Car manufacturers can offer different versions or trims of their products to suit different customers, without having to build a completely new vehicle due to individual preferences. This way they can capture customers with different preferences.
By offering different trims, automakers can cater to customers who want a more luxurious ride, or gearheads looking for a more performance ride. General Motors is not new to this game, with its brands – inclusive Chevy and Cadillac – which offer different versions of their vehicles.
For example, Chevrolet recently introduced the RST Performance Edition trim for its full-sized Tahoe SUV. This is in addition to other versions such as the Tahoe RST, Tahoe High Country and the Tahoe Z71. Simply put, the 2023 Tahoe RST Performance Edition takes the performance of the RST trim to the next level and combines it with some luxury.
Interestingly, the 2023 Cadillac Escalade-V also combines luxury and beastly performance. Interestingly, the Escalade-V beats the Tahoe RST Performance Edition in many ways, but the Chevy could be a better choice than the Cadillac.
Escalade-V outperforms Tahoe RST Performance Edition
The RST trim of the Chevrolet Tahoe comes with the 6.2-liter V8 engine with 420 horsepower, perforated leather seats and 22-inch high-gloss black wheels. But the Tahoe RST Performance Edition takes it up a notch by getting more powerful.
Adding Chevrolet Performance induction and exhaust systems increases the power level of the 6.2-liter V8 engine from 420 hp and 460 lb-ft of peak torque to 433 hp and 467 lb-ft of torque. This amount of power represents an increase of 13 horsepower and 7 lb-ft over the RST’s optional 6.2-liter mill.
It allows the Tahoe RST Performance Edition to zoom from zero to 60 mph in 5.78 seconds and reach a quarter mile in just 14.2 seconds.
Nevertheless, the Cadillac Escalade-V dominates in the performance aspect. After all, the full-size luxury SUV managed to earn the V badge. It shares the LT4 6.2-liter V8 engine with the Cadillac CT5-V Blackwing, but with the larger 2.65-liter TVS supercharger. This combination results in a maximum power output of 682 hp and 653 lb-ft of torque, making the Escalade-V one of the most powerful full-size SUVs of its kind.
In a head-to-head race, the Escalade-V would beat the Tahoe RST Performance Edition, as the Cadillac can complete the sprint in 4.4 seconds and reach the quarter mile in 12.8 seconds.
Tahoe RST Performance Edition drives like a cop car
The feature-packed 2023 Cadillac Escalade-V got sportier with a full-time active four-wheel drive system, standard Magnetic Ride Control 4.0, Air Ride Adaptive Suspension and exclusive Escalade-V suspension hardware. Combined, these elements give the driver greater control despite the increased power, without compromising the SUV’s renowned precision driving comfort.
In addition, the Escalade-V comes with exclusive V-Mode that allows drivers to personalize their experience behind the wheel. This V-Mode allows the driver to select the performance driving mode (Tour or Sport), lower the ride height and reduce engine performance. The Escalade-V rides on 22-inch wheels and has a powerful braking system with six-piston Brembo front brakes and Edge Red calipers.
On the other hand, the Chevrolet Tahoe RST Performance Edition offers a unique performance similar to that of a police car. After all, the Tahoe RST Performance Edition uses Chevy’s pursuit-rated police vehicle packages, like those in the Tahoe and Blazer PPV, and the brand’s first Silverado PPV. Its dynamic driving dynamics inspire not only excitement, but also confidence on the road.
Among the elements the RST Performance Edition borrowed from the pursuit-rated Tahoe are police spec springs, retuned dampers and chassis calibrations to police spec, as well as a lowered ride height to police spec (0.4 inches front and 0.8 inches rear) . It comes with front and rear Brembo brakes, with front discs about 25% larger (in diameter) than those found in the RST. It also rides on Police-spec Firestone Firehawk Pursuit 275/55R20 tires with black 20-inch aluminum wheels.
Born luxury vs. Enhanced with luxury
As a luxury full-size SUV with plenty of power inside, the Cadillac Escalade-V should offer an abundance of sporty yet premium elements inside. Somehow elements such as red accents or carbon fiber are missing, although there is a V badge on the dashboard. The interior is as luxuriously appointed as the Platinum trim, with a beautiful twist of Zebra wood decor, semi-aniline leather seats and heated/ventilated and massaging front seats.
For luxurious convenience, the Escalade-V comes with a standard 38-inch curved OLED (with twice the pixel density of a 4K TV), premium infotainment experience with a 16.9-inch diagonal color information display, a 14.2-inch diagonal center cluster display and a standard AKG Studio Reference audio system with 36 speakers and 3D Surround
Meanwhile, the Tahoe RST Performance Edition is quite luxurious, despite not being a full-size luxury SUV. Chevy decided to bless this equipment with the Luxury Package, which comes with numerous active safety elements and features for the driver’s convenience. The package also includes automatic heated steering wheel and heated outdoor second row seats.
One reason to choose the Chevy Tahoe RST Performance Edition
In terms of power, the Tahoe RST Performance Edition is inferior to the Escalade-V. However, a police vehicle-like SUV is hard to resist, as such calibration is quite uncommon in civilian cars.
In terms of luxury elements, the Escalade-V offers more than the Tahoe RST Performance Edition. Nevertheless, it’s quite difficult for the Escalade-V to justify its starting MSRP of $149,990 (including destination fees).
Meanwhile, the Tahoe RST Performance Edition package is available with an MSRP starting at $8,525 on top of the RST, which has an MSRP of $67,415. The Tahoe RST Performance Edition, a full-sized family car, might offer better value for money than the pricey Escalade-V.
Source: Chevrolet, Cadillac