The Cadillac Escalade has long been the gold standard in the large luxury SUV market. The 2016 model of this flagship vehicle more than lives up to its name, with accolades including best large luxury SUV and best luxury SUV for families by U.S. News and World Report, as well as the President’s Vehicle Satisfaction Award and Most Satisfying Luxury SUV from AutoPacific. The Escalade has few changes since its complete redesign for the 2015 model year, though the infotainment system is newly updated and lane keep assist is now available.
The 2016 Escalade has an MSRP ranging from $72,970 – $94,950 depending on desired trim level and options. With space for seven, this large vehicle is powered by a standard V8 engine producing 420 horsepower and paired with an eight-speed automatic transmission. And with a towing capacity of 8,300 pounds, it’s the luxury SUV of choice for those who plan to hit the road with a trailer or large boat.
You’ll also enjoy the cavernous cargo capacity–a whopping 94.2 cubic feet with both rows folded down, 51.6 cubic feet with the second row folded, and 15.2 cubic feet when all seats are engaged.
As expected with an SUV in this class, the 2016 Escalade is incredibly well-appointed, with most features available even in the base model. Some of the vehicle’s most unique features include tri-zone automatic climate control, allowing even the second and third row passengers to choose their ideal temperature, standard heated seats in the first and second rows, hands-free power liftgate, power folding third-row seat, 8-inch touch screen, Bluetooth, five USB ports, navigation, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto integration, and a 16-speaker Bose surround sound system with HD and satellite radio.
Compared to Competition
Few luxury SUVs stack up to the features, power, and space you’ll get with the 2016 Escalade. Buyers are impressed not only by the generous appointments in even the base model, but also by the car’s expansive cargo capacity and high-end interior. However, the Escalade does lag behind comparable models in both fuel efficiency and towing capacity. The price is also higher than many of its competitors, with the base model falling right in the middle of the class when it comes to cost.
As mentioned, the Escalade’s fuel economy is just average for its class. However, models that get more miles per gallon tend to have a diesel or V6 rather than a powerful V8. The 2016 Escalade does come with an Active Fuel Management System, which shuts down four of the eight cylinders in driving situations where you don’t need the power. That allows the SUV to get a respectable-for-its-size 15/21 city/highway miles per gallon.
Pros and Cons
If you’re shelling out for a luxury SUV, you simply can’t do better than the Escalade. While pros are extensive, standout features include the high-quality build and materials, high-tech safety features, incredible performance, the agile maneuvering for a car of this size, and the extensive array of standard equipment. This is probably not the vehicle to choose, however, if you’re concerned about cost or fuel economy.