Spied: Cadillac SRX-V? Performance pack? Model facelift?

Something new appears to be afoot in the world of the Cadillac SRX. Spy photographers spotted this blacked-out SRX-based prototype with a curious mix of attributes that have us scratching our heads.

The front bumper-mounted lighting assemblies found on the current standard SRX have been removed here, and in their place reside large mesh air-intakes. The horizontal strip of six intake slots on the SRX's front fascia are still here on this prototype, but they're also finished in a V-style mesh treatment. Finally, this tester's front air-dam gets a lowered extension, creating a deeper front chin.

Add to the picture that our tester appears to have the STS-V's 10-spoke 18-inch wheels and tires and its V-spec brake calipers, and it would seem that we have a sport package, or even a V-spec prototype. But, with the recent addition of an SRX Sport Package for 2007 -- which actually looks more sporty and aggressive than this prototype -- visually things don't quite add up.

While we're at it, why not throw in some portholes taken directly from a Buick Lucerne? They're right there on this SRX's front fenders. It's unimaginable that Cadillac would so blatantly lift a recognizable Buick design cue and plunk it on a Cadillac, so what gives? It's tough to say for sure, but perhaps an SRX facelift will get Escalade-style fender vents, and these Buick portholes are simply applied to approximate the effect in the early phases of testing.

So are we dealing with a facelifted SRX here? The '07 upgrades only
included a new interior and the Sport Package addition, leaving the
standard SRX styling untouched. This prototype has revised tail-
lights with clear-lensed LED tail-lights also visible on facelifted
STS prototypes, so maybe these changes just represent some new
visuals in store for the SRX lineup.

Alternatively, the prototype could preview aspects of both the facelifted SRX and a more potent V-spec model. Whether such a vehicle would be a true SRX-V or something more tame remains to be seen.

In March, it was reported Cadillac would offer a "V" kit for the SRX minus the "V" power. In other words, all the performance upgrades an SRX-V might have, aside from an outrageously powerful engine. We're not sure if those rumors referred to the now-available Sports Package or something entirely separate.