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Cadillac - 2003 Escalade EXT
Cadillac - 2003 Escalade EXT

Cadillac - 2003 Escalade EXT

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Cadillac Escalade EXT The Escalade EXT, a bold new addition to Cadillac's lineup in the 2002 model year, entered uncharted territory for GM's luxury division. A sport utility tru... More »
Cadillac Escalade EXT

The Escalade EXT, a bold new addition to Cadillac's lineup in the 2002 model year, entered uncharted territory for GM's luxury division. A sport utility truck, with elements of a luxury SUV and pickup truck, the Escalade EXT offers commanding looks and a powerful engine.

For 2003, Escalade EXT adds numerous features, including new safety features, a rear- seat entertainment system, interior instrument panel upgrades and modified seats.

"The Escalade EXT is perhaps the ultimate expression of Cadillac's breakthrough design and technology," said Susan Docherty, Escalade marketing director. "It is exposing Cadillac to new generations and new categories of buyers who might not have considered a Cadillac vehicle, and is helping us reinvigorate the brand."

Smarter electrical systems

An advanced new multiplexed electrical architecture makes Escalade EXT even smarter. The new architecture greatly reduces the number of wires, splices and connectors, minimizes weight, improves packaging efficiency, reliability and durability and enables features such as the driver information center, new infotainment systems, automatic climate control and the passenger sensing system.

A new driver information center monitors and reports on up to 30 system functions - more than any vehicle in its class. The instrument panel and cluster - redesigned to accommodate these new features - provides more crucial operating data than any competitor. An available eight-button steering wheel control allows owners to personalize several functions and safely access new infotainment systems.

The 2003 Escalade EXT offers new entertainment systems, including a Panasonic DVD Entertainment System, XM Satellite Radio and a highly refined, premium Bose sound system with superb imaging, stage and spectral response.

Available XM Satellite Radio features 100 coast-to-coast digital channels, including 71 music channels (more than 30 of them commercial-free) from hip-hop to opera, classical to country, bluegrass to blues, and 29 channels of sports, talk, children's and entertainment programming. XM also brings to the car, for the first time on radio, a diverse selection of 24-hour news sources previously available only in the home. XM's next-generation sound quality technology provides superior sound, remarkably close to that of a compact disc.

The optional rear-seat entertainment system includes a DVD player with flip-down screen for rear-seat passenger viewing, wireless headphones and a remote control. The state-of-the-art, factory-installed system includes a 7-inch liquid-crystal display, with a 16 x 9 aspect ratio (screen format), capable of playing studio-quality audio/video in both CD-audio and DVD formats. The DVD player can play all discs manufactured for wide- or standard-screen formats, as well as CD audio discs. It also provides three other sets of auxiliary video and audio inputs for video game systems like the Microsoft Xbox, a camcorder or other types of external equipment.

New safety features

The Escalade EXT adds additional safety enhancements for 2003 including an automatic passenger-sensing air bag system. It automatically deactivates the passenger-side air bag under certain conditions to protect children (or small adults). The system assesses whether the occupant in the seat is an adult or child, based on the measured weight in the seat cushion and tension in the belt system, if any. If these measurements are typical for a child, the air bag is disabled. If they are typical for an adult, the air bag is enabled. Even if the vehicle is equipped with a suppression system, it is important to note that: children are safer in the back seat; rear-facing infant seats must never be placed in front of an active air bag; everyone should always use proper restraints and be properly positioned in the vehicle.

The dual-stage air-bag system is a supplemental restraint system designed to detect vehicle deceleration and, based on the deceleration data, provide an appropriate amount of air-bag inflation. The dual-level air-bag system senses the severity of a crash and determines whether to deploy the air bag with the primary or "lower" amount of inflation or with primary and secondary "higher" amount of inflation. Sensors located in the front of the vehicle work with the sensing diagnostic module (SDM) to measure the severity of the impact. The SDM uses the data to make a determination on the type of air-bag deployment (first stage or second stage) or non-deploy. Dual-stage air bags are designed to help reduce the occurrence of inflation-induced injuries by deploying the air bag less forcefully in lower-speed crashes.

Escalade EXT now has supplemental brake assist, in accordance with federal requirements, a center seat shoulder belt in the second row and a child restraint anchor system to make installing child seats easier and safer. The Escalade EXT also features improved brake performance and pedal feel, and quieter operation. The brake and accelerator pedals now have a power-adjustable feature.

The vehicle features an upgraded StabiliTrak system and new Borg-Warner one-speed full-time open-differential transfer case. The new system's four-channel electronic brake control replaces previous three-channel hydraulic brake control for ABS/traction and two-channel control for yaw stability. Instead of independent braking applying only to the front wheels, with the new four-channel system any of the four wheels can be independently controlled. The system provides more stable, controlled ABS stops, improved fuel economy, reliability and serviceability and greater yaw stability control. The primary benefits are reduced understeer and proper brake pressure for traction and yaw stability control at all times.

New standard power exterior rearview mirrors feature power tilt glass/power folding, heat, left-side electrochromic glass, puddle lights, turn-signal indicators in the glass and a memory feature. They include a "curb" feature, which reverse-tilts them down to allow a driver to see the distance to a curb or the lines on a parking spot.

New standard high-intensity-discharge (HID) headlamps enhance safety and styling. The reflector optics headlamp system creates a white light, which approximates daylight and illuminates road surfaces better than conventional halogen or incandescent systems. Using a ballast, initiator, arc tube and reflector, HID generates more light per watt, using less electrical energy, and runs cooler than conventional systems.

More cabin comforts

A new dual-zone heating, ventilation and air conditioning system (HVAC) provides outstanding comfort. Dual-zone controls allow the driver and front passenger to adjust the temperature to their own comfort levels - up to a 30-degree Fahrenheit difference between the two front zones.

Upgraded interior

A redesigned instrument panel and cluster place more crucial operating data in front of the driver and use new graphics to highlight Cadillac's luxury character. Italian luxury brand Bulgari designed the face of the analog clock, located in the console. An ebony background offsets the white facing of the graphics, as well as all control knobs, for a harmonious, integrated look. The cluster gauges feature a simpler design, with chrome halos now highlighting only the tachometer and speedometer. The steering wheel's eight control buttons operate audio, trip and fuel calculation, vehicle function programs and voice recognition for the standard OnStar system.

The center console that flows up into the IP has a new, seamlessly integrated, single-piece design for improved fit and finish. A new covered storage compartment with a "push-push" lid has been added to the left of the clock. The rear of the console has a new LCD temperature display and larger control head for the independent, rear-seat ECC control. All seats feature a simpler, cleaner, European-style appearance, including new leather trim and more sculpted contours.


The best-in-class Vortec 6000 V8 gives the vehicle more horsepower and torque per liter than any SUV, at 345 horsepower at 5200 rpm and 380 lb-ft of torque at 4000 rpm. The engine links to the Hydra-Matic 4L60-E heavy-duty electronically controlled four-speed automatic transmission with overdrive.

New exterior colors

Escalade EXT features two new exterior colors for 2003: Green Envy - a medium Pearl Green Metallic, and Out of the Blue - a medium Blue Metallic.
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