The Escalade is definitely one of Cadillac's most iconic (and successful) models, and today GM’s luxury brand is finally unveiling its electric version. Easily recognizable by its audacious silhouette, the Escalade IQ remains imposing while offering a more elegant profile carrying over several styling cues from the Lyriq and Celestiq. Drag coefficient has been lowered by around 15% from the gas-powered model.
The Escalade sits on a very similar Ultium electric modular platform as the GMC Hummer EV, and borrows many technologies from that particular GMC counterpart. The battery has 24 modules (200 kWh) and Cadillac estimates 450 miles (724 kilometres) of range. When plugged on a 350 kW charging station, the IQ will be able to gain 100 miles (160 kilometres) in approximately ten minutes.
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Screens, Screens, Screens!
Inside, the interior gets Escalade-level luxury and finishes. The main screen stretches from pillar to pillar, spanning a whopping 55 inches. The first 35 inches in front of the driver combines both the instrumentation and the multimedia system, which incorporates Google and the 5G modem.
The second section can be operated by the passenger, who can watch content or even play video games thanks to an HDMI port. The Executive package includes captain's chairs in the second row with a console fitted with HVAC and seat controls (heated, ventilated and massaging). For audiophiles, the AKG Studio Reference audio system with 40 speakers is included with the Executive Package. Luxe 2 and Sport 2 versions feature a 36-speaker system, while Luxe 1 and Sport 1 have “just” 19. The ambience can also be tailored using a palette of 126 colors in a cabin that is, as you may have guessed, very roomy and the floor is completely flat. Cargo volume is comparable to that of the extended version (ESV) of the gasoline-powered Escalade. However, the front trunk, or "frunk", can store an additional 340 liters.
Over 700 Horsepower
Mechanically, the Escalade IQ features a host of comfort-enhancing technologies for a plush drive. The adaptive air suspension and Magnetic Ride Control 4.0 provide a smooth, pleasant ride for passengers, despite the 24" wheels. Taking into account the Escalade's size, engineers have added rear wheel steering - reducing the turning diameter to just twelve meters. The GMC Hummer EV’s “crab mode” is dubbed Arrival Mode on the Escalade, and it allows it to travel diagonally at low speeds for easy parking.
The powertrain uses two electric motors that can generate up to 750 hp and 785 lb-ft of torque (Cadillac estimates). As a result, it can sprint from 0 to 60 mph (0 to 96 km/h) in less than five seconds. To achieve these figures, Velocity Max mode (Cadillac speak from Watts to Freedom on the Hummer) must be engaged. Towing capacity sits at 8,000 lb.
For longer journeys, Cadillac's Super Cruise function allows you to cover more than 640,000 km of listed highways in the USA and Canada in semi-autonomous fashion. Safety technologies include parking assistance, automatic emergency braking with pedestrian and cyclist detection, and 360-degree camera.
The Cadillac Escalade IQ 2025 will be offered in two variants (Luxury and Sport), and will be manufactured at the Detroit-Hamtramck Assembly Center in Michigan. Production will start in summer 2024. Pricing starts at $130,000 in the U.S. Canadian pricing has yet to be announced.