Although the Cadillac Escalade is enduring a fairly flat sales year, GM’s ultra-lux SUV does remain a top choice among one particular group: vehicle thieves. In fact, in the latest report from the Highway Loss Data Institute—released in August—the Escalade was once again named the vehicle most likely to be stolen in this country, as it has for the past four years. But with Cadillac actually hoping to attract a slightly different target audience, the brand is launching five new theft-deterrence measures for the 2012 Escalade, Escalade Hybrid, Escalade ESV and Escalade EXT.
“The goal is to make the Escalade a very difficult target for thieves without any added inconvenience for customers,” said Bill Biondo, General Motors’ global leader for vehicle theft prevention. “The new systems work in the background and few people realize they are there, but they are strong added protections.”
• PASS Key 3+. The automaker’s latest, most sophisticated encryption system for the Escalade’s key, key cylinder and ignition system; it helps prevent the Escalade from being started by anything else except for the proper key.
• A new, more robust lock system for the steering column. GM claims the system “makes it nearly impossible to maneuver the Escalade onto a flatbed.”
• An available inclination sensor. The sensor can detect changes in the angle of the vehicle that could indicate it was being lifted for towing or maneuvered onto a flatbed, then set off an attention-getting alarm.
• An available shock sensor. Capable of setting off the vehicle alarm if it detects “shocks” to the vehicle’s condition, like those that occur if a window is broken, this sensor is geared toward preventing both property theft and vehicle theft.
• An enhanced and available wheel-lock system. It’s designed to make it more difficult than ever to steal the Escalade’s wheels and tires.
“Combined, these technologies comprise one of the most-extensive sets of theft-deterrent measures available for this type of vehicle and meet or exceed security specifications among global vehicle security analysts,” Biondo said.