The verdict: Do you have a family of four, five or six and money burning a hole in your pocket? Me neither, but if you’re one of the few who likes to live large with your little ones, the 2021 Cadillac Escalade — and its jaw-dropping price tag — could be your new family-mobile. We tested the 2021 Escalade Premium trim; it had all-wheel drive and cost nearly $110,000.
Does it fit three car seats? No, but we tested a model with captain’s chairs. The Escalade can be configured with a three-seat bench in the second row.
Related: Search Car Seat Checks
- Latch: The 2021 Escalade has two sets of lower Latch anchors in the second-row captain’s chairs. The anchors are exposed and easy to use. The second row’s top tether anchors were also exposed and sit on the captain’s chair seatbacks. The three-seat bench in the third row doesn’t have any lower Latch anchors, but each seat has a top tether anchor that’s on the seatback. Like the second row’s top tether anchors, they were easy to find and use.
- Infant seat: With the front passenger seat adjusted comfortably for our 5-foot, 7-inch installer, there was plenty of room for the rear-facing infant seat and installation was problem-free.
- Forward-facing convertible: This car seat fit well in the second-row captain’s chairs, and connecting to the lower Latch anchors was easy.
- Booster seat: Our high-back booster seat fit well. The second row’s seat belt buckles are positioned on the side of the seat; they’re easy enough to grasp.
- Third-row forward-facing convertible: In the third row, we used the seat belt to install the car seat. Connecting to the top tether anchor was easy. The Escalade’s owner’s manual recommends that car seats with a single top tether strap are routed around the head restraint, closer to the middle seat; for those car seats with dual-strap top tethers, the straps should be routed around the head restraint.
- Third-row booster: Our high-back booster seat fit well. In the third row, the buckles are on stable bases and easy to use.
- Rear-facing convertible: Normally, our rear-facing convertible seat fits well in most vehicles, but because our test vehicle had a rear entertainment system with sizable screens mounted on the front row’s seatbacks, we ran into space issues. To fit the rear-facing convertible, we had to move the front passenger seat forward. Our 5-foot-7 tester had enough legroom to sit comfortably, but taller passengers will have comfort issues.
- Third-row access: While the second-row captain’s chairs slide forward and fold — in theory, to create a pathway to the third row — the pathway is too small even for the smallest of kids. Thankfully, our test vehicle’s captain’s chairs create a bigger path to the third row. Our SUV also had power running boards that made the climb into the Escalade a lot easier both for adults and little ones.
A: Plenty of room for the car seat and the child; doesn’t impact driver or front passenger legroom. Easy to find and connect to Latch and tether anchors. No fit issues involving head restraint or seat contouring. Easy access to the third row.
B: One room, fit or connection issue. Some problems accessing the third row when available.
C: Marginal room plus one fit or connection issue. Difficult to access the third row when available.
D: Insufficient room, plus multiple fit or connection issues.
F: Does not fit or is unsafe.
About Cars.com’s Car Seat Checks
Editors Jennifer Geiger and Jennifer Newman are certified child safety seat installation technicians.
For the Car Seat Check, we use a Chicco KeyFit 30 infant-safety seat, a Graco Contender 65 convertible seat and Graco TurboBooster seat. The front seats are adjusted for a 6-foot driver and a shorter passenger. The three child seats are installed in the second row. The booster seat sits behind the driver’s seat, and the infant and convertible seats are installed behind the front passenger seat.
We also install the forward-facing convertible in the second row’s middle seat with the booster and infant seat in the outboard seats to see if three car seats will fit; a child sitting in the booster seat must be able to reach the seat belt buckle. If there’s a third row, we install the booster seat and a forward-facing convertible. Learn more about how we conduct our Car Seat Checks.
Parents should also remember that they can use the Latch system or a seat belt to install a car seat, and that Latch anchors have a weight limit of 65 pounds, including the weight of the child and the weight of the seat itself.
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