My 3rd Esc AWD - '03, '08, '10. Selling features on this one were Magnetic ride control, active fuel mgmt (4/8 cyl), front side airbags standard. RE the ride control - only thing I notice is slightly faster transmission of road variation. It' certainly a more "euro" feel, frankly out of place in such an SUV as this. Active fuel mgmt is a total joke - I got better mileage with my '08 (but, only 500 miles so far in this one). And guess what? No more rain sensing wipers and no more heated washer fluid (I'm from Wyoming - needed that hot washer fluid!). There's more, but the crowning blow came when transferring OnStar - you can't keep your old number!!
Owned a 2007 Yukon loaded. Loaded with problems too. Serious electrical issues which scared us to drive it with children inside. We took it in about 4 times and finally traded in for the escalade awd. You would think that being the King literally! Of the Cadillac and the road, it should be built far better than the Tahoe/Yukon? Not ! The biggest pc of crap! I have ever owned! Within 8 months it was in the shop about 12 times for all sorts of problems. Worst was the engine cut off while driving on interstate. Super dangerous vehicle! Took it in and there must have been 5 escalades in shop for shadow problems of mine. Purchased a Volvo xc70 loaded and freaking love it!
You'll need little legs if you buy the huge Escalade. Actually had an agreement on an 07 ESV in late 2008 but dealer sold it out from under me. OK since by that time, I realized the tiny, non-adjustable rear seats were almost deal-breakers anyway. No, not the third row small, nonadjustable seats - the SECOND row. My $30k 06 Pilot had more rear legroom and it has seats that move fore and aft, unlike the $70k Escalade. Cool looking as the Escalade is, the QX56 is more usable and we're getting that. I'm surprised you mention Land Rover as an option: Land Rovers have the #1 disparity between perceived quality and actual quality - they're bad trucks but great for poseurs!
We had first looked at the 06 Escalade but didn't like it. We went with the Mercedes R350, but when it was time to change, the styling was a turnoff compared to the GL. So we went with the Gl450. It has a great third row, but the bench seat is a turnoff. So we decided it was time for a new luxury SUV, with captain chairs, leaving us to the Navigator, extremely bold, the QX56, in which the redesign didn't thrill us but was a near choice, or the Escalade. By far the styling is great and overall i am pleased with it. It has AWD, which I need, and is VERY difficult to get in Florida.