the top six car manufacturers. Although the brand is still struggling to keep pace with changing times, recent years have shown improvement. However, it’s still expensive to own a Cadillac. 

We will be examining the reliability of Cadillac vehicles in this guide. Also, we will evaluate top issues and help you decide which model to buy.

Índice de Contenido
  1. Are Cadillacs Good Cars?
    1. 1. Safety
    2. 2. Engine
    3. 3. Rust and body
    4. 4. Technology and features
    5. 5. Performance
    6. 6. Affordability
    7. 7. The cost of ownership
    8. 8. Repair & Maintenance Costs
  2. Are Cadillacs Reliable?
  3. Cadillac History
  4. How common are Cadillac Problems?
    1. 1. Defective Northstar Engines
    2. 2. Perilous times for Power 
    3. 3. Malfunctioning Drivetrain
  5. Cadillac Models with the Best Reputation
    1. 2002 Cadillac Escalade ESV
    2. Cadillac CTS-V Coupe 2010
    3. Cadillac CT6 2016
    4. Cadillac Models Most Reliable
    5. Cadillac SRX 2010
    6. 2013 Cadillac Escalade EXT
  6. Cadillac - Is It a Good Used Car?

Are Cadillacs Good Cars?

1. Safety

Safety ratings for Cadillacs are almost always high. Every car and SUV has a 5-star safety rating by the AA. NHTSA Or a high designation from IIHS.

Cadillac is a premium brand and Cadillac cars come with all the most recent safety equipment. Many of the most advanced driver-assist technology are available as standard equipment. 

2. Engine

Cadillac belongs to the GM vehicle brand. The automaker is known for producing reliable engines, and it has a good reputation for making decent powertrains.

The Northstar V8, one of Cadillac's most beloved engines, has been plagued by problems. There have been major problems with this motor, even though it was a very popular model from 1993 to 2011.

3. Rust and body

Some Cadillac models were prone to corrosion. The most well-known Cadillac CTS was the 2000 to 2008 model. Rust was primarily found under the car and in the jack bolts.

Cadillac addressed the problem with its newer models. Cadillacs can be trusted to stay in top condition provided they are taken good care of. 

4. Technology and features

Cadillac is considered a premium brand and you will find lots of advanced technology. The automaker is slower than other brands to make some tech features available. 

One of the most notable additions to today’s vehicles is Super Cruise. It is far more efficient than other vehicle technology. 

5. Performance

Back in the day, the Cadillac brand was known as the older person’s car. The Cadillac brand was considered a retirement vehicle, which meant that the performance of these vehicles is often poor.

Cadillac has been changing the brand. Many of these vehicles now look trendy, and the engines are more powerful. 

6. Affordability

Cadillac cars are expensive because they're a premium brand. Cadillac vehicles are more expensive than average Toyota and Nissan.

Cadillac is often less expensive than luxury brands. Comparing with similar Mercedes-Benz models, BMWs and Audis, most models will be cheaper.

7. The cost of ownership

The cost to own a luxury car is usually higher than that of a regular brand. Cadillac is in this group.

The Cadillac brand will depreciate quicker than other brands, and you also spend more money on taxes and insurance. Additionally, maintenance and repair costs are often higher.

8. Repair & Maintenance Costs

RepairPal estimates that you will pay more to repair or maintain a Cadillac car. Average per year, the cost of repair and maintenance is slightly higher.

Additionally, repair costs can sometimes be more expensive. However, visits are fairly common. 

READ MORE: 20 Most & Least Expensive Cars to Maintain 

Are Cadillacs Reliable?

J.D. Power reports that Cadillac is one of the most reliable brands. According to J.D. Power, Cadillac is considered the most reliable brand. It is ranked 6th behind Buick. Lexus, Porsche, Acura, BMW and Mercedes-Benz also have higher ratings than Cadillac. Infiniti, Infiniti, Infiniti, Audi, BMW and Mercedes-Benz all receive lower ratings. 

J.D. The Cadillac CT6 is also rated by J.D. Power as the most desirable midsize premium car on the current market. The Cadillac XT5 also ranks among the most desirable midsize premium SUVs. 

Cadillac History

Old Cadillac

Cadillac was founded by Henry Leland, 1902. The company was named after Antoine de la Mothe Cadillac, Detroit’s founder. Cadillac was the original automaker to endorse mass production. 

The company was the first to offer a car with a completely enclosed interior in 1910. The Model Thirty was introduced two years later by the automaker. It is the first car to have an electronic starter and a car that doesn't need a crank. This innovative design allowed women to drive. Cadillac's V-type 8-cylinder engine was introduced three years later. This would be the marque's signature product. 

Cadillac was a major player in the 1920s. In 1926,  customers had over five hundred color combinations available, allowing for complete customization. Harley Earl designed the LaSalle convertible coupe in 1927. 

Cadillac's 16-cylinder V type engine was created during the Great Depression. It became one of history's most famous. It wasn’t long after that a V12 version was also released, giving drivers an option between the V8 and V16. 

Cadillac was forced to stop production in the 1940s to make warplanes. Cadillac continued to use some of this technology, which included the popular rear spoiler design. Cadillac developed power steering technology in the 1950s. This helped drivers to take the top positions during the 24 Hours of Le Mans. 

Of course, the company developed even more of today’s most-known innovations. Cadillac introduced the standard feature of front seatbelts in all its vehicles starting with 1963. Cadillac introduced automatic headlights in 1964 and Comfort Control was the first vehicle to offer thermostatically controlled ventilation. It wasn’t later before the company released the car stereo and electric seat warmers too. 

Cadillac's 8.2-liter motor produced 400 horsepower back in 1970. The motor was installed in the Eldorado for the first time. It had the best torque rating of any passenger car on the marketplace. Seville's release at the end of the decade was the result of a computerized shift that included onboard microprocessors and a digital display.

To celebrate the company’s 100th anniversary, Cadillac built the mid-engine V-12 Cien concept car which was inspired by the F-22 stealth aircraft. The luxury carmaker also redesigned the whole lineup over the years to better appeal to younger and more business-minded customers. This plan is clearly working, as evidenced by the popularity of the new models. 

How common are Cadillac Problems?

1. Defective Northstar Engines

The Northstar engine is a major complaint about Cadillac. The motors have been in production since so many years, and there will always be complaints. However, these engines are more problematic than one might expect.

The 1993 and 1994 models had massive oil leakages, and the pre-2000 engines were using excessive amounts of oil. The cylinders had carbon buildup and the head gaskets blew on older models. 

2. Perilous times for Power 

Certain CTS models equipped with StabiliTrak's vehicle stability enhancement system can cause unsafe driving conditions. The technology has been criticized by drivers for causing a decrease in engine power.

It seems to be most prevalent with the 2019 CTS with customers needing to replace the engine wiring harness because there wasn’t enough voltage supplied to the transmission. It also causes StabiliTrak and Trac lights to turn on. 

3. Malfunctioning Drivetrain

Cadillac CTS Performance Coupe 2012 suffers from excessive jerking when turning and backing up. Some people also complain of bumping, or the vehicle not being able to stay in one place. This becomes worse in cold weather.

Multiple issues can cause jerking. In some cases, it’s because of a stuck valve body, while others find that faulty torque converters can be blamed. 

Cadillac Models with the Best Reputation

2002 Cadillac Escalade ESV

A new generation of enthusiast embraced the Escalade's arrival on the market. This SUV not only has a powerful V8 engine but also offers all the space you need for your family.

It’s filled to the brim with luxuries, ensuring that nothing is lacking. These days, they are available at an incredible price. 

Cadillac CTS-V Coupe 2010

While the CTS-V looked great, it was noticed by people when they saw the coupe. It couldn’t make it to production fast enough. 

Driving this coupe is an experience like no other. It boasts a 6.2-liter V8 and either a 6-speed manual or automatic transmission. It’s even ranked higher than some BMW performance models. 

Cadillac CT6 2016

It comes with a 3.6-liter V6 engine that produces 335 horsepower. It’s also more fuel-efficient than a comparable model with a V8 engine.

But you may be able to locate one with the 3.0-liter twin turbo V6 which generates 404 horsepower. The cabin has everything you need for every driving situation. 

Cadillac Models Most Reliable

Cadillac SRX 2010

The SRX itself was a success model with a production run that spanned 2004 through 2016. The SRX was an excellent model, with a production run that spanned from 2004 to 2016. However, it almost lost its name when the first model in the second generation failed.

SRX models were recalled due to the turbocharged V6 engine of the 2.8-liter turbocharged model failing if regular gasoline was used instead. The change in gasoline must be rectified, and this is totally unacceptable. 

2013 Cadillac Escalade EXT

GM thought it was a brilliant idea to convert the Escalade SUV into a truck using this EXT version. But, nobody wanted to take it. 

Cadillac owners weren’t looking for trucks and truck drivers had no interest in this model. Therefore, it’s not a highly desirable model that will ever retain its resale value. 

Cadillac - Is It a Good Used Car?

Overall, it’s safe to say that Cadillac has reliable cars, especially if you choose a newer model. Cadillac has made great strides to restore its image and climb back up the ranks. 

If you choose an older Cadillac, however, it is important to do extensive research. It’s easy to get a Cadillac with major problems that could lead to expensive repair bills.

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