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Automotive Intelligence News

News of  August 22, 2000
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Redesigned 2002 Escalade Delivers Cadillac Design & Technology In A Powerful Package
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Cadillac Escalade

Photo: GM

Pebble Beach, Calif., U.S.A.- With a unique blend of power, performance, comfort and sophisticated technologies, the all-new 2002 Cadillac Escalade creates a new standard for luxury sport-utilities. As the first sport-utility vehicle in the Cadillac portfolio, Escalade has successfully attracted younger, more affluent, import buyers, especially "early-adopters" who tend to acquire and embrace technological innovations.

"The Escalade has been a catalyst in attracting a new and important customer to Cadillac showrooms," said Michael J. O'Malley, Cadillac general manager. "The 2002 Escalade, with its distinct design and innovative technologies, signifies a direction for Cadillac's portfolio that will further broaden Cadillac's appeal." 

The 2002 Escalade builds on Cadillac's heritage of design leadership  with a bold new shape, while pioneering meaningful technologies  that customers want and use. The new-from-the-ground-up, second-generation, full-size Escalade is the first Cadillac to reflect the division's fusion of art and science philosophy by blending forward-thinking technology with an expressive new design.  

Leveraging years of award-winning GM truck experience and a new architecture, the 2002 Escalade expands market coverage, now with a choice of all-wheel drive and two-wheel-drive versions, each offering distinct performance differences. It also marks Cadillac's first export SUV for the Middle East, where GM SUVs dominate the market. 

The new Escalade is unmistakably a Cadillac. The exterior joins telltale Cadillac cues with sheer, chiseled forms and sharp lines, setting the tone for future products. The Escalade's bold design is the first in a series of future Cadillac models with a new form vocabulary that reflects Cadillac's art and science philosophy. Crisp, tailored lines are set off by Escalade's prominent, powerful front end, displaying Cadillac's new wreath and crest.  

In 2002, the AWD and 2WD Escalade each receive a new engine, delivering strong acceleration, a smooth ride and quiet operation. With Cadillac's exclusive version of the best-in-class Vortec 6000, the AWD Escalade now has more horsepower and torque per liter than any GM SUV and far more than any competitor. This high compression engine generates 345 horsepower at 5200 rpm and 380 lb.-ft. of torque at 4000 rpm. The engine links to a new Hydra-Matic 4L60-E HD (heavy-duty) electronically controlled four-speed automatic transmission with overdrive. Larger 17-inch wheels and tires offer a smoother ride and better handling.  

The rear-wheel drive model is powered by the Vortec 5300 V8, which makes 285 horsepower at 5200 rpm and 325 lb.-ft. at 4000 rpm, resulting in 30 more horsepower than the previous Vortec 5700. Plus, the 5300 delivers 90 percent of its peak torque over a wide band from 1600 to 5000 rpm. The engine is coupled with a standard Hydra-Matic 4L60-E electronically controlled four-speed automatic transmission with overdrive. 

"Escalade's dual powertrain strategy, coupled with sophisticated chassis control technologies, like StabiliTrak, offers a package that parallels the acclaimed Northstar system found in the Cadillac DeVille and Seville," said Susan Docherty, Cadillac Escalade brand manager. 

The Middle East export version offers the same design and performance features as the AWD Escalade, but its exhaust system has been modified to run on leaded fuel and it does not have OnStar. AWD capability gives Middle East customers the added traction to handle sandy or loose gravel and accommodates off-roading activities, which are common in that region of the world. 

Also new on the AWD model is StabiliTrak(tm), which is standard equipment on the Escalade. With StabiliTrak comes the computer-controlled road sensing suspension package, improving body stability, ride comfort and wheel control.  

Ultrasonic Rear Parking Assist, combined with improved lighting and braking, safer seat designs, side impact air bags and premium level OnStar, complete the Escalade safety and security package. 

Escalade's interior is more comfortable, luxurious and practical for 2002. The redesigned cabin provides more head, hip and second- and third-row leg room than before, without an increase in overall width and slight decreases in height and length.  

Seating has been expanded to eight passengers through the addition of a standard third-row and testing shows the seats offer best-in-class comfort. The addition of the removable, 50/50 split third-row seats gives the Escalade a new level of flexibility and utility, an important factor to customers. 

The seats are supportive and covered with Soft Nuance leather. The first two rows of seats are heated.  

The interior also has best-in-class climate control, a spacious floor console that flows up into the instrument panel, and a state-of-the-art Driver Information Center. A new best-in-class 11-speaker Bose(r) Acoustimass(r) audio system debuts on the Escalade, along with an in-dash, single-load six CD changer. A special acoustic package delivers a quieter ride.  

(August 18, 2000)

 

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