2021 Cadillac Escalade First Look
2021 Cadillac Escalade First Look By Auto Critic Steve Hammes
America’s aspirational SUV has received its overdue makeover.
The all-new 2021 Cadillac Escalade is taking bold in a smarter direction with dramatic increases in both passenger and cargo space capitalizing on its longer wheelbase and new independent rear suspension. With people’s knees no longer in their faces, 3rd row legroom has increased a whopping 10+”. Regular and extended length models are still offered.
Beloved by the power hungry, GM’s 6.2-liter V8 checks in with 420 horsepower but the big news is the addition of a 3.0-liter diesel engine – destined to better satisfy trailering needs – matching the torque output of the gas power plant at 460 pound-feet. A 10-speed auto manages the gear changes for both.
Carrying the Super Cruise torch from the departed CT6, the Escalade ups the ante by adding automated lane changes to the best semi-autonomous system on the market – a technology Mercedes-Benz debuted years ago on their less capable self-driving setup.
The newly available air suspension goes where the Lincoln Navigator’s steel springs fail to by providing a cushion for the Escalade’s new chassis. It combines with Cadillac’s superior Magnetic Ride Control shocks for what should be an incredible ride quality. 22” wheels are standard.
The centerpiece of the cabin is most definitely the curved, paper thin, 38” OLED display with better resolution than your 4K TV. Taking another page from Mercedes is the augmented reality navigation system which uses live street views to enhance driving directions.
And is this the audio system to end all arguments? A never before heard AKG in-vehicle, 36 speaker studio reference system that’s powered by 3 amplifiers. Those opting out will have to make due with only 19 speakers.
Pricing has yet to be announced but the Escalade’s on-sale date will be later this year.