2007 Cadillac Escalade EXT

The King of Bling is back, bigger, gaudier, more powerful, and--surprise--less of a gas hog than before. The pickup-cum-SUV is actually being seen ahead of the Chevrolet Avalanche, even though both go on sale in the late summer, which is perhaps evidence of the relative success of the two. The EXT boasts a massive grille, tighter panel gaps, and a more streamlined--or less brick-like--exterior, which enables it to get better gas mileage despite having a more powerful, 6.2-liter V-8 engine that makes 403 hp and a whopping 417 lb-ft of torque. EXTs come with standard eighteen-inch wheels and tires, but buyers can opt for twenty-twos. Stability control is standard and now incorporates a program to help avoid rollovers, while front side air bags are standard and a full-length head curtain system is available. Oh, and by the way, the awful boxy side cladding of the old truck has gone.

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