The long-awaited Cadillac Escalade IQ has been revealed. Larger than a Hummer but quicker off the mark than most sports cars and with a range that shades many EV saloons, it is a headline-grabbing statement of intent for America’s most famous luxury brand.
The Escalade draws power from a gargantuan 200kWh battery, almost double the size of the packs featured in limousines such as the BMW i7, Mercedes-Benz EQS and Rolls-Royce Spectre.
It delivers a claimed range of 450 miles, giving the Escalade an efficiency rating of just 2.25 miles per kWh – which, for comparison, is less than half that of the much smaller Vauxhall Astra Electric. Evidently, the brief for the Escalade was not to produce the world’s greenest EV, but rather to facilitate conspicuous consumption without a combustion engine.
Its huge battery is supported by 800V electricals, which enable the car to recoup up to 100 miles of range per 10 minutes of charging at a fast charger of as yet undisclosed speed. It can also return energy to the grid thanks to vehicle-to-home charging technology, although such capabilities will not be activated until a software update for the 2025 model year.
General Motors has yet to reveal the weight of the Escalade’s battery – or of the car as a whole – but the Hummer’s 212.7kWh (usable capacity) pack tipped the scales at 1326kg, according to test data filed with the US Environmental Protection Agency.
A pair of electric motors (one per axle) send up to 750bhp and 785lb ft through all four wheels when Velocity Max mode is engaged. According to Cadillac, this allows the Escalade to cover 0-60mph in less than 5.0sec – on a par with super-hatchbacks such as the Volkswagen Golf R.
Despite measuring 5.7m long and 2.4m wide, the Escalade has a turning circle of just 12m, which is comparable with many family hatchbacks.
Extra versatility is provided by adaptive air suspension, which allows the Escalade to be raised by 25mm or lowered by 50mm. A novel Low Ride mode allows the SUV to be driven with its suspension fully lowered at “low speeds”.