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The Cadillac XTS Years To Avoid

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We've identified four Cadillac XTS years to avoid based on commonly-reported issues. Check out which ones (and which ones are considered safe to buy used instead).

Black Cadillac XTS
Source: Flickr

When it comes to luxury sedans, Cadillac has always been a top player in the game, and the XTS is no exception. This full-size beauty has been turning heads since its debut in 2013, impressing buyers with its sleek design, spacious interior, and high-tech features. Sure, it may not be the top dog in the land yacht category, but the XTS still manages to hold its own. The twin-turbo V-6 engine packs a punch, providing the smooth, refined power you’d expect from a car in this class.

And while it might not be quite as luxurious as the Mercedes-Benz S-Class, the XTS offers a more affordable alternative for those who want a taste of the good life without breaking the bank.

But here’s the thing: not all XTS model years are created equal. Some have been known to have more than their fair share of problems, leaving potential buyers scratching their heads and wondering which ones to steer clear of. In this post, we’ll look closer at the Cadillac XTS years to avoid so you can pick out your next luxury sedan confidently.


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Which Cadillac XTS Years to Avoid?

According to RepairPal, the XTS boasts a respectable reliability rating of 3.5 out of 5.0, placing it in the upper half of luxury full-size cars. While its average annual repair cost of $875 is slightly higher than the overall vehicle average, it is still lower than the average for its class. Meanwhile, the frequency and severity of repairs for the XTS are relatively typical compared to other vehicles on the market.

That said, for the Cadillac XTS years to avoid, keep an eye out for the following model year:

  • 2013 Cadillac XTS
  • 2014 Cadillac XTS
  • 2016 Cadillac XTS
  • 2017 Cadillac XTS

2013 Cadillac XTS

When it comes to reliability woes, the 2013 XTS is widely considered the worst model to avoid. RepairPal has documented 170 complaints and five recalls for the 2013 CTS with issues concerning the electrical system, engine, and suspension.

For starters, the 2013 Cadillac XTS has faced numerous complaints about its CUE system screen delamination. Owners report that the screen begins to crack and delaminate, rendering it unusable. For instance, one owner experienced issues at 65,328 miles, calling the system unacceptable for a luxury vehicle. Another, with only 39,130 miles, was frustrated by having to pay for repairs on a defective screen. Other users also shared similar grievances, with one stating that the issue recurred despite being replaced under warranty.

Furthermore, This XTS has faced significant suspension issues. Owners report that the front right suspension often slams hard on the ground despite multiple repairs. Additionally, the rear suspension can suddenly collapse, erratically causing the vehicle to ride. Some drivers have experienced suspension failure on the highway, which could lead to accidents.

2014 Cadillac XTS

The 2014 XTS was more reliable than the debut model year, thanks to fewer complaints and less severe reliability sore spots. However, it still received more complaints than the other model years, so it certainly earned its place on this list of Cadillac XTS years to avoid.

A major pain point for XTS owners is the faulty electrical system. A common issue is the navigation screen cracking and becoming unresponsive. The problem often comes back even after repairs, leading to multiple dealership visits. Another primary concern is the Cadillac CUE system, which manages essential functions like navigation, climate control, and hands-free calling. When this system fails, it leaves drivers without crucial features, especially in emergencies. These frequent malfunctions and costly repairs reveal this model’s worrying trend of electrical issues.


The Cadillac XTS is a luxury full-size vehicle that offers a high-caliber experience when you’re behind the wheel. Those determined to make this vehicle their own should ask one final question - what’s the most reliable Cadillac XTS year on the market?

The 2014 XTS has struggled with several suspension issues that used car buyers should know. A notable problem is the rear air suspension failing suddenly, causing the vehicle to drop to the point where the tires nearly touch the wheel wells. One owner’s account experienced this failure at 65 mph on the highway, almost losing control of the car due to the bouncing rear end. The issue can recur despite being repaired, making it a costly and dangerous problem. Although less common, these suspension failures are critical for potential buyers to consider when evaluating this model.

2016 Cadillac XTS

The 2016 XTS isn’t as problematic as the two previously highlighted years, but some of its issues may make you think twice about buying a used unit. For instance, this XTS received many complaints regarding its electrical system.

One of the most troubling problems reported by 2016 XTS owners is the sudden activation of hazard lights while driving, which can mislead other motorists and compromise safety. Compounding this issue, the vehicle may completely shut off during right turns, catching drivers off guard and forcing them into oncoming traffic.

The CUE infotainment system has also been a source of frustration, with reports of freezing, unresponsive screens, and even physical damage like spider cracks. Despite the prevalence of these issues across multiple Cadillac models, no official recall has been announced.

Although less prevalent, the 2016 Cadillac XTS has been associated with several transmission problems, particularly the torque converter. Many owners have reported experiencing shuttering, vibrations, and even complete transmission failure at relatively low mileage. These issues often result in costly repairs, with estimates ranging from $1,700 to $2,500.


How much will they be worth if you keep them for a few years? Do Cadillacs hold their value, or do they fall flat after use?

2017 Cadillac XTS

Lastly, in this list of the Cadillac XTS years to avoid is the 2017 model. As with many luxury vehicles with modern tech, the 2017 XTS grappled with annoying electrical system woes.

That said, the 2017 Cadillac XTS is riddled with electrical gremlins. From frozen infotainment screens to trunks opening unexpectedly while driving, these issues pose safety risks and inconvenience. Some owners have even reported complete power loss while stopped at intersections. Despite numerous complaints, Cadillac has yet to issue a recall.

However, we have to credit Cadillac since the 2017 model year is the most reliable unit in this list with decent critic reviews. If you can find a good deal on a 2017 XTS, ensure you’ve looked into its potential electrical issues.

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