You are using an older browser version. Please use a supported version for the best MSN experience.

Cadillac Is Switching to New Torque-Based Engine Badging

Car and Driver logo Car and Driver 13/3/2019 Andrew Wendler
Adding to the world glut of numbers, Cadillac will badge its engines with torque figures like "400" after the international newton-meter standard. © Cadillac Adding to the world glut of numbers, Cadillac will badge its engines with torque figures like "400" after the international newton-meter standard.
  • Cadillac's new engine naming scheme will use a three-digit number that corresponds with torque output, measured in newton-meters.
  • The first model to adopt the new name is the new XT6 crossover, which will wear a "400" badge.
  • Other 2020 Cadillac models will use the names going forward, except for the high-performance V-series models.

Cadillac announced today that, starting with the 2020 model year, it's adopting a new engine-naming scheme in which the powertrain designation will be based on its torque number. The automaker says that's to give buyers "a clear understanding of the power differences across the lineup."

The three-digit number, which will show up on exterior badging, comes from torque measured in newton-meters, which the automaker points out is an international standard of measurement that is recognized everywhere (we use pound-feet to measure torque in the U.S.). With the increasing use of turbocharging and electrification of future models, it's "all about the torque," says Cadillac president Steve Carlisle, so finding a way to quantify that in the engine name is what Cadillac decided to do.

The first example of the new naming scheme is the 400 badge seen here on the new XT6 crossover. That number corresponds to the 3.6-liter V-6's 271 lb-ft of torque, which is 367 newton meters of torque; Cadillac generously rounds it up to 400 and says it will round each number to the nearest 50. Every 2020 model-year and later Cadillac except for the V-series will get the new engine badges, starting with the XT6, Cadillac said. A "T" will denote turbocharging on some models.

This move is reminiscent of Audi's confusing powertrain naming scheme, which uses two-digit numbers that correspond with power output. These number badges don't appear on any U.S.-market Audi models, but the Audi consumer site does list models like the A6 3.0T with a "55" designation.

More From Car and Driver

Car and Driver
Car and Driver
image beaconimage beaconimage beacon