Electrification Coming to Cadillac Escalade With IQ Model

A teaser photo showing the badge of the upcoming Cadillac Escalade IQAn all-electric version of the Cadillac Escalade, the Escalade IQ, will appear late in 2023.

We’d love to tell you all about it. But Cadillac’s entire press release announcing the development consisted of four sentences, three about its slightly awkward name.

The all-electric Escalade IQ “will be revealed later this year and promises the same commitment to craftsmanship, technology, and performance that has helped the Escalade nameplate dominate the large luxury SUV segment for the last 20 years,” the company says.

Cadillac goes on to explain that the name connects the model to the Lyriq midsize SUV and Celestiq super luxury car, Cadillac’s first two electric vehicles (EVs).

Gas-Powered Version Probably Not Going Away

We can make some educated guesses about what to expect. Since its 1998 creation, the Escalade has always shared a platform with GM’s large trucks. So looking to those can probably tell us what to expect.

Chevrolet plans to sell a gas-powered Silverado pickup alongside a Silverado EV starting late this year. The two models share a name but barely any parts. The gas-powered version rides on a traditional truck frame. The EV version rides on a platform GM calls Ultium.

Ultium is a so-called “skateboard platform.” It combines batteries, electric motors, steering parts, and suspension components into a single, nearly flat unit with the vehicle’s body built on top. Engineers can scale Ultium down to build smaller vehicles like the upcoming Chevy Equinox EV and up to build full-size products like the Silverado EV and GMC Hummer.

The same approach seems likely for the Escalades. Cadillac will probably continue to build the gas-powered Eskie (and its stretched Escalade ESV and hyper-powerful Escalade V equivalent) for years while parking the Escalade IQ beside it in showrooms.

The gas-powered models will probably disappear ahead of the company’s self-imposed 2035 deadline for a mostly electric lineup.

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