2003 Cadillac Escalade EXT Road Test Specs | Edmunds

2003 Cadillac Escalade EXT - Road Test Specs

2003 Cadillac Escalade EXT Truck

(6.0L V8 AWD 4-speed Automatic 5.2 ft. Bed)


Model year2003
ModelEscalade EXT
Style4dr Crew Cab AWD (6.0L 8cyl 4A)
Base MSRP$51,230.00
As-tested MSRP$44,234.00


Drive typeAWD
Engine typeV8
Displacement (cc/cu-in)6
Horsepower (hp @ rpm)345
Torque (lb-ft @ rpm)380
Transmission type4-speed automatic


Suspension, frontshort and long arm
Suspension, rearsolid live axle
Steering typespeed-proportional power steering
Tire brandGoodyear
Tire modelAll-season touring
Tire size, frontP265/70R17
Tire size, rearP265/70R17
Brakes, frontfront and rear ventilated disc

Track Test Results

0-45 mph (sec.)4.6
0-60 mph (sec.)7.7
0-75 mph (sec.)11.1
1/4-mile (sec. @ mph)15.82 @ 86.33
Braking, 30-0 mph (ft.)32.8
60-0 mph (ft.)135.46
Slalom, 6 x 100 ft. (mph)55.0
Skid pad, 200-ft. diameter (lateral g)43.1
Sound level @ idle (dB)Lo
@ Full throttle (dB)75
@ 70 mph cruise (dB)72

Test Driver Ratings & Comments

Acceleration commentsRather amazing that a three-ton, all-wheel drive truck can score a 15-second quarter-mile time. The Cadillac's 6.0-liter engine manages to make this beast feel light on its feet with a Kansas-flat torque curve and positive upshifts. The wide gear ratios had the EXT only mid way through third gear at the quarter-mile lights, but above 4,500 rpm (it shifted around 5,400 rpm) the engine did get a little brusque -- though with this vehicle a completely reserved engine note would have likely been a disappointment.
Braking ratingGood
Braking commentsThe EXT has a fair amount of pedal movement when engaging ABS, but minimal noise and no kickback through the pedal. Very brief wheel lockup could be heard as the system cycled, and the nose dived a bit, but no more than expected for a truck. The shortest stopping distance came on our third and final run, and 135 feet is commendable for such a heavy vehicle. Less pedal movement and squishiness would be appreciated, but overall an impressive system.
Handling ratingGood
Handling commentsStrong engine power and light steering make the EXT feel smaller than it is, but it's still a large heavy vehicle that doesn't want to change direction quickly. Placing it between the cones was tricky due to its size, and eyewitness reports noted that the Caddy would lift a rear wheel when I got aggressive with my steering input (this explained the somewhat abrupt rear-end swings I experienced). It's hard to fault a 6,000-pound truck for not beign more nimble in the slalom test. For what it is, the EXT handles admirably. — Karl Brauer

Testing Conditions

Elevation (ft.)85
Temperature (°F)70
Wind (mph, direction)0

Fuel Consumption

EPA fuel economy (mpg)Auto 12/15 Manual /
Edmunds observed (mpg)11
Fuel tank capacity (U.S. gal.)31

Dimensions & Capacities

Curb weight, mfr. claim (lbs.)5903
Length (in.)221.4
Width (in.)79.5
Height (in.)75.6
Wheelbase (in.)130
Legroom, front (in.)41.3
Legroom, rear (in.)38.9
Headroom, front (in.)40.7
Headroom, rear (in.)38.6
Seating capacity5
Cargo volume (cu-ft)53.9
Max. cargo volume, seats folded (cu-ft)97.6


Bumper-to-bumper4 years / 50,000 miles
Powertrain4 years / 50,000 miles
Corrosion6 years / 100,000 miles
Roadside assistance4 years / 50,000 miles
Free scheduled maintenanceNot available


Front airbagsStandard
Side airbagsStandard
Head airbagsNot Available
Antilock brakesStandard
Electronic brake enhancementsNot available
Traction controlStandard
Stability controlStandard
Rollover protectionNot available
Emergency assistance systemStandard
NHTSA crash test, driverAverage
NHTSA crash test, passengerGood
NHTSA crash test, side frontNot tested
NHTSA crash test, side rearNot tested
NHTSA rollover resistanceNot tested

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