Facelifted 2009 XLR unveiled!

UPDATED: Galleries of the new XLR and XLR-V now posted in our image galleries.

We knew (and largely had already seen) the facelift to the XLR roadster.

Now, Cadillac has put out at least one teaser image showing the CTS-inspired front end, fender vents, and fancy new wheels.

09 XLR

Details we didn’t have before include that the XLR will keep its current Northstar engines. Interior changes seem to be limited to trim and materials changes.

Technology improvements include the new Bluetooth system that we should see on most Cadillacs for 2009.

More pics and details as they become available.

Read the official press release below:
Detroit, Mich. – Since its inception in 2004, Cadillac’s XLR has been a fresh face in the elite club of the world’s finest luxury roadsters. Today Cadillac revealed the new 2009 edition of the XLR Roadster, featuring styling and model enhancements providing more dramatic design and technology.

Only the finest editions of Cadillac’s retractable hardtop roadster will be offered in 2009: The luxurious XLR Platinum and the high-performance XLR-V. The XLR Platinum is equipped with a 320-horsepower (239 kW) 4.6L Northstar V-8 engine. The XLR-V, part of Cadillac’s V-Series of high-performance models, is powered with a 443-horsepower (330 kW) 4.4L Supercharged Northstar V-8 engine.

The 2009 XLR includes a new front fascia, new rear fascia and new side fender vents. The revised design is inspired by the award-winning CTS sport sedan, delivering more detail and aggressiveness to Cadillac’s roadster. The front fascia includes new fog lamps and specific upper and lower grilles for the Platinum and V-Series models. Also, both ’09 models feature the distinctive hood with a raised center section that was previously exclusive to the V-Series.

“XLR has been a catalyst for the dramatic design and technology driving Cadillac’s ongoing renaissance,” said Jim Taylor, Cadillac general manager. “The enhanced 2009 model exemplifies the continued development of Cadillac’s approach to design, performance and craftsmanship.”

The ultra-luxury XLR Platinum model receives additional exterior identifiers, including a revised rear fascia with more pronounced new exhaust tips and a new 18-inch wheel design (painted wheel finish is standard; chrome is optional).

Inside, the ’09 XLR lineup delivers more luxury and technology. Alcantara™ – a suede-like microfiber material – is used for the headliner material, in either Ebony or Cashmere color. Also new is hand-cut and sewn leather used on the upper instrument panel. This hand-stitched and wrapped leather lends tailored elegance to the cabin, representing Cadillac’s new approach to modern and elegant interior craftsmanship.

The updated cabin includes new instrument cluster trim rings and graphics, new wood grain trims (Natural Olive Ash Burl for XLR Platinum and Black Olive Ash Burl for XLR-V) and new metal trims (Quartz for XLR Platinum and Bermuda for XLR-V.)

Advanced technology has always been a trademark of XLR, and that legacy continues in 2009. This includes Cadillac’s acclaimed Magnetic Ride Control system and amenities such as Keyless Access with push-button start, DVD navigation and entertainment, heated and cooled seats, head-up display and heated steering wheel. XLR’s advanced technologies also include Adaptive Forward Lighting that enables the headlamps to swivel in concert with vehicle steering, and Adaptive Cruise Control.

XLR is factory-equipped with OnStar 8.0 with Bluetooth capability. The next-generation OnStar 8.0 system (OnStar subscription is not required for Bluetooth) features enhanced hands-free voice commands, Turn by Turn navigation and Emap powered by MapQuest. This includes the industry-first Destination Download feature, in which directions can be downloaded from OnStar directly to the car’s navigation system – eliminating the need to stop the car to manually enter a destination.

  • JLM


    I was present at the world preview of the Cadillac 2009 XLR/XLR-V and the styling updates are impressive in person. And I would suggest the exterior changes are most impressive on the XLR Platinum. The new front grill and rear exaust are gorgeous. The new side vents opinions was split, those who liked them and those who would prefer not to have them. I fall into the camp of liking the side vents with the new chrome wheels and the vents are functional.

    On the interior mostly a refinement in the metal finish and again I prefer the XLR Platinum approach compared to the XLR-V.

    I will provide other impressions later once I return home.


  • JLM

    I have just arrived back home in Connecticut and I am still buzzing regarding my experience at the Cadillac XLR Rendezvous III. And how would I describe this event, in one word, spectacular!

    I must say after attending Cadillac’s XLR Rendezvous III, photos simply cannot express the experience of Cadillac’s XLR design and engineering, photos simply are one dimensional for me and cannot convey the true beauty of Cadillac’s XLR.

    I had the pleasure to meet fellow Cadillac XLR owners and Cadillac/car enthusiasts. The Cadillac XLR Forum and Cadillac created an exclusive, fun, informative event for Cadillac XLR owners and Cadillac enthusiasts. The 2008 XLR Rendezvous III was located in Bowling Green, KY. Cadillac kicked off this gathering appropriately with a reception at the Olde Stone Country Club beginning with Cadillac marketing welcome remarks and the introduction of Cadillac’s General Manager Jim Taylor. Jim began with thanking the XLR owners for selecting Cadillac’s XLR. Then he provided an overview of the transformation of Cadillac and its future direction. The lead engineer assign to the XLR from its inception provided and overview of the styling, design and engineering updates for 2009.

    Then Jim announces what everyone came to see, the world premiere of Cadillac’s 2009 XLR. The 2009 XLR Platinum was met with cheers and clapping and we all were invited to review the 2009 XLR in person. I waited to see the car last, which afforded me the time to talk with Jim and the Cadillac product and engineering teams over cocktails.

    Having the experience of my comparative evaluations of the world’s best sports cars, luxury performance roadsters and midsize premium performance sedans, prepared me very well for this world class Cadillac XLR happening.

    After this insightful event, Cadillac is simply first-rate in my view, my expectations and specifically of Cadillac’s GM, Jim Taylor, after an extensive and enjoyable open discussion I came to a single formidable conclusion; I believe the Cadillac team understands the performance luxury and traditional luxury market. And what was so personal and impressive for me, was the pure passion, knowledge and professionalism displayed in regard to their designs for Cadillac. This was made evident at this event in very powerful terms, in product design, engineering and advance technologies created in superlativeluxury Cadillac models andespecially the XLR.

    With every new product development, Cadillac not only is competitive on the world luxury stage today, but they have created and designed some of the most unique designed and advanced luxury products available.


  • O.K. The XLR is the best personal car I have ever owned. Then why is it being discontinued as opposed to acccepting ‘sold only’ orders? If one want to be Cartier one has to act Cartier! To own an XLR, in my case is a result of a lot of sweat equity. To be denied the control pleasure of a stick shift in the roadster and have that manual transmission only available in a sedan, with my kids in the back seat, is to quote a famous General ‘Nuts’. To imply if I want a stick shift in a Roadster buy a Corvette. So whats the message here, lower my aspirations and join the Tatoo crowd ?

    Send out an e-mail survey to all XLR owners and ask about a stick shift if it were to be made available? Either the results will prove you wrong or me wrong. I think the former.

    R.S.V.P. please