If you’re in the market for a three-row luxury SUV of American descent, but don’t need something as humongous (and expensive) as a Cadillac Escalade or a Lincoln Navigator, the new XT6 and the Aviator should probably be on your shortlist.
But how do they compare? Is Cadillac’s latest SUV good enough to steer customers away from Lincoln’s tech-laden Aviator? That remains to be seen when the two companies release them for test drives, but for now, let’s start this comparison off by analyzing their looks.
No ugly ducklings
While you can argue that neither of the two is particularly stunning to look at, calling them mundane doesn’t sound fair either. The XT6 is all dressed up in Cadillac’s latest design language, combining sharp, elegant lines with a somewhat boxy form factor, although not quite as much as the Escalade.
Lincoln’s Aviator, on the other hand, is visibly sleeker, with a more sloping roofline and large ‘Aviator’ lettering on the front fenders – it almost seems as though Lincoln thought “luxury first”, and then proceeded to insert their own DNA into the mix. Meanwhile, the XT6 inscription on the Caddy’s doors is less eye-catching.
As for their rear end design, it’s again the Aviator that looks to announce itself to the world more blatantly, as the automaker’s name is plastered across the tailgate, right above that horizontal light strip.
Safe and alert
The two SUVs have differently styled interiors, with the XT6 adopting Cadillac’s usual V-shape dashboard design, whereas the Aviator’s cabin slightly resembles that of the Navigator, albeit with a less cluttered look. You can also see some minor similarities with the 2020 Explorer’s interior, though thankfully, the Aviator has a more traditional landscape-oriented infotainment display.
The Lincoln also comes with the ability to “see” potholes thanks to its Adaptive Suspension with Road Preview. Then there’s the Lincoln Co-Pilot 360 Plus bundle with Traffic Jam Assist, Evasive Steer Assist, Reverse Brake Assist and Active Park Assist Plus. On the Caddy’s side of the fence, there’s Automatic Emergency Braking, Forward Collision Alert, Park Assist, Lane Change Alert with Side Blind Zone Alert and Lane Keep Assist with Lane Departure Warning. You’re pretty safe, in either of the two.
What lies under their hoods
Since we’re discussing tech, we could say that the Aviator’s upcoming Plug-in Hybrid powertrain falls under that category. It’s projected to produce some 450 HP and 600 lb-ft (813 Nm) of torque, which on paper is vastly superior to the XT6’s 3.6-liter V6 petrol unit, with its 310 HP and 271 lb-ft (367 Nm) of torque. The Lincoln’s petrol option meanwhile is a 3.0-liter bi-turbo V6 that produces 400 HP and 400 lb-ft (542 Nm) of torque.
With pricing still unannounced, it’s hard to tell which one of the two will represent greater value for money. However, looking at how they stack up in terms of on-board tech, engines and aesthetics, which one of the two would you rather purchase as your next family car?