General Motors unveiled the all-new, all-electric 2025 Cadillac Escalade IQ earlier this month, pulling the wrapper on a tech-heavy SUV loaded to the brim with luxury. To complement its tall, utility vehicle stance, the 2025 Cadillac Escalade IQ incorporates a set of assist steps, which aid with ingress and egress. That said, the all-electric Escalade doesn’t include power-deployable boards, offering fixed units instead. GM Authority found out why.
In a recent interview with GM Authority Executive Editor Alex Luft, Escalade IQ aerodynamics engineer Chenxing Yu addressed why the all-electric SUV offers fixed running boards (or assist steps), as opposed to power-deployable boards.
According to Yu, the decision came down to vehicle architecture, but included several other factors as well. For example, the fixed boards were actually a more optimal shape for vehicle aerodynamics, a particularly important feature for efficiency when it comes to all-electric vehicles. Additionally, power-deployable boards would not be large enough to fit a foot, reducing usability when it comes to ingress and egress. Finally, there was an additional consideration to be made in finding the right balance between form and function.
Notably, when the doors on the 2025 Cadillac Escalade IQ are closed, the steps are not flush with the body, but rather stick out a little bit from under the doors, as see in a recent GM Authority real world photo:
The 2025 Cadillac Escalade IQ isn’t alone when it comes to offering fixed running boards rather than power-retractable units – in fact, there’s currently no GM electric vehicle that offers power retractable running boards, as GM Authority covered previously. Not that there aren’t viable candidates, either, with the GMC Hummer EV Pickup and Hummer EV SUV, as well as the Chevy Silverado EV all looking like solid contenders when it comes to offering this relatively simple luxury feature.
As a reminder, the 2025 Cadillac Escalade IQ will be produced at the GM Factory Zero plant in Michigan starting next summer.