Cadillac will have something to show off at the 2019 Detroit auto show, and it's more than likely a new XT6 crossover SUV.
The brand's newly minted president, Steve Carlisle, told Automotive News (subscription required) in an interview published Monday that the next Cadillac debut will show face in Detroit, whose next annual auto show takes place in January.
All signs point to the three-row XT6 as the most likely contender based on the luxury brand's future product roadmap. Cadillac also has two new sedans on the way—CT4 and CT5—but neither will likely be ready for a debut as early as January.
The XT6 will bridge the gap between the small (and two-row) XT5 crossover and the full-size, body-on-frame Escalade. However, the XT6 will not ride on General Motors' rear-wheel-drive Omega platform. Instead, it will share underpinnings with the Chevrolet Traverse and Buick Enclave, which ride on the extended-wheelbase version of the C1XX platform.
The shorter version of the platform underpins the GMC Acadia, Cadillac XT5 and forthcoming Chevrolet Blazer. The XT6's proportions will put the model within striking distance of the Audi Q7, Volvo XC90, Lexus RX L, and the upcoming Lincoln Aviator.
Cadillac Escala concept, 2016 Monterey Car Week
Cadillac will likely continue to pull design inspiration from the Escala concept car (shown here), which means we'll likely see a similar fascia as the 2019 XT4 and refreshed CT6 sedan find a home on the XT6. Spy shots haven't come close to giving away the crossover's final design, but it does seem to give off a more upright stance than Traverse or Enclave.
Under the hood, look for one of two V-6 engines: a naturally aspirated 3.6-liter mill, or Cadillac's 3.0-liter twin-turbocharged unit. The former will likely serve as a base engine, as it does in the Traverse and Enclave. Chevy also offers the Traverse with a turbocharged inline-4, but the Cadillac-exclusive twin-turbo V-6 seems more appropriate here.
The XT4 officially launched Cadillac's newest product offensive, but more will come after the XT6, too. The brand plans to launch a new vehicle every six months through 2020, and it may have a proper halo car in development.
Carlisle added that future halo models could stray from the current CT/XT nomenclature and pull from the brand's past. While he downplayed the idea of a halo car based on the Chevrolet Corvette, a battery-electric powertrain evoked a more meaningful response.
"Now, if it were somehow a different propulsion system that might be more interesting," he said.