The new 2020 Cadillac Escalade might look like a dinosaur when compared to the curvaceous, smoothed over SUVs of 2020. Yet, here it is. The 2020 Escalade continues to excel at providing a luxurious, roomy interior that endeavors to encapsulate half a junior soccer team. Cadillac hasn’t done much to refresh the design, but the tech amenities and safety features are all quite contemporary.
There are four model trims for the 2020 Cadillac Escalade. There’s the standard, luxury, premium luxury, and platinum models. Additionally, there is the standard length and an extended version called an ESV. Standard features on the base model Escalade would put most economy vehicles to shame. It comes with surround view camera, 16-speaker sound, 4G Wifi, advanced safety features and leather everywhere you look.
Upgrading to the Platinum model is an exercise in excess, but there are times when moderation is overrated. To get an idea of the separation in features, the Platinum Escalade adds magnetic ride control, a rear seat entertainment system, power retractable steps, and a power sunroof. There’s plenty more to see on the Platinum Escalade. Take a closer look at just how far you can go.
2020 Cadillac Escalade Performance Options
All model trims come with the same engine configuration. You get a 6.2 Liter V8 engine that’s paired with a 10-speed automatic transmission. There’s 420 horsepower at work under the hood, but the Escalade still needs to accelerate with all that it’s got. You’ll be lucky to get above 17 MPG in the city. The 10-speed automatic transmission works better going up than down, but never drops the ball entirely.
Two wheel drive and four wheel drive are big choices on the new Escalade. Not only is there a difference in performance capabilities, but there is about a $3,000 price difference, as well. Two wheel drive propels the rear wheels, not the front. With four wheel drive you can tow up to 8,300 pounds. The ride quality is truck-like, meaning that you’ll get a good jostling even on well-paved roads and streets.
Some vehicles neglect to add any performance upgrades outside of the model trim features. However, the 2020 Cadillac Escalade does have a few performance accessories that warrant closer attention. You can add a cold air intake system, an upgraded exhaust tip set, and carbon fiber side exit exhaust. Although these upgrades won’t necessarily boost your horsepower, they’ll enhance the throttle note considerably.
When it comes to trailering, you could spend a good portion of your day looking at all the options. There are nineteen trailer options available from Cadillac. Most of them are hitching ball mounts of various size and different types of wiring harnesses. Choosing between them will ultimately come down to what you plan to haul.
2020 Cadillac Escalade Tech Features
As mentioned earlier, there are some fantastic tech amenities that come standard on all new Escalades. One of the only additional tech features of the Platinum Escalade is a heads-up display for the driver. There’s an interesting tech amenity that you can add on to the Escalade build out. You can integrate DVD screens into the backs of the driver and passenger seats. You can also add a pair of digital headphones. Adding both tech features will load an additional $2,155 to the final price.
2020 Cadillac Escalade Safety Features
Safety features get the bundle treatment from Cadillac. This is the main reason why an upgrade to Platinum is worth the added cost. Platinum SUVs gets a rear camera mirror, rear cross traffic alerts, and lane keeping technology. The security system monitors unauthorized movement electronically. As an afterthought, the highway safety kit and first aid package are a useful bundle whether you plan on traveling on the highway or not. More safety gear is always a good choice.
Exterior Style Points
The 2020 Cadillac Escalade could never be mistaken for other SUVs. It has a big, bold front grille that’s easily recognizable as a Caddy. Most Escalades are either black or white, but those aren’t the only choices. There are two premium exterior colors – red passion tintcoat and crystal white tricoat. Either choice will add about $600 to the build price.
There aren’t many exterior add-ons available for the 2020 Cadillac Escalade. You can add wheel locks, a license plate holder, and roof rails. Otherwise, the options for exterior style upgrades is a bit lacking when you consider that this is a Cadillac.
There are some exterior vanity accessories like license plate frames and sport covers. However, the Escalade exterior accessories aren’t all about egotism. Deflectors protect your hood, side mirrors and windows. An underbody shield protects the oil plate and engine. The most expensive exterior accessories are rocker panel moldings for the vehicle’s profile. Although these covers cost the most, they’re applied with adhesive tape. This implies that they might need replacing sooner rather than later.
The interior of the Escalade is the star of the show. Whether you choose maple brown or jet-black leather surfaces with black accents makes no difference to the build price. This is purely a matter of your personal aesthetic. Both look amazing, but the maple sugar interior provides a stunning contrast of colors and surface textures to delight the eye. With the Platinum model you get leather across the doors and instrument panels as well.
Upgrades and Add-ons
There are three different packages that you can equip to a brand new 2020 Escalade from Cadillac. However, there might be some confusion because one package automatically includes the other. Here’s a bi of clarity. The first option is the Escalade Sport Edition. It comes with special 22-inch wheels with silver finish. It also comes with gloss black accents all around the exterior of the SUV.
Sport Performance Braking Package
Now, the second package is called the Sport Performance Braking Package. This package bundles in everything from the Sport Edition package and adds a performance grade front brake kit. This second option is the pricier of the two, but the improved braking is well worth an additional $2,000.
Interior Protection Package
The third package focuses on the interior of the 2020 Escalade. This is the Interior Protection Package and it adds all-season floor mats to the second and third rows, as well as the cargo area in the back. If you want to keep this luxury SUV in pristine condition, then having these pull out, wipe down mats is essential.
The next set of options focuses your attention on the interior yet again. If you’ve opted for the Interior Protection Package, then you’ve already equipped protective floor mats. You can turn your attention to the second row of seating where you have two options. You can opt for two captain’s chairs with bucket seating or a second-row bench that folds down. Each choice has different advantages and that will depend on your passengers. Will you need a pass-through for more cargo or more seating space for more people?
There might not be a lot of full-on features that you can add to the Escalade, but there are a plethora of accessories. For example, there are no fewer than eighteen different types of carriers. There’s everything from roof rails for kayaks to hitch carriers for mountain bikes. The roof-mounted luggage carrier seems like a function-first option.
You can add more electronics than a wholesale tech store. Cadillac is prepared to equip you with Bluetooth portable speakers, battery chargers, jump starters, and electronic cables. You might save yourself a trip to the electronics store or you might wind up with a glove box full of cables and gadgets you don’t need. Nearly all of them are worth skipping.
Summing it Up
There’s a reason that the Cadillac Escalade has won the Consumer Guide Best Buy award five years in a row. It’s a big body premium SUV that spares no expense in your favor. It has a powerful V8 engine and seating for eight lucky adults. Additionally, there is a veritable Christmas wish list of add-ons and features that take the 2020 Escalade to the heights of luxury.
A maxed-out 2020 Cadillac Escalade will drastically affect the starting MSRP. So, if you were budgeting $70,000 for your next SUV, then this isn’t the platform for you. Fully loaded with a modest number of additional features, amenities and accessories, the 2020 Escalade hovers around $100,000.
The big difference in price comes from the model trims themselves. Once you opt for the Platinum Luxury edition SUV, you’re entering another stratosphere of features. This build out is ideal for a car service company that wants a flagship passenger vehicle. You get an SUV that can seat seven to eight people and accommodate all their luggage. The 2020 Escalade wouldn’t make the best sense as a family hauler simply because there are more affordable options on the market for growing families.