2020 Infiniti QX60 vs. 2020 Cadillac Escalade

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

For better protection of the passenger compartment, the QX60 uses safety cell construction with a three-dimensional high-strength frame that surrounds the passenger compartment. It provides extra impact protection and a sturdy mounting location for door hardware and side impact beams. The Escalade uses a body-on-frame design, which has no frame members above the floor of the vehicle.

Both the QX60 and the Escalade 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, rearview cameras, rear cross-path warning, available all wheel drive, lane departure warning systems and around view monitors.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration does 35 MPH front crash tests on new vehicles. In this test, results indicate that the Infiniti QX60 is safer than the Cadillac Escalade:

QX60

Escalade

Driver

STARS

4 Stars

4 Stars

Neck Compression

25 lbs.

64 lbs.

Passenger

STARS

5 Stars

4 Stars

Chest Compression

.6 inches

.6 inches

Neck Injury Risk

33%

34%

Neck Stress

137 lbs.

165 lbs.

New test not comparable to pre-2011 test results. More stars = Better. Lower test results = Better.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration does side impact tests on new vehicles. In this test, which crashes the vehicle into a flat barrier at 38.5 MPH and into a post at 20 MPH, results indicate that the Infiniti QX60 is safer than the Cadillac Escalade:

QX60

Escalade

Rear Seat

STARS

5 Stars

5 Stars

HIC

101

107

Into Pole

STARS

5 Stars

5 Stars

HIC

338

355

Spine Acceleration

42 G’s

50 G’s

Hip Force

661 lbs.

893 lbs.

New test not comparable to pre-2011 test results. More stars = Better. Lower test results = Better.

For its top level performance in all IIHS frontal, side, rear impact and roof-crush tests, and with its optional front crash prevention system, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety grants the QX60 the rating of “Top Pick” for 2017, a rating granted to only 157 vehicles tested by the IIHS. The Escalade has not been tested, yet.

Warranty

The QX60 comes with a full 4-year/60,000-mile basic warranty, which covers the entire truck and includes 24-hour roadside assistance. The Escalade’s 4-year/50,000-mile basic warranty expires 10,000 miles sooner.

The QX60’s corrosion warranty is 1 year longer than the Escalade’s (7 vs. 6 years).

Reliability

For smoother operation, better efficiency and fewer moving parts, the QX60 has an overhead cam design, rather than the old pushrod design of the engine in the Escalade.

A reliable vehicle saves its owner time, money and trouble. Nobody wants to be stranded or have to be without a vehicle while it’s being repaired. Consumer Reports rates the QX60’s reliability 52 points higher than the Escalade.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that Infiniti vehicles are more reliable than Cadillac vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Infiniti 11th in reliability, above the industry average. With 38 more problems per 100 vehicles, Cadillac is ranked 23rd.

From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ December 2018 Auto Issue reports that Infiniti vehicles are more reliable than Cadillac vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks Infiniti 22 places higher in reliability than Cadillac.

Fuel Economy and Range

On the EPA test cycle the QX60 gets better fuel mileage than the Escalade:

QX60

Escalade

2WD

Auto

20 city/27 hwy

14 city/23 hwy

4WD

Auto

19 city/26 hwy

14 city/21 hwy

Environmental Friendliness

In its Green Vehicle Guide, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) rates the Infiniti QX60 higher (5 out of 10) than the Cadillac Escalade (3). This means the QX60 produces up to 16.5 pounds less smog-producing pollutants than the Escalade every 15,000 miles.

Transmission

The QX60 has a standard continuously variable transmission (CVT). With no “steps” between gears, it can keep the engine at the most efficient speed for fuel economy, or keep it at its peak horsepower indefinitely for maximum acceleration. The Escalade doesn’t offer a CVT.

Brakes and Stopping

The QX60 stops much shorter than the Escalade:

QX60

Escalade

70 to 0 MPH

181 feet

202 feet

Car and Driver

60 to 0 MPH

113 feet

133 feet

Motor Trend

Suspension and Handling

For superior ride and handling, the Infiniti QX60 has fully independent front and rear suspensions. An independent suspension allows the wheels to follow the road at the best angle for gripping the pavement, without compromising ride comfort. The Cadillac Escalade has a solid rear axle, with a non-independent rear suspension.

The QX60 AWD handles at .76 G’s, while the Escalade 4WD pulls only .73 G’s of cornering force in a Car and Driver skidpad test.

Chassis

The Infiniti QX60 may be more efficient, handle and accelerate better because it weighs about 1200 to 1300 pounds less than the Cadillac Escalade.

The QX60 is 3.3 inches shorter than the Escalade, making the QX60 easier to handle, maneuver and park in tight spaces.

Unibody construction lowers the QX60’s center of gravity significantly without reducing ground clearance. This contributes to better on the road handling and better off-road performance and stability. In addition, unibody construction makes the chassis stiffer, improving handling and reducing squeaks and rattles. The Escalade uses body-on-frame design instead.

Passenger Space

The QX60 has 28.2 cubic feet more passenger volume than the Escalade (149 vs. 120.8).

The QX60 has 2.7 inches more rear legroom and 6 inches more third row legroom than the Escalade.

For enhanced passenger comfort on long trips the QX60’s middle and third row seats recline. The Escalade’s third row seats don’t recline.

The front step up height for the QX60 is 3.8 inches lower than the Escalade (18.2” vs. 22”).

Cargo Capacity

The QX60’s cargo area provides more volume than the Escalade.

QX60

Escalade

Behind Third Seat

16 cubic feet

15.2 cubic feet

A low lift-over cargo hatch design makes loading and unloading the QX60 easier. The QX60’s cargo hatch lift-over height is 30.6 inches, while the Escalade’s liftover is 32.1 inches.

The QX60 has a standard third row seat which folds flat into the floor. This completely clears a very large cargo area quickly. The Escalade doesn’t offer seats that fold into the floor.

A standard locking glovebox (which can’t be accessed with the valet key) keeps your small valuables safer in the QX60. The Escalade doesn’t offer locking storage for small valuables.

Ergonomics

The QX60’s front and rear power windows all open or close with one touch of the switches, making it more convenient at drive-up windows and toll booths, or when talking with someone outside of the car. The Escalade’s rear power window switches have to be held the entire time to close them fully.

If the windows are left open on the QX60 the driver can close them all at the outside door handle. On a hot day the driver can lower the windows at the outside door handle or from a distance using the keyless remote. The driver of the Escalade can only close the windows from inside the vehicle, with the ignition on.

Economic Advantages

Insurance will cost less for the QX60 owner. The Complete Car Cost Guide estimates that insurance for the QX60 will cost $340 to $1380 less than the Escalade over a five-year period.

The QX60 will cost the buyer less in the long run because of its superior resale value. The IntelliChoice estimates that the QX60 will retain 54.7% to 54.76% of its original price after five years, while the Escalade only retains 43.53% to 45.84%.

According to The Car Book by Jack Gillis, the QX60 is less expensive to operate than the Escalade because it costs $191 less to do the manufacturer’s suggested maintenance for 50,000 miles. Typical repairs cost much less on the QX60 than the Escalade, including $155 less for a water pump, $506 less for a muffler, $47 less for front brake pads, $119 less for a fuel pump, $459 less for front struts and $134 less for a power steering pump.

IntelliChoice estimates that five-year ownership costs (depreciation, financing, insurance, fuel, fees, repairs and maintenance) for the Infiniti QX60 will be $26277 to $43440 less than for the Cadillac Escalade.

Recommendations

Consumer Reports® recommends the Infiniti QX60, based on reliability, safety and performance.

The Infiniti QX60 outsold the Cadillac Escalade/Escalade ESV by 28% during 2018.

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

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