The formidable Eldorado legend continues…
…in the continuing saga of “As the Standard of the World Turns”
“The Standard of the World” for Nineteen Hundred and Sixty was one of the world’s most luxurious automobiles. The epitome of Cadillac luxury was the formidable Eldorado series. These elegant automobiles were crafted entirely by Fleetwood on a separate assembly line dedicated to this exclusive limited edition model series. The 1960 Eldorado Seville hardtop coupe was the ultimate Flagship.
Style code # 60-64 6437 H Series 6400 Eldorado Seville had a base price of $7,401 and only 1,075 were built for the 1960 model year. This was also the last production year for the Eldorado Seville. This is another dramatic finale for a distinguished cast member…in the continuing saga of “As the Standard of the World turns.”
Exclusivity and Supremacy are nouns that aptly describe the fabulous Eldorados. In 1960 Cadillac held the status “Standard of the World” for fifty-eight consecutive years…the ultimate Flagships for Cadillac’s 1960 model year were the Eldorado Biarritz convertible and the Eldorado Seville hardtop coupe.
The Seville had an exclusive roof covered in luxurious Vicodec. Both Biarritz and Seville were built at a restricted pace to retain exclusivity. The Eldorado series earned the unqualified admiration of the world’s most discerning motorists.
Dignity, distinction, and grace of beauty played a major role in the stature attained by these magnificent motorcars. The 1960 Cadillacs were stream lined, with finer, trimmer lines.
The Eldorado Seville hardtop coupe maintained that poised dignity which was the hallmark of every Cadillac. The Eldorado models were available in fifteen standard and five exclusive colors. The Eldorado series was the most aristocratic of Cadillacs.
The styling was refined to a more contemporary look for 1960. The iconic Cadillac tail fins were neatly manicured to blend into the architecture seamlessly. The Eldorado Seville had a signature stainless steel molding which was a dual-bead design that arched gracefully along the length of the car.
“Eldorado” was identified on each front fender. From its aggressive front end ensemble swept back to the flatter horizontal plains of the gracefully trimmed tail fins, the 1960 Eldorado Seville hardtop coupe was the pinnacle of elegance and refinement. In glamour, lasting beauty and comfort, the Eldorado Seville was without conjecture one of the most lavishly bestowed motorcars in the world.
The 1960 Cadillac Eldorado Seville was as luxurious on the inside as it was on the outside. The instrument panel had a jewel-like appearance with all gauges and controls within convenient placement.
The 1960 Seville received a new steering wheel and contoured horn bar. With the use of Cadillac’s X-frame, seat height and legroom were increased because the construction permitted lower body mounts.
The Eldorado Seville was one class act. It was comprehensively equipped to provide the utmost in motoring majesty. Seat backs and seat cushions were hand trimmed in fine Florentine and Cardiff leathers harmonizing with elegant Cardinal cloth.
The Eldorado Seville featured as standard equipment: wide center folding arm rests front and rear, power windows, power six-way seat, power vent windows, power vacuum operated door locks, electric clock, courtesy lighting, heater/defroster, remote-controlled left outside rearview mirror, power vent windows, windshield wiper/washers, remote control trunk release, and white wall tires.
The 1960 Eldorado Seville was powered by Cadillac’s 6.0 litre “Q” engine. The “Q” engine differed from the standard V8 by offering 345 hp @ 4,800 rpm with 590 Nm of peak torque @ 3,400 rpm. Performance was rated as 0-60 mph in 10.8 seconds, 0-100 mph in 29.2 seconds with a top speed of 126 mph. It could do the ¼ mile @ 83 mph in 17.9 seconds.
The engine was equipped with a “Triple Deuce” which was a Rochester 3-2bbl set-up. Its sophisticated design used the central dual barrel for normal operation. When the accelerator pedal was depressed beyond 75% travel, both secondary barrels open simultaneously producing a vast increase in power. The engine used the 4-bbl downdraft with equalized manifold, mechanical fuel pump, dry-pack air cleaner, intake silencer, and an automatic choke.
The 1960 Eldorado Seville was built as body on frame construction. It was built on Cadillac’s rugged tubular X-Frame which provided torsional rigidity. It permitted lower body mounting for improved appearance and stability.
The front suspension used upper and lower control arms. It was equipped with independent helical coil springs, and spherical ball joints. It also used inner threaded forked arm bearings, tapered roller bearings, and a torsion rod stabilizer bar, and hydraulic direct-acting shock absorbers.
Cadillac’s four-link drive rear suspension was refined with new lower control arms that incorporated a two-leaf spring that contributed to a quieter ride and helped to cushion starting/stopping thrusts between axle and frame.
The upper yoke was connected to the highest points of the frame and to the top of the rear axle housing by a ball joint, which keeps more weight below the pivot point thus minimizing body roll on curves and sharp turns.
It used a hypoid type rear axle with offset differential housing to facilitate straight-line drive. The 1960 Eldorado Seville rode upon a long 130” wheelbase, had the luxury length of 225” and was 79.1″ in width. The rear suspension used hydraulic direct-Acting inverted “V” mounted shock absorbers. Rubber bushings were used to absorb road impact and isolate road noise.
Cadillac air suspension was standard for the Eldorado Seville. This primitive system was quirky and proned to failure. Most owners bought the GM helical coil spring conversion kits to keep those gorgeous Cadillacs at proper ride height. Those air suspension systems were proned to fail at most embarrassing moments.
I remember seeing an Eldorado Brougham backing off a steep incline and one of its bladders busted and it instantly became un-driveable… lop-sided…the owner was horrified! Those systems would have been awesome had they been ‘real features.’
They were supposed to keep the vehicle at optimum ride height at all times. This system was also working when the car was off. Manual adjustment permitted raising ground clearance by several inches for deep mud, snow, or steep inclines….excuse me? It was the steep incline that I saw take the Brougham out of service…but the problematic air suspension’s days were numbered…
Standard for the 1960 Eldorado Seville was the Cadillac Power Brake system. New self-adjusting brake shoes adjusted themselves automatically compensating for brake lining wear. This assured consistent braking action without service adjustment for the lining life. The adjustment happened each time the car was driven in reverse with the brakes applied.
Cadillac’s new finned rear brake drums dissipated heat faster, redistributing the brake action more evenly between the front and rear wheels. Drums were fitted to all four wheels. The brake system included a new vacuum release parking brake that released when the engine was running and car in gear. It could be used as a true auxiliary brake since it wouldn’t lock with the car in-gear.
The 345 hp V8 was a brilliant example of Cadillac’s unequaled length of experience with V8 powerplants. The fabled “Triple Deuce” added adrenalin to an already potent engine. The brilliantly responsive 1960 Eldorado Seville showcased new dignity, refinement, and the legendary Cadillac hand-craftsmanship.
Superb Fleetwood fit & finish went into the Eldorado Seville…as witnessed by the luxurious new fabrics and beautiful new leathers impeccably crafted by artisans who did things only one way: the right way. A Cadillac Eldorado was the EPITOME of the brand’s luxury. The Eldorado was the very essence of Cadillac.
The 1960 Eldorado Seville hardtop coupe was the last Eldorado Seville to roll off the assembly line. They were quite rare as well, only 1,075 copies were built. For $7,401 plus tax etc…look at what you could be driving back in 1960! This price doesn’t even cover the sales tax and destination fees per today’s miniatures when engine repairs alone would exceed $7000.
And that is NO fun when those expensive procedures must be repeated…ask some of the CTS & CTS-V owners who are now on their 2nd or 3rd engine/transmission and or other ‘strange’ idiosyncratic behavior…those things are wreaking havoc in the repair bays…
These automobiles were built at the summit of the automaker’s craft. I wonder will we ever see prestige, decadent luxury, and Cadillac-style ever again? Let’s face it, once you’ve driven “the real McCoys” the fake generation we are pretending to enjoy currently seems utterly absurd, and to add insult to the massive coronary…we have to pay this kind of money for ‘kitsch’…
This is another “Forget-me-not”…in the continuing saga of “As the Standard of the World Turns.”