Meet the Escalade Makers | 2021 Cadillac Escalade

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ESCALADE MAKERS SERIES

Meet the Escalade Makers. A group of forward-thinkers who helped bring the 2021 Cadillac Escalade to life in a deeply human way—through distinctly curated personas, astounding detail and technology that makes you the star.

EXTERIOR

FORMIDABLE FROM FIRST GLANCE

Escalade requires no introduction. That’s why Exterior Design Manager Therese Pinazzo encouraged her team to stay true to its unmistakable styling—and execute every detail in its most sophisticated fashion.

 

Therese believes lighting builds the icon, a testament from someone who dabbles in LED performance art.

She’s inspired by architecture, like “what you see looking up at a building in New York City.” It’s why the tail lamps on Escalade stretch a staggering three feet tall and have been coined “skyscraper” lights. Though their size was initially controversial, designers agreed the lamps define Escalade—and delivered them in a stunning, tapered form.

She finds working on Escalade both a challenge and an honor—particularly the opportunity to design its first-ever Sport trim, giving an already powerful character a more sinister mood. It’s athletic, aggressive and bound to turn heads. And it’s what she sees herself in.

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ZEBRA WOOD

An interior design element that pushes the boundaries of typical luxury. The proportion of light to dark striping in this wood was purposefully chosen to offer high-contrast, statement-making design to anyone willing to take risks and embrace their personal taste.

ZEBRA WOOD

An interior design element that pushes the boundaries of typical luxury. The proportion of light to dark striping in this wood was purposefully chosen to offer high-contrast, statement-making design to anyone willing to take risks and embrace their personal taste.

WHISPER BEIGE INTERIOR

Until now, a Sport trim for Escalade was uncharted territory, but customers had an appetite for a high-contrast interior. This trim merges sport and luxury by complementing jet black with a light beige on a grand scale.

PRECISION PERFORATED SEATING

This perforation uses pinholes in a variety of sizes to create sets of squares, or boxes, that mirror the pattern of the Cadillac Mondrian within the crest—a subtle honoring of automotive heritage.

PRECISION PERFORATED SEATING

This perforation uses pinholes in a variety of sizes to create sets of squares, or boxes, that mirror the pattern of the Cadillac Mondrian within the crest—a subtle honoring of automotive heritage.

WHISPER BEIGE INTERIOR

Until now, a Sport trim for Escalade was uncharted territory, but customers had an appetite for a high-contrast interior. This trim merges sport and luxury by complementing jet black with a light beige on a grand scale.

FOR THOSE BIG ON FIRST IMPRESSIONS

SPORT JET BLACK / WHISPER BEIGE TRIM

Features a dramatically dark grille, high-contrast Zebra wood and Precision perforated seats destined to make people stop, stare and remember.

INFOTAINMENT

THE INDUSTRY’S GIANT, GORGEOUS GAME CHANGER

Escalade debuts the industry’s first-ever curved OLED display. That means Infotainment Program Manager Joanne Leddy had her work cut out for her during reveal—fielding hours of questions and demos. She laughs, recalling how many reporters “didn’t want to get out” of the vehicle and the joy in watching eyes widen the moment the OLED lights came on.

Joanne says Cadillac leadership wanted to offer Escalade customers this groundbreaking technology from the start. Everything else had to work around it. It was a bold, purposeful decision to revolutionize the driver’s experience. The world is heading toward technology at every touch. The way you interact with your vehicle should be no different.

But OLED was not achieved without challenges. For example, the team engineered a special light control film so the display could stand proudly without reflecting light onto the windshield. It had to be executed perfectly. From full-cluster Augmented Reality Navigation to crisp and colorful album art, what Escalade places at your fingertips, you won’t find anywhere else.

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NATURAL FIGURED ASH WOOD

For fans of the traditional Escalade interior, this wood’s natural swirling grain and earthy brown tone pop off a jet-black atmosphere the perfect amount.

NATURAL FIGURED ASH WOOD

For fans of the traditional Escalade interior, this wood’s natural swirling grain and earthy brown tone pop off a jet-black atmosphere the perfect amount.

FULL SEMI-ANILINE LEATHER SEATS

Those in the third row still receive first-class treatment. Full Semi-Aniline Leather Seats in all three rows guarantees luxury sits at every touch.

MONDRIAN QUILTED SEATING

A new quilt pattern developed specifically for Escalade, in sleek black leather. Look closely and you’ll see stitches sewn over multiple times to set apart the different size squares that comprise the Cadillac Mondrian pattern.

MONDRIAN QUILTED SEATING

A new quilt pattern developed specifically for Escalade, in sleek black leather. Look closely and you’ll see stitches sewn over multiple times to set apart the different size squares that comprise the Cadillac Mondrian pattern.

FULL SEMI-ANILINE LEATHER SEATS

Those in the third row still receive first-class treatment. Full Semi-Aniline Leather Seats in all three rows guarantees luxury sits at every touch.

FOR EARLY ADOPTERS OF GROUNDBREAKING TECH

SPORT PLATINUM JET BLACK TRIM

Features Ash wood, sleek black Mondrian quilted seats and distinct Sport wheels and grille. A tech-forward feel to match the OLED’s perfect blacks.

INTERIOR

AN ARTFUL INTERIOR TO ELEVATE EVERY DAY

Interior Design Manager Phil Kucera compares his job to running your own business. He fills the hybrid role of artist and engineer, collaborating with multiple departments to create this interior oasis. It makes him the perfect hype man. Phil’s famous for his internal rallying cry—a sarcastic “It’s only the Escalade” (with the occasional expletive for emphasis).

Of all the hats Phil wears, Creative is his favorite. “I keep art at the core. It’s my personal philosophy.” He draws every single day, and he studies modern sculpture and the shapes and forms of paintings for inspiration. It helps him think in 3D and solve for the tricky areas of an interface.

A degree in industrial design also helps Phil make “beautiful things in an industrial way.” Cut and sewn materials fit Escalade like well-tailored clothing, millimeters-thin blade lighting elevates the ambiance, and laser-etched patterns are small surprises you’ll discover down the road. Phil and his team made sure to fret the details, because…

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BITTER LACE WOOD

This natural wood grain resembles the delicate, detailed patterns of lace on a large scale—perfect for the surface area Escalade offers. The wood is hand-dyed to create a dark merlot interior, a color that repeatedly appeared in customer research.

BITTER LACE WOOD

This natural wood grain resembles the delicate, detailed patterns of lace on a large scale—perfect for the surface area Escalade offers. The wood is hand-dyed to create a dark merlot interior, a color that repeatedly appeared in customer research.

FULL SEMI-ANILINE LEATHER SEATS

Those in the third row still receive first-class treatment. Full Semi-Aniline Leather Seats in all three rows guarantees luxury sits at every touch.

MONDRIAN QUILTED SEATING

A new quilt pattern developed specifically for Escalade, in a deep auburn shade of leather. Look closely and you’ll see stitches sewn over multiple times to set apart the different size squares that comprise the Cadillac Mondrian pattern.

MONDRIAN QUILTED SEATING

A new quilt pattern developed specifically for Escalade, in a deep auburn shade of leather. Look closely and you’ll see stitches sewn over multiple times to set apart the different size squares that comprise the Cadillac Mondrian pattern.

FULL SEMI-ANILINE LEATHER SEATS

Those in the third row still receive first-class treatment. Full Semi-Aniline Leather Seats in all three rows guarantees luxury sits at every touch.

FOR A HIGH-END RETREAT EVERY DAY

PREMIUM LUXURY PLATINUM JET BLACK / DARK AUBURN TRIM

Features Bitter Lace wood hand-dyed to match a rich, dark merlot interior and Full Semi-Aniline Leather Seats in all three rows.

SOUND

ENGINEERED TO SONIC PERFECTION

Escalade debuts exclusive AKG® audio systems, a collection of obsessively tuned speakers and amplifiers that boast studio quality, 3D Surround Sound—plus human-focused features like Conversation Enhancement, Front Passenger Volume Control and Navigational Rendering. Marty Shade, Manager of Customer Programs at AKG, is responsible for the acoustics.

Marty has worked with car audio since the age of 15, when his older brother spent a frustrating afternoon attempting to install new equipment. Marty had it done in 30 minutes. “After that, I was hooked,” he remembers. That’s good news, considering Marty and his team conducted 42 separate vehicle tunings to perfect the sound.

AKG has been the music industry’s favorite microphone since 1947. As experts in high fidelity and industry-leading technology, it’s only fitting their first automotive venture is with Escalade. “There’s synergy between the Cadillac brand and AKG as far as the level of detail and attention that’s paid to every aspect of the user experience,” Marty emphasizes. Sounds like the perfect partnership.

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PARCHMENT TAMO ASH WOOD

The movement within this wood grain creates an almost three-dimensional appearance, while the black and parchment colors within its natural stain tie the trim together.

PARCHMENT TAMO ASH WOOD

The movement within this wood grain creates an almost three-dimensional appearance, while the black and parchment colors within its natural stain tie the trim together.

AKG SPEAKER GRILLES

Stainless steel, chemically etched and artfully positioned around the interior. When you have up to 36 speakers within a vehicle, it’s only fitting that they elevate the environment.

MINI CHEVRON PERFORATION

A custom triangular pin, inspired by the Cadillac chevron, was engineered specifically for this perforation. Unique pin patterns were created for each separate seat panel—an estimated six to eight per seat—which are stitched together to form a cohesive, purposeful design.

MINI CHEVRON PERFORATION

A custom triangular pin, inspired by the Cadillac chevron, was engineered specifically for this perforation. Unique pin patterns were created for each separate seat panel—an estimated six to eight per seat—which are stitched together to form a cohesive, purposeful design.

AKG SPEAKER GRILLES

Stainless steel, chemically etched and artfully positioned around the interior. When you have up to 36 speakers within a vehicle, it’s only fitting that they elevate the environment.

FOR LUXURY THAT’S BOTH SEEN AND HEARD

PREMIUM LUXURY JET BLACK / PARCHMENT TRIM

Features AKG Studio sound system, three-dimensional Tamo Ash wood and Mini-Chevron Perforated seats in a Parchment color.

COLOR & TRIM

DESIGN INGENUITY THAT’S JUST YOUR STYLE

Escalade takes form in detailed personas featuring six woods, two quilting patterns, four perforation patterns and a variety of colors, threads and stitch patterns. Color and Trim Manager Michelle Killen compares her approach to interior design: a well-curated room requires a sofa from here, a table from there and a rug from somewhere else. It tells a personal story.

That’s why Michelle studied social media for inspiration, finding self-made people with a taste for earned luxury. What do their homes and handbags look like? How does that premium experience translate to a vehicle? Each trim persona is vastly different, yet distinctly Cadillac. She wants you to pick a favorite.

What Michelle finds remarkable is the victory in variety. Every single interior persona she presented to leadership on day one was achieved. She recalls admiring the imagery, woods and colors on the design wall and knowing Escalade could be executed no other way. Because “Escalade is the benchmark. This sets the standard for how we see Cadillac.”

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FINE LINE BRANDY WOOD

A deep, rich brown veneer with light striping tinted to match the brandy color of the seats perfectly. This trim offers fashion-forward drivers a combination of sport and luxury design cues, complementing the traditional jet-black look of luxury with the browns popular in sports cars.

FINE LINE BRANDY WOOD

A deep, rich brown veneer with light striping tinted to match the brandy color of the seats perfectly. This trim offers fashion-forward drivers a combination of sport and luxury design cues, complementing the traditional jet-black look of luxury with the browns popular in sports cars.

START/STOP STITCHING

This is a new luxury automotive offering for Cadillac and the first-ever start/stop stitch pattern in a seat, which required an entirely new manufacturing process. The ability to tie off individual stitches underneath the leather allows you to create unique patterns.

FACETED QUILTED SEATING

Craftsmanship reigns supreme in this highly complex, tactile quilting pattern. This pattern stacks two angular start/stop stitches on top of one another to create Cadillac chevrons—a level of depth and detail only available in this color on this trim level.

FACETED QUILTED SEATING

Craftsmanship reigns supreme in this highly complex, tactile quilting pattern. This pattern stacks two angular start/stop stitches on top of one another to create Cadillac chevrons—a level of depth and detail only available in this color on this trim level.

START/STOP STITCHING

This is a new luxury automotive offering for Cadillac and the first-ever start/stop stitch pattern in a seat, which required an entirely new manufacturing process. The ability to tie off individual stitches underneath the leather allows you to create unique patterns.

FOR THOSE WHO RESPECT DETAILED CRAFTSMANSHIP

PREMIUM LUXURY BRANDY / VERY DARK ATMOSPHERE TRIM

Features available hand-dyed Brandy wood and faceted seats with intricate start/stop stitching, the result of a new manufacturing process for Cadillac.

INNOVATION

PRESERVING A LEGACY OF LEADERSHIP

Global Product Manager David Schiavone has been working on Escalade since the first generation. He describes the vehicle’s meteoric rise as grassroots—a story of luxury unfolding via the pop culture masses. Professional athletes could fit comfortably inside; musicians and celebrities wanted to make a statement.

A father of three, David says the evolution of Escalade feels “like watching a fourth child grow up.” Under his watch, Escalade has been number one in the segment for 15 of its 21 years of life. But you don’t stay at the top by resting on laurels, and he can confidently say this next generation of Escalade competes head-on with anything in the market.

He lists a few crowning achievements: the record level of design execution, industry defining technology like available Super Cruise™ driver assistance feature and curved OLED display, exclusive AKG sound systems and improved third-row leg room. That’s the beauty of what David describes as the “catch all” role of product manager. He gets to be excited about everything.

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LINEAR MARQUETRY WOOD

Slats of several natural woods, from Ash to Elm, are laid side by side and left unstained so their natural color and detail are on full display—offering beautiful contrast to the Whisper Beige Leather Seating Surfaces. Wood on the doors runs at a 45-degree angle, similar to the Escala concept vehicle.

LINEAR MARQUETRY WOOD

Slats of several natural woods, from Ash to Elm, are laid side by side and left unstained so their natural color and detail are on full display—offering beautiful contrast to the Whisper Beige Leather Seating Surfaces. Wood on the doors runs at a 45-degree angle, similar to the Escala concept vehicle.

FABRIC INTERIOR DETAILS

This trim level is the first time that interior design elements of the Escala concept vehicle have entered production. A massive design victory for Escalade, the fabric details of this interior are simple, elegant and woven like a well-tailored suit.

MINI CHEVRON PERFORATION

A custom triangular pin, inspired by the Cadillac chevron, was engineered specifically for this perforation. Unique pin patterns were created for each separate seat panel—an estimated six to eight per seat—which are stitched together to form a cohesive, purposeful design.

MINI CHEVRON PERFORATION

A custom triangular pin, inspired by the Cadillac chevron, was engineered specifically for this perforation. Unique pin patterns were created for each separate seat panel—an estimated six to eight per seat—which are stitched together to form a cohesive, purposeful design.

FABRIC INTERIOR DETAILS

This trim level is the first time that interior design elements of the Escala concept vehicle have entered production. A massive design victory for Escalade, the fabric details of this interior are simple, elegant and woven like a well-tailored suit.

FOR THE LEGENDARY

PREMIUM LUXURY PLATINUM GIDEON / WHISPER BEIGE TRIM

A showcase of pure innovation—from rear seat entertainment to fabric interior trim details inspired by the Escala concept vehicle.

2021 ESCALADE

Unlike anything else on the road. Make your way.

  • Map coverage available in the United States, Puerto Rico and Canada.

  • AKG is a trademark of AKG Acoustics GmbH, registered in the United States and/or other countries.

  • Even while using the Super Cruise driver assistance feature, always pay attention while driving and do not use a hand-held device. Visit cadillacsupercruise.com for compatible highways and more information. Requires properly equipped vehicle, active Super Cruise subscription, working electrical system, cell reception, and GPS signal.

  • The Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price excludes destination freight charge, tax, title, license, dealer fees and optional equipment. Click here to see all Cadillac vehicles’ destination freight charges.

  • Functionality varies by model. Full functionality requires compatible Bluetooth® and smartphone, and USB connectivity for some devices.

  • Read the vehicle Owner's Manual for important feature limitations and information.

  • Vehicle user interface is a product of Apple® and its terms and privacy statements apply. Requires compatible iPhone® and data plan rates apply. Apple CarPlay is a trademark of Apple, Inc. Siri, iPhone and Apple Music are trademarks of Apple, Inc, registered in the U.S. and other countries.

  • Vehicle user interface is a product of GoogleTM and its terms and privacy statements apply. Requires the Android Auto app on Google Play and a compatible AndroidTM smartphone. Data plan rates apply. You can check which smartphones are compatible at g.co/androidauto/requirements. Android Auto is a trademark of Google LLC.

  • The Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price excludes destination freight charge, tax, title, license, dealer fees and optional equipment

  • Functionality is subject to limitations and varies by vehicle, infotainment system, and location. Select service plan required. Certain Alexa Skills require account linking to use. Amazon, Alexa and all related logos and motion marks are trademarks of Amazon.com, Inc. or its affiliates. See onstar.com for additional details.

  • The system wirelessly charges one compatible mobile device. Some phones have built-in wireless charging technology and others require a special adapter/back cover. To check for phone or other device compatibility, see my.cadillac.com/learn or consult your carrier.

  • Read the vehicle's owner's manual for important feature limitations and information.

  • Safety or driver-assistance features are no substitute for the driver’s responsibility to operate the vehicle in a safe manner. The driver should remain attentive to traffic, surroundings and road conditions at all times. Visibility, weather and road conditions may affect feature performance. Read the vehicle Owner’s Manual for more important feature limitations and information.

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