Purpose: Cabozantinib is an oral potent inhibitor of vascular endothelial growth factor receptor 2, MET, and AXL and is a standard second-line therapy for metastatic renal cell carcinoma (mRCC). This randomized phase II multicenter trial evaluated cabozantinib compared with sunitinib as first-line therapy in patients with mRCC. Patients and Methods: Eligible patients had untreated clear cell mRCC and Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group performance status of 0 to 2 and were intermediate or poor risk per International Metastatic Renal Cell Carcinoma Database Consortium criteria. Patients were randomly assigned at a one-to-one ratio to cabozantinib (60 mg once per day) or sunitinib (50 mg once per day; 4 weeks on, 2 weeks off). Progression-free survival (PFS) was the primary end point. Objective response rate (ORR), overall survival, and safety were secondary end points. Results: From July 2013 to April 2015, 157 patients were randomly assigned (cabozantinib, n = 79; sunitinib, n = 78). Compared with sunitinib, cabozantinib treatment significantly increased median PFS (8.2 v 5.6 months) and was associated with a 34% reduction in rate of progression or death (adjusted hazard ratio, 0.66; 95% CI, 0.46 to 0.95; one-sided P = .012). ORR was 46% (95% CI, 34 to 57) for cabozantinib versus 18% (95% CI, 10 to 28) for sunitinib. All-causality grade 3 or 4 adverse events were 67% for cabozantinib and 68% for sunitinib and included diarrhea (cabozantinib, 10% v sunitinib, 11%), fatigue (6% v 15%), hypertension (28% v 22%), palmar-plantar erythrodysesthesia (8% v 4%), and hematologic adverse events (3% v 22%). Conclusion: Cabozantinib demonstrated a significant clinical benefit in PFS and ORR over standard-of-care sunitinib as first-line therapy in patients with intermediate- or poor-risk mRCC.