New security features for Cadillac Escalade aim to curb theft

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Cadillac is adding new anti-theft features to the 2012 Escalade SUV. Image from Wikimedia Commons.

The Cadillac Escalade, the luxury full-size SUV, is one of the most frequent targets of auto theft. Cadillac is installing a host of new anti-theft security features to cut down on the theft rate.

Premium SUV a common target for thieves

According to Automobile magazine, the annual list of the most stolen cars by the Highway Loss Data Institute released in August revealed that between 2008 and 2010, eight of the 10 most stolen vehicles in the nation were full-size pickup trucks and SUVs. The only cars on the list were the Chrysler 300 and the Chrysler 300 Hemi variant.

The honors for most stolen vehicle went to the Cadillac Escalade. Thieves will steal any variation, including the Hybrid, Platinum and ESV versions, but preferred the EXT variant. The Escalade overall had a theft rate of 10.8 vehicles per 1,000, but EXT models have a theft rate of 14 per 1,000 vehicles. The Escalade has a theft rate of six times the national average and incurred 10 times the typical amount in insurance loss per vehicle, how much the owner has to pay for the loss, at $114 per vehicle.

New security features for the 2012 model

According to The Car Connection, the Cadillac Escalade has been the most stolen vehicle in the nation for almost the entire past decade. Cadillac, according to USA Today, has strengthened and added some anti-theft features to curb this trend.

The Escalade is getting stronger wheel locks to make it harder to steal the wheels. The Pass Key 3-Plus ignition key, according to Automobile Magazine, has been further augmented to incorporate the key, key cylinder and ignition system, so the vehicle won’t start without the key having been inserted. The 2012 Escalade also includes a “shock sensor” that triggers the alarm if the car is “shocked” by having a window broken.

Some thieves don’t even bother with breaking into an Escalade; they simply hitch it to the back of a flatbed and tow it away. To prevent those thefts, Cadillac has included a steering column lock that prevents the steering from working unless the car is being operated by the owner. The new model year will also have an inclination sensor; if thieves start jacking the car up, the sensor will trip and sound an alarm.

Already has OnStar

As the Chicago Tribune points out, the current Escalade already comes with the OnStar system on-board, which has remote engine lock and engine-slowdown functions for vehicles that have been stolen, but the new features may make those unnecessary.

The luxury SUV, which costs $20,000 more than comparable Chevrolet Tahoe and GMC Yukon models, will always be a desirable vehicle but. According to MotorTrend, while Cadillac knows thieves will always come up with new ploys, the company is trying to make stealing the Escalade harder.


Automobile Magazine

The Car Connection

USA Today

Automobile Magazine

Chicago Tribune


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