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XM, the story continues

This article is from our archives and has not been updated and integrated with our "new" site yet... Even so, it's still awesome - so keep reading!

Published on Fri, Jan 24, 2003

By: The LACar Editorial Staff

John Grafman: Cadillac Escalade XM Radio System

XM Radio: The Story Continues

XM Radio: The Story Continues Not to be overshadowed by Sirius’ BMW X5, XM recently acquired the next-of-kin to the Seville STS, the Cadillac Escalade. The system works with much the same finesse as the Seville . It takes just seconds to acclimate to the satellite radio system. It takes a bit longer to come to terms with the massive GM vehicle. After a day or two behind the wheel of this, driving a school bus is just a small step up in size. Not only do you feel quite at home inside the Cadillac, but as large as it is, you could potentially take up residence within its four doors. I think I have had bedrooms with fewer square feet of actual floor space

With no coercion at all and having the Escalade at my disposal, I chauffeured my friends Greg and Toni, who were interested in locating some available horse property. We traversed the rural area of La Cresta, in Murrieta. Off we went in search of a perfect plot of land. Our journey took us through the Country roads that wind through the Cleveland National Forest on the backside of Camp Pendleton . This scenic trek gave us the impression of what the San Fernando Valley might have looked like before it was developed. The area located under blue skies had rolling hills with huge boulders and fully matured oaks.

Our vehicle seemed like a good choice for this field trip. Although the Caddy is available with an abundance of luxury features, I did come across a few sore spots in the supple leather-lined land barge. We exposed a noticeable weakness in our foray in the hills. Upon returning down some unpaved hillsides, we became aware that this 7,000-pound monster had gearing that really wasn’t low enough! We weren’t in extreme terrain by a long shot…which was a good thing given the circumstance. Sure I know most Escalade owners would never dream of taking their beloved transport off the black top, but without a hill descent mode I can see why. A small overlooked item was the placement of the rear cup holders so far from reach that only Shaq had the possibility of grabbing a drink from these receptacles located at floor height on the back side of the center console. Someone must have been playing a joke when they developed the interior layout and stuck the cup holders there to see if anyone was paying attention…I guess not. As far as rearward vision goes…forget about it!

No matter how far we delved into the hills or positioned ourselves behind twisted rock outcropping, the signal reception was flawless. The Cadillac stereo can put several home units to shame. Greg, who was only lukewarm to the whole pay for radio idea, really came alive when he found that the XM system had not only Fox News and CNN and CNN headline news, but the BBC also. You just can’t be too well informed. In every genre, there were several choices. So, anyone will have a safe bet of finding something he or she likes on at any given moment.

XM really has something to offer everyone, and you can’t come away from the experience not overwhelmed with just how good this system is!

For more info on XM, check out For more info on Sirius, check out

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