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2009 Cadillac Escalade EXT Review
The ultimate combination of luxury and power.
Reviewed by Automotive on
The 2009 Cadillac Escalade EXT is Cadillac’s large luxury pickup truck. It comes in a single trim level and is equipped with a 6.2-liter, 403 hp, V-8 engine; a six-speed shiftable automatic; and all-wheel drive (AWD).
Engines: 6.2-liter V-8
Transmissions: six-speed shiftable automatic
Models: Escalade EXT
The Cadillac Escalade EXT gets new features and options for the 2009 model year. E85 ""FlexFuel"" can now be used in its gas tank. The DVD-based navigation system is now standard, where it was optional before. Magnetic Ride Control (MRC) suspension is optional as is the blind-zone alert system.
The 2009 Escalade EXT features variable intermittent rain-sensing wipers, privacy glass, a rear defogger, power heated mirrors with turn signal lights and reverse tilt for curb view, roof rack, step running boards, a hard bed cover, a remote anti-theft alarm system with engine immobilizer, daytime running lights, fog lights, auto delay off dusk-sensing Xenon HID (High-Intensity Discharge) headlights, 18-inch alloy wheels, a chrome grille, and a midgate that separates the truck bed from the passenger cabin. When more than the bed's 45.5 cubic feet of space is needed, the rear seats and the midgate flip forward to expand the cargo space to 101 cubic feet. The Escalade EXT is 222 long, almost 20 inches longer than the Escalade. From the front end, it resembles the Escalade; from the back, it looks like a pickup truck with a tailgate. A locking tonneau cover fits over the bed.
The 2009 Cadillac Escalade EXT seats five when the midgate is up. The second row seats can be folded to give you 54.3 cubic feet of cargo space. One big disadvantage to lowering the midgate is that the front seat occupants are exposed to the elements.
The cabin’s appearance is similar to that of the Escalade. Hand-stitched leather upholstery and trim, along with wood and alloy accents, offers a luxurious look. The navigation system's touchscreen is centrally located on the dash, within easy reach for operation. Other 2009 Cadillac Escalade EXT standard features include power door locks, power windows, eight-way power heated driver and passenger seats with power lumbar support and height adjustment, leather upholstery, bucket front seats, split-folding rear seatback, rear ventilation ducts, adjustable pedals, cruise control, front console with storage, power steering, universal remote transmitter, 12-volt power outlets, rear parking sensors, a leather/wood tilt steering wheel with audio and cruise control functions, dual-zone climate control, wood/alloy/leather interior trim, an auto-dimming rearview mirror, memory settings for two drivers, tachometer, trip computer, external temperature display, DVD-based navigation system/eight-inch LCD touchscreen with voice activation and real-time traffic, Bluetooth connectivity, pre-wired for cell phone, OnStar telecommunications service, and an AM/FM/six-CD changer/DVD/MP3/Satellite/Surround sound Bose audio system with eight speakers and subwoofer and a radio data system.
Performance & Handling
The AWD Cadillac Escalade EXT has a powerful engine that generates 403 hp and 417 ft-lb of torque, and a six-speed shiftable automatic transmission that has a tow/haul mode. It is a heavyweight with a curb weight of just under three tons; the EXT is surprisingly fast, with a zero-to-60-mph time of seven seconds. Handling is aided by the optional MRC and traction control. Braking is more of a problem as is the dismal gas mileage of 12/19 mpg city/highway. The V8 Ultra Luxury Collection adds the Magnetic Ride Control (MRC) suspension system that adjusts damping on a continuous basis by using a magnetic-fluid-based system inside its shocks. Sensors monitor road conditions 1000 times a second and adjust the shocks accordingly.
When properly equipped, the Cadillac Escalade EXT has a maximum towing capacity of 7500 pounds.
2009 Cadillac Escalade EXT’s standard safety features include viscous center differential, center limited slip differential, rear locking differential, front independent short and long arm and rear multi-link suspensions, front and rear stabilizer bars, a four-wheel anti-lock braking system (ABS), ventilated front disc/solid rear disc brakes, electronic brake force distribution, stability control, traction control, tire pressure monitoring, a blind-zone alert system, full-length side curtain airbags with rollover protection, adjustable pedals, OnStar, and rear parking assist. In government crash testing, the 2009 Cadillac Escalade EXT received a five-star rating for both frontal- and side-impact crashes.
EPA Fuel Economy
- Safety features
- Midgate concept
You Won't Like
- Exposure to the elements
- Fuel economy
- Braking deficiencies
The ultimate combination of luxury and power.
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