It was 1998 and
Ford Lincoln had launched the world’s first full-size luxury SUV– the Navigator; the move caught Cadillac by surprise, prompting a swift response from the brand in the form of the first-gen Escalade. That vehicle was little more than a Yukon Denali rebadge, with the project sent to production less than ten months after its approval.
At that point, Caddy had an official response to the Navigator on the market, but those in charge of the project weren’t completely satisfied with the end result. The bling factor became part and parcel of the second-generation Escalade, which launched only three years later for the 2002 model year.
It was that SUV that stirred the souls of celebrities, athletes, and rappers all over the world. Even JD power called it “the most appealing luxury SUV.” But the little-known fact is that the Escalade was the most-powerful SUV in the world at the time thanks to its optional high-output 6.0 liter Vortec V8 making 345 horsepower and 380 lb.-ft. of torque. This last part is portrayed quite nicely in the following commercial.