2012 Cadillac Escalade Photo
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On Performance
On Performance
The 2012 Cadillac Escalade is big, brash, and yes, very heavy; but you wouldn't know it based on how well it responds and accelerates.
8.0 out of 10
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PERFORMANCE | 8 out of 10

Expert Quotes:

Hybrid accelerates from a stop and passes much like conventional models.
Consumer Guide

there’s no escaping its truck-based origins, which make it feel as big and ponderous as a school bus if you hurry it
Car and Driver

[Hybrid] accelerates almost silently in electric-only mode if you accelerate lightly up to 25 or 30 mph

The engine isn't a slouch, but the likes of the QX56 and Range Rover Supercharged will blow its doors off.
Motor Trend

The 2012 Cadillac Escalade is a big, heavy, truck-based luxury vehicle. But you can almost forget about its heft and truck roots thanks to an amazingly strong, responsive engine and expert chassis tuning that makes the Escalade feel quite responsive.

You might expect the 2012 Cadillac Escalade to feel unwieldy, yet thanks to a brawny, responsive engine and expert chassis tuning, it can actually feel quite responsive. With a huge (and thirsty) 6.2-liter V-8, making 403 horsepower and 417 pound-feet of torque, the Escalade can move quickly--to 60 mph in only about 6.5 seconds, according to some sources, even though its weight can total almost 6,000 pounds. The six-speed automatic transmission functions as a willing companion most of the time. And all the while, the V-8 has a rumbly, vocal exhaust note that's not so typical for a luxury vehicle, but memorable.

The key to getting this monstrosity to behave and handle well, without busting your bum on rough pavement—despite those huge 22-inch wheels—is GM's excellent Magnetic Ride Control; it's offered on most of the Escalade lineup. While the Escalade is hardly maneuverable, it corners with a verve and responsiveness that will catch driving enthusiasts completely off guard. Stopping power is provided by large, powerful brakes that work so well that, again, you can forget entirely that you're hauling three tons or more.

Once again the Escalade is be available as either a rear- or all-wheel-drive model. Towing capacity remains at 8,100 pounds for the all-wheel-drive model and a hefty 8,300 pounds for the rear-wheel-drive variant.



The 2012 Cadillac Escalade is big, brash, and yes, very heavy; but you wouldn't know it based on how well it responds and accelerates.

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