The Seattle Cadillac Escalade SUV have a tow rating of up to 8300 pounds, and tons of bling, the Escalade is luxury writ large. A 420-hp V-8 and an eight-speed automatic with rear-drive are standard; all-wheel drive is optional. The long-wheelbase ESV adds about 25 cubic feet of cargo space behind the third row. The rough ride and reluctant handling betray the pickup-truck foundation, and extras can push the price into the stratosphere. A tribute to conspicuous consumption, it’s more than most drivers need.
Despite weighing well over two and a half tons, the Escalade doesn’t struggle to build speed. We’ve yet to strap our test equipment to the ESV, but a regular Escalade Platinum ran from zero to 60 mph in 5.8 seconds, 0.4 second quicker than the Infiniti QX80, 0.7 second quicker than the Lincoln Navigator, and 1.4 seconds ahead of the Lexus LX570. The Escalade and Escalade ESV are able haulers, capable of towing up to 8300 pounds (8100 for the ESV), be it a boat, a camper, or a track-prepped Acura Integra. Finally, there’s no denying the Escalade’s immense visual presence—a quality we’d imagine sits high on the wish lists of buyers in this vehicle segment.