The relatively new 2021 Cadillac Escalade is currently available with General Motors’ familiar 6.2-liter naturally aspirated V8 engine making up to 420 horsepower. Nice. There could always be more power, though. Now Motor Trend reports a factory supercharged option is on the way, with a boost of up to 200 more horsepower.
Motor Trend cites a source known as Deep Burble in its report about a supercharged Cadillac Escalade, GMC Yukon and Chevy Suburban from earlier this week. So we’ll file this one under Shit We Heard and grab our pinch of salt.
But supercharging the Escalade is a rather obvious thing to do, as plenty of tuning companies have made a business of it and the Escalade’s luxurious competitors all offer more powerful versions of their big SUVs. It would only make sense for GM to lock down some of that market for itself.
Here’s what Motor Trend reports:
GM will be offering supercharged versions of these three SUVs, most likely as a dealer-installed option. How much power? We’d guess another 200 hp or so, for a total of between 600 and 625.
While we can’t really count on Deep Burble without understanding their connection to the information, Motor Trend also reached out to someone who would certainly be relatively in-the-know about General Motors engine plans, John Hennessey of Hennessey Performance. Hennessey offers tuner kits for various GM models and uses GM crate motors in its vehicles. Here’s what Hennessey told Motor Trend:
“GM locked their SUV ECUs for the 2020-2021 6.2-liter V-8. We can’t tune them,” he told me. And it gets more interesting: “We are able to upgrade 2020-2021 6.2-liter GM [pickup] trucks.”
The speculation here would be that GM is intentionally locking tuners out of these models to one day sell its own tuned variants, maybe a supercharged version with over 600 HP, I guess. While such a tune’s greatest appeal will likely be among affluent and image-conscious Escalade buyers, the report indicates GM’s ECU lock is also present on GMC and Chevrolet SUVs with the same engine, suggesting the supercharger kit could go to the more affordable Yukon, Tahoe and Suburban SUVs.
More power for everybody is great, and I hope the kit is a solid value that doesn’t absolutely explode your engine and ruin your life. But the idea that the supercharged Escalades will be coming from inside GM this time likely means it’ll be worth looking at if you can swing it.