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2020 Escalade ESV Platinum
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I'm 61 yrs. old. I just bought my first Escalade ESV Platinum. It came with bucket second row, and
bench 3rd row seats that both look terribly uncomfortable. I bought it because Mother Cadillac decided
to do away with their so called flagships XTS & CT6. Although they were small in comparison to their
old Sedan De'Ville's, now their top sedans are like semi muscle chevy's.
I'm a big boy that like big room, that's why I went ESV.
Now so far I've only had myself and the wife in the Escalade. Most likely the only other person may be
the Mother in law. She lives in a separate apartment behind us.
So you see, I knew the back seats would never really seat people. I coulda saved caddy some money
by having options. I woulda had eliminated the second row, and had them put a rear Lazy Boy Reclining
and removable SOFA back there for lounging and watching a movie !
I did see the 2nd row buckets have a massive mount on the bottom of them making them unattractive to
remove. But what about the 3rd row bench, removable? Do 2nd or 3rd rows move back any?

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Interesting. Since the kids graduated I leave the 3rd row down and normally the second row too. 4X8 sheets of plywood slide right in. I even carried over 3000 lbs of 8’long steel bars that loaded in minutes. It’s been so long since I had the rear seats up that I had to think for a bit about where they are! Not as silly as it seems, as we had 2 Navigators with 3rd row seats that the entire 100lb seat had to be removed and stored outside the car in order to carry a sheet of plywood.

Anyway...we have carried hundreds of kids in the 3rd row, and now that the kids are gone it is folded away and never thought about. I love the design...especially since a button brings them right back to life...no climbing and pulling on latches and headrests.

It sounds like you prefer a van setup.
 

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Interesting. Since the kids graduated I leave the 3rd row down and normally the second row too. 4X8 sheets of plywood slide right in. I even carried over 3000 lbs of 8’long steel bars that loaded in minutes. It’s been so long since I had the rear seats up that I had to think for a bit about where they are! Not as silly as it seems, as we had 2 Navigators with 3rd row seats that the entire 100lb seat had to be removed and stored outside the car in order to carry a sheet of plywood.

Anyway...we have carried hundreds of kids in the 3rd row, and now that the kids are gone it is folded away and never thought about. I love the design...especially since a button brings them right back to life...no climbing and pulling on latches and headrests.

It sounds like you prefer a van setup.
Then your Navigators must have been 1st gen 98-02 as the 03 is awesome with flat folding 3rd row and normal easy entry to behind the 2nd row flipped/folded bucket into the 3rd with very good comfort in the 3rd row.
The 2nd gen Escalade is like rock climbing to get into the 3rd row and the floor is way up too high (due to solid rear axle even though I love solid rear axle over IRS) so it is terribly uncomfortable.

I think it is a shame that these SUVs (more luxurious ones that the old utility Suburbans, Broncos, Ramchargers) have been out since 1998 and they haven't all perfected ( or at least figured out) the 3rd row entry and comfort in them.
Sad really.
I don't even use the 3rd row...I just want it! BUT I would like to be able to remove it entirely (like most brands and generations can do)

WHAT we REALLY need it more aftermarket seats and add ons.
I have some good ideas and have found some that work albeit not exactly as safe as in the factory seat with a seat belt (not even close) BUT safer than riding in the bed of a pickup with a camper top often in a metal lawn chair!

They have some neat blow up beds that sit on top of folded 2nd row and stick into the slit behind front seat to floor for support and make a sleeping area out or 2nd row and they make some air mattresses for the rear part like in Navi's and Expi's when seats are folded flat.
They need at least some short apt style overstuffed chairs or even bean bags to put back there.

I have used similar in RVs, bus conversions, limos, party buses. I think there would be a market IF they were made BUT there are some "issues".

Also, I can't believe that with today's easier design and retooling that there aren't aftermarket whole seats common and cheap.

I think EVERY SUV should have a 2nd row that is a bench seat that the top of middle flips down to a nice big console (and it can have a lid) for arm rest and separation just like the center consoles in navigators BUT you flip it up and there's the middle seating area.
THEN if you have the Japanese design it you could have the bottom (real transformer style here) flip up and over to the rear ( or even toward the front) on a "lowering pivot" like the 2nd gen Navi seats do to get flat and lower....so then you would have a non leather not seating area on top with both halves folded together sitting on the carpet -low- so it would be easier to walk over it into the 3rd row.
The way they are now with 2nd row full width or center jumpers is most people crawl over the tall back of the seat esp kids and teens.
This scratches and wears the leather.

They need to improve on this GREATLY.

Alas....if the world would just listen to me...
 

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Well...I may be the odd man, but I like the Escalade just like it is. We owned 3 Navigators with removable seats...I’m too old for that anymore. Can’t tell you how often we needed the seat, but it was back home. Our kids loved the rock climbing and fought over the rear seat! Push button, push button and Bam...2000lbs of tiles go in the back.

It still sounds like you guys are missing the old van layout.
 

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Then you had 1st gen navis. They suck. Like an old minivan. You have to take the seat out or turn it sideways to get more room.
The 03 up navi and expedition just folds flat. THEN you fold and swoop the 2nd row buckets down to the exact same level.
If you remove the center console in 2nd row you have a HUGE completely flat carpeted area.
Plus getting into the 3rd row is easy in the fords.
The 2nd bucket flips and swoops forward so you have the floor carpet that you step on to get into 3rd row.
On a caddy you can't even see the carpet UNLESS something is wrong with my seat. You have to crawl over like 8 inches taller or seat.
 

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Your description of the later Navigator is pretty much spot on with my Cadi...except the cadi doesn’t have a center console to begin with. The center row flips and folds forward against the front seats, giving easy although steep access to the 3rd row. All the rear seats fold flat and level...Is that different on yours?
 

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What year is yours? On my navigator, the second row seat flipped but then it pivoted forward so you weren't having to go up and over the seat you were going behind the seat right on top of the floor pan with the carpet on it
With my Escalade the seat just folds down but doesn't really go forward so you have extra 6 to 8 in of seat you have to crawl up on and over.
 

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What year is yours? On my navigator, the second row seat flipped but then it pivoted forward so you weren't having to go up and over the seat you were going behind the seat right on top of the floor pan with the carpet on it
That exactly describes my cadi. It’s a 2015 with second row buckets...same as our Navigator, but the navigator buckets didn’t fold flat. DId GM screw something up on the later years?
 

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It was the early ones. The Cadillac SUVs just seem to lag behind on features at least some of them versus The Navigators and Expeditions. The second gen Escalade 02 to 06 was nowhere near as nice for the seat entry as the second generation Navigator 03-06. But of course this is when Ford went with the independent rear suspension so you got the flat floor in the back because of the lower floor because there is no pumpkin and the back like on the solid rear axle that Cadillac used all the way until 2019.
I think the main seat thing is just a matter of the folding and pivoting principles incorporated into the seat and the 02 to 06 Cadillac just didn't have it as figured out as the 03 Navigator.
Even the first generation Navigator and Expedition was easier to get into the third row because the seat base flipped up and the rear and hinged on the front so you weren't climbing up on top of the back of the seat when it was folded down and crawling over the extra height of the seat. The seat flipped forward out of the way and you went behind it right up onto the carpet of the vehicle.
I know it's a little hard to describe and picture in written form but if you had them right there beside each other to try most people would certainly have a preference and say one is much easier than the other.
Maybe I'm just not operating the seat right and if so I'll say I'm an idiot. It wouldn't be the first time I overlooked something obvious but consider a GM Trailblazer. Does rear seats fold over and then flip up so you don't crawl over the seat to get into the third row. You step up onto the carpet.
The second generation Escalade lifts the butt Part up and then fold the back down into that area but is not as good of a design as the Trailblazer.
It's going to end up making me get rid of this thing and getting an Envoy just because of the way the seat folds for access to the third row when I don't even use it!
It seems that most every other SUV used the flip up at the front hinge idea like the Trailblazer and the Expedition but Cadillac decided to do it differently. And worse! When you're going to do something different, make sure it's better.
 

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You’re past me. In 2006 I was still driving my ‘83 Fleetwood we bought new, so the 2015 was our first new Cadi in several decades. The kids graduated in 2018, so we looked at trading in for a new Lincoln, Cadi, Jag, BMW, Tesla. Honestly, we didn’t like anything available in 2018 more than our 2015 Escalade. It is hands down easier to load and unload than the 3 Lincoln SUV’s we owned, so I really can’t relate to what you are describing. I mean, honestly...you simply push a button to raise and lower the seats, compared to removing and storing the Lincoln seats. Unless something goes horribly wrong, just like our last Cadi, we’ll be driving this one through 2045.
 

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You’re past me. In 2006 I was still driving my ‘83 Fleetwood we bought new, so the 2015 was our first new Cadi in several decades. The kids graduated in 2018, so we looked at trading in for a new Lincoln, Cadi, Jag, BMW, Tesla. Honestly, we didn’t like anything available in 2018 more than our 2015 Escalade. It is hands down easier to load and unload than the 3 Lincoln SUV’s we owned, so I really can’t relate to what you are describing. I mean, honestly...you simply push a button to raise and lower the seats, compared to removing and storing the Lincoln seats. Unless something goes horribly wrong, just like our last Cadi, we’ll be driving this one through 2045.
Yes, you're referring to using the back cargo area and folding the third row seats flat. They suck in the first generation Ford's like I mentioned. The entire bench seat is always in the way or you can turn it sideways to get more room but basically you have to remove it from the vehicle and it was like a hundred and thirty pounds. It's very cumbersome. The 03 and above Fords are awesome because you push the button and they fold completely flat. But I was not talking about the cargo area I'm talking about access to the third row for someone to sit in it. The Navigators even the old first generation has a seat in the second row that flips forward so it's completely out of the way and you step up onto the carpet into the open area to get to the back seat this is the same as the Chevy Trailblazer and Envoy. The little Envoy is so much easier to get into an out of and more comfortable and the backseat then the same year Escalade! This seems ridiculous because of the size of the vehicle. They designed the seat entirely differently. On and 02-07 Escalade the seat does not flip forward. The bottom part flips up against the back of the front seat and the back flips down into that hole so you literally have to crawl up on top of the back of the seat which is horizontal and flat on the floor but it's an extra eight in taller than the carpet. So therefore it is much harder to crawl up and into the vehicle instead of just stepping into it like you can on a Ford or on a Trailblazer or Envoy. It is a terrible design. I might just go take some Envoy seats and bolt them into the Escalade because they're only held on by 4 bolts and it would be easy to mount. The real problem would be getting the back latch well done into the floor pan because that is like a hook.
I just parked in side-by-side today and got into the third row seat on the Trailblazer and sat down and then I got into the Escalade. It is so much easier to get into the Trailblazer. The Escalade is an Abomination and the seat is not nearly as comfortable when you're there with no leg room and your knees up to your chin. It was an afterthought design for preteens. The little dinky Trailblazer and Envoy will actually see the average adult.
Call me picky but I don't think it'd be too hard for them to figure this out and make them functional. They get it figured out I'm one vehicle and they screw it up later on on a higher and more luxurious vehicle. But as I said, I'm picky and I love to point out flaws in everything.
 
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