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Hagerty Employee

Cadillac's supercharged, $150K Escalade-V is more powerful than your Z06

When the CT6 ended its production run in North America, Escalade once again became Cadillac's flagship model in its home market. Its latest iteration, the fifth generation of the full-size SUV, is the most technologically advanced and marked the model's move to independent rear suspension while also expanding the powertrain offerings with the addition of a diesel.

I’m sure this is an amazing vehicle, and I’m glad GM is building it for the few that can afford it, but I’m really not impressed anymore by big buck vehicles or supercars where cost is no object. It would only be news if these vehicles were not good.
In my mind the Ford Maverick is a way more impressive vehicle than this Cadillac. A low cost vehicle with good design and functionality that normal everyday people can afford, and this is key, that normal everyday people want to buy. Does GM have the vision to build such a vehicle?

The truth is lets just see how well the Maverick really does. The Ridgeline started strong and now sells 30k units a year. Not a great number. 


FWD trucks are not really trucks they are more a Ute or CUV with a bed and generally take sales from other CUV models. . I expect the Maverick sales will settle in the third year. 


The truth is you can get a Ranger for nearly the same price that is a better vehicle or the coming Colorado that will be best in class next year. The price is not much different and the MPG is not that much different and the utility is much greater. 


The Cadillac here has one mission Make Money. It will and that is all it needs to do. That is the point of making high end cars. 


The Maverick is just an Escape under the sheet metal with many short cuts to cut the price and in the end you get what you pay for. 


Just slam the door and hear the sound or lack of sound deadening. The single piston floating calipers are not a sign of quality. The non folding back seat? Even the Ranger lacks this feature to save money. The corner cutting will come back to haunt them. 


“Better” is up to the individual. A Ranger or a Colorado may be better to you, but not to Maverick buyers, who don’t want Rangers or Colorados. Buyers also don’t care if someone thinks it’s a real truck or not. The price, better MPG, and utility works for Maverick buyers. They also don’t care or know about its Escape roots, much like Honda owners probably don’t know or care about the Ridgeline, Pilot, and Odyssey being based on the same unit platform. Buyers also recognize the value in cheap cars built to a price point. That’s why I still regularly see old cheap Rangers, S-10’s, Tacomas, Mazda B2000’s, and Nissan Frontiers down here in the South.
The Maverick fills the needs of its buyers in a way the Ranger (or Escape) doesn’t. That’s why Ford didn’t replace the Ranger with the Maverick, but instead sells both.

I think Honda could sell a lot more Ridgelines in North America.

Part of it is mindset... sell a lot more, at a lower price.

If these means add an even-more basic trim level --do it.

Make some eye-popping colour options in the cheaper trims. Think 80s & 90s sports trucks.

I test drove a 2019 Ridgeline. Auto magazines at the time called it the "compromise nobody wanted". I laughed at this... a 4-door El Camino is basically perfect for us, but it was too pricey.

Spot on. I love everything about the Ridgeline except its price.


Here is the problem. The Ridgeline cost more because it is built better. You get what you pay for. Even loaded it still stickers below the average price of a vehicle. 

The cold harsh truth is the $9,999 Ranger and S10 are gone by two decades. 

$25k or less really buys you crap. It may look cool but under the skin there is little there. 5 years from now it will be a money pit like so many low end cut rate cars. 

Hyundai to be honest did the right thing. They built a better vehicle. It cost more but it is a better vehicle. They also do not call it a truck. They asked the media never to call it a truck. 

I have checked out the Maverick and Bronco. Both look cool and are good ideas but neither are well built and have many low cost things under and in the skin. 

I am not a Jeep fan but the Jeep is a much better built vehicle even with the death wobble. The sad thing is the Bronco with options is not cheap to buy but just slam the door and there is no sound deadening on the panel inside. It clangs like a Russian car. 

Most people do not buy base models, most mfgs do not like selling base models. Money is in the options and most people want all they can buy. If you can’t spend over $25k you are better off buying low mile used once this chip shortage is over. 

I have owned a El Camino, S10, Sonoma and now Canyon crew. My present truck is the best off all, has the most power of all and gets the best mpg of all. I bought a top end model but a similar Colorado LT for under $30k. It is a right size where 4 easily sit and 5 if needed. It can tow 7,000 pounds it can haul about anything needed like 35 bags of mulch with out even sagging down in the rear. 

It rides and drive very good and even has 4 piston calipers on the front. I Paid $8k off sticker for it. 

Little things like a fold flat rear seat adds cargo space I even have options the others don’t even come close to offering like cooled seats and I only paid just a bit more. 

Bust some folks are fine with a bad hamburger when they could just spend a slight more and get a decent steak. It is all in what you value more. 


My view is once you spent the price of a Maverick you may as well kick in the little more and get a better vehicle. 

Unless you lease. Then cheap is fine as it will be gone  once it becomes unraveled. 

Pit Crew

You and Mary Barra are one and the same.

GM used to cover the entire automotive market, now all it does it chase the upper end with Sierra Ultimate Denali's, this contraption and an ugly Hummer.

Hyundai/Kia, Honda and especially Toyota are not so near sighted. When the recession comes and gas prices skyrocket, she will wish Lordstown still made Cruze and Orion still made Sonics instead of Hummers.

I'm glad to see the Blackwing engine make it into something, especially something that might sell a few (even at that pricepoint).


When it seemed like that engine program was going to just be abandoned it seemed like  an illogical waste to me.

Community Manager

Odds are this motor isn't a Blackwing V8, it's a derivative of the LT5 motor from the outgoing Corvette ZR1. The Blackwing is a name now, the motor is long gone. 


I thought some Italian company bought the rights to the Blackwing V8. Kind of a curious move by GM to create the Blackwing when the excellent Corvette V8s already existed. 

Community Manager

Apparently that is still up in the air, I haven't seen any update since this posting: 


The Blackwing is a victim of mismanagement. It was a plan of one of the Cadillac managers to give them their own V8 and put more separation between Cadillac and Chevy. While the Chevy engine is good it does little to the flagship to have a pick up truck engine in it. 


So the manager of Cadillac left when it was decided to make the move to EV. It was too late to cancel the engine but GM did not want to move forward with it. 


The engine here is like Sajeev said a updated LT5. Then the new DOHC Corvette engine is not even related to the Blackwing. 


Cadillac has been miss managed and GM has not had a clear focus for the division since the 80's. This is why they are struggling today. Lincoln has faired not any better. Both are shadows of their past. 


GM once the move was made to EV many programs were canceled or changed. There are now big collective plans for Cadillac and it will be interesting to see if they will finally get it right. The new Flagship is going to be a major hand built car but with little reputation today will it work out?  They really have to get it right and hope people really embrace it or it will be another short lived expensive project. 


Cadillac really needs to earn back the name equity. That is not easy but the EV reset may give them the opportunity.