Premiere has a way of catching one's attention. The lines have designer chic. The name wears a sterling history. The ability to smoothly cruise or catapult along with command blends the fact that underneath it all, it can do some incredibly tough things. Identifying it as a pickup truck—a very sophisticated, top-line one at that—is the "huh" factor.
Yes, the pickup tail lamps you're chasing down the road belong to a Cadillac. The large wreath and crest emblems, the splashes of chrome, the laid-back windshield and integrated side running boards leave no doubt.
Cadillac's EXT luxury pickup is reinvented for 2007, and among its amenities is a kick in the gusto. And Cadillac has managed to cram together a multiple of purposes bathed in top-line amenities that defy nearly any other vehicle to match its combined ability. In fact, Caddy calls it a "sport utility truck" rather than designating a single pickup purpose.
With a more powerful, all-aluminum 6.2-liter, V8 powerplant underneath, this pretty baby has guts. A six-speed Hydra-Matic six-speed shifter adds punch. Tapping the accelerator releases a wealth of grunt power—some 403-horsepower and 417 lb.-ft. of energetic torque. (Expect your Russian Wolfhound's ears to lay back flat during acceleration if it doesn't have the sense to pull its head back inside on takeoff.)
True to its truck heritage, the Escalade EXT is built on a new "boxed" frame for rigidity and strength, that lends a tad less comfort than a cushy sedan would have. But add all-wheel-drive, and ladle on the luxury of a Cashmere or Ebony interior, and all is forgiven. Who can argue with an eight-inch touch-screen nav system, flip-down rear seat DVD video, leather seating with available heat and cooling, heated steering wheel, and segment-first Bose 5.1 digital surround sound. Think XM Satellite Radio, MP3 and more.
A Midgate capability to expand truck bed depth adapts to many uses. Need a nine-foot truck bed to haul a sculpture? Banish the rear seats momentarily and there's plenty of room.
Caddy claims this $55,000 vision (add $10,000 for those with insatiable appetites for amenities), can eke out a sensible sounding 13/19 MPG on premium fuel. With that said, all we can add is: Wow! What a ride!