Cadillac has two brands that resonate with customers. One is the Escalade, the giant SUV that has been America's default luxury cruiser for a couple of decades now. The other is Cadillac's racing-inspired V Series, which has produced past legends like the CTS-V wagon and present ones like the CT4-V and CT5-V Blackwing sedans. And now —as antithetical as it may seem on paper — those brands are combining.
On Friday. Cadillac announced they will offer an Escalade-V for the 2023 model year. They will give the new SUV a full reveal in spring 2022. And that — beyond some photos of an Escalade with V-Series badging and an engine noise teaser — is about all we know for sure about it as Cadillac declined to release more information.
We can expect the 2023 Escalade V will receive more power than the standard model, which employs GM's 6.2-liter V8 putting out 420 horsepower and 460 lb-ft of torque. We'd also expect the enhanced power output would come from a V8. V8 engines are — despite the future zero-emissions pledges — what GM does best.
An exciting prospect would have the Escalade getting the 600-plus horsepower supercharged LT4 version of the 6.2-liter V8 used in the CT5-V Blackwing and previous Corvette Z06, though perhaps detuned a little bit. That would put the Escalade V on par with power-wise with full-size crossover rivals like the Mercedes-AMG GLS 63. A more modest proposition could be the 6.2-liter V8 from the Corvette Stingray, which puts out a little below 500 horsepower (which would still be a substantial jump for the Escalade).
Was the market crying out for a racing-inspired Escalade? We're not sure. But even the definitively unsporty Lexus LX 600 launched with an F Sport Handling street-performance-oriented trim. So perhaps the market for an even hotter Escalade is there.