To put together this definitive review on the 2009 Cadillac SRX, TheCarConnection.com consulted with a wide range of reviews from across the Web. TheCarConnection.com's car experts have also driven several versions of the Cadillac SRX to be able to deliver a conclusive opinion on the car, to compare it with other cars in the class, and to help you make a smart purchase decision.
The acclaimed Cadillac SRX crossover continues to offer one of the segment's most satisfying combinations of sports sedan-like driving character and SUV spaciousness. It delivers these attributes with the dramatic design, technology, and craftsmanship driving Cadillac's ongoing renaissance.
For 2009, the SRX crossover maintains its distinctively styled exterior and luxurious interior. Performance is derived from either a 3.6-liter V-6 with variable valve timing or a powerful 4.6-liter Northstar V-8 renowned for its power and smoothness.
The 2009 SRX remains a tastefully drawn crossover vehicle that's aging well in its final years on the market (it was introduced in 2004 and will be replaced in the 2010 model year). The interior was redesigned mid-cycle, and the updated center console and trim impart a much richer feel to the Cadillac SRX than the original cockpit. The wagonesque rear defers to utility over style, but the design has improved with age. The SRX's interior can hold as many as seven passengers with the optional power-folding third-row seat, but those in the third row should be very small--elementary-school small. The second-row seat is much more hospitable to adults and teenagers alike.
The 2009 Cadillac SRX handles nimbly, with either its standard suspension or GM's optional Magnetic Ride Control, which uses magnetic force to control the stiffness of the shocks. The SRX is built off the same platform as the Cadillac CTS and STS; although not a lot of parts are shared, it nonetheless shows the benefit of good building blocks.
The 2009 SRX comes with a 3.6-liter, 260-horsepower V-6 as the standard engine teamed with a five-speed automatic. This is the price leader, but it won't satisfy your needs if you are looking for performance, and its fuel economy is not worth the sacrifice in acceleration. Luckily there is the optional 4.6-liter, 320-horsepower Northstar V-8 engine mated to a six-speed automatic transmission. It provides a lot more power; it can launch the crossover to 60 mph in about 6.5 seconds, but fuel economy is still an issue. Available in either rear- or all-wheel drive with either engine its 4,000-pound-plus heft cuts fuel economy to 13 mpg city with the V-8 versions and only ranges up to 15 mpg with the base V-6 rear-wheel-drive version. .
The '09 SRX also features the popular Adaptive Remote Start system, which starts the engine, can adjust cabin temperature to personal preferences, engage the defrosters, and activate the available heated seats from up to 200 feet away. Other features include a standard navigation system on the V-8 version (it's optional with the V-6). OnStar-equipped models also get turn-by-turn navigation assistance. Adaptive Remote Start is a new option for 2009; it permits the driver to start the engine, adjust the heat and air to a preset temperature, and defrost the windows. An optional Ultra View sunroof opens nearly all the first two rows of seats to sunshine. Six airbags and stability control are standard.
The Bottom Line:
The 2009 Cadillac SRX enters its last year as a good-looking and functional crossover, but tight third-row seating and poor fuel efficiency remain as blemishes on an otherwise solid package.