The XLR is a retractable hardtop convertible marketed by the Cadillac division of General Motors, assembled in Bowling Green, Kentucky. Intended to be Cadillac’s flagship sports car, the XLR was based on the Chevrolet Corvette’s Y platform. The XLR featured own its unique styling, interior, and suspension, and power-retractable aluminum hardtop, along with the Cadillac Northstar engine.
Cadillac introduced the XLR at the 2003 Detroit Motor Show and began production in the 2004 model year — forshadowed by the Evoq concept vehicle.
The XLR features as standard equipment heated and cooled leather seats, wood interior trim, remote keyless access, 18 inch alloy wheels, side airbags as well as a navigation, audio, and DVD system sharing a 7-inch dashboard screen. The retractable hardtop itself is constructed of aluminum (i.e.,lightweight), requires 6′-10½” of vertical clearance during retraction, and is manufactured by a supplier joint venture between Mercedes-Benz and Porsche.
The engine is Cadillac’s 4.6 L Northstar tuned for 320 hp (238.6 kW; 324.4 PS), mated as of the 2007 model year to a 6-speed automatic transmission.
The XLR is the second roadster offered by Cadillac in recent years. The first was the Cadillac Allanté, produced from 1987 to 1993.
The XLR was nominated for the North American Car of the Year award for 2004.
The Cadillac XLR-V is the high performance version of the XLR. It is an ultra-luxury segment car, first introduced in 2005. It is the successor to the Cadillac Allanté, produced from 1987 to 1993.
Cadillac gave the public its first glimpse of the supercharged XLR-V in its Super Bowl commercial, which aired February 6, 2005. Super Bowl MVP, Deion Branch was also awarded an XLR. The car was formally introduced at the 2005 New York International Auto Show.
The XLR-V uses the same supercharged Northstar V8 as the STS-V, though output is down somewhat. For the XLR-V, the engine is certified by the SAE to produce 443 hp (330 kW) and 414 lb·ft (561 N·m). The supercharger and four intercoolers are built into the intake manifold. A six-speed automatic transmission, larger brakes from the Z51 Corvette, and 19-inch wheels will also be used.
The XLR-V can accelerate to 60 mph in 4.6 seconds according to Car and Driver’s tests. The magazine also timed it at 11.3 seconds to 100 mph (160 km/h) and recorded a 13.0 second quarter mile at 110 mph (177 km/h). Its top speed is electronically limited to 155 mph (249 km/h).
The XLR-V went on sale in the United States in early 2006 with a base price of $98,000. Pricing for the 2008 model starts at $101,300; making it one of General Motors’ most expensive vehicles.
Manufacturer General Motors
Assembly Bowling Green, Kentucky, United States
Class Luxury roadster
Body style(s) 2-door coupé convertible
Layout FR layout
Engine(s) 4.6 L Northstar V8
4.4 L Northstar SC V8
Transmission(s) 6-speed automatic
Wheelbase 105.7 in (2685 mm)
Length 177.7 in (4514 mm)
Width 72.3 in (1836 mm)
Height 50.4 in (1280 mm)
Curb weight 3840 lb (1740 kg)
Related Chevrolet Corvette