The all-new fifth-generation Cadillac Escalade is on its way, bringing with it a total overhaul for the full-size luxury SUV. In addition to a new exterior design, fresh engineering under the skin, and a new cabin, the next-gen Escalade will also gain a new push-button gear selector, replacing the column-mounted shifter used on the current model.
The news comes to us courtesy of a recent exclusive report by our sister publication, Cadillac Society, which learned about the 2021 Escalade’s move to an electronic gear selector via sources familiar with future GM product plans. Cadillac Society states that the move to a push-button shifter is made possible by the Escalade adopting GM’s Electronic Precision Shift (EPS) technology.
Rather than making a direct, physical connection to the transmission like the current model’s column shifter, EPS makes the gear selector process completely digital, resulting in greater levels of refinement by reducing Noise, Vibration, and Harshness (NVH) levels, while increasing ease-of-use.
Because EPS is completely digital, it enables engineers and designers significant flexibility in creating the gear selection interface. For instance, EPS can enable gear selection using a rotary knob, a joystick, a push-button interface, or even a more traditional, gated gear selector. EPS was first introduced on the Cadillac XT5, and can be found today on a variety of new Cadillac vehicles, including the XT4, XT6, CT6, and CT5, all of which feature EPS via a console-mounted shifter/gear selector.
EPS in the next-gen Escalade will use a row of vertical buttons placed to the left of the central infotainment screen. Each of the previous four generations of the Cadillac Escalade used a column-mounted shifter, which was sometimes criticized for its old-school pickup truck roots and lack of luxurious feel and refinement. By comparison, the new push-button shifter will be more contemporary, and should do well to underline the Escalade’s position as the flagship Cadillac utility.
The next-gen Escalade is also expected to offer three engine options, including a pair of gasoline powerplants at launch and an all-electric option later in the model’s lifecycle. Look for the revamped luxury SUV to make its debut sometime in the second half of 2019, with an on-sale date later in 2019 or in the beginning of 2020.
The 2021 Escalade will be one of six all-new Cadillac models slated for a reveal through the 2021 calendar year as part of the brand’s latest strategic product offensive. Stay tuned, as more info on the next-gen Escalade is expected to drop in the very near future, and don’t forget to subscribe to GM Authority for more Escalade news, Cadillac news, and around-the-clock GM news coverage.
Source: Cadillac Society