The 2025 Cadillac Escalade IQ represents the future of the Escalade nameplate as the battery electric progression of the luxury SUV. Having made its debut in August 2023, the Escalade IQ boasts an upright, aggressive demeanor that’s more streamlined than its gasoline-powered counterpart. Interestingly, the Escalade IQ will feature fixed running boards, as opposed to power retractable counterparts. The decision to feature fixed steps is not a common one for a luxury vehicle, which typically feature retractable (or deployable) running boards. Cadillac Society is here to tell you the reason that Cadillac elected to forego the deployable units.
In a recent interview, Cadillac Escalade IQ engineers explained to Cadillac Society Executive Editor, Alex Luft, that not offering retractable steps was an architectural limitation. In other words, the BT1 architecture’s construction and battery placement currently prevent the implementation of retractable steps.
Other factors that played into the decision include considerations for having enough space for a foot to comfortably step on when entering or exiting the vehicle. Presumably, a retractable assist step would not have had as much space as their fixed counterparts that engineers ended up choosing. It’s also worth noting that the fixed assist step has an optimized shape for optimal aerodynamics, which is of vital importance for range in an electric vehicle.
The front view probably shows the fixed assist steps best on the 2025 Cadillac Escalade IQ, as they are not quite flush with the doors or the body, but rather stick out to the sides a bit.
The 2025 Cadillac Escalade IQ will carry a starting price of $130,000, including destination and freight charges. Production will commence in the summer of 2024 at the Detroit-Hamtramck plant, which is now known as Factory Zero, in Michigan. As far as power goes, the 2025 Cadillac Escalade IQ features a 200 kWh 24-module battery pack capable of traveling 450 miles of range on a single charge while boasting a two-motor eAWD configuration, throwing 750 horsepower and 785 pound-feet of torque.
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2025 Cadillac Escalade IQ Photos