Cadillac Escalade Esv Models & History 2003

Test Drive: 2003 Cadillac Escalade ESV by Greg Wilson Photos by Russell Purcell Less intimidating to drive than it looks The Cadillac Escalade sport-utility vehicle was first introduced in 1999, and at that time, many people, including myself, wondered whether a traditional North American manufacturer of luxury cars should add a truck to their lineup. No matter that Lincoln, Lexus, Mercedes-Benz, and BMW already had their luxury SUVs – Cadillac represented the last bastion of American luxury car design, where big, wide, comfy sedans ruled the roads. A Cadillac truck? It just seemed impossible. Click image to enlarge Perhaps the closest competitor to the Escalade ESV is the seven passenger 300 horsepower Lincoln Navigator, however it’s about 368 mm/14.5 inches shorter and $8,000 cheaper than the ESV. The Navigator ($69,995) is more comparable with the standard wheelbase Escalade ($75,580). Other seven passenger competitors may include the Lexus LX470 ($98,200), Toyota Sequoia Limited V8 ($62,155), and fully loaded versions of the GMC Yukon 1500 XL LT 4X4 ($56,775) or Chevrolet Suburban LT 1500 4X4 ($56,480). The Escalade ESV may also compete with the five passenger Range Rover 4.4 ($104,000), Mercedes-Benz G500 ($107,400), and Hummer H2 ($74,745). None of the Escalade ESV’s competitors have as much standard horsepower or torque, but it’s worth mentioning that the Suburban and Yukon XL are available with an optional 340 horsepower 8.1 litre V8 with 455 foot pounds of torque. The Escalade isn’t available with that engine. Verdict A full-size luxury SUV with genuine legroom and headroom for 7 or 8 people, the Escalade ESV is loaded with luxury features and has plenty of power and towing capacity. It’s also surprisingly quiet and easy to drive. The price seems high until you look at what most other luxury SUV makers charge. Technical Data: 2003 Cadillac Escalade ESV Base price $78,150 Freight $1,050 A/C tax $100 Options $5,465 (DVD navigation $3,095; Rear seat DVD entertainment system $2,095; Trailering kit $275) Price as tested $84,765 Type 4-door, 7 or 8 passenger full-size SUV Layout longitudinal front engine/all-wheel-drive Engine 6.0 litre V8, OHV Horsepower 345 @ 5200 rpm Torque 380 lb-ft @ 4000 rpm Transmission 4-speed automatic with tow/haul mode Tires P265/70R-17 Curb weight 2662 kg (5869 lb.) Payload (max.) 604 kg (1331 lb.) Towing capacity (max.) 3500 kg (7700 lb.) Wheelbase 3302 mm (130.0 in.) Length 5570 mm (219.3 in.) Width 2019 mm (79.5 in.) Height 1923 mm (75.7 in.) Cargo capacity 1294 litres (45.7 cu. ft.) behind 3rd row 2549 litres (90.0 cu. ft.) behind 2nd row 3737 litres (131.6 cu. ft.) behind 3rd row Fuel consumption City: 18.9 l/100 km (15 mpg) Hwy: 12.9 l/100 km (22 mpg) Fuel type Premium unleaded recommended Warranty 4 yrs/80,000 km Greg Wilson is a Vancouver-based automotive journalist and editor of CanadianDriver