Last post on Oct 13, 2013 at 2:53 PM
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Cadillac Escalade, Cadillac Escalade EXT, Cadillac Escalade ESV, SUV
#769 of 1005 QX56 vs Escalade vs Navigator vs Denali
Mar 20, 2005 (4:51 pm)
We were recently in the market for a full size Luxury UTE. We evaluated the Navigator, the Escalade, the QX56, and the Yukon Denali.
We really liked the QX56 -- but I have to be honest -- the horror stories posted on the QX56 forum kept us away. We loved the space inside the vehicle -- 2nd row space is incredible. The fold down rear seats, the silky smooth power, great ride. There were a few things we did not like at all -- the door handles are the cheesiest things on the planet. They just didn't communicate "quality" in any sense. If a basic detail like that is so bad -- the things we read in the QX56 forum are very easy to believe. the location of the digital clock & compass is bizarre. the clock is so cheezy it looks like a 1960's retro clock! The Nav system with the toggle was a real pain in the arse to use. Even with all of those little things we didn't like the rest of the vehicle is far ahead and this vehicle has promise if Infiniti can clean these up and deliver reliability. We will take a strong at these again next time we're in the market.
We also looked at the Navigator. The 2005 is a fine vehicle. The only thing I really disliked was the stupid door that opens and closes over the Nav system/radio. What's up with that? I also found the ride to be too soft for me. I want to feel some contact with the road under me and there just wasn't any with the Navigator. The power rear seats and lift gate were sort of cool -- but completely useless for me because we'll never use the 3rd row seats and I'm tall enough that raising/lowering the lift gate is not an issue. Pricing on the Navigator is extremely soft! Dealers were all offering $10-$12k off MSRP in their newspaper ads! Resale value down the road was a real concern.
We never expected to give the Yukon and the Escalade much of a look. We decided we would give them a shot. The base Yukon wasn't interesting at all. The Denali was clearly a big step up. The biggest downside for us is that the 3rd row seats don't fold down -- so we would have to take them out and store them somewhere. These are not moving either and the dealer was frank in telling us that we would get a great deal. A Chevy dealer down the street was advertising brand new Tahoes at 25% off MSRP!
We then went and drove the Escalade. We were quite surprised. It had the most comfortable front seats of all! With enough adjustment settings that it was easy to find just the perfect settings for me. When you're over 6 feet-- that can be a challenge in a lot of vehicles. The ride was clearly superior to the Denali and the Escalade was noticeably quieter than the Denali and somewhat quieter than the Infiniti. We had been driving a Trailblazer and found the similarities comforting. We were used to how the controls worked and they were located where we expected them to be. The touch screen Nav system is easy to use too.
In our final rankings of the Vehicles we ended up with (this is highly personal and subjective) the following:
GMC Yukon Denali
We also looked at Consumer Reports. The Cadillac isn't covered but it's based on the same platform as the Yukon/Tahoe which is a CR best buy and recent model years are scoring very very well. We felt very comfortable with the quality of the Cadillac. The extra year or 14k of Warranty is also a nice extra over the Denali.
The Infiniti's quality reputation was a deal killer for us. If we hadn't read the QX56 forum we probably never would have test driven the Escalade or Navigator. Our initial impression was that high!
In the end we (as you probably guessed) moved up from the Trailblazer to the Escalade. We absolutely love it. We got ours with the big 20" wheels & tires -- which look great and makes the vehicle ride higher. The downside of the big tires is extra road noise when we drive on some of the heavily rutted freeways. Moving over and driving in the passing lane generally cures that problem.
Our recommendation is to drive all 4 of these vehicles -- none is far superior to any of the others. Your choice will likely come down to subjective personal criteria and quality reputation. If you're sensitive to price the Denali is a great value right now. Otherwise I think it's a race between the Escalade and the Navigator until Infiniti cleans up its act. The QX56 has a lot of promise.
May 06, 2005 (7:11 am)
Help! I need advice on which way to go.....
I am looking at the Escalade EXT fully loaded for $649 (tax included)
or at a few other options.
I have been told that there are much better ones out there, but I was kinda of stuck as to which way I should go. I have a 4 month old and I want to make sure I have the best one for him and my wife, while at the same time I don't want to get a bad deal. Any thoughts???????
#771 of 1005 Re: Wishful thinking.... [microrepair]
May 07, 2005 (11:25 am)
Micro- I wanted to thank you. After reading your comments it brought a chuckle to my day. Surely, you were just kidding but I will indulge you. When the 2002 Cadillac Escalade first rolled into dealerships in 2001 it started a whirl wind that has yet to stop. Everyone from your mother to your little brother was talking about the new Cadillac SUV. The Escalade is still to date the most powerfull SUV in its class offers the most value for your dollar, and in my opinion has the most presence of all the SUV's.The Escalade set an industry standard and sent all the major players back into their design rooms for evauluation.Dont pretend that you dont remember, people were not even thinking about putting wheels on there SUV's, untill the "Mack Daddy" came out. I should also add that with General Motors being the largest coorperation in the US. not to mention having the #1 selling full size LUX. SUV in the US. (hahah sorry Im chuckling again) I could be wrong but I highly doubt that will lose much sleep that the Cadillac Master "game plan" did not work and you skipped over the "showroom". Lastly ill give you the benefit of the doubt, that you were just mistaken again so i will clarify. The Escalade is a Full Size LUX SUV the ml 320 and rx 300 are in a smaller lux class and perhaps they do dominate in that clas.... oh wait! I spoke to soon they already have there hands full with the Cadillac SRX hot on there tracks lets see... "Best Luxury SUV" for 04' & 05 car and Driver Magazine. ;^)
#773 of 1005 Dumb Question
Jul 22, 2005 (4:12 pm)
I have purchased a brand new ESV last month, and it has 3000 miles on it.
I'm just wondering if I should get an oil change. On the manual, it says I don't have to change until a light pops up on the panel.
Please reply, anyone?
#774 of 1005 Re: Dumb Question [esvman]
by Stever@Edmunds HOST
Jul 22, 2005 (4:18 pm)
Not dumb, but certainly a contentious question.
Check out First Oil Change while waiting for responses in here.
#776 of 1005 Backup Sensors
Aug 07, 2005 (12:42 am)
Hey guys, a while ago maybe a year ago or so there was some discussion of backup sensors. I remember I was totally ragging on them. Well they came standard on my Armada and I have found them to be outstanding for use when parrallel parking or just about any backup manuver. Wanted to come back and just let you guys know I've seen the light.
#777 of 1005 Re: Backup Sensors [paisan]
by Stever@Edmunds HOST
Aug 07, 2005 (10:26 am)
That's good to hear Mike. Sometimes it's just more fun to rag on stuff though.
Interesting reading about what you're doing to your Armada with the computer install btw.
Aug 10, 2005 (8:13 pm)
Earlier today I wanted to replace a burnt out light on my clock.. By mistake the ground wire that is connected to a clip that plugs into to clock came out n touched with the grey wire. Sooner or later I noticed that none of my lights on my instrument cluster were working neither the lights on the radio nor the comfort controls. I also noticed that when i check all the fuses to the instrument cluster they were all in woking condition, none of the fuses were burnt out..After checking the fuses i notice the radio illumination would come on but when i turned on the parking lights they would turn off... My truck is totally dark inside..why is that or how can i fix this problem?? Can someone plz help me with this electrical problem..