Car Review: The bold and the beautiful 2012 Cadillac Escalade ESV

For some folks driving a Cadillac is not just a choice but also a tradition and so enters the 2012 Cadillac Escalade ESV. Photo: 2012 Cadillac Escalade

DALLAS, October 22, 2012 — For some folks driving a Cadillac is not just a choice but also a tradition. For those folks too, the 2012 Cadillac Escalade ESV will not disappoint when in the market for a new vehicle. Falling into the SUV category of the larger than large variety, this Cadillac is luxury all-the-way, but it would not be unheard of to see it hauling around a large number of people as in eight of your friends and family or even a boat if necessary or, even better, both.

Only receiving a few minor tweaks this year, the Cadillac Escalade ESV’s navigation system has been amped up just a touch.

Terrific Space Inside

One of the major draws on this Escalade is the space it offers. Competition in this area is with the Lincoln Navigator or the smaller Infiniti QX or Mercedes GL-Class.

Escalade’s luxury interior

The ESV version of this Escalade is actually the extended wheel version of the regular Escalade and it comes in four trims: base, Luxury, Premium and Platinum Edition.

With the base trim you get 18-inch wheels, adaptive suspension dampers, rear parking sensors, power-folding and heated mirrors with driver auto-dimming, a roof rack, automatic xenon headlights, fog lamps, a power liftgate, running boards, remote ignition and keyless ignition/entry, a tri-zone automatic climate control, heated and ventilated 10-way power front seats, power-adjustable pedals, heated second-row seats, an auto-dimming rearview mirror, and a rearview camera.

On the Luxury trims the wheels are 22-inches with an upgraded magnetic automatically adaptive suspension, automatic high beams, a blind-spot warning system, sunroof, and a heated steering wheel.

Optional on this trim is the power-retracting running boards and a rear seat entertainment system, but if you choose the Premium trim you get these two features standard.

Optional on the Premium, but standard on the Platinum Edition are LED headlights as well as a cool exterior trim, 22-inch chrome wheels, leather-trimmed dash and door tops, heated and cooled cup holders, and upgraded leather upholstery.

Under the hood the 2012 Cadillac Escalade ESV has a 6.2-liter V8 engine with 403 horsepower and 417 pound-feet of torque. It comes standard with a six-speed automatic transmission and rear-wheel drive, but all-wheel drive is an option too.

Safety, First and Foremost

Safety features on this Cadillac include standard antilock disc brakes, stability control, traction control, front side-impact and full-length side curtain airbags as well as rear parking sensors, a rearview camera, OnStar emergency communications, and — all but the base trim — a blind-spot warning system too.

Inside, expect high-quality leather upholstery along with faux-wood and trim and the overall luxurious styling that Cadillac is known for all around. As for the knobs, bells and whistles are also intuitive and placed well for ease of use and location.

While the 2012 Escalade ESV can accommodate eight passengers, take note of the second row adjustments needed to be made in the case either a choice of bucket seats or optional bench seats.

With all the seats in use, there is 46 cubic feet of space and when the rear seat sections are folded and removed, you up that to an impressive 137-cubic feet of cargo space, leading in cargo space class overall.

For driving, it’s obvious you are driving a bigger than big vehicle and needless to say parking in the “smaller” spots won’t be an option. This is made up in the fact that, while on the road, you do own it and the power to get going is more than enough for the driver, including a smooth ride with the requisite smooth handling too.

Should You Need to Know: Tests came in at zero to 60 miles per hour in about seven seconds and for this large of a SUV you would be hard-pressed to complain.

Miles Per Gallon: The Escalade ESV RWD Platinum that I drove got 14 miles per gallon in the city and 18 miles per gallon on the highway.

Cost: The cost for this ride was $82,545 with all the bells and whistles I could want in this luxury cruiser.

Rita Cook is a writer/editor with has over 1000 articles to her credit in the past 13-plus years. She is a frequent auto and travel contributor on a radio show in Los Angeles called Insider Mag Radio at KPRO 1570 am on from midnight to 12:30 a.m. Monday mornings.

She also contributes travel and auto to the Anthony Duva show, which can be heard live from 2:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. EST every Sunday at

Cook is a member of the Texas Auto Writer’s Association, writes for the Dallas Morning News Green Living Section as well as artist profiles and www.greensourceDFW and spends much of her time on the road traveling or working on books.

She recently received the 2012 Green Media Award from the North Texas Corporate Recycling Association.

Her latest book releases are both “Haunted Dallas” and “Haunted Fort Worth” from Her third book in the Haunted Series will be released in October “Haunted Bartlesville, Oklahoma.” Follow Cook at Twitter at @ritacook13.

This article is the copyrighted property of the writer and Communities @ Written permission must be obtained before reprint in online or print media. REPRINTING TWTC CONTENT WITHOUT PERMISSION AND/OR PAYMENT IS THEFT AND PUNISHABLE BY LAW.

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Rita Cook

Rita Cook is a writer/editor with over 1000 articles to her credit in the past 10-plus years. She is the co-host of a radio show in Los Angeles; Insider Mag Radio at KPRO 1570 am and is on from midnight to 12:30 a.m. Monday mornings.  Cook is a member of the Texas Auto Writer’s Association and also writes an eco-friendly column for the Dallas Morning News.


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