2021 Cadillac Escalade Sport Platinum Diesel: Overview
It is still fresh in our memories that a leading manufacturer from Europe ruined the image of diesel less than a decade ago. It is also true that EVs are the talk in the town and automotive circles are very busy with this topic. All major manufacturers made commitments to stop the production of ICE (internal combustion engine) vehicles within 20 years or so. The regulations in Europe and North America, in particular, will enforce this big shift in the history of the automotive industry.
However, it is also true that the industry is probably decades away from the full adoption of EVs. We will need and use ICEs still for a long time. And diesel engines do matter especially when it comes to heavy-duty jobs.
2021 Cadillac Escalade Sport Platinum Diesel: Engine and Powertrain
The self-igniting engine under the hood of our tester is a 3.0-litre Duramax turbocharged inline six-cylinder delivering 277 horsepower and an impressive 460 lb-ft of torque. Mated to a modern 10-speed automatic transmission, this diesel promises great efficiency in fuel economy and towing capability (3,629 kg). GM uses this engine also for Chevrolet Tahoe and GMC Sierra, Escalade’s corporate cousins. with 91 litres of the fuel tank, a drive, for instance, from Toronto to Quebec City and beyond up to 900 kilometres is very realistic.
2021 Cadillac Escalade Sport Platinum Diesel: Exterior, Interior and Design
Cadillac, at the top of GM’s hierarchy of brands, does not disappoint. We have been testing Cadillac vehicles for about a decade or so. And That is Cadillac’s most upscale interior we ever experienced. The attention to detail, the material -and the build quality are comparable to the best. Every feature from the keyless entry sensor, to the door handles, the soft-leather seats and the instrumentation is superb and there is no question that you drive a GM vehicle sufficiently differentiated from other brands in the company.
The curved OLED (organic light-emitting diode) screen gives its character to the interior and is standard on all Escalade models. This diagonal display offers the best resolution in a vehicle until now and is almost 100 cm long. With three layers of displays on top of each other, it provides an excellently clear picture. It consists of three parts: The left screen is 7.2-inches and gives the trip information. The “main” screen in front of the driver is 14.2-inches and shows the traditional info, revolution counter and speedometer. And the big centre or the infotainment screen measures 16.9-inches. The picture quality is brilliant and we can say that Cadillac is the benchmark in this regard. The curved shape adds uniqueness to the interior. As we distill more and more info from our vehicles, Cadillac makes a statement that we will need bigger and bigger screens.
Cadillac Escalade Sport Platinum Diesel: Driving Impressions
We as auto journalists have fewer and fewer options when it comes to testing a diesel vehicle. But, when we do drive a diesel vehicle, especially a big one like this Escalade, the advantages come into play. We came up with an average consumption of 11,2 litres at the end of a one-week, mixed-mode driving cycle. This would be unimaginable with comparable V8 gasoline. Especially on the highway and using GM’s Super Cruise system it would be so relaxing to drive from one end of the Province to the other. Diesel engines, by nature, have higher compression ratios (low twenties versus about 1 to 8 with gasoline). And with the price of diesel below the regular 87-octane gasoline, it makes a difference especially you are a high-mileage driver. To the skeptics who think the diesel network is weaker than gasoline, I would reply as “Where do we stand with the charging network?”
Apart from the fuel economy, the Escalade drives soft and nice. The independent rear suspension of the current generation full-size GM SUVs (as we observed in our previous tests) makes a big difference even if the limitations of a body-on-frame vehicle are still at play.
When it comes to sudden accelerations on the highway, you may miss V8 gasoline since the significantly lower horsepower shows the weaker side of its character. You need some patience and remember the advantage of delivering the same torque with a V8 at just 1,500 rpm.
2021 Cadillac Escalade Sport Platinum Diesel: Pricing and Equipment
For details of pricing and specifications of our tester, please see the window sticker below:
2021 Cadillac Escalade Diesel: Conclusion
GM has a smart strategy by offering a reasonable and viable engine option for its big SUVs. While working towards an electrified future is the right, long-term strategy, offering the proven benefits of a diesel engine enables Cadillac to outperform its competitors.
It is also worth remembering that due to the global chip shortage and supply chain bottlenecks, delivery of an Escalade Diesel may be up to six months away when you order one today. A tragic loose-loose situation both for the manufacturer and the buyers who want to own a great full-size SUV
For more detailed and up-to-date information, please visit https://www.cadillaccanada.ca/en