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Are Cadillacs Reliable? A Complete Breakdown

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Cadillac is one of the first manufacturers to get global recognition. Their success allowed other carmakers to follow suit, leading the way to spreading from one continent to all. The Cadillac, just like many cars out there, are not built the way it used to be but, are Cadillacs reliable? We’ll take a look at that and more below. 

The Road to Success

The Cadillac started to hit its peak in the 1900s. Throughout the century, they would bring about a ton of changes to the brand, including adding a souped-up engine and adding some great color combos to the inside and the outside. The Cadillac that we all know today is a result of all of the evolutions and is meant to be the best version that’s been put out to date but, are they? 

One of the largest upsets to the brand came with the introduction of the NorthStar engine, with many buyers upset with the change. They changed that quickly and started adding turbocharged engines into most of their models, which quickly got consumers back. 


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Are Cadillacs Reliable?

Because cars are one of those things that most of us need, there are a ton of surveys and reports. Any issues that drivers have, they can add it to the report, building a collective opinion on the overall reliability. One consumer report, Brands That Make the Best Vehicles, Cadillac only came in four spots above the last spot. 

As an affordable luxury car, that’s something that all potential buyers should be aware of before deciding if it’s the car brand for them. Among the worst ranked for Cadillac were the CTS, ATS, and the Escalade, scoring one start out of a possible five. Digging in a little deeper, the brand did have major recalls happening back in 2014, where they had six different within the year. 

The Best of Cadillac

Among the areas where Cadillac scores the highest is their safety features. They have made some serious changes over the last years, turning their focus on making a safer car for drivers and passengers. From the inside to the outside, each Cadillac model is made with state-of-the-art safety features that prevent collisions and help drivers adopt safer driving habits. 

Apart from safety, the areas where Cadillac blows the competition out of the water are: 

  • Affordability 
  • Interior choices and materials 
  • Gas mileage
  • Performance

All of these are the reason why the brand continues to be one of the top sellers in the United States, catching the eyes of many that are shopping for luxury that won’t break the bank.


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Key Issues with Cadillacs

When looking at similar issues within different models, most of the complaints came from two places, the seats and the airbags. Drivers reported that the seats did not stay secure, and the airbags would not deploy when the key was in a certain position. Apart from that, other issues include additional maintenance and a higher cost of repairs than other brands in the same category. 

Additionally, there are some issues reported with the overall design and the structure of the Cadillac, something that drivers should keep in mind. While that won’t make too much of a difference for very light driving, it could be the make or break for a car that takes the entire family across the country multiple times per year. 

Cost of Ownership  

When answering, “are Cadillacs reliable?” another question we asked was the cost of ownership. The last thing that potential buyers want or need is to have to take their cars to a mechanic over and over again. While the average car may have issues here and there, the Cadillac seemed to have more.

The average cost of repair came in more than $100 per year when compared to other brands, raising a cause for concern. There were costs in addition to normal maintenance, which includes oil and filter changes. When looking at the most reliable Cadillac models, the following made the list: 

  • The Cadillac STS
  • The Cadillac SRX
  • The Cadillac DTS
  • The Cadillac XTS 

As far as the least reliable, the Cadillac CTS and the XT4 made the list. 


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Miles and More

As far as the number of miles, the Cadillac is said to last more than 150,000 miles with proper maintenance. When compared to other luxury cars that are a little low but, when compared to affordable cars on the market, it falls just right. 

Reliability Reports & Value

According to reliability reports released back in 2019, there were three brands that scored last in terms of reliability. In the last place was Cadillac, something that surprised many consumers. These reports look at a number of things, including the handling and performance, along with things that drivers have to say. Adding all of these together put the Cadillac in the last place, perhaps catching the attention of the brand.

Apart from the recent consumer reports, the brand was also featured in terms of value. Does the Cadillac hold value? Because it’s put up to some strong competitors (ex. Lexus, Audi), the Cadillac does not hold its value. When it comes to resale value, consumers have reported difficulties getting a value that they consider fair, as there is not a good market for used Cadillacs. 

So, Are Cadillacs Reliable? Key Things to Consider 

Cadillac might have started off as one of the top cars out there. They paved the way for other carmakers to make their way overseas and break into foreign markets and had a solid reputation. Still, over the years, that reputation has faded, causing them to fall last into some consumer reports. 

Before purchasing a Cadillac, it’s good to first think about your needs when it comes to driving. Then, look at the top-rated models the brand has to offer and start there. Just like with any other car, stay away from those that have been deemed unreliable by those who drive them daily.



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