Cadillac has one exceptionally good, class-leading model in its range. That model doesn’t have a V badge. It isn’t even a car. And almost nothing about it is unique. It’s the Escalade. And people can’t get enough of its luxury whipped cream dolloped atop its American apple pie.
Contrary to recent reports that the Escalade will abandon its body-on-frame roots, it looks like the Escalade will continue as a luxury offshoot of its full-size SUV cousins — the Yukon and Tahoe/Suburban — reports the Detroit Free Press based on an interview with Cadillac CEO Johan de Nysschen:
“The Escalade must become more sophisticated and technically advanced, more detail oriented” in its interior design and materials, [Johan de Nysschen] said. “We can do all that with a body-on-frame architecture.”
Though, if we’re to dig into this no-change-is-good story a bit more, maybe Cadillac couldn’t change the Escalade even if it wanted to.
In the small luxury car segment, the Cadillac ATS ranked 10th out of 23 models on sale in 2015, according to GoodCarBadCar. The Cadillac XTS and CTS placed 6th and 8th respectively in the midsize luxury segment. The only other bright spot in the Cadillac lineup is the SRX, which played runner-up to the Lexus RX in the midsize luxury SUV segment and may lose some places when replaced it’s by the XT5.
With all these segment fires raging around Cadillac’s coupes and sedans, the decision not to change the Escalade might not be a decision at all, but an inevitability. The Escalade is the one model giving GM’s luxury brand a roof over its head. And when you’re surrounded by wildfire, the last thing you do is set light to your own home.