Cadillac Announces ESCALADE IQ, But When’s The Suburban EV Coming?

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In a recent press release, Cadillac (GM’s flagship luxury brand) announced a new vehicle that’s supposed to be released later this year. But details were very sparse. Later this year, Cadillac says it has plans to unveil the ESCALADE IQ, which promises to uphold the brand’s commitment to craftsmanship, technology, and performance. Following in the footsteps of the LYRIQ and the upcoming CELESTIQ, the ESCALADE IQ will join Cadillac’s growing all-electric portfolio.

The company says its IQ naming strategy is a celebration of Cadillac’s introduction of a new type of EV that seamlessly integrates with people’s daily lives and surroundings. This designation is Cadillac’s EV nomenclature and was first introduced on the LYRIQ.

CleanTechnica’s readers tend to be pretty technical, so I know you all won’t be happy with just that. We want to know things like how the vehicle will be built, what kind of range it has, how much power it will have, and every other performance number under the sun. Some of you would probably even appreciate knowing what platform it will be built on and how it might feel to drive the thing, too (at least those of you who aren’t strictly numbers people).

I can’t give you that, but based on GM’s history and that of the Cadillac brand, I can make some very educated guesses that the average ICE-hating “I only got into cars when EVs came out” people could. So, I’ll do that.

We Have To Start With The Escalade’s Grandfather

While a great number of hip hop and rap artists will tell you all about the Escalade and maybe the custom modifications they supposedly made to theirs, pretending that the Escalade is something special is just as fictitious as most rap lyrics. Just as rappers’ multi-million record deals are mostly taken up by costs and advances, the Escalade has always been a dressed up Chevrolet (or GMC) Suburban.

So, it’s ironically fitting that faux-rich musicians would flock to the vehicle. It’s just like them!

But then again, I have to remember that it’s 2023 and even vehicles like the Chevrolet Tahoe and Suburban are expensive. This wasn’t always the case, though, as it existed long before the rise of luxury pickup trucks and SUVs.

The Chevrolet Suburban has a rich history that spans over eight decades. As an iconic American SUV, it has cemented its place in popular culture and remains a favorite among drivers.

Originally introduced in 1935 as the Suburban Carryall, this vehicle was intended for commercial use. It had a seating capacity of eight and could carry up to 1,000 pounds of cargo. In 1940, Chevrolet introduced a panel van version of the Suburban, which quickly became popular with businesses.

During World War II, the Suburban was used by the military as a transport vehicle. After the war, it underwent several design changes, including a switch from wooden to all-steel construction. In 1955, the Suburban received a new body style and became a popular choice for families seeking a roomy and versatile vehicle.

GM eventually put the vehicle on a common platform with the company’s pickup trucks, essentially making it a work truck, but with more interior space instead of a bed. But, underneath, it has been almost identical to the Chevy Silverado and GMC Sierra for decades.

In the 1960s, the Suburban continued to evolve, with new features such as air conditioning and power brakes. It also became a popular choice for law enforcement agencies. In the decades that followed, the Suburban continued to receive updates and improvements, including better fuel efficiency, more safety features, and advanced technology.

Today, the Chevrolet Suburban is still going strong, with a reputation for durability, versatility, and capability. It continues to be a favorite among families, businesses, and law enforcement agencies. As Chevrolet expands its focus on clean energy and sustainability, the Suburban is expected to play a significant role in the brand’s all-electric future.

But first, it’s probably going to arrive as the Escalade, because a big truck with a big battery can’t be cheap.

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The Silverado EV Is Probably A Good Starting Point For What To Expect

Many people have said that the new Silverado EV looks a lot like the Chevy Avalanche, an observation that is probably instructive in this case. Why? Because like the Escalade, the Avalanche was based on the Suburban, sharing most of its parts. The difference was that the Avalanche came with a short truck bed and a new “midgate” instead of a third row of seating, allowing the vehicle to be used like a four-door short bed pickup or a two-door truck with a full-sized bed, depending on the needs of the driver.

So, as Tuvok (the Vulcan, not the similarly-named rapper) would say, logic would dictate that the new Escalade IQ will be very similar to the Silverado EV underneath. And, GM’s plans for the Ultium platform support this line of thinking.

So, expect something like the Silverado EV, but with a front end a lot more like the Lyriq. Then, expect versions with a third row and versions with a midgate, just like past Escalades. Also, expect it to ride lower, have larger wheels, and have more luxury features than the Silverado EV. Expect a price north of $100,000, too.

Logic would also dictate that the vehicle has a large battery pack, because less is NEVER more in Escaladelandia. I’d be very surprised to see a curb weight that’s lower than the Silverado EV’s heaviest 450-mile version, but with a little less efficiency, but probably not as bad as the Hummer EV (another GM vehicle we like to bag on around here).

An efficient Escalade? Forget about it. That would violate the Dictates of Poetics, which specifies that a vehicle’s character must be derived from its traits or something. GM might surprise me later this year with a Prius-like efficiency and a light weight battery that make for a very logical seven or eight seat vehicle, but dollars to donuts, expect a bloated and luxurious version of the Silverado.

Finally, expect the Suburban EV to come sometime in the following years, whenever GM feels like it’s a good idea to offer something for the rest of us to haul families and boats with.

Featured image by GM.

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Jennifer Sensiba

Jennifer Sensiba is a long time efficient vehicle enthusiast, writer, and photographer. She grew up around a transmission shop, and has been experimenting with vehicle efficiency since she was 16 and drove a Pontiac Fiero. She likes to get off the beaten path in her "Bolt EAV" and any other EVs she can get behind the wheel or handlebars of with her wife and kids. You can find her on Twitter here, Facebook here, and YouTube here.

Jennifer Sensiba has 1955 posts and counting. See all posts by Jennifer Sensiba