On this blog, we’ve written extensively about the Cadillac Escalade and all its features. Today, we will talk about what kind of mileage you can expect from this large SUV and if this is a car you should consider in your buying process. Let’s start with a quick answer:
On average, a Cadillac Escalade lasts between 200.000 – 230.000 miles. An Escalade needs to go to the garage for unscheduled repairs about 0.32 times per year, with a 20% chance of severe problems. Furthermore, Escalade owners spend an average of $1.007 per year on repair costs.
However, that certainly doesn’t answer the question entirely. Below we’ll first take an in-depth look into the performance of different generations of the Escalade in terms of mileage. Also, we’ll compare the Escalade to its main competitors and other cars manufactured by Cadillac. Finally, we’ll look at maintenance costs and common problems to make sure you have an excellent feeling for what this car has to offer. Read on!
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Current Mileage Of Cadillac Escalades As A Group
Let’s start by looking at the potential mileage a Cadillac Escalade can provide over its lifetime. To get a clear image of this, we used the following method. First, we went to Autotrader.com, and there we selected all available Cadillac Escalades in the United States.
Then, we filtered the group of Escalade only to include pre-2016 models. The reason for this is the fact that these Escalades have had time to reach decent mileage. Including younger Escalades would skew the results and give us a less accurate reading of potential mileage.
Finally, we divided the entire sample group (1.877 Escalades) into different groups based on the mileage they had already reached. The results are displayed in the table below.
|Amount Of Miles
|Percentage Of Cars
|Cars With 150.000+
|Cars With 100.000 – 149.000
|Cars With 45.000 – 99.999
|Cars With 0 – 44.999
What we found is that a large percentage of Escalades seem to reach very good mileages. We usually expect to see 5-8% of the total sample size in the 150.000+ group, whereas in this case, 15.72% of Escalades have a mileage higher than 150.000 miles.
Furthermore, there’s also a very influential group in the 100.000 – 149.000 category, which does speak in favor of the potential durability of the Escalade. However, these numbers don’t yet tell us the whole story.
How Reliable Is A Cadillac Escalade Compared To Its Competitors
To paint a clearer picture of the potential mileage and reliability of the car, we also feel it’s essential to compare the Escalade to its competitors. For this, we selected the Lincoln Navigator, the GMC Yukon, and the Infiniti QX80. Again, we only selected the models manufactured in 2016 or earlier to get a complete image.
What we found is that the Escalade performs very well compared to its competitors. It outperforms the Infiniti QX80 by a significant margin. Furthermore, it gets beaten by the GMC Yukon and the Lincoln Navigator, although we still feel that 15% is a firm number.
Finally, we also looked at the highest recorded mileage of the different cars. This is done so that you have an idea of the maximum mileage the vehicles can reach. We found here that the Escalade has the highest recorded mileage of 270.000, which is just below the Yukon and above the Navigator. The Escalade, therefore, does seem to hold its own.
|Cars With 150.000+ Miles
|% Percentage Of Cars With 150.000+
The Mileage Of Escalades Compared To Other Cadillacs
Finally, we feel it’s also essential to compare the Escalade to other Cadillacs. This is because doing this also provides you with a general feeling for the brand and what Cadillac manufactures typically.
We found here that the Escalade severely outperforms all the other Cadillacs (except for the STS; however, this car has been on the market for much longer). Of all the Cadillacs, the Escalade has by far the highest recorded mileage. Furthermore, it also outperforms in the ‘% of cars with 1500.000+’ category by more than 10% compared to most other vehicles.
It, therefore, seems that the Escalade is the most reliable Cadillac you can get in terms of mileage and that they are indeed built to last.
|Cars With 150.000+ Miles
|% Percentage Of Cars With 150.000+
Maintenance Cost Of Cadillac Escalade Per Year
Besides knowing the potential mileage of the Escalade, we also feel it is essential to get a feel for how much this SUV will cost you on an annual basis. To gather this data, we went to Repairpal.com. We looked at the recorded yearly maintenance cost for each model year of the Escalade. The results are displayed in the table below.
We found that, even though the Escalade seems to be able to reach very high mileage, the annual maintenance cost is very high, even for this type of vehicle. On average, an Escalade owner spends around $1.007 per year. Furthermore, Escalade owners need to visit the garage for unexpected maintenance around 0.32 times per year (once per three years), with a 20% chance of severe problems.
To put this in perspective, the GMC Yukon has an annual maintenance cost of $747 per year, whereas an Infiniti QX80 will cost $718 per year. Only the Lincoln Navigator does worse with a yearly maintenance cost of $1.089.
|Year Of Manufacturing
|Cadillac Escalade Maintenance Cost
Also read: The Complete Cost Of Maintaining A Cadillac
Common Cadillac Escalade Problems
These maintenance costs are, of course, not something that happens unexpectedly. They can be traced back to the problems that an Escalade can have. Unfortunately, this car has had quite some issues throughout its generations. Before you look below, please notice that many newer models don’t yet have a lot of data available, which makes it difficult to talk about their general problems.
NOTE: Before buying a used car, I always like to make sure the vehicle isn´t having any problems that you should be aware of. The easiest way to do this is by buying an OBD2 scanner. These scanners can easily be plugged into any car you’re interested in, and they’ll give you a rundown of potential problems.
Door Handles May Break (Inside/Outside)
In pre-2016 models, the door handles on the in- or outside may break, which means they need complete replacement. Expect to pay around $150 for this repair.
Incorrect Temperature Of Heater Or A/C
The heather or A/C may have problems reaching the correct temperature due to a failing mode door actuator. Fault codes should be stored in the car’s control module and can be read with an OBD-II scanner. The repair cost will be around $350.
Speedometer Or Fuel Gauge Provides Incorrect Reading
In pre-2017 models, the speedometer may start giving incorrect readings caused by a fault in the instrument cluster. On some models, the warranty for this has been extended to 7 years or 70.000 miles.
In other cases (pre-2009 and the 2013 models), the fuel gauge will start giving incorrect readings caused by a failing fuel sensor. In some older models, experts advise you to change the complete fuel pump module. Replacing a sensor will cost around $300, whereas a full fuel pump replacement will cost $750.
Service Stability Message
In pre-2014 models, the steering wheel position sensor may fail, which will result in a ‘Service Stability Message’ being displayed. The sensor will need to be replaced, which will cost around $300-400.
Anti-Theft System Failure
Failure of the anti-theft system may result in a ‘no start’ caused by a failing ignition switch which will need to be replaced. These problems mainly occur in pre-2014 models. The cost for this replacement is around $200.
Power Door Lock Actuators Fail
In pre-2014 and 2016 models, the power door lock actuators may fail, or they will start to operate too slowly. These will need to be replaced, costing around $300 per door.
Noise From The Front/Rear Differential
A complete overhaul of the front/rear differential may sometimes be necessary for pre-2017 models because of worn bearing that causes a loud noise. Expect to pay around $400 for replacing these bearings.
Check Engine Light Due To Gas Cap
A loose or worn gas cap will result in the check engine light illuminating in pre-2011 models. Replacing the gas cap will cost around $100.
Failing Fuel Pump
A failing fuel pump will result in the engine not cranking or stalling. The fuel pump will need to be replaced, which will cost around $750.
Dirty Throttle Body
In pre-2011 models, the throttle body of the engine may become dirty, which will lead to lower idle RPMs and lower speed overall. Cleaning the throttle body will cost around $280.
ABS Warning Light
The front wheel speed sensors are prone to fail in pre-2007 models, which lead to erratic ABS functioning. The wheel speed sensors will need to be replaced, which will cost around $180.
Is A Cadillac Escalade A Smart Buy?
Now, all of this leads to the question of whether or not the Cadillac Escalade is a smart buy.
When we look at the potential mileage that the Escalade can reach, we see that the car performs very well compared to its competitors and other Cadillacs. However, we also see that these mileages aren’t reached without a fight. Escalades will generally have high maintenance costs and, if you’re unlucky, you’ll encounter a host of problems.
Furthermore, we feel it’s also essential to look at the depreciation of this car. Using data from Caredge.com, we found an Escalade depreciates 47% in the first five years. This tells us that a 5-year old Cadillac may be a great deal in terms of value-for-money. On the other hand, buying a new Cadillac will make you lose quite some money in a short time.
Therefore, we recommend the following: if you’re looking for a large SUV, then a GMC Yukon or Infiniti QX80 may also be options you can have a look at because of their high potential mileages and lower maintenance cost. However, if you’re sure you want an Escalade, it is wise to invest time in learning how to identify its significant problems to inspect these points on the dealers’ lot. Buying a problem-free Escalade can be a great long-term buy, whereas purchasing a problematic Escalade may quickly become a financial burden.
Cadillac Escalade Maintenance Schedule
Finally, we feel it’s essential to get a feel for what kind of maintenance an Escalade requires these days. Below you’ll find the maintenance schedule for this car.
- Every 7.500 miles the tires should be rotated and the engine oil and filter should be changed.
- Every 22.500 miles the cabin air filter should be changed.
- Every 45.000 miles the evaporative control system should be checked and the engien air cleaner filter should be changed.
- Every 97.500 miles the spark plugs should be changed and the transfer case fluid should be changed if equipped with 4WD.
- Every 150.000 miles the coolant should be changed and the drive belt should be inspected and changed if needed.
Hi! My name is Stefan; I’m the owner and lead writer at TheDriverAdviser.com.
I’m an active writer on this blog myself, as well as a novice car mechanic. For the really technical stuff, I find writers with experience as a mechanic or who have studied mechanical engineering.
Read more about our fantastic team on our about page!