2021 Cadillac Escalade ESV vs. 2020 Toyota Land Cruiser

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

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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.

Over 200 people are killed each year when backed over by motor vehicles. The Escalade ESV offers optional 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.

An active infrared night vision system optional on the Escalade ESV Premium/Platinum/Sport helps the driver to more easily detect people, animals or other objects in front of the vehicle at night. Using an infrared camera and near-infrared lights to detect heat, the system then displays the image on a monitor in the dashboard. The Land Cruiser doesn’t offer a night vision system.

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, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, crash mitigating brakes, around view monitors, available all-wheel drive, lane departure warning systems, blind spot warning systems and rear cross-path warning.

Warranty

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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

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The Escalade ESV has a standard “limp home system” to keep drivers from being stranded if most or all of the engine’s coolant is lost. The engine will run on only half of its cylinders at a time, reduce its power and light a warning lamp on the dashboard so the driver can get to a service station for repairs. The Land Cruiser doesn’t offer a lost coolant limp home mode, so a coolant leak could strand you or seriously damage the truck’s engine.

Engine

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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.

The Escalade ESV’s 3.0 turbo diesel produces 59 lbs.-ft. more torque (460 vs. 401) than the Land Cruiser’s 5.7 DOHC V8.

Fuel Economy and Range

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On the EPA test cycle the Escalade ESV gets better fuel mileage than the Land Cruiser:

MPG

Escalade ESV

RWD

6.2 OHV V8

15 city/20 hwy

AWD

6.2 OHV V8

14 city/19 hwy

Land Cruiser

AWD

5.7 DOHC V8

13 city/17 hwy

An engine control system that can shut down some of the engine’s cylinders helps improve the Escalade ESV V8’s fuel efficiency. The Land Cruiser doesn’t offer a system that can shut down part of the engine.

In heavy traffic or at stoplights the Escalade ESV’s engine automatically turns off when the vehicle is stopped, saving fuel and reducing pollution. The engine is automatically restarted when the driver gets ready to move again. (Start/Stop isn’t accounted in present EPA fuel mileage tests.) The Land Cruiser doesn’t offer an automatic engine start/stop system.

The Escalade ESV has 3.7 gallons more fuel capacity than the Land Cruiser (28.3 vs. 24.6 gallons), for longer range between fill-ups.

Transmission

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A ten-speed automatic is available 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.

Tires and Wheels

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The Escalade ESV’s tires provide better handling because they have a lower 50 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the Land Cruiser Heritage Edition’s standard 65 series tires. The Escalade ESV’s tires are lower profile than the Land Cruiser’s 60 series tires.

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

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

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For superior ride and handling, the Cadillac Escalade ESV 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 Toyota Land Cruiser has a solid rear axle, with a non-independent rear suspension.

The Escalade ESV offers an available 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 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 21.9 inches longer than on the Land Cruiser (134.1 inches vs. 112.2 inches).

For better handling and stability, the track (width between the wheels) on the Escalade ESV is 3.6 inches wider in the front and 3.5 inches wider in the rear than the average track on the Land Cruiser.

Chassis

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The front grille of the Escalade ESV (except Diesel) 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.

Passenger Space

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The Escalade ESV has 27 cubic feet more passenger volume than the Land Cruiser (170.4 vs. 143.4).

Cargo Capacity

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

Escalade ESV

Land Cruiser

Behind Third Seat

41.5 cubic feet

16.1 cubic feet

Third Seat Folded

94.1 cubic feet

41.4 cubic feet

Second Seat Folded

142.8 cubic feet

82.8 cubic feet

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

Escalade ESV

Land Cruiser

Third Seat Folded

94.1 cubic feet

n/a

Third Seat Removed

n/a

53.5 cubic feet

Second Seat Folded

142.8 cubic feet

82.8 cubic feet

Pressing a switch automatically lowers the Escalade ESV’s second 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

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The Escalade ESV has a much higher standard payload capacity than the Land Cruiser (1548 vs. 1320 lbs.).

The Escalade ESV has a much higher maximum payload capacity than the Land Cruiser (1636 vs. 1320 lbs.).

Servicing Ease

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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

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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.

Unlike the driver-only memory system in the Land Cruiser, the Escalade ESV has standard driver and passenger memory, so that when drivers switch, the memory setting adjusts the driver’s seat, steering wheel position and outside mirror angle and the front passenger seat also adjusts to the new passenger’s preset preferences.

The Escalade ESV Premium/Platinum/Sport has a standard heads-up display that projects speed and navigation instruction 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 Escalade ESV’s power parking brake sets with one touch and releases with one touch or automatically. The Land Cruiser has a lever-type parking brake that has to be strenuously raised to engage properly. It has to be lifted up more and a button depressed to release it.

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 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 Platinum has standard massaging front seats in order to maximize comfort and eliminate fatigue on long trips. Massaging seats aren’t available in the Land Cruiser.

The Escalade ESV Premium/Platinum/Sport’s Adaptive Park Assist can parallel park by itself, starting, stopping and changing direction automatically. The Land Cruiser doesn’t offer an automated parking system.

Model Availability

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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

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/08/11

The Cadillac Escalade/Escalade ESV outsold the Toyota Land Cruiser by over ten to one during 2019.

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