Let There Be LED On The Escalade
|Topics: Cadillac Escalade
January 29, 2008
Let there be light. But Cadillac wants a no ordinary light on the new Escalade. And so there were light emitting diodes.
The 2008 Escalade Platinum will be the first to utilize the dependable and chic LED headlamps. When the sport utility hits showrooms this summer, it will be flaunting the full functioning headlamps which are powered by LED. The announcement was made by the General Motors Corp.’s luxury brand last Monday.
The LED headlamps of the new Escalade sport both high- and low-beam projection. They deliver long-lasting light which is brighter than the traditional halogen lights and Xenon beams. Hella KGaA Hueck & Company, the manufacturer of the headlamps, said its product will last up to 20 times longer than traditional automotive lights.
The manufacturer said that the headlamps uses free-form glass projection lenses to aim the forceful light to different zones in front of the SUV. The said headlamps use five LEDs for the low beam plus an additional two for high-beam projection. LEDs, which also run the parking lights, are all encased inside a sole housing.
The headlamps do not only provide brighter light for they also add elegance to the aura of the SUV. At the automaker's request, they echo the Cadillac's LED tall taillights, said Siegfried Hetz, Hella's product engineering specialist. "We could have designed these to look any way we wanted, but working with Cadillac, they wanted a stacked appearance," he added.
Stephanie Brinley, an analyst with AutoPacific, an automotive marketing and consulting firm, said that consumers should expect to see more vehicles with LED headlamps in the future. "They offer a lot more freedom and designers will take advantage of that," she said. "Especially in vehicles that promote high style. High-end vehicles such as the Cadillac Escalade Platinum make the perfect platform to debut a new technology.”
"It's a way for manufacturers to offset the cost of something that's new and expensive," she added. "Elements like LED headlights can make a vehicle pop. It can increase the image factor and the wow factor."
Jim Taylor, Cadillac's general manager, has this to say: "We're giving more attention to how a Cadillac looks at night. These headlamps will help give the Escalade Platinum a very distinctive appearance."
Recent technological advances allowed Hella to incorporate the LEDs into the headlamps, said Daniel Veitner, Hella's vice president of marketing. "Red LEDs have been around for 20 or 30 years, but only recently have we been able to ramp up the brightness," he said in an interview with the Detroit News. "By 2010, we should have LED lights that can burn brighter than (high-intensity discharge) lights today."
The new Cadillac headlamps offer more than good vision for the driver at night, Hella and Cadillac officials said. Aside from adding finesse to other auto parts, the headlamps also serve as the SUV’s semaphore of distinction.
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