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A black 2017 Cadillac Escalade, which is popular among used Cadillac's, is parked on a cobble stone road in front of a building.

The Legend of the Cadillac Escalade

For those that want it all, there are exotics in life like the Cadillac Escalade. Its entire being is unapologetic. It has it, and it doesn’t think twice about flaunting it. Since the Escalade’s first day out in 1999, it crushed the idea of what a luxury SUV can be. And since then, Escalade designers have never looked back. Its most comfortable coat is black. It contains enough chrome to shine without its lights on. It’s a luxury vehicle most of us have seen, but not everyone has driven. Yet, unlike an Italian sports car, this Cadillac SUV is not far beyond one’s reach. As a popular choice when looking for a used Cadillac, the Escalade doubles as a legend in pop culture and movies.


No amount of dramatic words can exceed the drama that the Cadillac Escalade emits. Like the many celebrities it has carried and been driven by, the Escalade is a celebrity in its own right. Since its creation in 1998 (although it debuted as a 1999 model year Escalade), it began to develop a persona…a celebrity persona. It was seen out at night clubs, parties, and major events with some of the world’s most famous people. It has earned an innumerable amount of cinematic roles and is still highly demanded by Hollywood’s sought after directors.

After Cadillac’s SUV debut, a well-known businesswoman, actress, and singer helped post the car on the map with her hit song “Love Don’t Cost A Thing.” Jennifer Lopez describes a scene in which the main character, the man coming out of a car and walking into a club, arrives in an escalade.

A black 1999 Cadillac Escalade is parked on a farm next to a woman with her horse.

More music artists capitalized on the Escalade after it became known as a celebrity status symbol. The rapper Ludacris more than features the Escalade in his song “Southern Hospitality.” You can also see Ludacris rapping inside of Cadillac Escalades in several of his other music videos.

In 2004, several years after the Escalade exploded on the map, it continued to cause after-shocks in pop culture. Lil-Wayne, an already platinum rapper by 1999, was just getting his career started in 2004. Lil Wayne proudly displayed an all-white Cadillac Escalade of his on MTV Cribs.

Under the Lights

Internationally known for his rap and hip hop music, Dr. Dre is a proud owner of a Cadillac Escalade. Dr. Dre’s rapper and producer counterparts are known for purchasing foreign supercars when they go out in public. His choice to go with the Escalade in place of a Lamborghini or Ferrari tells the public that the Escalade is in the same luxury level as such cars. As the founder of the popular headphone company Beats, Dr. Dre is familiar with the music scene. If we know anything about driving a car and listening to our favorite music, we know its an amazing feeling. For a music producer to choose an Escalade should tell the public a little something about what it feels like to drive a Cadillac Escalade.

Victoria Beckham, otherwise known as Posh Spice of the Spice Girls, and her husband David Beckham scuttle around town in their personal Cadillac Escalade. Not only does the crowd-stopping beast on four wheels seem enough for a worldwide soccer phenom, but the Escalade’s aesthetic is up to par with one of the Spice Girls as well.

Starring Roles

The Matrix Reloaded (2003), a film known for its futuristic and surreal storyline, features the sport-utility pick-up truck Escalade known as the 2002 Escalade EXT. In the film, characters utilize its agility, speed, and imposing stature to defend themselves in a highway shootout. The first Transformers film (2007) also featured an Escalade to represent the might and unstoppable nature of evil.

A black 2002 Cadillac EXT is driving around traffic cones.

While the Escalade may be known for its roles of carting-around the outlaws, it has shined in more lawful and docile roles. Vincent Chase, the lead character in the fan-favorite TV-series Entourage (2004-2011), is escorted around in a sharp 2015 Cadillac Escalade in the Entourage movie (2015).

Behind the Scenes

Songwriters, performers, movie stars, professional athletes, and even the less drama-inclined, as in Bill Gates, trust the Escalade to protect them on ever-unpredictable roadways.

Known for having a heavy chassis, the Escalade is notoriously protective of its passengers. Its curb weight of three tons is an ally in the case of an accident. In 2015, the Escalade featured the first haptic alert system of any vehicle, which vibrates the driver’s chair to alert of a potential collision. With safety features added each year, the Escalade has gained the trust of any celebrity or hard-working citizen that gets the pleasure to ride in one.

If VIPs only wanted protection when they traveled, they’d choose any SUV. But the Escalade isn’t any SUV. It’s class, safety, and performance. With every year that passes, the Escalade has aged beautifully. Billionaires, TV stars, professional athletes, and more choose to travel in Escalades today, more than ever. Cadillac designers continue to persuade public figures that want to be seen driving or being driven in one.

The Escalade was built to sustain high speeds, carry lots of weight, and tow heavy loads. Although the Escalade is popular among the high and mighty, it remains an SUV capable of working in the mud. When it debuted in 1999, it carried a 5.7L V8, capable of 255 hp and 330 lb-ft of torque. In other words, the Escalade has never been all about its looks.

The latest model to date (the 2020 Escalade) has a 6.2L V8 with 420 hp, 460 lb-ft of torque, and a towing capacity of 8,100 lbs. With these competitive performance specs, the Escalade is not only a fancy looking ride but a powerful contender on the road. Nowadays, more people are becoming fans of the Escalade for its role as a hard worker, as well as a piece of art.

With a bunch of celebrities at its back, the Escalade is a beautiful yet tough ride. With owners that span from Dr. Dre to David Beckham, this is a great choice for any driver. The 2020 model starts at $75,195, and while that may seem like a lot for an SUV, it is filled to the brim with luxury features and amenities. A used Cadillac Escalade, from around 2010, can run about 15-18k depending on the mileage and condition. Which is a great value for an SUV with a lot of luxury features.