WHILE IT’S NOT DIFFICULT TO spend a pile of money on a luxury SUV, those who have aspired to move up to the elegance, performance, and sleek amenities of the posher brands can now do so with new models priced around $40,000—which isn’t a big jump from standard car costs nowadays.
The Cadillac XT5 is a handsome replacement for the SRX, offering all the prestige and presence of an Escalade, just in a more budget-friendly package. Engineers pushed the wheels out to the corners and broadened the cabin, creating three additional inches of rear legroom and 63 cubic feet of cargo space—yet still losing more than 275 pounds in the process. An improved V-6 provides 310 horsepower and can deactivate cylinders to BY ANDY STONEHOUSE
boost mileage. And loaded with a refined dash and cool bits like a new digital rearview mirror, it’s an updated and classy ride.
For a true sports-car experience in crossover guise, the Infiniti QX50 presents a sweet spot. The QX50 is an improved and expanded version of the underappreciated EX35 crossover, with all of Infiniti’s beautiful cabin finishings— with refinements such as a moon roof and heated seats now standard. But it also makes the most of a 325-horsepower 3.7-liter V-6 engine, with a ride that is definitely not like your average crossover. Intelligent AWD, or a very sporty RWD model with a snow mode, will help make for a more engaged ride to the hills.
Much as Porsche successfully revolutionized itself with the 2017 Cadillac XT5