Cadillac Escalade-V Blackwing Caught Launching Video With LT4 V8

All the way back in July 2019, MC&T was the first to report that Cadillac was working on a special high-performance Escalade with an LT4 supercharged V8 engine. Nearly two full years later, spy photos confirmed the existence of this mega SUV, which will feature GM’s proven 6.2L LT4 V8 engine shared with the Cadillac CT5-V Blackwing sedan and Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 muscle car. Power is expected to be somewhere between 640 and 668 horsepower, while other additions, such as improved suspension, better tires and bigger brakes, are expected to help keep all those ponies in order. More to the point: The Cadillac Escalade-V (named for now) will be the only full-sized American SUV on the market with a supercharged V8. If you remember, the Dodge Durango SRT Hellcat has already been discontinued. Stellantis is expected to eventually boost the Jeep Wagoneer and Grand Wagoneer, but that could take a few more years.

Watch our spy video below and let us know what you think. At the end of the video you can see the supercharged Cadillac Escalade actually launching itself to the point of performing a Carolina Squat, but just short of popping a wheelie:

Cadillac Escalade-V: Details

The SUV’s front end appears more aggressive than the standard Escalade, with larger lower air intakes and a deeper chin spoiler. All around we also see some quad exhaust tips, which are not present on any current Cadillac Escalade model. These tips are not new to the brand, however, as they resemble the units found on both the CT4-V and CT5-V Blackwing models. Above the new exhaust tips is also a redesigned rear bumper.

The tires appear to be similar if not exactly the same size as the stock Cadillac Escalade. The spy photos make it unclear which brand and type it is exactly. There’s also little indication that this supercharged Escalade will be wider than the base model, but it’s clear it will come in a long-wheelbase form, which allows for three comfortable rows of seats and an abundance of cargo space.

So if you want to blast up and down I-75 with maximum speed, comfort, payload and occupancy, this might be the vehicle for you.

Image via KGP Photography for Muscle Cars & Trucks

Looking at the side profile of these 2023 Cadillac Escalade-V prototypes, a few more visual cues come into play. The ride height of the two trucks seems lower than that of the standard models, and some unique wheels are tucked into the arches. These multi-spoke wheels are wrapped in tires that have had the brand completely removed, probably in an effort to hide their sticky connection from prying eyes.

Supercharged LT4 V8 Engine

The spy photographers couldn’t discern what kind of powertrain was under the hood of the Cadillac Escalade-V prototypes, but we already have insider information to fill in the blanks. Our sources have stated that the truck will be powered by the same 6.2L LT4 V8 as the Camaro ZL1 and Cadillac CT5-V Blackwing models. While power output remains a mystery at this point, we won’t be surprised to see the SUV has the same 668 horsepower as its Blackwing sibling. Powertrain adjustments may need to be made for towing capabilities, although this didn’t dramatically affect the output of the Hellcat-powered Durango.

2023 Cadillac Escalade-V
Image via KGP Photography for Muscle Cars & Trucks

Supercharged Escalade A no-brainer for Cadillac

Customer demand for a powerful Cadillac Escalade-V model is not new. In fact, Dave Schiavone, Cadillac’s Escalade Product Manager, was quite candid about this when he spoke to MC&T back in October 2020.

“Since we came out on the CTS with the V Series, we’ve had dealers and customers always asking for an Escalade-V,” said Schiavone in an exclusive interview with MC&T. “We are always looking for opportunities and where we can take portfolios.

Recent comments from Cadillac executives also suggest the brand has plans for more V-Series models. There’s certainly no better place to start this rollout than with the brand’s most successful (and profitable) offering. We also know that the Escalade will be the last ICE-powered model in the brand’s lineup, as they plan to go EV-only by 2030. It makes sense that this Escalade-V arrives before the Escalade EV (expected to be the Escalade IQ) to start production for the 2024 model year, as a final hurray for the brand’s most iconic vehicle of the 21st century.

LT4 Supercharged V8 Engine Luxury SUV Cadillac Blackwing Escalade
Image via KGP Photography for Muscle Cars & Trucks.

Leave a Comment