Everything apart from the Escalade's 420-hp 6.2-liter V8 engine is new for 2021. Underpinning the Escalade is a new ladder frame that sports independent rear suspension for improved ride characteristics. The new rear suspension also allowed the rear section of the new Escalade to be reconfigured for dramatically better legroom in each of the back rows. The 6.2-liter gasoline V8 is matched with a 10-speed automatic transmission. Everything inside the 2021 Escalade is new as well, highlighted by the huge OLED information screen, which boasts more than 38 diagonal inches of display area. In its three digital panels, the curved OLED display has a driver information center, an instrument cluster and a much larger screen to the right for audio, navigation and phone info.
For 2021, the Cadillac Escalade comes redesigned and with improved features; these includes better technology, new independent rear suspension, enhanced styling and an optional turbo-diesel engine.
The 2021 Escalade model line includes the extended-length Escalade ESV, as well as Luxury, Premium Luxury, Sport and Platinum Sport versions of each. With any of these models you also have a choice between rear-wheel drive and 4-wheel drive.
All Escalades have a 6.2L V8 engine. With an aluminum block and heads, direct injection, variable valve timing, this is a big V8, but a thoroughly modern one. The engine makes 420 horsepower and 460 lb-ft of torque, and thanks to an Active Fuel Management system, which will run the engine on four of its cylinders during coasting or some lower-speed cruising conditions, it returns EPA ratings of up to 15 mpg city, 20 highway in rear-wheel drive only.
The new optional 3L inline-six turbo-diesel engine pushes out 460 lb-feet of torque and 277 horsepower, making it a very capable and fuel-efficient hauler.
The Escalade is built on a fully boxed frame, which provides the strength needed for towing and larger payloads. The Premium Luxury trims adds Magnetic Ride Control, a system that uses special shocks that can change their damping characteristics in just a fraction of a second, allowing softness to soak up rough roads and firming up for quick emergency maneuvers when needed. Meanwhile, Active Noise Cancellation technology and special acoustic-laminate glass help keep it quiet inside.
Cadillac Escalade ESV models are about 15.9 inches longer than the standard Escalade, with a wheelbase that's 13.2 inches longer. Both offer a seating capacity of up to eight, depending on the layout. Seating space is technically the same; the key difference is that ESV models offer easier access to the third-row seats, as well as more than double the cargo space behind the third row. Throughout the Escalade's interior the traditional luxury ambiance hasn't been forgotten. The cabin is plush and well-appointed with cut-and-sewn materials and real wood trim.
Meanwhile, there's also the Cadillac User Experience (CUE), a system that uses sophisticated voice controls combined with a capacitive screen at the center of the instrument panel; it even incorporates proximity sensing--showing different menus depending on how near the user's hand is to the display. The system includes Siri Eyes Free compatibility with the capability to read incoming text. The OnStar 4G LTE data connection is also available, which turns the vehicle into a high-speed mobile hot spot.
All Escalades come with a comprehensive airbag system that includes seat-mounted side airbags, front driver and passenger frontal and curtain and side-impact airbags for all occupants. An available Driver Awareness Package includes Forward Collision Alert, Lane Departure Warning and a Safety Alert seat that transmits warnings to the driver with patterned vibrations. A front and rear automatic braking system works to avoid or mitigate the severity of a potential accident.
The 2021 Escalade's base Luxury trims comes standard with 22-inch wheels, power folding heated mirrors, LED headlights, LED brake lights, heated front seats, driver seat memory, keyless entry with push button start, Rainsense rain detecting wipers, Rear Seat Reminder and steering wheel crafted with leather genuine wood materials.
The infotainment system includes 19-speaker sound system, 16.90 touchscreen display, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto integration, SiriusXM radio, Bluetooth, four 12v power outlets, five USB ports and a Cadillac OLED gauge display.
The Escalade comes standard with many safety features including Surround Vision camera system, front and rear parking sensors, Front Pedestrian Braking, Forward Collision Alert, Lane Keep Assist, Teen Driver mode, Stabilitrak stability control and Tire Fill Alert.
The Premium Luxury trim adds much more standard equipment on the 2021 Escalade, this includes a panoramic sunroof, ventilated front seats, leather upholstery, dual-zone automatic climate control with separate rear HVAC controls, head-up display, rear camera mirror, automated parking sensors, Side Blind Zone Alert and Rear Cross Traffic Alert.
The Premium Luxury Platinum trim adds more higher-end features including 36 speaker sound system, power-retractable side steps, illuminated sill plates, rear wireless headphones, adaptive cruise control and luxury Air Ride Suspension.