Escalade performance is highlighted by the powerful and efficient 6.2L V-8 engine, rated at an SAE-certified 420 horsepower (313 kW) and 460 lb-ft of torque (623 Nm). The 10-speed transmission is an all-new design and the first introduced into a luxury SUV.
The 10-speed has four simple gear sets and six clutches: two brake clutches and four rotating clutches. That’s only one more clutch than the eight-speed, despite having two more forward gears, contributing further to the compact packaging, while also improving spin losses to enhance fuel efficiency.
- Precise and smooth shift feel. Shorter steps between gears and proprietary controls provide a quick, seamless shifting experience for the Cadillac customer.
- Improved efficiency. Because of the wider overall ratio spread of the 10L80, the new 10-speed allows the engine to run at lower rpm on the highway, achieving an EPA-estimated 23 mpg on the highway (2WD) — an approximately 5-percent improvement over the previous 8-speed automatic.
- Quicker shifts for better performance. The 6.2L Small Block’s 420 horsepower and the 10L80’s quick shifts help it achieve a X second improvement in 0-60 over the previous 8 speed. (In anticipation of improvement – need to investigate).
Exclusive to the Escalade is the six-piston Brembo brake system with red Calipers and a special-edition Cadillac logo.
Escalade’s performance is channeled to a sophisticated chassis and suspension system, engineered for a great feeling of solidity and a smooth, quiet ride. A fully boxed frame, composed of more than 75 percent high-strength steel, is the foundation for its ride quality.
Chassis and suspension highlights include:
- Shear-style body mounts, which reduce body shake and enhance the feeling of structural stiffness, improve damping performance when compared with previous compression mounts
- A cross-axis ball joint on the frame-side of the rear suspension lateral link that enhances steering precision
- Third-generation Magnetic Ride Control is standard, with two selectable modes. Its dual-electric-coil design enabled engineers to tune with more resolution to handle quickly changing road conditions.
- Electric variable-assist power steering system enhances fuel economy and tailors steering assist to vehicle speed
- Four-wheel-disc brake system with Duralife™ brake rotors that offer up to double the service life
- Standard automatic locking rear differential that provides greater traction when needed and greater driving comfort when it’s not.
The available four-wheel-drive system enables the driver to select an Auto mode for set-it-and-forget-it automatic activation. When conditions call for extra traction assist, a separate 4 HI mode offers the most capability for more challenging conditions. Drivers can select 2 HI for best fuel economy, or 4 L for heavy duty trailering and a Neutral for dingy towing.
Cadillac’s Magnetic Ride Control, the world’s fastest-reacting suspension system, is standard, delivering precisely controlled driving performance. At its core, Escalade is an SUV with the capabilities of a full-size truck, enabling a trailering rating of 8,300 pounds on the standard model and an 8,100-pound rating on Escalade ESV – more than Mercedes-Benz GLS550 (7,500 pounds), Lexus LX 570 (7,000 pounds) and Land Rover Range Rover (7,716 pounds).