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Cadillac Escalade Interior

Reviewers praise the redesigned 2015 Cadillac Escalade's cabin for its first-rate materials and top-notch construction, which they say are a vast improvement over previous models’. They agree that the Escalade's high-end, quiet cabin makes it well worth the price tag. However, critics wish that the infotainment system was more responsive and straightforward.

  • "The interior is a vast improvement over last year's model, which was itself a vast improvement over its predecessor. We're impressed with how well Cadillac has managed to keep up with the latest in interior design, though the Escalade still can't touch pricey rivals such as the Range Rover for overall quality." -- AutoTrader
  • "The interior has a good flow to it, and lives up to its 'world standard' moniker. Cadillac was quick to point out that all of the stuff that looks like metal is metal, and everything that looks like wood is really wood. The panel gaps are very tight; in fact, we think the Escalade now has one of the best American interiors available, second to the electric ELR." -- AutoWeek
  • "By far the biggest leap forward for the new Cadillac Escalade, the interior is now fit for a full-size luxury SUV boasting soft-touch materials as far as the eye can see. Cut and sewn leather and real wood give off a more refined feel - something missing from the Escalade as of late." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • "Throughout the cabin, there's an abundance of soft-touch materials, leather and wood trim that approach the quality of premium European competitors. We were especially taken with the new open-pore matte wood trim that lacks the thick plastic-like lacquer of the traditional trim." -- Edmunds
  • "Long a weak point of the last-generation Escalade, the new model's interior is nothing short of a massive improvement. Real wood is paired with - and contrasted against - real metal, Alcantara and supple hand-stitched leather. This is an interior worthy of an $84,000 sticker, one I had no problem spending an extended amount of time in." -- Autoblog

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Seating

The 2015 Escalade seats seven or eight, depending on whether the middle row has standard bucket seats or the optional bench seat. Power-adjustable pedals, a heated power tilt and telescoping steering wheel, leather seats, power-adjustable heated and ventilated front seats and heated second-row captain’s chairs are standard. The Cadillac Escalade's seats are comfortable and supportive, and its sound-deadening materials keep the cabin incredibly quiet, reviewers say. Critics agree that for an adult-sized third row, you'll need to upgrade to the Escalade ESV, as legroom is limited in the regular-wheelbase model. Still, they note that wider rear door openings make the Escalade easy to climb into. Automotive writers also report that the Escalade's tilting and telescoping steering wheel and adjustable pedals make it easy for most drivers to find a comfortable driving position.

  • "The near-total lack of a foot well makes the third row unusable for kids much past elementary school. As before, to get a truly usable third row, you need to upgrade to the ESV, which also offers very good cargo capacity even with all three rows in use." -- Automobile Magazine
  • "As for comfort, that's where the Escalade shines. While the SUV's ride is a little bumpier than we'd expect, largely owing to 22-in wheels in most trims, the Escalade still offers plush seats and a floaty feel that soaks up most bumps, a quality most luxury-SUV shoppers will truly appreciate." -- AutoTrader
  • "There's plenty of square footage for seven passengers (or eight if the second-row buckets are replaced with a bench) to disassociate with their smartphones. ... As with its platform-mates, the Cadillac version offers a roomier front seat than before, the short-wheelbase model gets larger rear door openings to make climbing in and out easier." -- Car and Driver
  • "Drivers of all body types should be able to find a comfortable position thanks to the 14-way power-adjustable heated and cooled front seats, power-adjustable pedals and tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel." -- Edmunds
  • "The 12-way power front seats offer a wide range of adjustability; finding one's ideal driving position is easy. I prefer to sit as low as is practical in most vehicles, and the Escalade's huge range of adjustments makes that possible. The seats themselves are thoroughly supportive and comfortable, a welcome improvement over the old Escalade's largely flat-cushioned furniture. The tilt-telescopic steering wheel, meanwhile, enjoys a similarly large range of motion. It's possible to drop the tiller right in the driver's lap, should they be so inclined. Outward visibility is quite good, befitting of such a large vehicle with a cavernous greenhouse." -- Autoblog

Interior Features

Standard features on the 2015 Cadillac Escalade include a 16-speaker Bose surround-sound audio system, navigation, Cadillac’s CUE infotainment system, Bluetooth, five USB ports, satellite radio, HD Radio, a rearview camera, front and rear park assist, remote start and tri-zone automatic climate control. Optional features include a rear-seat entertainment system, a power sunroof, forward collision alert, lane departure warning, blind spot warning and a head-up display.

Many reviewers report that the CUE infotainment system isn't intuitive and may take drivers some time to master. They note that some rivals’ systems offer physical buttons and knobs that are simpler to use, and say that CUE can be unresponsive to commands. However, some critics say that CUE becomes easier to use over time, and a few are impressed with the audio system's robust sound quality.

See 2015 Cadillac Escalade specs »

  • "CUE continues as the infotainment system of choice; despite our initial usability complaints, we find it easier to use every time we get into a Cadillac, so owners will probably grow accustomed to the system's quirks relatively quickly. We also love that storage cubby behind the radio controls, and there are a bunch of other spots to hide valuables in the doors and back." -- AutoWeek
  • "Cadillac's eight-inch touch-screen infotainment system nestles in the center of the dash, and if CUE looks more diminutive in the huge SUV than in, say, an ATS, it is every bit as frustrating to use. This is one of the few features unique to the Cadillac version of the K2, and it might serve as sufficient motivation for some customers to seek out whichever motor mall contains their local GMC store. Remember: Denali ain't just a mountain in Alaska, and the SUV of that name uses an infotainment system with more conventional knobs and buttons." -- Car and Driver
  • "Showcased in the center of the dash is the CUE infotainment center that is featured in other Cadillacs. It's an attractive system with a beveled button layout and glossy piano black facing. Unfortunately, it's still rather complicated to use and slow to respond to commands compared to rival systems. On the plus side, the 16-speaker Bose audio system delivers strong performance and there are plenty of entertainment options for rear passengers." -- Edmunds
  • "Cadillac's CUE infotainment system, complete with eight-inch touchscreen, capacitive-touch controls and piano black surround, dominates the Escalade's center stack, providing a modern look but finicky operation." -- Left Lane News

Cargo

The 2015 Escalade has 15.2 cubic feet of cargo space behind the third row, 51.6 cubic feet with the third row folded and 94.2 cubic feet of total cargo space with the second and third rows folded. A hands-free power liftgate is standard. The Escalade offers more overall cargo space than most other SUVs in the class. The long-wheelbase Escalade ESV has even more cargo room, with 39.3 cubic feet behind the third row, 76.7 cubic feet with the third row folded and 120.9 cubic feet with the second and third rows folded. With previous Escalade models, test drivers complained about needing to remove the third row to maximize cargo space, so they appreciate the new fold-flat second and third rows. However, they note that cargo space is reduced over the outgoing model due to the higher cargo floor.

  • "For such a big vehicle, the Escalade's space utilization is wanting. The cargo floor now steps up, which was necessary to allow the second- and third-row seats to fold flat (via a pushbutton just inside the tailgate). It's not an elegant solution, but we agree that pushing a button to stow the seats certainly beats lugging them out of the car. Owners can remove the stepped-up load-floor base (it's a shallow stowage bin) if they need every last inch of cargo height. The taller floor means there's now barely enough space for two wheelie bags behind the third-row seat in the standard Escalade. …" -- Automobile Magazine
  • "Cargo capacity behind the third row of seats is marginally less than that of its competitors, at 15.2 cubic feet, as is its maximum 94.2 cubic feet with all seats folded flat. The space is very usable, though, and it's unlikely that owners will find it lacking." -- Edmunds
  • "When priorities shift from people hauling to cargo carrying, new fold-flat seating in both rear rows makes maximizing space a snap, especially compared with the heavy third row seat that had to be carried out of the old model. However, as the cargo floor had to be raised several inches to accommodate the fold-flat feature, stowage space has taken a small hit." -- Left Lane News
Review Last Updated: 7/18/14

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