With GM’s announcement that it will be investing more than $331 million in its Arlington assembly plant in Texas, home of its ‘GMT900’ full-size SUVS such as the Chevrolet Tahoe and Suburban, GMC Yukon and the Cadillac Escalade, the General has essentially secured the future of the road giants.
A few years back there were rumblings that GM was looking to axe its Cadillac Escalade SUV and replace it with a crossover model based on the Lambda platform, a plan devised in response to the financial crisis at the time and a spike in world oil prices.
However, it now looks as though GM will build both a seven-seat luxury crossover based on the Lambda platform for Cadillac as well as a next-generation Escalade. The new crossover will fill the price gap between the $34,430 Cadillac SRX and the $63,160 Escalade, though we could see prices rise significantly going into the future.
At the announcement of the Arlington investment, GM boasted that its new generation of full-size SUVs will offer better fuel efficiency than ever before without sacrificing the features and functionality we’ve come to expect.
This means that the new Cadillac Escalade, due in time for the 2014 model year, will likely carry a cost premium in order for it to meet the latest regulatory fuel economy requirements. Advanced engines and lighter materials will likely see production costs rise.
Additionally, the expansion of the Arlington facility could also see GM start production of a flexible-bed Cadillac Escalade EXT if the pickup model is offered with the next-generation of the Escalade.
[GM via TheCarConnection]