Cadillac is a brand of power and bold statements, and the fancy Escalade is the most popular brand’s model. Most car manufacturers are building fully electric lineups by slowly removing petrol and diesel models, but Cadillac decided not to go down quietly and give us the last taste of an actual American luxury SUV experience – the “Victory” version of the Cadillac Escalade.
Last year they surprised us with the CT5-V Blackwing, and many people thought this was the last chance to get a brand-new V8-powered Cadillac. However, what we see here is even better – the last chance for Cadillac to reveal its roots.
The new Escalade-V will have a hand-built 682 hp supercharged 6.2-liter V8 LT4 power plant, paired with a 10-speed automatic transmission. While the SWB version accelerates from 0 to 60 mph in 4.4 seconds, the Escalade-V is not all about brute power as it’s equipped with an electronic limited-slip rear differential, Brembo brakes, V-Driving mode, and a magnetic ride control that reads the road up to a 1,000 times per second and immediately adjusts the air ride adaptive suspension to provide a better traction and responsiveness. The tour mode lets you adjust steering responsiveness, dampers, brake feel, and even the loudness of exhausts, leaving you with either an aggressive sports SUV, soothing family carrier, or anything in between.
You can tell it’s not a regular Escalade from first sight. The Escalade-V features a new styling around the car: a bigger grille, front bumper splitter, rear bumper diffuser, unique 22-inch wheels, chrome bits are blacked-out to give more aggressiveness, and you’ll find massive “V” badges on the sides and back.
The interior is less surprising as Cadillac didn’t want to trade luxury and comfort for quirky badging, tighter seats, and carbon fiber trims. The only changes are a few small “V” badges and zebra wood trims. The Escalade-V is based on the Sport Platinum version, which grants a nearly fully loaded Escalade with only a couple of optional extras left out.
The Cadillac Escalade-V doesn’t have any competition because the relatively modest GMC Yukon and Lincoln Navigator with black trims are the closest thing to the Escalade-V. Cadillac is already talking about a fully electric Escalade that should come out in a few years, so this is your last chance to drive out of the dealership in a rumbling brand new Cadillac Escalade if you have $149,990 laying around.