By on November 21, 2015

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If you were to buy a 2003 Cadillac Escalade ESV near North Caldwell, New Jersey, you’d expect to shell out nearly $10,000 for an exceptionally clean ride from a dealer, according to Edmunds. Yet, this particular example of GM’s brashly designed full-size SUV sold for nearly 12 times that amount: $119,780.

Why?

Well, this one was driven by a garbage man.

This particular Escalade ESV was featured in the final three seasons of “The Sopranos” with none other than Tony himself, the late James Gandolfini. The vehicle is signed by Gandolfini in three separate locations inside because one of anything isn’t enough for anyone who buys an Escalade.

After bidding ended on November 20, the winning bidder was stuck with a $119,780 bill to take the Escalade home and probably never drive it.

According to the auction house responsible for the sale, Boston-based RR Auctions, this is the highest price ever garnered by a vehicle from “The Sopranos”. The previous record was held by a 1999 Chevrolet Suburban that sold for $110,000 in 2013.

The Escalade’s 6.0-liter V-8 might not be particularly fast, but at least it’s quick enough to chase down Panther-platformed Town Cars that nobody loves.

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55 Comments on “Is This 2003 Cadillac Escalade Worth $119,780?...”


  • avatar

    TONY SOPRANO’s ESCALADE is worth way more than that.

    Buy it.

    Get a License plate that says STUGOTS

    Keep it in a museum.

  • avatar

    Phil Leotardo really thought that silly Lincoln could escape an Escalade???

    youtube.com/watch?v=mvAE6Dw768A

    WHERE’S MY F’IN MONEY???

  • avatar
    Joss

    Never watched the series. Never heard of the guy. I saw a Jurassic World Lego set on ebay for $852 – normal retail $149.99. There’s a pre-Xmas shortages (apparently.)

    Better let this buyer know.

  • avatar
    Xeranar

    It’s probably going into a car museum and thus 120K is an investment into long-term relevance. It’s a shame Gandolfini passed since he was an excellent actor. Still a wonderful reminder of a great show.

    • 0 avatar
      28-Cars-Later

      I think my favorite film Gandolfini had a role is “The Last Castle” opposite Robert Redford followed by his role as scumbag Eddie Poole in “8mm” and his minor role in “True Romance”. I highly recommend “The Last Castle” if you haven’t seen it, a very classy film.

      http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0272020/?ref_=nm_flmg_act_25

      • 0 avatar
        DeadWeight

        ‘The Drop’ with him & Tom Hardy was really, really good. I’d highly recommend it (and I’m picky).

      • 0 avatar
        dolorean

        My favorite cameo is Gandolfini as the Heavy pinching for none other than Christopher Walkin whilst Chris interviews (tortures) Dennis Hopper in “True Romance”. That early Tarantino movie also had cameos of Brad Pitt, Val Kilmer, Samual Jackson, Bronson Pinchot and best Detroit pimp performance EVAH, Gary Oldman.

        Trivia Fact: Gary Oldman met with Director Tony Scott about the project and told him he hadn’t read the script he’d been sent, then asked Scott what his part was like. Scott told him “You’re playing a white guy who thinks he’s black, and you’re a pimp.” Oldman immediately accepted the role.

    • 0 avatar
      05lgt

      JG didn’t suck in Killing Them Softly. Ray Liotta was more painful to watch, but Gandolfini made the most of his part.

  • avatar
    mcs

    If anyone is feeling left out and wants a car from a TV series, the James Garner Firebird from the Rockford Files comes up for auction in January.

    https://www.mecum.com/lot-detail/FL0115-204101/0/1978-Pontiac-Firebird/Automatic/

    • 0 avatar
      Piston Slap Yo Mama

      In the world of crime shows, his Firebird was as iconic as any Ferrari 308 or Daytona – and I want one. I’d also like Jesse Pinkman’s Tercel 4×4. I don’t care if this Escalade has Hollywood provenance, Escalades are a Bro conveyance, and that’s uncool. http://jalopnik.com/the-sale-of-jesse-pinkmans-breaking-bad-car-will-hel-1137890497

  • avatar
    DeadWeight

    Of course!

    Cadillac makes the finest vehicles, capable of matching or exceeding the refinement, precision, reliability, prestige, comfort, performance, fit & finish, NVH parameters, and other important criteria of the very best from Germany or Japan (and certainly need not worry about the Koreans), at this or any other price point.

    And Cadillac has Millennial chicks voicing “the Arena” speeches as slow moving SRXs & Art & Science ATSs are lease-special advertised rolling through SoHo, so Cadillac is not as much product as hipster brand, now, too.

    • 0 avatar
      TMA1

      I’m waiting for your comment on Cadillac’s terrible tie-in with the new Heroes (yes, I’m embarrassed to admit watching that).

      Last week, there was a long slow shot of CUE as one of the characters fawned over it, and the shiny plastic buttons all over the steering wheel.

      There’s also apparently an entire Cadillac-themed subplot episode on the show’s main site. Makes me wonder what kind of audience Cadillac is trying to capture.

      Now, I’ll get out of here, because I’m only up to season 3 of The Sopranos on Amazon Prime.

      • 0 avatar
        28-Cars-Later

        I wasn’t even aware there was a “new” Heroes. I also wasn’t aware HBO shows were on Amazon Prime. Hmmmmmmm…

        • 0 avatar
          TMA1

          It’s supposed to be one 13-episode season. It certainly doesn’t rise to the greatness of the first season. I’m not sure it can hang with the other seasons. I’m just too invested to quit at this point. Nice to see some of the old characters though.

          As far as I know, the following HBO shows are on Prime:
          The Wire, Rome, Boardwalk Empire, The Sopranos, Six Feet Under, Band of Brothers, Oz, In Treatment, and Eastbound & Down.

    • 0 avatar
      DeadWeight

      Tony Soprano WAS Cadillac in 2003.

      In 2015, and under JdN & Melody CT-Lee, Jason “Mom Bought Me A Sewing Machine & Let Me Play With Dolls” Wu is Cadillac, as is Pen-Boy Uwe proclaiming authoritatively that “brands, not products, matter most.”

      http://www.newnownext.com/out-designer-jason-wu-stars-in-cadillac-dare-greatly-commercial/02/2015/

      • 0 avatar
        RideHeight

        Where are the Cadillac icons of a manlier past like Liberace with his 23-carat ’31 Fleetwood and his ’54 Eldorado with painted piano keys, musical notes and candelabras all over the interior?

        “Mom Bought Be A Piano & Let Me Play With Boys”

        • 0 avatar
          DeadWeight

          Sinatra, Dean Martin, Elvis, Eastwood, Shaft, Huggie Bear, Bogart and other real MEN drove bold, powerful, comfortable, spacious, V8 powered AMERICAN Cadillacs once upon a time, not Asian-American interior decorators who played with dolls as boys and do fem-bot jumps in the air in Uwe/Melody/JdN approved commercials.

          Real Cadillac MEN:

          http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SDe23UM6kjY

          http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DoQXao7Zjpg

          Uwe/MelodyLee/JdN Cadillac men:

          http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rBdpiZ9nnhc

  • avatar
    olddavid

    “Woke up this morning and got yourself a gun”……. To shoot yourself for spending that kind of scratch on a used Escalade.

  • avatar
    energetik9

    Never watched the series. I don’t care what show it was on, it’s still an ugly used Escalade and a 12 year old one at that. I’d pay money NOT to own it.

  • avatar
    CoreyDL

    He starts out with a black Escalade as the replacement for his 99 Suburban (that’d be the maroon one he had for most of the series), but then crashes it – to be replaced with this white one here.

    In the last season, he replaces Carmella’s E350 wagon with a Cayenne Turbo, in gold (bleh).

    • 0 avatar
      gtemnykh

      Gotta say, I find the GMT400 ‘Burb massively more appealing for a mob/gangster character.

      Interestingly, a fairly recent Russian gangster flick also had the antagonists driving a Tahoe of that generation (a ’95) through the chilly streets of post Soviet Russia:

      linkhttps://youtu.be/tnnCHmSJpg4?t=59

      Plenty of room even in the shorter Tahoe for bodies to be incinerated in the city boiler :)

  • avatar
    Luke42

    Whet reading the headline, I assumed that some harried used car dealer had entered the mileage into the price box.

    119,780 miles is perfectly plausible on a 2003 Escalade. If I actually cared, I’d look at the odometer picture to make sure.

    I’m a computer guy, so I’m primed to check for these kind of errors.

    But it turned out to have something to do with a some celebrity. Sheesh, who could have guessed? :-)

  • avatar
    Hummer

    Meh, it’s the only luxury vehicle that’s been worth driving since its GMT800 intro, at least from the American manufacturers, and in its price range probably the entire luxury sector.

  • avatar
    kmoney

    Crazy. This thing went across the block right after the show ended with proceeds going to Children’s Hospital LA.

    http://www.barrett-jackson.com/Media/Home/Reader/vehicles-from-hbos-the-sopranos-to-hit-the-block-at-barrett-jackson-palm-beach/

    I wonder if the buyer there actually managed to turn a profit on it second time round.

  • avatar
    APaGttH

    Never saw the show, never heard of the guy, and the buyer was stupid to spend this kind of money really translates to, “this was important for me to read even though I claim to have never watched the show or know who Golden Globe, AFI and Emmy Award winning actor James Gandolfini is. Really I’m just jealous that someone had $120K to drop on something they’re that passionate about, and I don’t have that kind of Cheddar to chase my own interests. So instead, I’m going to call them stupid and mock the entertainment history significant vehicle. My life is sad.”

  • avatar
    rudiger

    I think I’d rather have Paulie Walnuts’ gold 2003 CTS. It went for a lot less, too ($20k).

  • avatar
    Maymar

    And yet Don Draper’s ’65 Cadillac Coupe deVille sold for less than half that amount? I haven’t seen enough Sopranos to judge the merits of one anti-hero over the other, but you’d have to be crazy to want an ’03 Escalade more than the deVille.

  • avatar
    Brock_Landers

    I live on the other side of the world and even I know that the Sopranos is the most (pop)culturally significant TV show of our generation. But here are some Americans who haven’t seen it and know nothing about it, strange.

    • 0 avatar
      28-Cars-Later

      “the most (pop)culturally significant TV show of our generation.”

      I guess you’ll have to better define “our generation” but both The Simpsons and Seinfeld had more cultural impact. Breaking Bad might be up there too. I was about 18 when The Sopranos came on, I stopped watching it in the beginning of the third season and haven’t seen an episode since. Just another mafia show which came at the end of a decade of major mafia movies. FWIW I thought “Oz” was a better show from what I remember.

      • 0 avatar
        bryanska

        Breaking Bad owes everything to the Sopranos. Every scripted show in the “new golden age of TV” owes fealty to Sopranos. Tony Soprano was the first big flawed antihero of the 2000s, and the huge character arc spawned a resurgence of scripted TV, leading to Breaking Bad as well as dozens (hundreds?) of character-driven shows.

        If you mapped the influence of the Sopranos like some people map the influence of rock bands, I bet there’s a lot.

  • avatar
    CaseyLE82

    It’s a 2003 Escalade, right? Is it worth $119k? I suppose that depends on what kind of a person you are. I suppose that the buyer is a very different type of person to myself.

  • avatar
    Davekaybsc

    Gotta love these older Escalades, when there wasn’t even an attempt to disguise what they were underneath. Hey idiots, we put a wood steering wheel in a Subuarban and put a Cadillac badge on it. Pay us all the money.

    • 0 avatar
      DeadWeight

      All they did now was improve the interior and add some options vs its GMC/Chevy siblings.

      It doesn’t have a plush ride, still has rough edges, is unreliable, and is serviced by tatted felons.

      But there’s little Jason “Play With Dolls” Wu or Millennial Chick uttering “the Arena in SoHo” in this Cadillac, at least.

  • avatar
    Carlson Fan

    “It doesn’t have a plush ride, still has rough edges, is unreliable, and is serviced by tatted felons.”

    It may have been a lot of things, but unreliable it was not. Nothing wrong with a GM GMT-800 SUV in the reliability department. Easy to work on when they do break. Parts are plentiful and dirt cheap. Recommended all the time on Boating & RV forums to people looking for a good, older, reliable, and cheap tow vehicle.

    • 0 avatar
      bunkie

      With apologies to Rod Serling:

      There is a fifth dimension beyond that which is known to man. It is a dimension as vast as space and as timeless as infinity. It is the middle ground between light and shadow, between science and superstition, and it lies between the pit of man’s fears and the summit of his knowledge. This is the dimension of imagination. It is an area which we call The Truth About Cars (Cadillac Discussions)

  • avatar
    skor

    Talkin sh!t about Tony? Fug all youse guys.

    /Born in in Jersey (Jersey City)
    //Raised in Jersey (Bergen County)

  • avatar
    dolorean

    SHUT UP AND TAKE MY MONEY! Just wait until I shake this couch and laz-E-Boy out a bit, see what falls. Ooh, a penny!


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