The next generation of the luxury car….
Cadillac’s first downsizing was the 1977-1979 model years
The 1978 Fleetwood Brougham was the next generation of the luxury car. The 1977-1979 model years were Cadillac’s first downsizing. These were the most efficient in Cadillac’s history. They were engineered from the ground-up making more efficient use of space. This next generation luxury car was made easier to service. They had increased head and legroom with more usable trunk space.
The Fleetwood Brougham for 1978 had clean, crisp, sculpted lines. They had better maneuverability for easier overall operation. These new Flagships offered the traditional Cadillac roominess, luxury, and elegance, in an all-new size. A lightweight V8 engine added unusual spirit to this motorcar of such dignity. The 1978 Cadillac Fleetwood Brougham was a special car for special people.
The 1978 model year for Cadillac offered trim and highly efficient luxury cars. The Fleetwood Brougham was designed for the times. It was nearly two-feet shorter than previous Fleetwoods, and it was nimble and quick. Gone were its Fleetwood coachcrafted body and individually longer wheelbase. The Fleetwood Brougham now shared its platform with the Sedan deVille, it also shared the same overall dimensions. The vinyl roof and its pillar treatment differentiated the Fleetwood Brougham from the Sedan deVille. The Fleetwood Brougham was further distinguished with a frenched limousine-style rear window treatment.
Elegant refinements and luxurious roominess made the 1978 Fleetwood Brougham a superb luxury sedan. Electronic Level Control replaced the previous Automatic Level Control to maintain proper poise automatically for varied driving situations. 1978 Cadillacs used matched-mounted tires and wheels to reduce rolling resistance. Cadillac engineers retuned body mounts and structure for a smoother, quieter, ride. For straight, fade-resistant stopping power, four-wheel disc brakes were standard. From the handsome new grille to the distinctive new tail lamps, the 1978 Fleetwood Brougham was as efficient as it was beautiful.
Standard features for the 1978 Fleetwood Brougham included: Automatic Climate Control, power windows and door locks, Variable Ratio Power Steering, whitewall steel belted radial tires, Electronic Level Control, lamp monitors, AM/FM Signal Seeking radio with scanner and power antenna, Dual Comfort 50/50 front seats with six-way driver and two-way passenger power adjustment, manual passenger recliner, opera lamps, fully padded vinyl roof, and Freedom Battery. Eleven leather and seven Florentine velour choices were available for the interior upholstery. Cadillac offered many features and accessories optional to add further distinction to the 1978 Fleetwood Brougham.
The optional d’Elegance package offered contoured pillow-style seating
The 1978 Cadillacs were powered by the 7.0 litre 425 CID 16-valve OHV V8 engine. It was equipped with a Rochester 4-bbl Quadrajet and mechanical fuel pump. The engine produced 180 hp @ 4,000 rpm with 434 Nm of peak torque @ 2,000 rpm. Performance was rated as 0-60 mph in 11.7 seconds, 0-100 mph in 38.8 seconds with a top speed of 112 mph. It did the ¼ mile @ 76 mph in 19 seconds. The engine was mated to GM’s Turbo Hydra-Matic automatic transmission.
The 1978 Fleetwood Brougham was built as body on frame construction. It used a ladder type frame with welded cross members. The front suspension used the traditional upper and lower control arms, integral steering knuckle, arm and caliper support, integral hubs and rotors on spindles, tapered roller bearings with spherical joint, independent coil springs, link-type stabilizer bar, and hydraulic Direct Action shock absorbers.
The rear suspension used a four-link drive, coil springs, electronic height control network, and hydraulic Direct Action shock absorbers. The 1978 Fleetwood Brougham rode on a long 121.5” wheelbase and had the luxury length of 221.2”. It was 76.4” wide. Four-wheel self-adjusting disc brakes with a dual hydraulic master cylinder facilitating independent front and rear operation were standard.
Genuine long-laced wire spoke wheels, Cadillac-style
In keeping with the times Cadillac did their first downsizing with their 1977-1979 models. This next generation of the luxury car was trim and highly efficient. Its size made perfect sense with the rising cost of petroleum. The 1978 Fleetwood Brougham was the new breed of luxury car. A potent 7.0 litre V8 moved this modern architecture with unusual spirit. It was fully equipped as standard with many options available to further enhance comfort and convenience Cadillac-style. The 1978 Fleetwood Brougham’s spacious understated elegance made it a world-class sedan. Power, performance, and prestige were yours with the 1978 Fleetwood Brougham by Cadillac.
Thanks to Matt Garrett/GM Classics for keeping the spirit alive!
The 1975-1976 Fleetwood Brougham were the last Fleetwoods….
Good taste never goes out of style….as witnessed by the 1966 Brougham
1964 Cadillac Fleetwood
1978 Cadillac Fleetwood Brougham