PRICELESS IN PINE
By: Melanie Droz Shawcroft
No more “Mom, I’m cold” or “Mom, I’m hot.”; they had the ability to control it on their own
This iconic luxury full-size SUV was introduced in 1998, the year I graduated high school. I can recall all of my classmates pining over it, so it is hard to believe that 16 years later Cadillac has released the all-new, 4th generation Escalade. It was perfect timing to take the 2015 Cadillac Escalade 4WD Luxury to Pine, AZ for a mini high school reunion with two of my close high school friends – the only difference from our glory days 16 years ago would be the 5 kids we were bringing along.
This new Escalade definitely does bridge the gap between multiple generations – it had a little bit of everything to make us all happy. Ranging from ages 2 to 8, the 5 kids were quite happy in the 2nd row bucket seats and 3rd row with tri-zone climate control – no more “Mom, I’m cold” or “Mom, I’m hot.” They had the ability to control it on their own; they also had the ability to get in and out of the SUV on their own all weekend with the assist step. In addition, the kids thoroughly enjoyed the Sirius XM, HD radio, CD and MP3 player. Although the active noise cancellation keeps the outside noise out, these moms were hoping this SUV would have the ability to cancel out the Disney favorites from the front row that blared on the 16-speaker BOSE cabin surround sound. Maybe the next generation Escalade will come equipped with that feature.
Like I said, the Escalade does appeal to all generations, so there was a ton of elements (besides the early bedtime for the kids) that the adults appreciated throughout the weekend in Pine as well. First, the navigation which accepts most voice commands got us to our final destination in Pine – my friend’s remote cabin. We used the Bluetooth to assure our husband’s we were safe – I am certain they were jealous for several reasons: we were getting out of the heat, we got to drive the 2015 Cadillac Escalade, and with its 8,300-lb. towing ability and trailering equipment, we were able to take two quads along with us – courtesy of my other friend. But, of course, we felt safe in the Escalade. With Stabilitrak stability control system with traction control, rear vision camera, side blind zone alert, tire pressure monitoring system, magnetic ride control (the world’s fastest-reacting suspension system) and On Star which has automatic crash response, we felt completely protected in the Escalade. Another reason for our husband’s to be jealous.
The 2015 Cadillac Escalade 4WD Luxury also made a ton of things easier on this trip with 3 adults and 5 children. The power, hands-free, programmable liftgate made it simple to load the bags, coolers and everything else you need for 5 children into the SUV.
It is literally a lot more baggage after you start a family. In addition, the 6.2L V8 6SPD automatic engine made it easy to get to the cabin. With the ability to go 0-60 in 6 seconds, we got there in record time. The interior color was indeed jet black, so that may have contributed as well. This luxury SUV is not short of power, just like the weekend was not short of good times, fond memories and lots of laughter.
But just like spending precious time with long-time friends and helping each other raise one another’s kids, this SUV might just be priceless.
The luxury of this SUV goes above and beyond as well, unlike the luxury of the creepy insects and interesting people out in the woods. This Escalade had 22” premium painted aluminum with chrome insert wheels, leather-wrapped steering wheel that is heated, steering wheel controls, power adjustable pedals, keyless and adaptive remote start, and front bucket, leather seats with 12-way power adjustable and heated and cooled seats. This was, by no means, intended to be a luxurious vacation – we brought comfortable clothes, sneakers, no makeup and grungy kids. So, it was a treat to have luxury during the short ride to Pine and driving around the small town to pick up pizza, get ice cream and visit the fire department. The dark granite metallic exterior paint of the Escalade did get a bit dirty due to the rain and off-roading it experienced. Luckily, this SUV comes with rain sensing windshield wipers and a front tilt-sliding sunroof that kept us dry on the inside.
Although the gas mileage is not as impressive as the hybrid I drove last week, the 14 city mpg and 21 highway mpg do not rank too low in regard to an SUV – standard SUVs range from 13-26 mpg. However, the MSRP does scream luxury, power, comfort, safety and good looks at $78,295.00. But just like spending precious time with long-time friends and helping each other raise one another’s kids, this SUV might just be priceless.