Changes for the 2015 Cadillac Escalade:
The 2015 Escalade is completely redesigned, more powerful yet more fuel efficient, and designed to meet a higher standard in terms of design, materials, comfort, safety, and technology. If Cadillac’s full-size luxury SUV takes a step back, it is with regard to reduced cargo carrying capabilities due to a third-row seat that can no longer be removed from the vehicle.
Cadillac offers the 2015 Escalade in standard or extended-length ESV format, the latter a larger model suppling double the amount of cargo space behind the third-row seat. Buyers select from Standard, Luxury, Premium, and Platinum “collections” of equipment.
Engines and Transmissions:
A new 6.2-liter V-8 engine equipped with fuel-saving cylinder deactivation technology is standard for every 2015 Escalade. The V-8 generates 420 horsepower, and Cadillac claims it will accelerate the SUV to 60 mph in less than six seconds. Maximum towing capacity is 8,300 lbs.
A 6-speed automatic transmission was standard in early versions, replaced by a more fuel-efficient 8-speed automatic shortly after the SUV's launch. Rear-wheel drive is standard, and a 4-wheel-drive system is optional. Cadillac’s Magnetic Ride Control suspension is also standard, along with electric variable-effort steering and DuraLife brake rotors designed to last twice as long.
Fuel Economy Ratings:
According to the EPA, the 2015 Escalade with the 6-speed automatic should return 17 mpg in combined driving with rear-wheel drive, while 4WD models are expected to get 16 mpg. As this summary was written, the 8-speed automatic had not been rated. When it’s time to fill ‘er up, the task takes less time thanks to a new capless fuel-filler design.
As this summary is written, few crash-test results exist for the redesigned Escalade. The NHTSA gives this big SUV 5-star ratings in each of three side-impact protection assessments, combined with a 3-star rating for rollover resistance. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) had not assessed the Escalade at the time this summary was published.
Every 2015 Escalade includes Cadillac’s controversial CUE infotainment system, employing an 8-inch touch-, gesture-, and proximity-sensing screen and including text-messaging support and Siri Eyes Free compatibility. Six months of OnStar service is free, and includes Automatic Crash Response, Stolen Vehicle Tracking, FamilyLink location sharing, and more. OnStar also transforms the Escalade into a mobile Wi-Fi hotspot thanks to a 4G LTE Internet connection that is free for three months or until the owner burns through 3GB of data.
Gauges are rendered on a configurable 12.3-inch instrumentation display, and the Luxury and Premium models get a full-color heads-up display. A new Bose Centerpoint premium audio system designed specifically for the Escalade includes 16 speakers, while a Blu-Ray DVD rear entertainment system is optional. Cadillac also installs a number of new standard or optional anti-theft and security features.
All 2015 Escalade models are equipped with a new front center airbag offering greater collision protection to front seat occupants, as well as a surround view camera system. Luxury and Premium models have Side Blind Zone Alert, Lane Change Alert, and Rear Cross Traffic Alert systems. A Driver Awareness Package adds Forward Collision Alert, Lane Departure Warning, and a Safety Alert Seat. A Driver Assist Package installs full-speed-range adaptive cruise control, Front and Rear Automatic Braking, and Automatic Collision Preparation with Automatic Safety Belt Tightening.
Written by Christian Wardlaw
August 11, 2014
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