Buying Guide

2012 Cadillac Escalade EXT

Fair Market Price $36,752 Base

EPA MPG:

13 City / 18 Hwy

Towing (Max):

7,700 lbs.

Payload (Max):

1,230 lbs.

A Cadillac pickup may seem like heresy to many of the Caddy faithful, but the wreath-and-crest brand was one of the first luxury marques to expand into the profitable SUV and truck segments. The EXT, which is essentially a high-end Chevrolet Avalanche, is available with the same luxury amenities as the Escalade and Escalade ESV sport-utilities. Those amenities include a high-grade interior, state-of-the-art Bose 5.1 digital surround sound, and a touch-screen navigation system. The Escalade EXT uses the same six-speed automatic transmission and rumbling 403-hp, 6.2-liter V-8 that’s found in its SUV siblings. But the EXT borrows from its Chevrolet sibling. Look behind the seats, and you’ll find a pickup bed and the same Midgate system used in the Avalanche. When the rear seats are folded, the Midgate panel can be extended into the cabin, converting the EXT from a five-passenger vehicle to a two-seater and expanding the pickup bed from five feet to eight feet. A tonneau cover protects the external bed from the elements; alternatively, it can be removed for extra storage space. A power-operated soft cover is a dealer-installed option.

Drive: 4-wheel
Trim Levels: Escalade EXT, Luxury, Premium
Body Style: Pickup, 5-passenger
Engine: 6.2L V-8, 403 hp, 417 lb-ft (E85 capable)
Transmission: 6-speed automatic
Passenger volume: 120.0 cu ft
Capacities: Towing 7600 lb; payload 1362 lb; cargo (second row folded/Midgate open, second row folded) 54.3/101.0 cu ft

The only luxury pickup on the market soldiers on into 2012 with few changes from last year. There is one new exterior color — radiant silver metallic — and a new design for the lid on the center console storage compartment. Upgrades have been made to the touch-screen navigation system.

Dual-stage front, side, and side curtain air bags are standard, as are traction and stability control with rollover mitigation, Ultrasonic rear parking sensors, tire-pressure monitoring, and OnStar telematics with automatic crash response and emergency services with a one-year free trial. Blind-zone alert is optional.

All: 13 mpg city/18 mpg highway

  • Midgate system
  • Opulent cabin
  • Small bed
  • Poor fuel economy

A luxury pickup with a usable five-foot bed.

  • Ford F-150 Lariat Limited
  • GMC Sierra Denali
  • Ram 1500 Laramie Longhorn

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