In our opinion green cars (electric cars, hybrid cars, alternative energy vehicles) are cars that are more energy efficient than your average car especially when the manufacturer has made a special and concerted effort to develop new approaches or new technologies. An efficient vehicle runs on less fuel which saves more of the world’s finite natural resources. And this, my friends, is good for the health and future of the planet.
A Symbol of Success
The Cadillac Escalade is a big symbol of American excesses. The Escalade is an SUV that was never designed to travel off road. The poor fuel economy of the gas only version has been moderated to some degree by mating a hybrid power train to the over the top luxury of Cadillacs and especially the Escalade series.
The Escalade Hybrid has another purpose besides transporting glitterati in over the top luxury it also highlights the increasing popularity in the “green” trend. The Escalade Hybrid proclaims it “greenness” from all visible angles. It displays various green and hybrid badges at every opportunity.
Cadillac Escalade Hybrid / The Power Train
The Escalade Hybrid shares the same kind of power train with the erstwhile GMC Yukon Hybrid and the Chevrolet Tahoe Hybrid which was voted 2008 Green Car of the Year by the Green Car Journal. The Escalade Hybrid therefore delivers the same fuel economy at city driving and highway cruising. The Escalade comes standard with desirable and useful cabin technology such as navigation, audio, and Bluetooth support.
The opportunity to take the Escalade Hybrid to the road came and the luxuries were indeed a pleasure from the start. When the power lift gates open the taillights blink in warning. Stepping into the truck is quite easy because the running boards automatically folded down. The third row seats needed some muscle to get out of the way.
Electric power by itself can get the Escalade Hybrid moving on its own but unless you enjoy the musical honking and blaring of horns behind you need to give it some gas. Having said that, transition from all electric power to dual power mode is smooth without undignified noises under the hood and in the transmission.
Cadillac Escalade Hybrid / The Disadvantages
This truck is somewhat unwieldy especially in narrow lanes but the responsive steering makes up for the slight clumsiness and can manage to keep the truck in its lane with aplomb. Another useful bit of technology is the blind spot detection system. This system warns the driver if a car below the high sight lines of the Escalade through a signal in the side mirror. The XM NavTraffic is overlaid on the screens maps and will warn you of any incidents in the road ahead. It is then a simple matter to hit the avoid button to have a new route programmed for you.
The Price Tag
Costing a pocket denting base price of $73,475 it does come fully equipped with navigation system, On-star, Bluetooth, and blind spot detection. The only option is the powered running board which adds an additional $1,095 to the total. All in all the Escalade Hybrid was very impressive except for a rough truck like ride and a pointed lack of audio sources.
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