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Before there was the Ford F-150 Limited or GMC Sierra 1500 Denali, truck manufacturers looked to their luxury brands to offer premium pickups. Today, luxury trucks from luxury brands have largely disappeared. Simply put, it turns out folks want a pickup with a Ford, Chevy, or Ram badge rather than Lincoln or Cadillac branding. And that brings us to the Cadillac Escalade EXT, a Cadillac truck that lasted nearly 10 years. 

What is the Cadillac Escalade EXT?

The Cadillac Escalade EXT is essentially a pickup truck version of the Escalade SUV. The Escalade has been the “everyone look, I’ve made it” vehicle for years. But in the early 2000s, General Motors was letting the brand do some weird things. And that led to a Cadillac truck. 

The Cadillac Escalade EXT was once a luxury truck.
Cadillac Escalade EXT | IFCAR

The Escalade EXT was first introduced back in 2002. And as you can see from MotorTrend’s reporting at the time, the whole thing was a pretty big deal. GM and Ford were both trying to corner the luxury truck segment. There was the Caddy truck and the Lincoln Blackwood. 

There was just one problem though. If you look at sales, it seems pretty clear that folks were not interested in these kinds of vehicles. By the time it was canceled in 2013, Cadillac sold just 1,972 Escalade EXT units. But that is better than the Lincoln Blackwood that Ford made. In the United States, it lasted just two model years, although Lincoln did try its hand at another truck later on. 

Does Cadillac make a truck?

In 2023, there is not a Cadillac truck. Although some folks have made renderings of what a modern Escalade-based truck would look like. Some of these renderings are based on the Escalade-V, which is the performance version of this full-size SUV.

While a new Cadillac truck would be cool, especially if it came with 682 horsepower. But if the past is any indication, folks don’t really go for pickups from luxury brands. Instead, they want trucks with luxury features from standard truck manufacturers. 

The 2023 GMC Sierra 1500 Denali is like a new Cadillac truck.
2023 GMC Sierra 1500 Denali | GMC

I would imagine that most consumers who would be in the market for a Cadillac truck already have the answer. And that is the GMC Sierra 1500 Denali. When it comes to GMC products, the Denali trim and Denali Ultimate offer all of the top features. 

What is so special about the GMC Sierra 1500 Denali?

The Sierra 1500 Denali is a special truck because of its luxury, capability, and advanced features. In my opinion, it could certainly be worthy of Cadillac badging, but as it stands, this is a GMC product. 

It offers up to 420 horsepower and 495 lb-ft of torque. You can also get it with General Motor’s Super Cruise technology. If you aren’t sure what Super Cruise is, I encourage you to check out the video below. I don’t have hands-on experience with the tech, but it is hands-free driver assistance. And it looks like GM has one of the better systems on the market. 

As you would expect, a GMC Denali truck does not come cheap. The 2023 GMC Sierra 1500 Denali starts at $65k, but you can option it out to be much more expensive. If you’re looking for a new Cadillac truck, this might be the closest you can get.

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