The 2023 Cadillac Escalade-V is thunderously powerful, packing a massive punch from a high-powered V8 engine. Could this be a great SUV to drive, or is it too much?
The V-Series badge is nothing new for Cadillac. This badge was used in previous versions of luxury sedans from this brand. In recent years we’ve also seen the Blackwing name added to some Cadillac models. Whether it’s a V or the Blackwing moniker, it means more power, performance, speed, and aggression from the vehicle wearing the badge.
Should you drive this big Cadillac high-performance SUV? Is it just enough or too much?
It takes big power to move the Escalade
Regardless of the packaging and trim, this massive, full-size Cadillac luxury SUV requires tons of power to get it going. The standard engine for the non-V models is a 6.2-liter V8 that delivers 420 horsepower and 460 lb-ft of torque. This L87 engine has become common in many GM vehicles, but it’s not the high-performance engine for the Escalade-V. This high-powered version derives its power from the 6.2-liter supercharged V8 LT4 engine. This ‘Blackwing V8’ engine packs a serious punch at 682 horsepower and 653 lb-ft of torque to rocket this massive beast to 60 mph in only 4.4 seconds.
If you’re looking for insane speed from a large, boxy luxury SUV, you can’t go wrong with this version of the Escalade.
How does this big Cadillac harness all that power?
With great power in an SUV, you must have the right stuff to keep all that power under control. The ride components developed for this SUV have been improved to ensure this SUV offers the engaging driving experience desired. This means the air ride adaptive suspension and magnetic ride control system have been upgraded to handle the amazing power going through the 10-speed automatic transmission.
In addition to a fantastic and sporty ride, the Cadillac Escalade-V can be stopped in a hurry. This big brute has vented six-piston Brembo front brakes. These impressive brakes to the job and get you stopped quickly, but this still isn’t a sports car; it’s a full-size SUV with lots of power, weight, and performance features. You can’t expect this SUV to turn fast laps on the local track, but it can show up and show off with enough power to challenge the AMG and M-Division models from Mercedes-Benz and BMW.
Enjoy the glorious sounds coming from the Escalade-V
One of the most wonderful aspects of this impressive high-performance luxury SUV is the sound it makes. The exhaust brings you a tremendous noise that feels like thunder shaking the ground under your feet. If you’re ready for your big SUV to sound like a high-powered sports car, this is the one you’ll want to enjoy during your drive.
This SUV needs better tires
Why build a high-performance SUV if you’re not willing to put high-performance tires on it? It seems like the Cadillac Escalade-V has everything desired except the right shoes. The tires found on this high-powered SUV are Bridgestone Alenza A/S 02 all-season tires. Hmm, that doesn’t sound like a set of performance rubber at all. Considering the cost of this SUV, which we’ll get into soon, why doesn’t Cadillac include a set of performance summer tires to ensure this brute has the right rubber touching the road?
Luxury as far as the eye can see
The outside of the Escalade-V doesn’t invoke any new feeling of performance or style. That said, once you step into the cabin, you’ve found a place packed with upscale luxury items to make sure you can easily enjoy the drive. The large OLED digital display dominates the dashboard, leather is on nearly every surface, and the 36-speaker AKG audio system fills the cabin with glorious sounds. You might never want to leave this interior space once you sit in the massaging seats and turn on this function.
Is the 2023 Cadillac Escalade-V worth the price?
The starting price for the standard-length version of this high-powered luxury SUV is $152,490. Choose the longer ESV model, and you’ll pay even more. This is a $41,000 increase over the Sport Platinum version of the regular Escalade. This is a hefty premium for an SUV that doesn’t add style, has the wrong tires, and drinks gas like a drunken sailor. For most drivers, the high price is enough of a turn-off, but if you’re itching for an Escalade with incredible power and performance, this could be the SUV you love to drive.
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