Despite shoving big engines in nearly everything they sell, Cadillac’s model lineup is doing a bit of an electric slide as the brand looks to the future. The Lyriq crossover is on sale now, the big-and-bespoke Celestiq is supposedly coming soon, and now the 2025 Cadillac Escalade IQ joins the mix.
Yes, “Escalade IQ.” Cadillac decided all electric models will have names ending in “-iq” but then decided Escalade has so much recognition and brand equity that they had to keep the nameplate. Interesting choice but there’s so much more to discuss, so let’s dive in.
2025 Cadillac Escalade IQ Platform and Power
If you’ve seen the GMC Hummer EV or upcoming Chevy Silverado EV and GMC Sierra EV, you’ve seen the basic underpinnings of the Escalade IQ. As with the others, the Escalade IQ uses GM’s Ultium platform, which allows very fast charging along with flexible battery pack configuration and of course, plenty of power.
Every Escalade IQ will use two motors, one per axle, to produce 680 horsepower and 615 lb-ft of torque. Those numbers increase to 750 HP and 785 lb-ft in “Velocity Max” mode. Cadillac estimates a zero to sixty time of under five seconds.
All of that power comes from a 24-module battery pack that stores 200 kWh of energy. That’s a lot; for reference, the Ford F-150 Lightning Extended Range uses a 131 kWh battery. Granted, the F-150 Lightning can’t travel as far on a charge. Cadillac estimates the Escalade IQ will go 450 miles between charges, a true road-tripper and likely useful as a tow vehicle, too.
Trailer-wise, the Escalade IQ is rated for 8,000 pounds of trailer weight, and a trailer brake controller is shown below on the dashboard. Given my Hummer EV and F-150 Lightning tow tests revealed range drops by roughly half while towing, a 225ish-mile range with a trailer attached is not all bad. It’s on par with many gas-powered SUVs and trucks, so provided there’s charging infrastructure where you’re towing, this could work.
DC Fast Charging will let you add 100 miles of range in about ten minutes, says Cadillac.
2025 Cadillac Escalade IQ Suspension and Steering
You didn’t think GM would develop things like Crabwalk for the Hummer EV and not amortize those costs, did you? Of course not.
Indeed, the Escalade IQ can Crabwalk, though Cadillac is calling it “Cadillac Arrival Mode,” implying that your driver can Electric Slide right up to the curb in a very sultry manner as they drop you off for dinner or A Show.
Given Crabw– sorry, Cadillac Arrival Mode, is standard, so is four-wheel steering allowing up to 10 degrees of counter-steer. It’s paired to GM’s latest iteration of Magnetic Ride Control and height-adjustable air suspension. “Low Ride Mode” lets you drive at slow speeds with the suspension two inches lower than normal.
Oh, and the wheels are properly gigantic 24-inchers with 275/50R24 tires.
How Big is the Escalade IQ?
On the surface, the Escalade IQ is roughly the same size as a gas-powered Escalade ESV. Its wheelbase is a touch longer (136.2” vs 134.1”) but overall length is a bit less (224.3” vs 226.9”).
Inside, it’s about as spacious… until you get to the third row. There’s an inch more headroom, but six inches less legroom for third row passengers. Shoulder room suffers by a similar amount, though hip room is identical. This is of course all on paper, real-world sittin’ time might have the Escalade IQ feeling plenty spacious in the way-back.
Either way, Cadillac knows how Escalades are used and let’s be real, almost nobody is buying one for third row comfort. These are and have been second-row superstars for those looking to be driven.
When it’s time to haul things instead of people, the third row folds flat in to the floor, which gives you up to 69.1 cubic feet of storage behind the second row. Again, not quite as spacious as an Escalade ESV that offers 94.1 cubic feet. There is a fairly large frunk, though, giving you another 12.2 cubes up front.
Edit: Cadillac confirmed a larger Escalade IQL is coming at a later date, though they would not share any details beyond “yes” for now. I suspect that one will be much more accommodating for third row passengers.
What About the Escalade IQ’s Interior and Tech?
Screens! Screens everywhere! As with the entire industry of late, Cadillac has decided that more pixels is The Future. They tout 55 inches of pillar-to-pillar screen, on top of the secondary control screen up front and three more optional screens for the second row. As in the Grand Wagoneer and other big luxo-SUVs, I question the decision.
I suppose Cadillac is okay with most controls being touch-based given the (excellent) Super Cruise hands-free driving system is standard here. I’ve used Super Cruise to pull a trailer over 1,000 miles hands-free and it really is that fantastic. I still want buttons and knobs, though.
There isn’t just an excess of pixels inside, though – you can have a wild number of speakers too. There are three tiers of AKG sound system available using up to forty (!!) speakers. I’ve been impressed with AKG in other Cadillacs, so I’m excited to give this one a listen.
There’s no word on CarPlay or Android Auto support, which tracks with GM’s announcement that future vehicles won’t support the software. Cadillac buyers are likely less concerned about recurring monthly subscriptions, but on principle it’s annoying.
Two “personas” are available with the Escalade IQ – Luxury and Sport – which will help define how various interior (and exterior) accents and colorways are specified. Beyond the pictured tan and we-have-to black, there’s a light gray and a navy blue on offer.
Every interior is complimented with 126-color ambient lighting (take that, Mercedes-Benz) and optional illuminated trim. Other notable options include a second-row Executive package, which adds tray tables, three screens (one 12.6″ on each front seat back and the center “command center”), two wireless charging pads, and massaging seats with headrest speakers. All four doors can be power operated, with the driver’s door opening as you approach the Escalade IQ with the key in your pocket.
I called the branding of this new, fully-electric SUV “interesting” up top, but I have to give Cadillac credit where it’s due. They have seemingly kept the notion of “an Escalade” while changing the method of propulsion and cutting drag by fifteen percent over the gas model.
The nameplate has always been about luxury with a healthy dose of excess, and it seems like this new electric variant is indeed doing that. Maybe keeping the name after 25 years (yes, really) is smarter than I initially thought.
Cadillac says the Escalade IQ’s pricing will start around $130,000. Production begins next summer.