1979 Cadillac Fleetwood Brougham Sedan – Esoteric Doctrine of Luxury & Logic

Posted in "As the Standard of the World Turns", Cadillac: Masterpiece from the Master Craftsmen with tags , , , , , , , , on October 16, 2017 by 99MilesPerHour

Five years after the 1973-1974 Arab Oil Embargo, Cadillac had trimmed and redesigned its entire model range to meet the need of the day. For the 1979 model year the posh land yachts were in the 3rd year of refinement after the all-new 1977 downsizing. Fleetwood…the purveyor of the poised dignity; which became the true hallmark of every traditional Cadillac – remained the flagship of the breed in every respect.

The Fleetwood Brougham now shared the same platform as the DeVille series. Rising energy concerns forced Cadillac to abandon the type of model exclusivity it had grown accustom. General Motors used basic production dies that were modified for each division to reduce factory burden as well as overall operational costs. Gone are the days when Cadillac built eleven models in three series. Enter…the next generation of the luxury car…in the continuing saga of “As the Standard of the World Turns.”

Cadillac was the only luxury automobile manufacturer to offer the luxury of choice from four distinctive luxury model series. It gained a large percentage of the market share during the energy crisis. The luxurious Fleetwood Brougham is the aristocrat – the Cadillac of Cadillacs. It was now more efficient than ever. Admiration and respect afforded this supreme achievement in motoring was never more enthusiastic.

A trim new precision size designed for today’s world made it extremely popular among luxury car buyers. Fleetwood Brougham’s re-engineered elegance includes a host of options and personal conveniences to make Cadillac motoring unequalled in all of motordom. Cadillac’s tradition of leadership evolved into a new symbol of excellence. The 1979 Fleetwood Brougham is a superb luxury sedan with magnificent overall ride quality, living-room comfort, and classic beauty.

It is an amazing feat to completely redesign an automotive legend maintaining the loyal Cadillac enthusiast while gaining new patronage. Not only did Cadillac master this in such a short time…it did so setting new standards. Cadillac broke a sales production record in 1976 for the first time exceeding the 300,000-mark building 304,485 units – and these are all full-size models.

1976 Fleetwood Brougham and Eldorado convertible

1977 Fleetwood Brougham

Cadillac set its second consecutive calendar year production record in 1977 building 335,785 units. Cadillac once again broke their own sales record building 350,813 cars for the 1978 model year. Cadillac singularly built more cars annually than some automobile manufacturers’ combined sales production totals from all of their motor divisions. Cadillac was the luxury leader.

Model #6C style code #869 1979 Fleetwood Brougham 4-door sedan was base priced from $13,446 – $14,102 USD, had a base shipping weight of 4,250 pounds, and 42,200 were built. It has the luxury length of 221.5”, is 76.5” in width, is 56.7” in height, and rides upon a long 121.5” wheelbase.

Cadillac special editions have always been available to help the owner to express their individuality. The ultra-luxurious Brougham Sedan d’Elegance option was priced at $997 for Dante/Roma knit cloth trimmed interior and $1367 for natural grain leather trimmed version.

This elite option features plush button-tufted pillow-style upholstery with standard 50/50 dual comfort individually adjustable front lounge seats. Deep pile Tangier carpeting is lavishly under foot. The exterior includes “d’Elegance” scripts affixed to rear roof sail panels and special accent paint striping. However equipped, Fleetwood Brougham is the archetypal king of the road.

Fleetwood Brougham’s appointments may be compared to an exclusive club room on wheels. Legendary comfort and convenience are of paramount concern to the traditional Cadillac. It was perennially the most luxurious owner-driven Cadillac sedan in the flagship model hierarchy. The next generation of the luxury car introduced a responsible marriage of luxury and logic.

Tasteful refinement combines form and function to Fleetwood Brougham’s bold new elegance. Impeccably tailored “Dante” knit cloth or genuine natural grain leather upholsters the cabin distinctively in the grand Cadillac manner. 45/55 dual comfort front seats are adjusted independently for maximum personal comfort. Color-keyed carpet and interior trim gives the car a dramatic monochromatic look.

Standard creature comforts for the 1979 Fleetwood Brougham are comprehensive. Automatic Climate Control air conditioning keeps the cabin temperature comfortable year-round. The electronically tuned AM/FM digital radio with signal seeking and scan capabilities provides high quality sound reproduction with power antenna operation. (No scoffing, remember this is circa 1979 and today’s sound systems weren’t quite there yet)

Standard Cadillac amenities such as power steering, power windows and door locks, lamp monitors, new seatbelt chimes, exterior opera lamps, and padded vinyl roof covering makes it one of the world’s most luxurious automobiles. This is the short list of the myriad standard Cadillac features and accessories for the Fleetwood Brougham that are designed to make each journey as fulfilling as the destination…

The next generation of the luxury car is the most efficient Cadillac in the history of the brand. 1977 through 1979 first generation down-sized Cadillacs are powered with one of the last of the great Cadillac-built V8 engines. For the 1979 model year, Fleetwood Brougham is endowed with a responsive 7.0 litre 16-valve naturally aspirated L33 425 CID V8.

Cast iron block and cylinder heads makes this pushrod V8 a dynamo AND it’s lightweight. The engine is equipped with a 4-bbl Rochester Quadrajet, hydraulic lifters, mechanical fuel pump, and High Energy Ignition system. Old-school V8 engines like this can outlast their owner if properly maintained. The engine is mated to GM’s THM-400 3-speed automatic transmission. Sure, today’s technology isn’t here…but then neither are the repair bills associated with that ‘technology’ involved…

The highly responsive 7.0 litre “L33” V8 delivers 180 hp @ 4,000 rpm with a respectable 434 Nm of peak torque @ 2,000 rpm. Longitudinal acceleration is rated as 0-60 mph in 11.6 seconds with a top speed in the 112 mph range. It does the ¼ mile @ 76 mph in 18.9 seconds.

For an additional $783, the 7.0 litre “L35” V8 with speed density Electronic Fuel Injection was available. This version is equipped with two electronic fuel pumps (one in-line and one in-tank). Power output is slightly higher cranking 195 hp @ 3,800 rpm with 434 Nm of peak torque @ 2,400 rpm. Longitudinal acceleration is about the same as the carburetted version, 0-60 mph in 11.3 seconds with a top speed in the 114 mph range. The fuel injected version provides inherently smoother overall operation and better fuel economy. Cadillacs are not built for speed…we must remember.

Fleetwood Brougham’s traditional build yields an automobile with substantial structural integrity. It’s built as body on frame construction and doesn’t upend front engine rear-wheel drive virtues. A rugged ladder type frame with welded crossmembers is the major strength of the car between the passengers and exterior forces.

Independent coil springs and stabilizer bar network with upper and lower control arms to manage front suspension dynamics. Standard on all Fleetwood models is Electronic Level Control which utilizes the rear suspension to maintain optimum ride height regardless of load or road conditions automatically. The rear suspension is equipped with Cadillac’s 4-link drive and coil springs. Hydraulic Direct-Action shock absorbers are fitted to all four wheels.

Special Thanks to Jim Hailey Classic Cars

The 1979 Cadillac Fleetwood Brougham wears its trim new design very well. Its precision size combined with an efficient 7.0 litre V8 engine makes it a popular choice among contemporary classic automobiles. It is powered by one of the last great Cadillac-built V8 engines. Sturdy body on frame construction compliments the front engine rear-wheel drive tradition – Cadillac Style.

From the elegant exterior to the spacious interior, the 1979 Fleetwood Brougham is truly one of the world’s most luxurious automobiles. A Fleetwood was always a special kind of Cadillac…for special people. The Fleetwood Brougham for 1979 takes its place in automotive history…in the continuing saga of “As the Standard of the World Turns.”

 

1978-79 Moloney-bodied Fleetwood Brougham Sedan d’Elegance

1979 Fleetwood Series Seventy-Five factory limousine

“As the Standard of the World Turns”  © 2017-2018

The 1979 Fleetwood Brougham IS NotoriousLuxury  © 2017-2018

NotoriousLuxury exploits traditional Cadillac-Style

Cadillac Brougham Sedan d’Elegance – Serendipitous Resplendence

Posted in "As the Standard of the World Turns", Cadillac Historical, Classic American Marques with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on September 24, 2017 by 99MilesPerHour

Oh…that Cadillac Style. Robust full-size luxury never looked more impressive. Every luxury sedan has a signature…a flair for the dramatic. Cadillac Brougham evokes a unique je ne sais quoi no other luxury car can replicate. It is the ‘traditional’ Cadillac that established its reputation in the luxury car arena. Experienced artisans built each car as if it was for their very own use. Every traditional Cadillac motorcar was crafted to absolute perfection, catapulting the brand to “Standard of the World” status. Cadillac Brougham fervently adheres to full-frame, front engine rear-wheel drive virtues – as a traditional luxury car should.

It assumed its role as the most luxurious owner-driven Cadillac sedan augmenting the model hierarchy as flagship annually. Classic Cadillac appeal eminently qualifies it as America’s most distinctive full-size luxury automobile. Add the posh “d’Elegance” package for even more ultra-exclusivity. Think of it as your own personal limousine. Gracious six passenger comfort, potent V8 power, and a wide range of features and accessories made it a perennial favorite among luxury car buyers. The 1991 Cadillac Brougham Sedan d’Elegance flaunts its beauty…in the continuing saga of “As the Standard of the World Turns.”

The majestic Cadillac Brougham Sedan d’Elegance is the definitive status symbol. It’s designed as a motorcar of eminence. A host of options and personal conveniences make Cadillac unique among luxury automobiles. Cadillac Brougham represents a supreme achievement in grand and gracious motoring. Their sumptuous dignity resulted as a singularly successful concept in luxury sedans. From 1965 through 1996, the Fleetwood Brougham reigned supreme in all of motordom…there’s been nothing else like it on the road – and never will be.

This is one of the most fondly remembered Cadillac luxury sedans from the genre. The basic architecture was introduced in 1980. It is shared by Fleetwood and DeVille two and four door models from 1980 up to and including the 1984 model year for DeVille. The same platform/architecture continued through the 1986 model year badged as “Fleetwood” models. 

1987-1989 Cadillac Brougham

1990-1992 Cadillac Brougham

1993-1996 Fleetwood Brougham

The Brougham became its own series continuing that Cadillac poised dignity. It was no longer a member of the Fleetwood series from 1987 through the 1992 model year. The model is simply known as the “Brougham.” It remained the epitome of luxury and elegance. So…what could be more luxurious than a Cadillac Brougham? The sumptuous Cadillac Brougham Sedan d’Elegance redefines luxury to an even higher degree.

Is it denial or deception that dictates the design of today’s luxury cars? Seems the designers have the inclination nor the imagination to even contemplate what a ‘true’ luxury car enthusiast wants in a” luxury car.” For 1991, the Cadillac Brougham Sedan d’Elegance gave luxury car buyers the sophistication they desired: an elegant full-size luxury saloon of distinction.

Model series #DW5 body style code #W69 1991 Cadillac Brougham 4-door sedan had a base price of $30,225 – $30,875 USD with a base shipping weight of 4,282 pounds and 27,231 were built. The exclusive d’Elegance option was priced at $2445 with leather trim and $1875 with cloth trim.

The 1991 Cadillac Brougham was the largest passenger regular production car built in the land. It has the luxury length of 221”. It rides upon a long 121.5” wheelbase and is an impressive 76.5” wide. Cadillac Brougham was factory-fitted with Michelin P225/75R15 radial ply white sidewall tires. A Cadillac Brougham features uncompromised luxury and elegance – Cadillac Style.

Brougham is the contemporary classic. It received modest refinement for the 1991 model year. Its beautiful architecture includes clear coat paint as standard equipment. Brougham’s front-end ensemble is augmented by modular one-piece composite headlamp/cornering lamp units. Its massive chrome bumper is highlighted with bumper impact strips that are coordinated to handsome body side cladding spanning the lower quarter panels. Large jewel-like tail lamps are set into chrome bumper end caps to hint at the iconic Cadillac tail fins. The beveled trunk lid and wide bumper impact strip completes that rare synthesis of character associated with the brand.

The 1991 Brougham Sedan d’Elegance is the type of automotive opulence one had come to expect from Cadillac. It’s Brougham’s sheer size and stature that makes it an ideal luxury sedan. Eminence in a motorcar such as this no longer exists in domestic automobiles.

Its grandeur is exploited by a lavishly appointed interior. Standard Brougham luxury is Cadillac-Style. Add the d’Elegance option and it becomes your personal limousine. Tasteful hand button-tufted pillow style lounge seating has all the comforts of home. Whether trimmed in glove soft leather or luxuriously textured cloth, the Cadillac Brougham Sedan d’Elegance affords one uncompromising six passenger convenience in the grand Cadillac manner.

Even though it had dropped its Fleetwood nomenclature…secretly, it is still a Fleetwood! The 1991 Cadillac Brougham Sedan d’Elegance enjoyed success as the largest regular production sedan built in the land. It incorporates a wide array of standard features and accessories that are optional at extra cost on other fine cars in its class. The operative word here is class – complimentary, as always with a ‘traditional’ Cadillac luxury sedan…

Luxury and elegance are your constant companions

Cadillac Brougham’s standard vinyl roof treatment

Cadillac Brougham sedans for the 1991 model year offer a superb blend of comfort and convenience. They are equipped in the legendary Brougham manner. Power windows and automatic power door locks with central locking feature are standard for extra security. Automatic Climate Control maintains cabin temperature year round. Once set, no further intervention is required.

Illuminated Entry System and Twilight Sentinel automatic headlamp control aids night driving with an added peace of mind. Front seat occupants can adjust the 6-way power dual comfort lounge seats independently. All-new Electronic Variable Assist Power Steering and improved suspension refinement fine tunes the Cadillac “Magic Carpet” ride making even boulevard travel less intrusive. The Cadillac Brougham Sedan d’Elegance makes the journey as rewarding as the destination.

Optional at extra cost genuine long laced wire wheels

Optional at extra cost locking wire wheel discs

The ride…definitely Cadillac-Style. A traditional luxury sedan should provide a ride befitting a flagship. Its front engine rear-wheel drive configuration maintains weight distribution resulting in optimal overall operational stability and traction. Body on frame construction, standard Cadillac Electronic Level control, and Electronic Variable Orifice (EVO) power assisted steering, all network together for the legendary Magic Carpet ride. The assurance of Bosch II anti-lock brakes is a standard integral component for Cadillac Brougham’s active safety system.

Cadillac Brougham is powered as a traditional luxury sedan should be. V8 power is imperative to a car of its stature. A 5.0 litre 16-valve 305 CID naturally aspirated small block V8 with Throttle-body Injection is the standard powerplant. It cranks 170 hp @ 4,400 rpm with 346 Nm of peak torque @ 2,400 rpm. Longitudinal acceleration is rated as 0-60 mph in 11.4 seconds with a top speed in the 115 mph range. It can do the ¼ mile @ 76 mph in 18.2 seconds.

The optional 5.7 litre 16-valve 350 CID naturally aspirated V8 with Throttle-body fuel injection delivers spirited performance with an excellent power to weight ratio. It produces 185 hp @ 3,800 rpm with 407 Nm of peak torque @ 2,400 rpm. Longitudinal acceleration is rated as 0-60 mph in 10.1 seconds with a top speed in the 118 mph. It can do the ¼ mile @ 78 mph in 17.5 seconds.

Both engines are mated to the GM Turbo-Hydramatic THM 700-R4 (4L60) 4-speed automatic transmission with overdrive and torque converter clutch. These engine/transmission combinations provide ample performance with impressive fuel economy.

The 1991 Cadillac Brougham was the first choice among custom coachbuilders to handcraft stretch limousines and professional vehicles of distinction. This example is built by Armbruster Stageway Coachbuilders.

The satisfaction of ownership outweighs the price of a gallon of petrol. The 1990 – 1992 Cadillac Broughams are capable of outstanding fuel economy for automobiles of their sheer size and weight. Many of these magnificent motorcars are still in service. Some owners have restored their cars to better than original condition. The spacious six passenger luxury and power in reserve are two of Cadillac Brougham’s major strengths which entices enthusiasts world-wide.

Brougham’s poised dignity is immediately identified in any gathering of fine automobiles. It remains one of the world’s most distinguished automobiles. Robust, full-size luxury cars will always have a cult following. NotoriousLuxury will always present a rudely-elegant point of view prepared  for classic Cadillac aficionados…in the continuing saga of “As the Standard of the World Turns.”

Special thanks to Jim Hailey Classic Cars

Welcome to Greg’s World

Greg’s World IS NotoriousLuxury  © 2017

Cadillac Fleetwood Brougham – Contemporary Masterpiece

Posted in "As the Standard of the World Turns", Cadillac, Cadillac: Masterpiece from the Master Craftsmen, Classic American Marques with tags , , , , , , , , , , on September 4, 2017 by 99MilesPerHour

There’s nothing like the traditional full-size Cadillac. From the admiring glances of envy…to the myriad standard comfort and convenience features and accessories – The stately Fleetwood Brougham was considered the most luxurious owner-driven Cadillac in the model hierarchy. Fleetwood-bodied Cadillacs are the epitome of grandeur with a poised dignity which was the hallmark of every traditional Cadillac motorcar.

The 1994 Fleetwood Brougham is endowed with a special type of spirited operation few luxury cars share. It’s the 1993-1996 rear-wheel drive Fleetwood series that is the last of the breed…the end of an illustrious era in motoring. They preclude the traditional luxury sedan which left a void in American automobiles no other luxury car can fill. The majestic 1994 Cadillac Fleetwood Brougham presents an encore performance…in the continuing saga of “As the Standard of the World Turns.”

It’s dramatically styled in its beauty and bearing. The formidable Fleetwood Brougham is the motorcar that represents the “Standard of the World” in a majestic fashion only Cadillac could create. These magnificent automobiles are more inspiring to behold and more rewarding to own than any other full-size luxury sedan.

Fleetwood models possess an eloquence and dignity befitting a flagship of its stature. The Brougham augmented the Fleetwood series with elegant appointments and signature features for luxury in the grand Cadillac manner. The 1994 Fleetwood Brougham carried on the tradition with glamour and distinction. Cadillac Fleetwoods remain America’s most aristocratic automobiles.

The gracious proportions of Fleetwood Brougham’s traditionally-inspired architecture evoke thoughts of the days gone by when we had the choice of a ‘real’ full-size luxury sedan…and a Cadillac – all in the same car. Fleetwood Brougham’s tall, extra-wide doors provide easy entry and exit. Sweeping fender lines flow systematically enhancing aerodynamic efficiency…the EPA rated the 1994 Fleetwood Brougham as 25 mpg highway.

Chrome bright work clads the lower body sides which include removable trim that mocks traditional rear-wheel fender skirts – Cadillac Style. Its stately silhouette is augmented by a long nose and short rear end design reminiscent of those fabulous classic Fleetwoods. Most important, Fleetwood Brougham’s engineering places a large sumptuous cabin between its occupants and the road…

The 1994 Fleetwood Brougham goes to great lengths to satisfy the most discerning driver. Its luxury length of 225.1” is even longer than that of the 1994 Lincoln Town Car’s mere 218.9” length. Fleetwood’s wide 78” stance beats the Town Car’s 76.9” width proudly.

Fleetwood Brougham rides upon a long 121.5” wheelbase compared to Town Car’s 117.4” wheelbase. Fleetwood Brougham’s 57.1” height beats that of the Town Car at 56.9”. So you see…the Fleetwood Brougham and its poised dignity is eminently qualified to carry the title of America’s largest production passenger automobile for the 1994 model year – Cadillac Style!

With its full-size luxury, excellent road manners, and Cadillac elegance…the 1994 Fleetwood Brougham is traditional splendor that one had come to expect from the brand. The last of the Fleetwoods are big and beautiful from bumper to bumper. Their substantial body on frame construction is configured as front engine rear-wheel drive – as a true Cadillac should be.

This is General Motors last attempt building full-size cars. The big B/D body used by Chevrolet for the Caprice/Impala SS, Buick for the Roadmaster, and of course Cadillac with the Fleetwood. One advantage to a rear drive car is the ability to move the front wheels forward in its overall design. Placing the front wheels ahead of the engine greatly enhances suspension dynamics which govern stability. The engine doesn’t have to be connected. Drive shaft, rear differential, and rear suspension adds weight to the back of the car. (And NO torque-steer!)

Fleetwood could be compared to a luxurious club room on wheels. Its spacious cloth or leather trimmed cabin was available in two distinctive trim levels. The standard Fleetwood sedan base priced at $33,990 – $34,615 is augmented by the optional “Brougham” luxury package.

The Brougham option upholstered with Prestwick knit cloth was $1680 while the leather trimmed version was $2250. This exclusive luxury package has a different seat cushion sew-style and upgraded appointments than the standard Fleetwood sedan.

The exterior is highlighted with a luxuriously padded vinyl roof treatment with “Brougham” nomenclature affixed to the rear sail panels. This deftly identifies it as Cadillac’s most luxurious owner-driven sedan. No other motorcar in its class can replicate the grandeur and dignity this supreme achievement in motoring offers. Passengers are ensconced in traditional 6-passenger comfort.

There’s room to stretch out with nearly 5′ of shoulder room. It has 38.7” of headroom available for front seat occupants and 39.1” for the rear passenger compartment. Fleetwood Brougham provides 42.5” of front seat legroom and 43.9” for rear seat passengers. Classic “Standard of the World” creations do not have to scream achievement…they simply whisper success. Fleetwood Brougham is renowned for legendary Cadillac comfort and convenience.

And…if Fleetwood Brougham’s spacious dimensions aren’t enough to prove its superiority in the luxury car segment, its impressive list of standard amenities will. Electronic components are bestowed throughout its svelte architecture. All season Electronic Climate Control Air Conditioning maintains optimum cabin comfort year-round. Once the temperature has been set no further intervention is required. This sophisticated system includes rear compartment heating/air conditioning ducts.

Power windows with ‘express down’ feature, power door locks, Cruise Control, Tilt Wheel adjustable steering wheel, and digital instrument cluster are the more basic amenities. For the 1994 model year, Fleetwood Brougham’s signature features include: driver’s memory seat, manual articulating head rests, power triple-element lumbar controls, illuminated rear seat overhead vanity mirrors, heated front seats, rear seat folding center armrest with dual cup holder and storage.

Still undecided? Additional standard amenities include: Twilight Sentinel electronic headlamp control, Solar Ray tinted glass, controlled-cycle windscreen wipers, Illuminated Entry System, Power deck lid release with pull-down feature, illuminated driver and front passenger visor vanity mirrors, power 55/45 6-way front seating w/power 2-way recliners, power heated right and left outside rearview mirrors, Pass Key II theft deterrent system, as well as power assisted steering and brakes.

Brougham’s deep-seated luxury is due in no small part to Cadillac’s patented ‘split frame’ seatback and cushion design. The wide lounge-type seats provide independent adjustment. A new window defog system allows its windscreen to be cleared in cold weather while maintaining heat flow to the lower portion of the cabin. They don’t refer to a Fleetwood Brougham as “The epitome of luxury” for nothing…

What do these two cars have in common?

The 1994 Fleetwood Brougham and the 1994 Chevrolet Corvette share a startling truth. The Cadillac Fleetwood’s power is derived from Corvette’s responsive new 2nd generation 5.7 litre 16-valve, 350 CID “LT1” V8 engine. Both Cadillac and Corvette versions are built with a cast iron block. The Vette is built with aluminum heads while Cadillac uses cast iron heads. Here’s a Cadillac with the heart of Corvette! The naturally aspirated engine is equipped with electronic sequential-port fuel injection. Dual-platinum tipped spark plugs require no scheduled tune-up for 100,000 miles. (Burn a good grade of premium fuel and you can go a lot farther than the captioned number)

The powerful new V8 is mated to the 460L-E GM Turbo Hydra-Matic 4-speed automatic transmission with electronic shift control, overdrive, and torque converter clutch. Engine and transmission are synchronized into a single synchronous power train unit for optimum efficiency. The unique power train combo provides greater horsepower and more torque at lower speeds thus yielding quicker, more confidant acceleration.

The formidable 5.7 litre LT1 cranks 260 hp @ 5,000 rpm with 454 Nm of peak torque @ 2,400 rpm. Longitudinal acceleration is rated as: 0-60 mph in 8.5 seconds, 0-100 mph in 22.6 seconds with a top speed in the 142 mph range. Impressive for a luxury sedan huh? It does the ¼ mile @ 88 mph in just 16.1 seconds. These specs are great when taken into consideration, this is a 4,506+ pound sedan.

Fleetwood Brougham’s full-frame construction permits the traditional Cadillac build. The “Magic Carpet Ride” was a signature Cadillac trademark. The 1994 edition uses the same logic. An independent front suspension has heavy-duty short/long arm upper and lower control systems. Brougham’s superior ride quality is further refined with coil springs, deflected-disc shock absorbers, and stabilizer bar.

The rear suspension is Cadillac’s 4-link drive with coil springs and stabilizer bar. Standard, is Cadillac’s exclusive Electronic Level Control that automatically calibrate the car’s ride height to maintain optimum poise under any road or load condition. ASRIIU full-range traction control with throttle relaxer aids its overall operational stability. Also standard is a Bosch ABSIIU three channel anti-lock braking system with power disc brakes fitted to the front axle and power assisted drums fitted to the rear axle.

Many thanks to Jim Hailey!

When one takes into consideration, luxury sedans such as the Fleetwood Brougham and what the brand builds today…it seems as though Cadillac has forgotten its loyal following, the same following that helped catapult the brand to the eminent status of “Standard of the World.”

The full-size Fleetwood was the first choice among bespoke coachbuilders for stretch limousines and professional vehicles of distinction. It was the largest regular passenger production automobile available in America for the genre. When the Fleetwood Brougham ceased production, it left coachbuilders without a traditional-size platform…

Spirited performance is just a tap of the accelerator pedal away. Deep within this elegant sedan beats the heart of a sports car. Corvette’s formidable 5.7 litre LT1 V8 engine assures responsive acceleration with extra power in reserve. Spacious six passenger accommodations, myriad standard comfort/convenience features and accessories, and that inherent Cadillac-Style makes the majestic Fleetwood Brougham a rare commodity in today’s mass-production euphoria. The bottom line: “Life’s not a cabaret…it’s a Hallmark card.” The 1994 Cadillac Fleetwood Brougham is another successful chapter…in the continuing saga of “As the Standard of the World Turns.”

1941 Fleetwood Series Sixty-Special

1956 Fleetwood Series Sixty-Special

1964 Fleetwood Series Sixty-Special

1970 Fleetwood Series Sixty-Special Brougham

1976 Fleetwood Talisman

1994 Fleetwood Brougham

Welcome to Greg’s World of NotoriousLuxury © 2017

DeVille Déjà Vu…

Posted in "As the Standard of the World Turns", Cadillac, Cadillac: Masterpiece from the Master Craftsmen with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on August 27, 2017 by 99MilesPerHour

The traditional Cadillac convertible is designed for those who seek the drama of open-air touring, without sacrificing luxury, comfort, or convenience. Cadillac marketed them as “The only luxury convertibles built in the land.” Their youthful vitality called for a nice leafy run on a gorgeous sun lit day. For the 1964 model year, America’s favorite luxury car was now available as a powerful new convertible coupé.

Its splendor remains unmatched in all of motordom. Timeless styling in their beauty and bearing has made every classic Cadillac convertible coupé among the most revered of all American luxury automobiles. There is no more magnificent manner in which to view the world than from behind the wheel of an automotive masterpiece from the Master Craftsmen. The 1964 Cadillac Series 6300 DeVille convertible coupé garners a triumphant standing ovation…in the continuing saga of “As the Standard of the World Turns.”

The classic DeVille convertible coupé for 1964 ushered in a resplendent new era in luxury motoring…Cadillac-Style. Rarely does an automobile become a classic legend in its own time such as this supreme achievement in motoring. The Cadillac DeVille series had become “America’s Favorite Luxury Car” and new for the 1964 model year was this ingénue – which proved its authority in both 4-door hardtop and 2-door hardtop coupé closed-body configurations – now available as a spirited open tourer. The legendary Cadillac DeVille convertible coupé was built from 1964 until 1970.

Their extraordinary grace and unrivaled elegance are complimented by the outstanding ride qualities that made Cadillac the most highly desired luxury car in the entire world. The architecture is a true mastery of symmetry and balance. It’s the opulent 1964 Cadillacs that feature the last of the classic body styles with the iconic tail fins. These cars are long, low, and extremely wide – built at a time when aerodynamic efficiency was for airplanes…and not motorcars. Each and every distinctive inch of its styling exploited the finesse of the formidable “Standard of the World.”

Series 6300 Coupe deVille

The 1964 Series 6300 DeVille sparkles with the pomp and splendor associated with the traditional Cadillac heritage. Bill Mitchell (1912-1988) brilliant Chief Design Engineer for General Motors, was the successor to Harley Earl (1893-1969), an equally talented Chief Design Engineer and founder of the GM Art and Colour Design Studio in 1935…both gave the Cadillac brand a definitive opulence that doesn’t exist in today’s world. Harley Earl and Bill Mitchell are two of the most prolific design engineers in the history of the automobile. The 1959 Cadillac is the last to be associated with Harley Earl.

The flamboyant 1959 Cadillac tail fin

The 1950s through the 1970s were the most illustrious decades for Cadillac further enhancing its “Standard of the World” reputation. The Bill Mitchell Era gave the Cadillac brand what he coined as “The Sheer Look” that encompassed a more contemporary, highly provocative intrigue. Cadillac built such a formidable reputation in the luxury car segment, no other luxury automobile could replicate its grandeur.

The Sheer Look removed the “shoulders” from the bodyshell allowing the roofline and side windows to flow right into each panel seamlessly. Mitchell’s designs included the traditional “Cadillac Sneer”…this could be described as a euphoric front-end design feature which declared a “looking down its nose”aristocracy to chase the competition into subservience… 

It was Mitchell’s regime that removed the “excess” the brand had taken on through the years. Humongous body quarter panels, blinding flashes of chrome trim, and tail fins large enough to qualify as aircraft were his targets for radical change. His designs became synonymous with opulence. He refined the Cadillac motorcar with a confluence of luxury and elegance escalating the brand to new heights in exclusivity and supremacy. The 1964 Cadillac models epitomize this forward thinking in the grand Cadillac manner on the grand Cadillac scale. Bill Mitchell promoted classic simplicity with unrivaled magnificence resulting in a remarkably distinctive type of motoring.

Meticulous Cadillac design engineering, and impeccable craftsmanship with an inexhaustible pursuit of exemplary fit & finish remained the mission statement. The 1964 Series 6300 DeVille convertible is a thoroughbred sought by convertible enthusiasts world-wide. That Cadillac drama augments its sweeping silhouette, with the convertible top lowered the car’s architecture seems twice as long. The previous 1963 design was refined further. For 1964, all models received a Cadillac “Beauty Treatment” to give them an even more regal stature.

The Series 6300 DeVille convertible coupé retains the poised dignity which was the hallmark of every classic traditional Cadillac. Its bold front-end ensemble features a massive double-deck grille design. The chiseled stand-up hood and quad headlamp clusters conveys a formal elegance. Distinctive parking/turn signal lamps are cleverly hidden within a design matching the grille work. The same design continues wrapping around the front fenders to conceal the unique-to-Cadillac cornering lamps.

Its rear-end design is celebrated by automobile aficionados of all ages world-wide. Those fabulous fins remain as prominent today as they did when Cadillac led the entire world in luxury car design. The tail fins were trimmed after they reached their summit in 1959. The 1960 model year began tailoring them neatly into the architecture. Each subsequent design refresh continued the trimming until the finale in 1964 when they disappeared forever from the 1965 model year forward.

Handsomely trimmed tail fins for 1964 housed one set of tail lamps above the lower set that are neatly encased within chromed nacelles behind an ingenious clear lens. At night when the head and tail lamps are illuminated, the lower lens glows red gently. When the transmission is shifted to reverse they glow white to light the way while backing up. A massive chrome bumper runs between the bumper end caps with a delicate grille work which compliments front end styling. The 1964 model year tastefully precludes familiar Cadillac signature styling to pave the way for the next generation design.

Model #64-63F body style #6267F 1964 Series 6300 DeVille two-door convertible coupé was base priced at $5,612, had a base shipping weight of 4,545 pounds, and only 17,900 were built for the model year which enhances their desirability. Cadillac built their 3,000,000th car during this model year posting sales with a record-breaking total production of 165,959 vehicles.

The 1964 DeVille’s silhouette emphatically showcases Cadillac’s design prowess with an eloquence unequalled in the world of fine automobiles. DeVille’s restrained use of ornamentation makes its styling timeless. The DeVille series is one of the longest running and most profitable models in Cadillac history capturing the title of “America’s favorite luxury car.” Cadillac’s preeminence in the luxury car segment reflects the good taste and achievement of its owner.

Any Cadillac convertible coupé is a rare combination of luxury and sheer magnificence. The 1964 DeVille projects the youthful vitality of its owner. It’s the special emphasis on interior elegance that sets it apart from other luxury automobiles. Genuine perforated leather was available in nine color combinations.

The DeVille convertible coupé is equipped as a traditional motorcar of this stature should be. Power windows, power seat, front seat folding center arm rest, remote control outside rearview mirror, electric clock, power fully automatic folding fabric roof, cornering lamps, power steering, and power brakes are just a few of the myriad comfort and convenience amenities featured as standard equipment for the 1964 DeVille convertible coupé.

The handcrafted interiors reflects Cadillac quality

This DeVille convertible is equipped with Cadillac’s optional fully automatic Comfort Control Air Conditioning system. It was new to the industry for the 1964 model year. The owner could set their preferred temperature when they first took delivery of the car…and it never required further intervention as long as they owned the car. This is the forerunner of the contemporary fully automatic Climate Control Air Conditioning system. The entire auto industry has now named their fully automatic systems “Climate Control.” This is the type of innovation the contemporary puddle-jumpers Cadillac pretends to build lack…

Interiors by Fleetwood are a many splendored thing…

Luxury and elegance are paramount with a classic “Standard of the World” creation. A Cadillac was consistently refined to maintain this title. For the 1964 model year the mighty Cadillac V8 was brilliantly enhanced to deliver more hp per pound of engine weight than its competitors. This new engine boasts a larger displacement than the 1963 V8. The engine was bored out to 429 CID which is 39 CID larger to crank 340 hp @ 4,600 rpm packing a prolific punch with 651 Nm of peak torque @ 3,000 rpm.

This astute capability is reflected in its longitudinal acceleration of 0-60 mph in 8.7 seconds, 0-100 mph in 25.8 seconds with a top speed in the 124 mph range…all Cadillac-Style. For kicks, it does the ¼ mile @ 83 mph in just 17.6 seconds. DeVille and Fleetwood models got the refined new Turbo Hydra-Matic 3-speed automatic transmission. Engine power is transmitted to the transmission via oil-filled torque converter which multiplies engine torque during acceleration in any of the three gear ranges.

This lightweight 7.0 litre 16-valve V8 has a cast iron block and cylinder heads with new high tensile strength bolts. It is mounted at three points in rubber. The 429 CID has upgrades which includes wider combustion chambers designed for the most efficient burning of air/fuel mixture. These new combustion chambers have a large cooling area at the vortex of the wedge to prevent power-wasting pre-ignition. The aluminum alloy slipper type pistons reduce friction; contoured larger, lighter piston heads increase turbulence providing maximum combustibility of the air/fuel mixture.

Further refinement includes new con rods/bolts, a longer stroke, a new crankshaft, and camshaft. The engine runs in five main bearings with overhead valves and hydraulic lifters. There were two carburetors available for 1964. One with the Carter Aluminum Four Barrel : AFB3655 “S  4-bbl downdraft for non a/c vehicles or AFB3656 with air conditioning. Also available was a Rochester 4-bbl downdraft: #7024030 for non a/c vehicles and #7024031 for vehicles with a/c. Both with equalized manifolding, mechanical fuel pump, dry-type air filter, and automatic choke. The new high-lift camshaft is designed to hold exhaust valves open longer than intake valves for more efficient engine operation. The wide cams minimize wear on both cams and tappets.

1964 Cadillacs are large front-engine rear-wheel drive luxury cars. The Series 6300 DeVille convertible coupé has the luxury length of 223.5”, is 79.7” wide, and rides upon a long 129.5” wheelbase. It is built as body on frame construction. GM’s rugged tubular X-frame permits lower body mounts for not only aesthetic qualities but also provides a lower center of gravity which is vital to a convertible’s well-being. Other advantages to this type of construction is a surfeit of head and hip room along with increased seat height for the patented Cadillac deep-seated luxury.

Fleetwood Series Sixty-Special hardtop sedan

Cadillac’s refined “Magic Carpet Ride” was re-tuned for 1964. NOTHING rides like a traditional Cadillac. The excellent weight distribution combined with its unique technology placed Cadillac in a league all its own. Exclusive “True Center Drive Line” isolates and cancels road noise and vibration before it reaches the cabin through a network of rubber mounted strut rods and rubber bushings. A one-piece propeller shaft transmits power quietly and resists vibration. Constant velocity joints at each end of the prop shaft cancels out forces that generate noise and vibration.

The traditional front suspension has upper and lower control arms with independent helical coil springs. Cadillac’s 4-link drive with independent helical coil springs makes up the rear suspension. The brand was famous for its boldly original mechanical components, unsurpassed attention to detail, and an inexorable insistence upon quality. This is how Cadillac acquired and maintained “Standard of the World” status.

Out of a tradition of excellence…the DeVille legend continues with style and grace that only the “Standard of the World” could create. For 1964, America’s favorite luxury car introduced the DeVille convertible coupé. This elegant open tourer Is powered by the new Cadillac 429 CID V8 engine. Drop the top…tap the accelerator…and 340 horses are at your command. This is a significant collectible because it is the first DeVille ragtop and it is also the finale for the Cadillac tail fins.

The “Standard of the World” continued Cadillac’s legend of automotive superiority in all its facets: styling that’s as classic as it is contemporary…of infinite care and design of its manufacturer…of greater measures of comfort and convenience…but most important, the higher levels of owner pride, prestige, and lasting value. The 1964 Series 6300 DeVille convertible coupé continued this legacy of automotive greatness.

Many thanks to Jim Hailey for the use of the photos for the 1964 Series 6300 DeVille convertible coupé subject car. Special thanks to Bob Adams Classic Cars, and Daniel Schmitt Classic Cars – the best in the business – for the use of their photos of these beautiful classic Cadillac motorcars.

Classic Cadillac convertible showcase:

1936 V16 convertible

1947 Cadillac Series 62 convertible

1948 Cadillac Series 62 convertible 

1950 Cadillac Series 62 convertible

1953 Series 62 Eldorado convertible

1960 Series 62 convertible

1964 Series 6400 Eldorado convertible

1970 DeVille convertible…the finale

The traditional Cadillac was the most aristocratic of all motorcars. The real Cadillac motorcar has an extremely faithful cult following. The “Standard of the World” still graces the landscape eloquently which has garnered the respect and admiration from connoisseurs of fine automobiles world-wide. Cadillac built the only true luxury convertibles in America. The 1964 Series 6300 DeVille convertible coupé is both dramatically beautiful and remarkably responsive. Any Cadillac convertible is a most avant-garde manner to enhance any occasion where fine automobiles gather. The traditional Cadillac DeVille legend lives…in the continuing saga of “As the Standard of the World Turns…”

“Déjà Vu…could you be the dream that I once knew…is it you? Déjà Vu…could you be the dream that might come true…shining through? I keep remembering me…I keep remembering you – Déjà Vu…”

Greg’s World IS NotoriousLuxury © 2017

Lotus Exige “S” LF1: The Paradigm Of Success

Posted in Legendary Lotus Series with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on July 31, 2017 by 99MilesPerHour

Colin Chapman’s paradigm is ensconced within his famous rhetorical quote which became the company impetus – “Adding power makes one faster on the straights…subtracting weight makes one faster everywhere.” Lotus became synonymous with speed. The Lotus legend continues. Let’s fast forward to the 21st Century. Colin Chapman’s philosophy of weight reduction with aerodynamic architecture is the basis for the formidable Lotus Exige. It’s a car suited for the purist who knows the breed well.

Time dulls the impact of some automobiles in its class…however, a Lotus goes down in history as a true masterpiece in every respect. Its predecessors – the sophisticated first generation of high-performance behemoths that includes the Elite, Elan, and Europa are the pioneers which paved the super highway of success for the brand. The Lotus Exige is your best decision ready to be made if unambiguous high-performance, superb overall handling, and superior automotive concepts are what you seek. Aside from its technical superlatives – the Lotus Exige is drop-dead gorgeous!!!

Colin Chapman (1928-1982) hid his light under a bushel. The name of that bushel is Lotus! It was the very heart and soul of this man. The driving force behind the man…was his love for automobile racing and his indomitable strive for absolute perfection. Unlike the average CEO…Colin Chapman was actively involved with every aspect of his business – from the boardroom right straight through the assembly hall – he loved to place himself strategically in the center of everything.

When things went well, one received the twinkle of his blue eyes and a gratuitous nod of approval with a hearty thank-you. Colin Chapman would adamantly refuse to accept error – if one would not put their best foot forward, the twinkle in his eye quickly turned torrential grey and his demeanor became as fierce and unrelenting as a hurricane. This is how Lotus Cars home based in Norfolk, United Kingdom has become superfluous with legendary high performance…precision engineering…and automotive innovation.

Lotus Exige “S”

The Lotus Exige is an extremely swift two-seat sports car based upon the highly successful Lotus Elise and has been built in various configurations since 2000. The Exige “S” packs its prolific punch with a supercharger. Exige is created from a race-bred heritage. It’s this intrinsic knowledge which exemplifies the brand. Lotus road-going models aren’t mere production sports cars – they are race cars dressed in street clothes. Every Lotus is destined to become a cherished collectible taking its place in automotive history.

One such coveted Collector’s Series is the Exige “S” LF1 built at a highly restricted pace of only 81 vehicles for the 2014 model year. When they were in build their price equated to around $105,000 USD (even though they were not imported to the US) which is about a $10,000 premium over the Exige “S” model. The LF1 is a culmination of Lotus fashionably forward-thinking augmented by the craft of 21st Century tuning expertise. This type of refinement enhances the technological competence with a touch of dynamism further reinforcing Colin Chapman’s theory –

This distinctive limited edition is built to celebrate 81 Lotus grand prix victories. The LF1 is all decked out exhibiting Lotus F1 livery-inspired black with contrasting gold accents for both exterior and interior trim. The bold black and gold ensemble represents livery colors from the 1970s and 1980s which blends Exige’s contemporary sophistication with its Formula 1 racing heritage.

Each car is sequentially numbered to commemorate a specific victory in Lotus history from the very first in 1960 at Monaco to the 81st in 2013 in Australia with Kimi Raikkonen. “LF1” badges immediately identifies this unique collectible. Every Lotus brings an illustrious motorsport heritage. Why…ask any Lotus owner. Wouldn’t trade my Elan Sprint for all the tea in China! Especially now when the first-generation Lotus Elan is gaining such admiration as a true definitive British classic sports car –

The Exige “S” LF1 pays homage to Formula 1 Team success with Lotus resplendence. Riding a tight 90.6” wheelbase, the LF1 sports aggressively styled gold 17” wheels fitted to the front axle with 18” mounted to the rear. The wheels are mounted to Pirelli P-Zero Trofeo Tyres. Subtle red accents flow throughout the vehicle in a tasteful contrast…highlighting the lower front-end valance with hood and roof striping back to and ending with the underside of the rear wing. Classic red racing-inspired four piston calipers accent the two-piece high performance brake discs.

The Exige “S” Lf1 is powered by an alloy 3.5 litre transverse mid-mounted supercharged 24-valve Toyota 2GR-FZE V6 engine. It’s equipped with a 4-Mode Lotus Dynamic Performance Management system with launch control, an exhaust-bypass valve and optimized suspension settings. It also includes Variable Valve Timing, a 9-multiport sequential fuel injection system, and a Harrop HTV 1320 supercharger with an Eaton TVS technology intercooler. Its sophisticated electronics includes a direct ignition system and Lotus Electronic Throttle Control system. The engine is mated to a 6-speed manual gearbox with sports ratios, constant mesh helical gears and open differential. A Bosch Electronic Differential Lock aids traction and stability for this rear-wheel drive sports car.

The Exige “S” LF1 is constructed using composite body panels with an extruded aluminium bonded chassis structure. This lightweight 2,592 lbs. sports car has a wind cheating drag coefficient of 0.433. The front splitter, rear diffuser, and wing are designed to enhance the car’s aerodynamics.

Its fully independent suspension is equipped front and rear with roll bars for aggressive road-holding stability. Bilstein high performance gas-filled dampers and Eibach coaxial coil springs are fitted to the front and rear. Sophisticated rack and pinion steering provides the driver with excellent maneuverability. Standard equipment includes Lotus/Bosch tuned ABS, Hydraulic Brake Assist, Electronic Brake Distribution, and Cornering Brake Control.

The inner world of the Exige “S” LF1 intrigues the senses with leather, Alcantara, and carbon fibre. It is immediately set apart from its Exige “S” siblings by its exclusive carbon fibre build plate. This alerts passengers to the fact this is a piece of Lotus history. The black leather clad interior is highlighted with gold accents in true Lotus motorsport tradition. Embroidered “LF1” logos augment seatbacks, head restraints, and floor mats. The LF1’s Formula 1 heritage and contemporary values are presented as an abstract work of automotive art.

Distinctive F1 livery colors are coordinated throughout 

Meet Colin Chapman’s high-performance legends

The Elite, Elan, and Europa models are Colin Chapman’s 20th Century algorithms which set the stage for today’s high-performance athletes. His indomitable obsession and artful genius created processes and industry innovation that became an epiphany changing sports car design forever.

Formula 1 provenance is the underlying order of every Lotus automobile. The Exige “S” is the extremely swift supercharged sports car based upon these formidable principles. Its capability of achieving 0-60 mph in less than 4 seconds made it the ideal candidate in 2014 as the basis for a distinctive limited-edition sports car to celebrate Lotus historical grand prix victories.

The Exige “S” LF1 was built at a highly restricted pace of 81 vehicles. Each one is serialized sequentially to commemorate the historic grand prix victories from the first in 1960 to the 81st in 2013. The Exige “S” LF1 Formula 1 livery black and gold clad collectibles are worthy additions to your collection – if you get lucky. Hopefully…this will be a short-lived interregnum between grand prix victories for the brand. The Exige is a thoroughbred built in the formidable Lotus tradition. It’s a sporting machine Colin Chapman would be proud to bear his name.

Photos are courtesy of the Lotus Media Club

The Lotus Exige “S” LF1 IS NotoriousLuxury © 2017

Lotus Legends: Elite Sophisto

Posted in Legendary Lotus Series, Lotus with tags , , , , , , on June 25, 2017 by 99MilesPerHour

The Innovative…Beautiful…and Efficient Lotus Elite 

While the other auto manufacturers stretched their offerings to outrageous lengths, added a ton of bright work, and included fins large enough to qualify as aircraft – Colin Chapman did just the reverse…he thought in terms of classic simplicity. His forward thinking involved compact, lightweight aerodynamic architecture with component consolidation for the drivetrain.

His famous rhetorical quote sums his intentions quite eloquently: “Adding power makes one faster on the straights…subtracting weight makes one faster everywhere.” Colin Chapman’s theory yields the most highly collectible Lotus of today, the exceptional Elite. This is the first road-going model for the brand. It’s a truly remarkable car…like champagne and diamonds –   

The Lotus Elite’s styling is fashionably unique for the day. This is the first plastic composite car with a structure built as a single integral unit. It’s designed by Peter Kirwan-Taylor. The sleek design has a drag coefficient of 0.29 and can achieve 40 mpg. (And this car was developed at a time when most cars were sucking the gasoline pumps dry!)

Elite’s lightweight design is augmented by fibreglass monocoque construction. This unique design does not use a separate metal chassis. (Do I detect an ugly skeptical note in your voice?) Underneath the exquisite styling small steel sections are bonded into the fibreglass structure at strategic points. This novel manner of construction boasts inherent rigidity. The stresses at the race tracks proved its lasting qualities. 

Only 1,048 Lotus Elites were built during its production from 1957–1963. More than half of these were imported to the USA. This rarity enhances the Elite’s desirability in the classic car market. The production glass reinforced polyester monocoque for these required 57 molds to make, which was vastly complex and obscenely expensive. Maximar of Sussex, a boat building company, made the first 285 bodyshells. The Elite’s double-skinned structure was a challenge which took its toll on quality control. No two bodyshells were quite the same in precise measurement or materials.

Chapman switched to the Bristol Aircraft Company for the SII version. This was the largest fibreglass contractual agreement in Great Britain at the time. The new bodyshells were refined and far superior to Maximar’s reducing the number of molds required to 43 instead of the initial 57 molds. The Lotus Elite was grossly expensive in its overall production which put a strain on corporate finances biting deeply into company profits. This put Chapman on the brink of bankruptcy. (The Lotus Elan was the saving grace which bailed the company out of the red!)

The Lotus Elite established its place among the classiest sports cars in automotive history. Its cabin designed by Peter Cambridge, reflects that of a stylish road rally tourer projecting classic simplicity. There’s nothing ostentatious per Colin Chapman’s theory of form and functionality. It features a full complement of instrumentation to include speedometer, tach, fuel gauge, water temperature, oil pressure, and battery charge. High-back Dunlop seats, a 16” wood grain steering wheel, and carpeting all compliment Elite’s sporting nature.

There are no frills, no trendy bells and whistles…this car is built for speed. Most European sports cars designed for speed adopt the minimalist approach; therefore, the driver isn’t distracted by fancy trim detailing as well as radios. The list of options for the Lotus Elite included a heater, windscreen washers, and seat belts. Elite Series II has stiffer Royalite thermoplastic door trim with door pockets which double as arm rests. Each side window is made from plexiglass and is removable. The cabin is tastefully built for speed, not luxury  

Under the bonnet resides the Coventry Climax ‘FEW’ powerplant. If properly maintained it is a very reliable power source. It was expensive to build and even more so to rebuild. The Series I aluminium 1216 cc 8-valve in-line 4 cylinder naturally aspirated engine (Series I 1959-1960) is equipped with a single SU 1.5” horizontal carburetor. It produces 75 hp @ 6,100 rpm with 104 Nm of peak torque @ 3,750 rpm. Longitudinal acceleration is rated as 0-60 mph in 10.3 seconds, 0-100 mph in 44 seconds with a top speed in the 101 mph range. It does the ¼ mile @ 78 mph in 17.5 seconds. The engine is mated to the MG 4-speed manual gearbox. Lotus Elite is a front-engine rear-wheel drive sports car.

Series II (1961-1963) is fitted with Twin SU H4 1.5” carburetors which crank 83 hp @ 6,250 rpm with 102 Nm of peak torque @ 4,750 rpm. This version acquired a 4-branch fabricated exhaust manifold and a 3-piece alloy intake manifold. Heavy-duty bottom end construction with 3 main bearings and a deep sump flange on the block gives it more power. The engine has wedge-shaped combustion chambers that house unusually large valves (1.28” intake/ 1.15” exhaust). The engine is mated to the ZF 4-speed manual gearbox. Longitudinal acceleration is rated as 0-60 mph in 9.8 seconds, 0-100 rpm in 33.5 seconds with a top speed in the 103 mph range. It does the ¼ mile @ 81 mph in 17.7 seconds. 

Special variations of the Lotus Elite were built with extreme high-performance in mind. A Special Edition Super 95 Stage II engine is equipped with a high-lift 3-bearing cam, and ignition alterations. It cranks 95 hp @ 6,500 rpm with 100 Nm of peak torque @ 5,000 rpm. The head has 40 thou shaved off to provide a higher compression ratio of 11.0:1 which can hit 7,200 rpm without flexing. Many of the Super 95 models are fitted with Twin Weber 38 DCO carburetors and ZF 4-speed manual gearboxes. The Super 95 has a top speed in the 125 mph range. Only 23 Super 95 versions were built.  

If you want even more bang for your buck, the Super 100 version cranks 100 hp @ 7,200 rpm with 100 Nm of peak torque @ 5,000 rpm and has a top speed in the 130 mph range. Only 6 Super 100 versions were built. The Super 105 cranks 105 hp @ 7,200 rpm with 100 Nm of peak torque @ 5,000 rpm with a top speed in the 130–137 mph range. Only 6 Super 105 versions were built. These fully balanced racing engines were equipped with high-lift 5-bearing cam shafts and 80 thou shaved off the heads to give a higher compression ratio of 11.5:1 and can hit 7,900 rpm without flexing. Both Super 100 and 105 versions are equipped with Twin Weber 38 DCO carburetors and ZF 4-speed manual gearboxes. The 5-bearing versions are not suitable for road use because of high loadings imposed on the valve gear. 

Lotus Elan Type 26R Competition fixed head coupe

Lotus Europa Type 47

Lotus Elite

The Lotus Elite is a revolutionary automotive design which is the first road-going model for the brand. It benefits highly from Colin Chapman’s racing expertise. The Lotus Elite is really a race car in street clothes. Its technology was far ahead of its time. Elites are a culmination of a race-bred heritage, excellent handling, superb road-holding abilities, and outstanding overall ride quality. The one-piece fibreglass monocoque construction is the first of its kind. This lightweight design sports a mere 0.29 drag coefficient making it superfast by all means. Lotus Elite is one of the most highly coveted collectible classic sports cars in existence. Only 1,048 Lotus Elites were built from 1957-1963. This rarity enhances its desirability even further…. 

The Lotus Elite is aesthetically appealing from any angle

Here are 3 of the most coveted classics in automotive history

The indomitable Lotus Elan (1962-1973)

The totally avant-garde Lotus Europa (1967-1975)

The superlatively dynamic Lotus Elite (1957-1963)

…welcome to Greg’s World

Greg’s World IS NotoriousLuxury © 2017

 

Lotus Legends: Europa Twin Cam Ideology

Posted in Legendary Lotus Series with tags , , , , , , , on May 6, 2017 by 99MilesPerHour

Lotus power can be compared to a force that is fierce and unrelenting as a hurricane. Whether clothed in race car attire or simply as a road-going street version, the name Lotus equates to a serendipitous encounter few sports cars can replicate. The mighty “Big Valve” Twin Cam engine produces fury the competitors envy. It proves the theory that humongous engine displacement with numerous cylindrical configurations are not really necessary to produce prodigious, jaw-dropping, pavement-blistering performance. The first generation Type 74 Lotus Europa Twin Cam Special is a synergistic approach to very, very high performance.

By Gtb2 – Europa S1 1967, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=12079462

The Lotus Europa began as the name implies targeting European markets. They were launched initially for French markets as the S1 Type 46 with a Renault engine and gearbox in December of 1966, deliveries started in February 1967. They weren’t available for British and US markets until the S2 version of 1969.

Here’s a word of caution regarding the purchase of the S1 Europa: DON’T! The fibreglass body is bonded to the chassis. The body must be cut away to replace the chassis which is atrociously expensive. The Renault engine is not as good as the Lotus Twin Cam and parts are scarce for a rebuild which is inevitable. Most enthusiasts have switched out the engine to the Twin Cam. The S1 Europas are also very basic. The interiors have fixed non-operational windows, no floor carpeting, fixed seating positions (floor pedals are adjustable), and an aluminum faced dash.

1967 Lotus Europa S1 Type 46

The Europa was homologated as the Type 47 to become a full race version. The engine, suspension, and tires were tweaked to produce 165 hp reaching a top speed in the 143 mph range.

1969 Lotus Europa S2, Elite Garage Zuzwil SG, Switzerland

The following year brought revisions, the S1A & B had removable windows and a wood faced dash. The S2 model introduced in 1968 brought significant improvements to the Europa. A separate backbone chassis made everyone happy from the auto insurance industry to the restoration enthusiasts are tackling today. Electric power windows removed the inherent claustrophobia, adjustable seats, carpeting, and a polished wood dash made the interior more civilized and refined. The most highly desirable Europa models are the Twin Cam variants launched in December 1971. The “Big Valve” Special debuted in 1972. The last of the first generation Lotus Europa models exited the assembly hall in 1975.

The Lotus Europa sports a silhouette like no other car. It’s not an unrealistic, over-achieving, airbrushed, anorexic glam-car at the tracks, it is unregarding, gutsy, and is a real sports car. So it’s not drop dead gorgeous, it’s not perfect – but it is an athletic behemoth capable of awesome, jaw-dropping performance. It’s a low-slung mid-engine dream. The fibreglass body shell has a drag coefficient of a mere 0.29 making it superbly aerodynamic. The Europa’s bold and unconventional design bucks status quo for the day.

The Twin Cam rear body styling is trimmer than the Renault Europa which not only improves rear visibility but also makes them more aesthetically appealing. The Europa’s compact dimensions aided stability and aerodynamic efficiency. Twin Cam versions are stretched 1” longer to accommodate the larger engine.

The 157.5” overall length is augmented by a 92” wheelbase and 64.5” width. The Lotus Europa is only 42.5” in ride height. Its handcrafted fibreglass body shell has rigid torsional strength with a separate steel backbone chassis. This manner of build is void of squeaks and rattles. It also makes restoration easier; as with all first generation Lotus models – the chassis must be replaced at some point in time.

Initially, the Type 74 Europa Special was to be limited to 200 vehicles. Response to this new car was so great it continued through the end of production. Out of a total of 4,710 Type 74 Europas, 3,130 are built as Specials. The first 100 Big Valve Europa Specials were painted black with gold pin striping honoring the Team Lotus 1972 F1 World Championship title. This is the livery color of the GP cars for the sponsor which the models are named “John Player Specials.”

More color choices were introduced later on during the production tenure. Twin Cam models present a sportier appearance with signature features such as lower profile rear buttresses and a small front air dam under the chin. Twin fuel filler caps for the Twin Cam Europas are another distinguishing feature. The two fuel tanks total 12.5 gallons which is an increase over previous models.

Lotus 72 F1 in John Player Special Livery colors compliments of http://www.f1fanatic.co.uk/2010/01/16/great-f1-cars-in-pictures-lotus-72-autosport-international/autosportinternational_lotu/

By now, you can clearly see the Type 74 Twin Cam Europa is the best of all models. The Special is equally as feisty as the formidable Elan Sprint with the “Big Valve” powerplant. This naturally aspirated 2-valve per cylinder in-line 1558cc 4-banger is equipped with Twin Dell ‘Orto DHLA40 carburetors. The Big Valve engine has a cast iron block topped with an aluminium head. It’s equipped with a DOHC and the crankshaft runs in five main bearings.

This version of the Twin Cam cranks 126 hp @ 6,500 rpm with 153 Nm of peak torque @ 5,500 rpm. It redlines @ 6,800 rpm. The gearbox is mounted behind the engine and final drive forming a transaxle. It is inverted to provide forward gears. The Big Valve Twin Cam produces more torque; therefore, requires the heftier type 365 heavy-duty 5-speed manual gearbox.

Longitudinal acceleration is rated as: 0-60 mph in 6.1 seconds, 0-100 mph in 15.7 seconds, 0-120 mph in 28.3 seconds with a top speed in the 124-128 mph range. It does the ¼ mile @ 94 mph in just 14.7 seconds. The gearbox is a bit awkward and takes a bit of getting used to because of the cable linkage. It’s a mid-engine rear-drive rocket. 

The Europa Special has a separate fibreglass body shell and steel box-section backbone chassis as the Elan. It is a different configuration since the engine is longitudinally rear mid-mounted. The engine sits just behind the cockpit. Europas have a 56/44 rear-biased weight distribution. A 4-wheel independent suspension uses basically the same front suspension as the Elan. The front has upper and lower wishbones, spring dampers, and an anti-roll bar for stability. Lotus Europas use a lengthened version of the Herald-derived Alford & Adler rack and pinion steering system with a modified coupling to the Herald column.

The rear suspension features a large box steel trailing arm on either side anchored to the chassis in line with the cockpit bulkhead, fixed length drive shafts, coil springs, and telescopic dampers. A steel crossmember is bolted to the chassis above the gearbox to provide the mounts for the spring dampers. Europa Specials are equipped with the Girling brake system 9.5” discs fitted to the front axle and 8x 1 ¼ “drums to the rear. There are conversion kits available today to convert the rear brakes to disc type. Servo assisted brakes are standard for Twin Cam and Special models. The Lotus Europa continues Colin Chapman’s basic lightweight theory.

Lotus Twin Cam and Special models have more civilized cockpits than their Spartan predecessors. The foot wells are a bit larger and lower due to the extra 1” longer wheelbase. More sound deadening materials insulates the cabin. A new oatmeal color was added as an option. The last of the line Europa Specials incorporate cord inserts into the upholstery.

Carpeting and wood veneer dash accents makes them more upscale. Electrically operated windows, and comprehensive instrumentation adds to their more luxurious stature. The Lotus Twin Cam and Special models offer excellent overall performance, outstanding handling attributes, and a more relaxed attitude at high speeds as it adheres to the pavement like a magnet. This fierce Lotus flexes its muscles…as it minds its manners –

Lotus Europa Type 47

Lotus Europa S2 Type 54

Lotus Europa Type 74 Twin Cam Special

Colin Chapman’s forward thinking made the Lotus brand ahead of the pack for the day. The Europa Twin Cam Special with its mid-rear longitudinally mounted engine came about when Lamborghini and Matra were the only auto manufacturers to use such daring innovation. The most desirable Europa models are endowed with the mighty “Big Valve” Twin Cam engine. It moves the Europa with aplomb. This sleek, low-slung, brute has its own unique panache; there’s nothing else on the road quite like it.

The ultimate addition to your classic muscle car collection would be an Elan Sprint and a Europa Twin Cam Special – talk about a sophisticated power couple…this is the epitome. The Europa models are true to Colin Chapman’s philosophy regarding his minimalist approach with lightweight construction, aerodynamic efficiency, and ingenious component consolidation. What the ugly duckling lacks in appearance…it more than makes up for it in inexhaustible power and outstanding performance. The Lotus Europa Twin Cam and Twin Cam Special models are in a league of their own –

Lotus Elan Sprint

Special thanks to Conceptcarz, Favcars.com, F1 Fanatic, Wikipedia, Wallpaperup, and Elite Garage Zuzwil SG, Switzerland for the use of their photos of these extremely rare sports cars.

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