2020 Cadillac Escalade ESV vs. 2019 Toyota Land Cruiser

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

Both the Escalade ESV and Land Cruiser have child safety locks to prevent children from opening the rear doors. The Escalade ESV has power child safety locks, allowing the driver to activate and deactivate them from the driver's seat and to know when they're engaged. The Land Cruiser’s child locks have to be individually engaged at each rear door with a manual switch. The driver can’t know the status of the locks without opening the doors and checking them.

In the past twenty years hundreds of infants and young children have died after being left in vehicles, usually by accident. When turning the vehicle off, drivers of the Escalade ESV are reminded to check the back seat if they opened the rear door before starting out. The Land Cruiser doesn’t offer a back seat reminder.

The Escalade ESV has a standard front seat center airbag, which deploys between the driver and front passenger, protecting them from injuries caused by striking each other in serious side impacts. The Land Cruiser doesn’t offer front seat center airbags.

Over 200 people are killed each year when backed over by motor vehicles. The Escalade ESV Premium Luxury/Platinum has standard Reverse Automatic Braking that uses rear sensors to monitor and automatically apply the brakes to prevent a rear collision. The Land Cruiser doesn’t offer backup collision prevention brakes.

Both the Escalade ESV and the Land Cruiser have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, height adjustable front shoulder belts, plastic fuel tanks, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights, around view monitors, available all wheel drive, crash mitigating brakes, lane departure warning systems, blind spot warning systems and rear cross-path warning.

Warranty

The Escalade ESV comes with a full 4-year/50,000-mile basic warranty, which covers the entire truck and includes 24-hour roadside assistance. The Land Cruiser’s 3-year/36,000-mile basic warranty expires 1 year and 14,000 miles sooner.

Cadillac’s powertrain warranty covers the Escalade ESV 1 year and 10,000 miles longer than Toyota covers the Land Cruiser. Any repair needed on the engine, transmission, axles, joints or driveshafts is fully covered for 6 years or 70,000 miles. Coverage on the Land Cruiser ends after only 5 years or 60,000 miles.

The Escalade ESV’s corrosion warranty is 1 year longer than the Land Cruiser’s (6 vs. 5 years).

Reliability

To reliably start during all conditions and help handle large electrical loads, the Escalade ESV has a standard 660-amp battery. The Land Cruiser’s 650-amp battery isn’t as powerful.

J.D. Power and Associates rated the Escalade ESV first among large premium suvs in their 2019 Initial Quality Study. The Land Cruiser isn’t in the top three in its category.

Engine

The Escalade ESV’s 6.2 V8 produces 39 more horsepower (420 vs. 381) and 59 lbs.-ft. more torque (460 vs. 401) than the Land Cruiser’s 5.7 DOHC V8.

As tested in Motor Trend the Cadillac Escalade ESV is faster than the Toyota Land Cruiser:

Escalade ESV

Land Cruiser

Zero to 60 MPH

6.1 sec

6.8 sec

Quarter Mile

14.6 sec

15.2 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

95.2 MPH

91.2 MPH

Fuel Economy and Range

On the EPA test cycle the Escalade ESV 4WD gets better fuel mileage than the Land Cruiser (14 city/21 hwy vs. 13 city/18 hwy).

An engine control system that can shut down half of the engine’s cylinders helps improve the Escalade ESV’s fuel efficiency. The Land Cruiser doesn’t offer a system that can shut down part of the engine.

The Escalade ESV has 6.4 gallons more fuel capacity than the Land Cruiser (31 vs. 24.6 gallons), for longer range between fill-ups.

The Escalade ESV has a standard cap-less fueling system. The fuel filler is automatically opened when the fuel nozzle is inserted and automatically closed when it’s removed. This eliminates the need to unscrew and replace the cap and it reduces fuel evaporation, which causes pollution. The Land Cruiser doesn’t offer a cap-less fueling system.

Transmission

A 10-speed automatic is standard on the Cadillac Escalade ESV, for better acceleration and lower engine speed on the highway. Only an eight-speed automatic is available for the Land Cruiser.

Brakes and Stopping

The Escalade ESV stops shorter than the Land Cruiser:

Escalade ESV

Land Cruiser

60 to 0 MPH

119 feet

127 feet

Motor Trend

Tires and Wheels

The Escalade ESV’s standard tires provide better handling because they have a lower 55 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the Land Cruiser’s standard 60 series tires. The Escalade ESV’s optional tires have a lower 45 series profile than the Land Cruiser’s 60 series tires.

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the Escalade ESV has standard 20-inch wheels. Only 18-inch wheels are available on the Land Cruiser. The Escalade ESV offers optional 22-inch wheels.

The Cadillac Escalade ESV’s wheels have 6 lugs for longer wheel bearing life, less chance of rotor warping and greater strength. The Toyota Land Cruiser only has 5 wheel lugs per wheel.

The Escalade ESV has a standard easy tire fill system. When inflating the tires, the vehicle’s integrated tire pressure sensors keep track of the pressure as the tires fill and tell the driver when the tires are inflated to the proper pressure. The Land Cruiser doesn’t offer vehicle monitored tire inflation.

Suspension and Handling

The Escalade ESV has a standard driver-adjustable suspension system. It allows the driver to choose between an extra-supple ride, reducing fatigue on long trips, or a sport setting, which allows maximum control for tricky roads or off-road. The Land Cruiser’s suspension doesn’t offer adjustable shock absorbers.

The Escalade ESV has a standard automatic rear load leveling suspension to keep ride height level with a heavy load or when towing. The Land Cruiser doesn’t offer a load leveling suspension.

For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the Escalade ESV’s wheelbase is 17.8 inches longer than on the Land Cruiser (130 inches vs. 112.2 inches).

For better handling and stability, the track (width between the wheels) on the Escalade ESV is 3.8 inches wider in the front and 4 inches wider in the rear than on the Land Cruiser.

The Escalade ESV’s front to rear weight distribution is more even (51% to 49%) than the Land Cruiser’s (52.1% to 47.9%). This gives the Escalade ESV more stable handling and braking.

The Escalade ESV 4WD handles at .76 G’s, while the Land Cruiser pulls only .72 G’s of cornering force in a Motor Trend skidpad test.

The Escalade ESV 4WD executes Motor Trend’s “Figure Eight” maneuver 1 seconds quicker than the Land Cruiser (27.9 seconds @ .63 average G’s vs. 28.9 seconds @ .58 average G’s).

Chassis

The front grille of the Escalade ESV uses electronically controlled shutters to close off airflow and reduce drag when less engine cooling is needed. This helps improve highway fuel economy. The Land Cruiser doesn’t offer active grille shutters.

The Escalade ESV uses computer-generated active noise cancellation to help remove annoying noise and vibration from the passenger compartment, especially at low frequencies. The Land Cruiser doesn’t offer active noise cancellation.

Passenger Space

The Escalade ESV has 4.5 inches more front headroom, 2.4 inches more front legroom, 1.5 inches more front hip room, 3.9 inches more front shoulder room, .2 inches more rear headroom, 5.3 inches more rear legroom, 1.6 inches more rear hip room, 3.3 inches more rear shoulder room, 2.7 inches more third row headroom, 6.2 inches more third row legroom and .3 inches more third row shoulder room than the Land Cruiser.

Cargo Capacity

The Escalade ESV’s cargo area provides more volume than the Land Cruiser.

Escalade ESV

Land Cruiser

Behind Third Seat

39.3 cubic feet

16.1 cubic feet

Third Seat Folded

76.7 cubic feet

43 cubic feet

Second Seat Folded

120.9 cubic feet

81.7 cubic feet

The Escalade ESV’s cargo area is larger than the Land Cruiser’s in almost every dimension:

Escalade ESV

Land Cruiser

Length to seat (3rd/2nd/1st)

31.6”/63.6”/100.3”

16.5”/46”/66.5”

Min Width

49.3”

40”

Height

34.9”

41.5”

Pressing a switch automatically lowers the Escalade ESV’s optional second and third row seats, to make changing between passengers and cargo easier. The Land Cruiser doesn’t offer automatic folding seats.

The Escalade ESV’s liftgate lifts up in one piece, completely out of the way of loading and unloading, while sheltering the cargo loading area. The Land Cruiser’s tailgate’s top part raises up, but the bottom part lowers, getting in the way of loading and making an uneven surface for sliding cargo.

To make loading groceries and cargo easier when your hands are full, the Escalade ESV’s liftgate can be opened and closed just by kicking your foot under the back bumper, leaving your hands completely free. The Land Cruiser doesn’t offer a hands-free gesture to open its tailgate, forcing you to put cargo down if your hands are full.

Payload

The Escalade ESV has a higher standard payload capacity than the Land Cruiser (1390 vs. 1320 lbs.).

The Escalade ESV has a higher maximum payload capacity than the Land Cruiser (1440 vs. 1320 lbs.).

Servicing Ease

The Escalade ESV has a maintenance free battery for long life without checking the battery’s water level. The Land Cruiser doesn’t have a maintenance free battery, so the water level in the battery’s cells must be checked often to prevent damage.

J.D. Power and Associates surveys of service recipients show that Cadillac service is better than Toyota. J.D. Power ranks Cadillac third in service department satisfaction. With a 40% lower rating, Toyota is ranked 14th.

Ergonomics

The Escalade ESV has a standard remote vehicle starting system, so the vehicle can be started from inside the driver's house. This allows the driver to comfortably warm up the engine before going out to the vehicle. The climate system will also automatically heat or cool the interior. The Land Cruiser doesn’t offer a remote starting system.

The Escalade ESV Luxury/Premium Luxury/Platinum has a standard heads-up display that projects speed and other key instrumentation readouts in front of the driver’s line of sight, allowing drivers to view information without diverting their eyes from the road. The Land Cruiser doesn’t offer a heads-up display.

The power windows standard on both the Escalade ESV and the Land Cruiser have locks to prevent small children from operating them. When the lock on the Escalade ESV is engaged the driver can still operate all of the windows, for instance to close one opened by a child. The Land Cruiser prevents the driver from operating the other windows just as it does the other passengers.

The Escalade ESV’s power window, power lock, power mirror and cruise control switches are lit from behind, making them plainly visible and easier to operate at night. The Land Cruiser’s cruise control switches are unlit, making them difficult to find at night and operate safely.

To help drivers avoid possible obstacles, the Escalade ESV Premium Luxury/Platinum has standard cornering lights to illuminate around corners when the turn signals are activated. The Land Cruiser doesn’t offer cornering lights.

The Escalade ESV’s power mirror controls are mounted on the armrest for easy access. The Land Cruiser’s power mirror controls are on the dash where they are possibly hidden by the steering wheel and are awkward to manipulate.

The Escalade ESV’s Automatic Park Assist can parallel park or back into a parking spot by itself, with the driver only controlling speed with the brake pedal. The Land Cruiser doesn’t offer an automated parking system.

Model Availability

The Escalade ESV is available in both rear-wheel drive and four-wheel drive configurations. The Land Cruiser doesn’t offer a two-wheel drive configuration.

Recommendations

J.D. Power and Associates rated the Escalade ESV third among large premium suvs in owner reported satisfaction. This includes how well the vehicle performs and satisfies its owner’s expectations. The Land Cruiser isn’t in the top three.

The Cadillac Escalade/Escalade ESV outsold the Toyota Land Cruiser by over 11 to one during 2018.

© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.

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