What Is It?

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Our photo last week showed a rarity in this quiz – a new model. It was the 2015 Cadillac Escalade, based on the Chevrolet Tahoe, as is the GMC Yukon. The identical but longer Escalade ESV builds on the Chevy Suburban and the GMC Yukon XL.

What is it?  SPECIAL
SPECIAL
What is it?

A better photo of the redesigned SUV is with the auto review this week, so give it a look-see.

Chosen randomly from the correct entries was the name of James Covar, of Warrenville, who enters the quiz often. One time that he missed calling was the previous week, when the featured car was the 1972 Plymouth Fury Gran Coupe. Covar said his father once owned a car just like it.

Thank you to Covar and everyone else for guessing What Is It? Other readers sending in guesses on the Escalade were:

AUGUSTA: Carolyn Ogles said: “There will be an extensive report, as this seems to have all the latest technology including onboard radar to prepare to stop before drivers know they need to stop! Might not see many because in January the starting price was $69,000.”

Gary Engen wrote: “It’s a 2015 Cadillac Escalade. This fourth-generation Escalade is Cadillac’s de facto flagship. Externally, the new Escalade has a massive chrome grille and sculptured full light-emitting diode lighting in front and tall, thin sliverlike LED tail lamps (shown in your photo) running from bumper to roof that resemble those you see on Volvos.

“The Escalade ESV model has a 19-inch longer wheelbase than the regular Escalade that gives it a length of nearly 19 feet, which is nearly longer than a 15-passenger van. There is a downside to the ESV; it’s called not being able to fit into many home garages and being too long to make tight turns in some parking garages.

“I find the short-wheelbase Escalade to be much better-looking than the longer ESV but the longer, full-size-plus ESV is not bad-looking at all, though from certain angles it resembles a hearse.

“That reminds me of when I drove our large (at the time) 1971 Oldsmobile Vista Cruiser station wagon while living in Italy during my active Army days. The locals there thought it was funny seeing us in a large American wagon like that because that is what they used for a funeral hearse in their country.”

Tom Turner continued the idea that the SUV is huge: “I think it must be a 2015 Cadillac Escalade (but if it floats, it might be a frigate in the British Royal Navy).”

Lowell Fritsche said: “My first thought was that no 2015 vehicle can be that boxlike. Then I got to thinking. I will say it is one of the GM SUVs such as the Suburban or the Yukon. But I will be more specific and say it’s the 2015 Cadillac Escalade.”

Ray Ansley said he thought it might be the Chevy Tahoe or GMC Yukon.

Also guessing the Escalade were Billy Jones, Willie Thomas and Sammy Whitfield.

CANTON, GA.: David Anderson wrote: “The bumper-to-roofline taillight identifies this as the most upscale version of the full-size SUV from General Motors, the Cadillac Escalade. This example being the upscale sibling to the Chevrolet Tahoe because of the relatively short rear overhang. The Escalade has an overall length of just under 204 inches, while the Escalade ESV is just over 224 inches.

‘‘The 1996 Suburban I tooled around in for 17 years was just a mere 220 inches long by comparison, and today’s breed of luxury SUVs makes it look like a Conestoga wagon! Even the stablemates offered by Chevrolet and GMC are generations ahead of that ’96 model, but the Cadillac version steps it up even further and has the nearly $75,000 base price to show for it. The base price of the four-wheel-drive Premium Edition adds another $11,000, coming in just under $86,000.

“Being the Cadillac fan that I am and owner of several classic Cadillacs, along with a 2010 model (bought on the used market at 3 years old), I am not ashamed to admit that this is waaaaay too rich for my blood.

“In fact, I recently heard a news story that said the average paid for a new car today is over $30,000 and is most likely the reason for driving the number of leased vehicle agreements to record levels. I would imagine that even a limited-mileage, three-year lease on an Escalade is still going to push $800 to $1,000 a month.

“If you are one of those considering or already in one of those leases, just remember one thing; you are essentially renting that vehicle for three years. At the end of that lease you either come up with the financing to purchase it at the price that was agreed to on the day you took delivery, regardless of its condition, or you turn it in and walk away with nothing.

“If you walk away from it, you still might be out additional money if the leasing company decides the mileage, wear and tear is excessive – and they are the sole party that makes that determination.

“That same news story pointed out that the luxury-vehicle segment, regardless of brand, is the one that takes the largest devaluation hit in the first three years. Be restrained and patient. If you want to upscale your new ride, look for one that is 3 to 4 years old with low mileage. It might take awhile to find just the right one and you may even still have to make a slight compromise on color or equipment, but in the long run your financial well being will be better off for it.”

EVANS: Paul Perdue said: “This week’s vehicle is a 2015 Cadillac Escalade. This vehicle cost considerably more than my first home back in 1976. Let’s print some more money ...”

Bill Harding wrote: “I’m quite ashamed about my failure to identify last week’s car, so I’m going to go out on a limb and guess that this week’s vehicle (which, with every option box checked, could be mine for a mere $92,920) is a 2015 Cadillac Escalade ESV.

“What does ESV mean? If it was a Bible, ESV would stand for English Standard Version. How does this sound: the Escalade is based on the Chevrolet Suburban, so perhaps ESV stands for Expensive Suburban Variant.”

Scott VanEssendelft wrote: “The What Is It? vehicle is a 2015, 420-horsepower, 460-pound-feet of torque, 6.2-liter V-8 Cadillac Escalade.”

Jerry Paul said: “This week it is the king of bling, Cadillac Escalade.”

Pete Schiffbauer guessed it might be the new Cadillac SRX, a smaller SUV.

MARTINEZ: Lloyd Schnuck summed the vehicle up in a couple of sentences: “Looks like the rear quarter of a 2015 Cadillac Escalade fourth generation going on sale in April as a 2015 model. Built in Arlington, Texas, with a 6.2-liter EcoTec3 V-8 flex-fuel engine; a six-speed automatic; two- or four-wheel drive; two wheelbases, the 116-incher (the one pictured) and 130 inches. and a base price of $71,000.”

Bonnie Crowder guessed the Escalade and said she owns a 2006 Cadillac DTS sedan and a 2011 Escalade: “The new ones have no chrome.”

Travis Starr knew it was the Escalade.

PERRY, FLA.: Larry Anderson gets the vehicle each week, and this week was no exception: “It’s a 2015 Cadillac Escalade.”

THIS WEEK’S QUIZ

If you’re reading this, you are probably a car enthusiast and don’t need clues for identifying this week’s vehicle, so if clues insult your automotive knowledge, skip the following paragraph.

First clue: This was the first year for this model. Second, it bore a technological first, or at least the first in a long time. Third, this car’s name is almost a word. Fourth, its design was one of the cleanest, classiest ever built.

Welcome back. All we need is for you to tell us the year, make and model of this vehicle. Your guess should come in the form of: “1967 Pontiac Banshee,” although, of course, it isn’t. We just like to use Banshee as an example because it is what Pontiac was going to call the new 1967 Firebird until someone pointed out that a banshee was an evil spirit that foretold death, and back in the Nader years that would have been disastrous for sales.

We love that story.

E-mail your quiz entry to
glynn.moore@augustachronicle.com or call (706) 823-3419. Leave a message if I’m not here.

We need your name, city and phone number, and please spell your name if you call so we can identify you.

If you ever owned this car or have personal experience with it, tell us about it. As you can tell from the length of this quiz each week, we love to pass on your stories.

You have until midnight Tuesday to respond. A winner will be chosen randomly.

Thank you for sitting through this automotive history and mythology lesson – all at no extra cost!

– Glynn Moore, staff writer


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