1959 Cadillac Series Sixty-two Convertible
…the drama continues
…in the continuing saga of “As the Standard of the World Turns”
Cadillac for 1959 was the new “Standard of the World” in performance, engineering, and luxury. Two great new high-performance Cadillac engines were engineered for the 1959 model year. The 4-bbl carburetted version was standard. The “Triple Deuce” was available as a high output V8 engine for the Eldorado series. The Cadillacs for 1959 were all-new from the ground up. The iconic tail fins were the controversial selling feature. They were the tallest tail fins in the industry.
The Series Sixty-two convertible was a beautiful new edition of this glamorous open tourer. The long-low, sweeping lines of its architecture made it appear even larger than it was. The 1959 Cadillac Series Sixty-two convertible, style code #6267F was base priced at $5,455 and 11,130 were built. The Series “Sixty-two” was reassigned to Series 6200 (numerically) for the 1959 model year. This is another classic encore performance…in the continuing saga of “AS the Standard of the World Turns.”
The 1959 Series Sixty-two convertible embodied impressive dignity and gracious distinction with new beauty and durability. It was the finest comfort and most satisfying performance ever achieved in Cadillacs’ fifty-seven years of being the “Standard of the World.”
The silhouette was 5.5” lower than the previous model allowing it to appear sleeker and more contemporary. It was the outrageous tail fins that stood out making the 1959 models the most popular and most readily identifiable Cadillacs and remain that way today appreciating positively in worth.
The 1959 Cadillac Series sixty-two convertible was upholstered in fine Leeds grain leathers offered in eight color selections including solids and two-tones. These interiors were as classy as the exteriors.
This was open air touring at its finest. The Series Sixty-two convertible came standard with a power, fully automatic folding fabric roof. The Cadillac convertible has always combined comfort and beauty with the spirit of adventure.
The 1959 edition was a masterpiece of symmetry and balance. This car called for a sunny day and a nice leafy run. With the top down…those tail fins looked as though they spanned for miles. More standard amenities included; power windows, power seat, folding front seat center arm rest, courtesy lighting, power steering, power brakes, Hydra-Matic Drive, and the Cadillac peace of mind that came along with the legend…there was no more magnificent manner in which to travel than from behind the wheel of a Cadillac convertible…
The 1959 Series Sixty-two convertible offered new trim styles and materials. It had a new instrument panel with redesigned instrument cluster and 17” steering wheel. It also had new control knobs and levers, new power brake pedal, new emergency brake pedal & release, new accelerator pedal, 3-speed electric wiper/washers, and electric clock.
The objective in designing and building Cadillac engines has been since the car’s inception…to produce the finest, best balanced powerplants in the luxury car segment. This means engines with adequate power to move a big car with effortless ease and flexibility, to carry it swiftly up inclines without hesitation, and to perform hour upon hour at highway speeds with no audible sign of its presence. The objective of delivering this abundance of power was notorious reliability and economy.
The 325 hp version was equipped with a 4-bbl carburetor which worked as two sets of dual barrel carburetors. The primary unit with smaller barrels are used during idle and at normal cruising ranges. The secondary unit with larger barrels is the booster and kicks-in when the accelerator is depressed further to the floor for rapid acceleration or climbing steep grades.
The 390 CID 16-valve OHV V8 engine was equipped with a Carter AFB 2814S 4-bbl downdraft carburetor with equalized manifold, mechanical fuel pump, dry pack air cleaner, intake silencer, and automatic choke. The engine produced 325 hp @ 4,800 rpm with 583 Nm of peak torque @ 3,100 rpm. Performance was rated as 0-60 mph in 10.6 seconds, 0-100 mph in 29.2 seconds with a top speed of 126 mph. It did the ¼ mile @ 83 mph in 17.8 seconds. The engine was mated to GM’s Hydra-Matic (Jetaway/Flashaway) 4-speed automatic transmission.
The 345 hp Cadillac “Q” engine was standard on Eldorado models, optional at extra cost on all other models. It provided all of the attributes of the 325 hp V8 but through the use of a three-dual barrel carburetor set-up, or triple deuce as it was known. The central barrel unit was used for all normal operation such as idle, starting, and cruising speeds. When extra power was needed the driver depressed the accelerator beyond 75% of its travel, then both secondary dual barrels opened simultaneously releasing maximum power for quick acceleration, or climbing very steep inclines.
Both of these high-performance engines were designed with larger displacement, higher compression, new tapered exhaust valves, a new free-flow intake manifold, new pistons, rods and crankshaft, which improved engine operation and overall dependability, improved warm-up performance, and smoother, steadier idling.
The 1959 Cadillac Series Sixty-two convertible was built as body on frame construction. It utilized Cadillac’s rugged tubular-center X-frame for improved appearance and greater stability. This type of construction permitted a lower body mount with increased interior legroom front and rear.
The 1959 Series Sixty-two convertible rode upon a long 130” wheelbase, had the luxury length of 225” and had a wide 80.3” stance. This new Cadillac chassis featured improved braking, steering, driving ease, and riding comfort.
The front suspension used upper and lower control arms with forked arm bearings inner threaded, independent helical coil springs, spherical ball joints, stabilizer torsion rod, and hydraulic direct-acting shock absorbers.
The rear suspension used Cadillac’s four-link drive, helical coil springs, hydraulic direct-acting inverted “V” mounted shock absorbers, and rubber bushings to improve ride quality.
More glamorous than ever before…the Series Sixty-two convertible was dramatic in styling. The incomparable elegance of its design, the superb performance of its magnificent new 325 hp V8 engine, and all of Cadillac’s newest engineering innovations made this new “Standard of the World” creation stand out among the finest motorcars in the world.
The strikingly beautiful exterior was augmented by those iconic tail fins. The 1959 Cadillacs are destined to become cherished museum pieces. The 1959 Series Sixty-two convertible is an excellent example of Cadillac skill and alluring spirit. Its completely new profile and interior elegance marked it as one of the most dramatic and inspiring motorcars of all time.
Power, prestige, and presence were the fortuitous advantages of this luxury convertible. The 1959 Cadillac Series Sixty-two convertible made its classic cameo appearance…in the continuing saga of “As the Standard of the World Turns.”
The world will never forget those towering tail fins…
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