Archive for Cadillac

1960 Cadillac Series 6300 Coupe deVille – Dignity,Distinction, Grace, and Beauty

Posted in "As the Standard of the World Turns", Cadillac, Cadillac Historical, Cadillac: Masterpiece from the Master Craftsmen, Classic American Marques with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on December 29, 2017 by 99MilesPerHour

Welcome to the pomp and splendor of the traditional Cadillac motorcar. It is more than a mere automobile…it is a legend and a lifestyle. Cadillac earned the reputation as the superlative of superlatives through sophisticated engineering and exemplary craftsmanship. A traditional Cadillac moves with tremendous verve and élan. Luxury and innovation is the constant companion when one chose to drive the formidable “Standard of the World.”

The traditional Cadillac remains as one of the most revered automobiles to connoisseurs world-wide. One model in particular dominated this rare arena becoming “America’s favorite luxury car.” The iconic and unforgettable DeVille series is a jewel in the crown of General Motors. Coupes deVille and Sedans deVille consistently took turns leading sales production totals. Their unequalled pre-eminence made them the universal status symbol.

The 1960 Cadillac Series 6300 Coupe deVille is the quintessential example of American excess – flamboyant…yet tasteful. It echoes success. There’s new elegance and refinement. The epochal “Standard of the World” had once again left its indelible signature in the ultra-luxury car segment. Bill Mitchell, chief design engineer for General Motors gave the 1960 Cadillac an elegant poised dignity.

Overall styling refinement and restrained use of ornamentation diminished the bling from the 1959 Harley Earl design. These new models advanced the Cadillac tradition of excellence to an extraordinary degree. The 1960 Cadillac Series 6300 Coupe deVille showcases its dignity, refinement, and dramatic beauty…in the continuing saga of “As the Standard of the World Turns.”

The traditional Cadillac is the most charismatic luxury automobile to motor out of Detroit, Michigan. It was the American dream. Life…liberty…and the pursuit of Cadillac – nothing on the road could compare. The “Standard of the World” is an innovator, it follows in no other auto manufacturer’s tire tracks. It never took styling cues from the competition, Cadillac designed its cars to be ultra-exclusive. The entire auto industry took note. The “other” luxury car was forced into submission by the “Standard of the World.”

Exquisite fit & finish, superb engineering, and an inexhaustible dedication to excellence allowed it to carve its own exclusive niche in the luxury car segment. The traditional Cadillac is the most impressive and the most glamorous of all American Grand Marques…it’s the iconic tail fins that made it most charismatic. In 1960, Cadillac had been “Standard of the World” for fifty-eight years. These cars were built when “Made in the U.S.A.” meant something special…

The Beauty

For 1960, Cadillac presented a refined new sophistication. The tail fins were trimmed and tapered into the bodywork. This made the entire vehicle appear longer, lower, and wider. Bill Mitchell removed the ‘excess’ from Harley Earl’s genre making Cadillac even more luxurious. The tail lamps are now integrated into the fins for Mitchell’s “tailored look.” Turn signal lamps and back-up lamps are neatly set into chrome oval nacelles coordinating the contemporary new restyle.

The front-end ensemble is augmented by its wide cross-hatch grille design with alternate bars beveled to reflect a contrasting jewel-like pattern. A less ornate bumper is more sophisticated. Turn signal monitors integrated into the top of the crown moldings atop of each fender flash small amber lights alerting the driver to left and right turns. The overall look enhanced Coupe deVille’s sweeping silhouette making it lower, more refined yet completely in character with the “Standard of the World.” It’s remarkable how just a few changes made the 1960 model look completely restyled when it was not. Restrained use of ornamentation gives the car an understated elegance.

1959 Cadillacs sported the tallest tail fins in the industry

Series 6200, 6300, and 6400 use the same bodyshell

Comfort and convenience

Coupe deVille’s cabin is an exercise in sheer splendor. The luxury continues to proliferate…Cadillac-Style. A newly designed instrument panel places pertinent information directly in the driver’s sight for quick assessment; the instrument cluster is recessed into the dash eliminating annoying reflection.

The DeVille series is endowed with special appointments to make each journey as rewarding as the destination. Wide folding center armrests front and rear augment the wide bench seating for sofa-like comfort. Coupe deVille’s deep-seated elegance pampers up to six passengers spaciously. Power windows, 2-way power seat, power steering and brakes all provide a constant source of pleasure.

Cadillac Air Conditioning was a popular option

One may repose within the epitome of luxury with the standard diamond patterned nylon Chadwick tailored cloth interior or optional Cambray cloth with Florentine leather bolsters. Elegant Trieste nylon blend deep loop-pile carpeting flows lavishly throughout covering floor, lower door kick panels, and cowl sidewalls. The front floor tunnel is lower and narrower as a result of a more compact design of the transmission housing.

This equates to even more foot room for front seat passengers. The accelerator pedal has a recess at the base which the ladies like; this accommodates high heels making the alternation between the brake pedal easier. The pedals have improved spacing for added convenience. Coupe deVille interiors are designed and handcrafted by Fleetwood to suit the most discriminating taste.

The dramatic elegance and majesty of Coupe deVille for 1960 could have been ordered to suit the buyer. These amenities include Cadillac Air Conditioning that not only heats, cools but also removes dust, pollen, and smoke. The convenience of power door locks allows front seat passengers to lock and unlock the doors at the touch of a button.

A power trunk lock not only releases the deck lid but also when the lid is lowered it is securely locked automatically. Cruise Control maintains a set speed reducing fatigue on long journeys. Exclusive Cadillac Guide-Matic headlamp control automatically dips the high beams upon the approach of on-coming vehicles; the high beams ‘blink-off’ a second time as a reminder to the on-coming vehicle to dip their high beams as well. The traditional Cadillac was a blank canvas to become as individual as one’s own fingerprints.

Model # 60-63J style # 6337J 1960 Cadillac Series 6300 Coupe deVille two-door hardtop was base priced at $5,252, has a base shipping weight of 4,705 pounds, and 21,585 were built. Coupe deVille for 1960 has the luxury length of 225”, rides a long 130” wheelbase, and is 79.9” wide. It is a very large front engine rear-wheel drive vehicle. Hagerty Insurance Agency of Traverse City, Michigan values the 1960 Coupe deVille as: $47,200 USD for Concours condition, $29,800 USD for excellent condition, $21,100 USD for good condition, and $13,300 USD for fair condition.

Engine and Chassis

1960 Cadillacs are powered as a true luxury leader should be. The Cadillac 6.4 litre 16-valve 390 CID V8 provides effortless, silky-smooth operation at all speeds. It’s built using a cast iron block and cylinder heads mounted at three points with Vulcanized rubber engine mounts. The engine is equipped with a Carter AFB 2814S 4-bbl downdraft carburetor with equalized manifolding, mechanical fuel pump, dry-pack air cleaner, intake silencer, automatic choke, and dual exhaust.

These cars may be driven using only two primary barrels of the four to aid fuel economy. The trick is not to press the accelerator too hard leaving traffic lights and stop signs…but you have to move quickly through to the third gear. Not saying jack-rabbit starts but you need to get from a standing start to third gear quickly. When the accelerator pedal is depressed quickly beyond 75% the secondary barrels open. (burp-n-slurp!)

Ahhh…a real Cadillac engine

Cadillac has built some really impressive V8 engines. The magnificent 390 CID V8 cranks 325 hp @ 4,800 rpm with 583 Nm of peak torque @ 3,100 rpm. It is capable of obtaining 14 mpg if properly maintained and driven with the primary barrels. Longitudinal acceleration is rated as: 0-60 mph in 10.6 seconds, 0-100 mpg in 29.2 seconds with a top speed in the 122-125 range. It can do the ¼ mile @ 83 mph in 17.7 seconds. This engine delivers more hp per pound of engine weight than any other luxury car in its class for 1960.

The engine is mated to the highly successful Cadillac Hydra-Matic transmission. It provides dual drive range operation. So, what’s dual range? The left-hand side DR (Drive Range) position allows four forward gear ratios automatically. The right-hand position DR is for city driving locking out fourth gear up to 75 mph providing instant acceleration without step-down. LO range is provided for deep sand or mud and steep grades.

Coupe deVille has a traditional build as body on frame construction. Cadillac’s rugged tubular X-frame yields lower body mounts equating to more interior room and improved overall appearance. The front suspension has upper and lower control arms with spherical joints and helical coil springs which is sturdier than contemporary build automobiles.

The rear suspension fine tunes the Cadillac Magic Carpet Ride further with 4-link drive and helical coil springs. The Hypoid type rear axle has an off-set differential housing to facilitate Cadillac’s straight-line-drive. Coupe deVille’s power brakes are drum type with self-adjusting shoes. The brakes calibrate themselves each time the car is driven in reverse and the brakes applied. The rear drums are finned to dissipate heat rapidly.

New for 1960 is an automatic vacuum release parking brake that doubles as a tandem auxiliary brake in an emergency. This system evolved into Cadillac’s “Triple Braking System” for the 1962 model year. A split hydraulic master cylinder has independent front and rear braking systems in case one set fails the other set will still maintain 100% braking ability.

This 1960 Cadillac Series 6300 Coupe deVille has a secret. It belonged at one time to a very special person. It was the personal car for Canadian-born Ann Rutherford Dozier (1917-2012). She had the role of Poly Benedict in the 1930s and 1940s in “The Andy Hardy” series. She also had the role of Scarlett O’Hara’s sister Carreen in “Gone with the Wind.” Her illustrious career spanned five decades. The car was sold by Daniel Schmitt Classic Cars.

Cadillac motorcars from this genre are unique luxury automobiles. They paved the way for contemporary auto manufacturers with innovation and engineering setting industry standards. The 1960 Edition of the “Standard of the World” is another jewel in the legend’s crown. It’s a fine automobile that not only delivered the epitome of luxury and opulence but high performance as well. Only sports cars from Coupe deVille’s day share prodigious power exceeding 300 hp making DeVille a unique expression of American luxury. It reinforced Cadillac’s omnipotence in the luxury marketplace.

The traditional Cadillac is second to none. Coupe deVille is a very eloquent example of the mission while retaining the poised dignity that is the hallmark of every traditional Cadillac. Today’s luxury cars are ephemeral. Their transitory and unsubstantial designs are blamed on aerodynamics to optimize fuel economy. Luxury automobiles such as the magnificent 1960 Series 6300 Coupe deVille have become cherished classics. The traditional Cadillac motorcar will always be showcased…in the continuing saga of “As the Standard of the World Turns.”

1960 Cadillac Series 6200 convertible coupé 

1960 Cadillac Series 6200 two-door hardtop coupé 

1960 Cadillac Series 6400 Eldorado Biarritz convertible coupé 

1960 Cadillac Series 6300 Coupe deVille

…the continuing saga of “As the Standard of the World Turns”

Welcome to Greg’s World…

Greg’s World IS NotoriousLuxury  © 2018

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1966 Cadillac Fleetwood Eldorado Convertible – The Last of an Eloquent Breed

Posted in "As the Standard of the World Turns", Cadillac, Cadillac Historical, Classic American Marques with tags , , , , , , , , , , on November 9, 2017 by 99MilesPerHour

Luxury car manufacturers played in a different league at one time. It is the American ultra-luxury automobile that led the entire world in sophistication, design & engineering prowess…the charismatics alone sent shock waves throughout the auto industry. One guess who had the competition running scared…annually. The iconic “Standard of the World” intrigued luxury car buyers with tasteful ad campaigns as we waited with bated breath for the new “Cadillac of Cadillacs” to debut.

The Cadillac Motor Division of General Motors crafted a “Standard of Excellence” no other luxury automobile could match. The traditional Cadillac motorcar is a true masterpiece from the Master Craftsmen. I prefaced the story this way to prove a point. I keep writing about a special kind of Cadillac…the ‘traditional’ Cadillac because it was an institution. I am not saying let’s get locked in a time warp in the past – why not: “Give Americans the luxury icon we had come to know. Cadillac is a legend…as well as a lifestyle!” This my friend…is the true penalty of leadership –

1953 Cadillac Series 62 Eldorado convertible coupé

The traditional Cadillac became synonymous with success – its hallmark…was a poised dignity no other luxury car in the world could replicate. The formidable Cadillac reputation was consistently refined and managed through a process of evolution. Eldorado is Cadillac’s first real glamour car. This name prodigiously represents Cadillac’s most exclusive flagship models. It began as an extremely successful concept in luxury convertibles in 1953. Eldorado luxury hardtop coupé and convertible coupé models were built at a highly restricted pace to retain their exclusivity.

It became Cadillac’s most luxurious model when Eldorado morphed into the Brougham, a four-door pillarless hardtop sedan that’s also a limited edition. The last of the rear-wheel drive models is the 1966 Fleetwood Eldorado convertible coupé. These luxurious automobiles are indicative of Cadillac’s pre-eminence in the luxury car segment. Their impeccable craftsmanship reflects the pride associated with the brand. Eldorado Elegance, Excellence, and Excitement continues…in the continuing saga of “As the Standard of the World Turns.”

1957-1958 Series 70 Eldorado Brougham by Fleetwood

The Fabulous Fleetwood-bodied Series 70 Eldorado Brougham is the most expensive luxury car made in America for the day at $13,074 USD. It is the counter to Ford Motor Company’s 1956 Continental MK II.

Fleetwood Eldorados from this genre share platforms and body components with the DeVille series. They are a little more than a “dolled-up” DeVille as many assume. Being a member of the elite Fleetwood series has its perks. The iconic laurel wreath and crest badging is an honor in magnificence and dignity. Fleetwood-bodied Cadillacs are flagship models that epitomize the brand.

Eldorado – The Gilded One – is a paragon of automotive success. The formidable Eldorado models introduced new design features and accessories that would eventually find their way onto other Cadillac models. Eldorados also have the distinction of being the only two-door models built by Fleetwood. This was the in-house coachcrafting division for the brand that handcrafted ALL Cadillac interiors.

A “Fleetwood-bodied” Cadillac, is handcrafted in its entirety by Fleetwood. This is the element which made these distinguished  motorcars elusive. Eldorado was the styling predictor, the trendsetter, offering an audacious eminence as its signature. Cadillac convertible coupé models are elegant but a Fleetwood convertible coupé drips with sheer opulence in the grand Cadillac manner.

Model # 66-684 style # 68567-E 1966 Fleetwood Eldorado convertible coupé had a base price of $6631, a base shipping weight of 4,500 pounds, and only 2,250 were built. Let’s face it – when America drove luxury automobiles such as this no one was concerned with gasoline mileage, ugly touch-screen navigation systems, nor were we interested in a luxury car that sprints from 0-60 mph in a nanosecond.

Old school luxury…that’s right – cars that ride like a big ‘ole rollin’ Barco lounger completely impervious to the outside world –  is what we want. Being a Cadillac, it should do each task with poise. Nothing could be compared to the traditional Cadillac. When one purchased a 1966 Cadillac…they also inherited the legend and the lifestyle. The formidable reputation acquired was historically slow in the making therefore, this impeccable reputation should be restored in all its glamour in a form that’s right for the 21st Century…

Headrests are a rarity from this genre

The inside story is equally impressive. Fleetwood Eldorado has a unique character from the standard Cadillac models for 1966. Any Cadillac convertible exudes a youthful spirit…the Eldorado captures this essence delivering it as the most luxurious open grand tourer on the road. Impeccably tailored leather upholstery has a perforated seat back and seat cushion design to allow the seats to ‘breathe’ for comfort. Sporty bucket seats were an option at no extra cost which adds panache to Eldorado’s already dramatic style.

The Cadillac Eldorado augments the flagship model hierarchy as the superlative of superlatives. It’s ultra-exclusive even among other Cadillac models – extra special in a way such as “Harry Finley’s Flowers” or “Petrossian Caviar” – providing an added touch of opulence. Cadillac celebrated a banner model year breaking sales records for the day at 205,001 vehicles…this is the fifth consecutive model year to do so at the time. Cadillac led the automotive industry with luxury and innovation. Can we bring this ‘exclusivity’ into the 21st Century?

Fleetwood Eldorado’s fully automatic, power, folding fabric roof opens and closes swiftly at the touch of a button. The warmth of richly grained genuine walnut spans the upper door and rear garnish panels. This elegant trim is resin impregnated for longevity. Power windows, power seat with wide folding center armrest, and Variable Ratio power steering are among the vast array of gracious appointments in the grand Fleetwood tradition. The Fleetwood Eldorado was the only Cadillac to provide whitewall tires as standard equipment for the day.

These classic land yachts provide a ride today’s cars cannot replicate. 1966 Cadillacs are built as body on frame construction. Being an offspring of Fleetwood decent, it is endowed with standard Automatic Level Control to maintain proper ride height regardless of load or road condition. (With fender skirts!)

Traditional Cadillacs didn’t rely on gimmicky ad campaigns and cars boasting superficial bells and whistles. There was actually a time when Cadillac didn’t have to advertise its prowess in the luxury car segment. This breed of the illustrious Eldorado reaffirmed the “Standard of the World” mission luxuriously, lavishly, with Cadillac-Style. (And fender skirts!)

And lest we forget…the superb Cadillac engine and first-class drive train. Cadillac is the first luxury brand to build the inherently balanced 8-cylinder 90-degree V-type engine in 1923. Did you also know that Cadillac is the first automobile manufacturer to offer a complete line of multi-cylinder cars of all “V-types” by 1930? But the mother of all engineering feats is the magnificent V8 engine introduced in 1948. This all-new V8 is smaller, more economical, with refined overall operation. This OHV V8 is a milestone for the brand. Cadillac engines were continually refined through evolution for excellence. (No dinky 6-bangers here, lol!)

Here is the styling continuity from 1965 (top) to 1966 (below). Cadillac styling didn’t spring forth from a blinding flash of inspiration – nor were they dashed off a stylist’s pencil right into the assembly hall. Cadillac designed their cars to be aesthetically pleasing as possible through evolution; the new designs usually happened over a two model year cycle and the new model never ever made the previous offering redundant.

Bill Mitchell would not redesign the tail fin if the front end ensemble was freshened during the 1960s. His “tailored look” made the brand extremely tasteful – the Fleetwood Eldorado is “The Outlaw” …the quintessential bad boy of the bunch with a different style of its own…arrogance but not conceit – this car was not for everyone. Collectors are going bonkers over it today.

1966 Cadillac motorcars are equipped with the 7.0 litre 16-valve 429 CID V8 engine. Its fuel system consists of either a 4-bbl Carter AFB 3903S or a 4-bbl Rochester #7026030 carburetor with equalized manifolding, mechanical fuel pump, automatic choke and dry type air filter. Cylinder heads and cylinder block are made of cast iron. The engine is mounted to the frame at three points in rubber. It cranks 340 hp @ 4,600 rpm with 651 Nm of peak torque @ 3,000 rpm.

Longitudinal acceleration is rated as 0-60 mph in 8.9 seconds with a top speed in the 124-mph range. It does the ¼ mile @ 85 mph in 16.5 seconds. GM’s silky smooth THM-400 3-speed Turbo Hydra-Matic automatic transmission provides effortless operation with imperceptible gear changes. The transmission uses a torque converter which multiplies engine torque for increased driving thrust to the rear drive wheels during acceleration in any gear.

Rear end styling for 1965 (left) was freshened for 1966 (right)

The 1964 Fleetwood Eldorado is another significant model year. It is the last year for the iconic tail fin. It is also the only rear-wheel drive Eldorado of the 1960s going commando without fender skirts. This is the last time Eldorado would use “Biarritz” nomenclature on a production ragtop. The Biarritz name was revamped in the 1970s but as a posh limited edition fixedhead coupé.

1964 Cadillacs are among the most popular in the history of the brand. Special thanks to my friend Jim Hailey for the use of photos from his private collection of the drop-dead gorgeous 1964 Biarritz and the shockingly beautiful 1966 Eldo. Also, I salute Daniel Schmitt Classic Cars and Bob Adams Classic Cars – two if the finest caretakers in the business.

1964 Fleetwood Eldorado Biarritz convertible coupé 

1960 Cadillac Series 6400 Eldorado Biarritz

The traditional Cadillac is an automobile that defines an illustrious heritage. Its engineering innovation and advanced design concepts introduced industry-wide refinement leading to contemporary automobile evolution. The Cadillac Fleetwood series was augmented by the Eldorado which showcased everything majestic that made a Cadillac a Cadillac. It was unique even among other Cadillac models. They were the universal dream car and the ultimate symbol of success for the day. Eldorado is Cadillac’s first real glamour car, it was never intended to shatter sales production records.

Eldorado is an image car…that ‘extra-special something’ in vehicle form. It was built as a rear-wheel drive luxury convertible only from 1961 until the last Eldorado convertible exited the assembly hall in 1966. Each and every traditional Cadillac was built to the highest standards…the same standards which made it the “Standard of the World.” Will Cadillac ever rule the roads of the world again in high style with the formidable eloquence that used to be synonymous with the brand? The 1966 Cadillac Fleetwood Eldorado convertible coupé throws the other classic luxury cars shade…in the continuing saga of “As the Standard of the World Turns.”

NotoriousLuxury presents a 30 year contrast for the Eldorado

1956 Cadillac Series 62 Eldorado Biarritz convertible coupé

1966 Fleetwood Eldorado convertible coupé

1976 Cadillac Eldorado convertible coupé

Interior room is significantly larger with front-wheel drive

It was the only true luxury convertible built in the land

The 1976 Eldorado is the last to use the formidable 8.2 litre V8 

It was rumored at one time the Cadillac Elmiraj concept would be the new Eldorado. It’s a classy rendition of a classic Cadillac by all means. The contemporary proportions are just what the Cadillac buyer wants. What Cadillac seemed to have forgotten, once the Cadillac buyer has owned cars such as Fleetwood Broughams, the Eldorado Biarritz, Coupes deVille, and Sedans deVille…the contemporary versions are unreasonable facsimiles – 

Let’s let Casey/Art and Colour design the new Cadillacs! Look at the class this concept exudes. It also has the poised dignity that used to be the hallmark of every Cadillac. You GO Casey!

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

The Elite 1960 Cadillac Series 6900 Eldorado Brougham

Posted in Cadillac, Cadillac Historical, Editorials with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on February 22, 2017 by 99MilesPerHour

The formidable Eldorado legend continues…

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…in the continuing saga of “As the Standard of the World Turns.”

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Once upon a time in America there was a thing called the luxury automobile. These fabulous cars are a city block long and half a city block wide. They float along the road like a big ‘ole rollin’ Barco lounger. The elegance and prestige lineages evolved through impeccable craftsmanship, America was renowned for such. The Cadillac motorcar became the most enviable of all automotive legacies. The Cadillac name was a byword for superlative in any field of endeavor…

The Fleetwood division meticulously handcrafted the finest automobiles to motor out of Detroit, Michigan. The most eminent and revered models were Fleetwood-bodied Cadillacs. They are the last of the hand-built motorcars. The Brougham augmented the Fleetwood model hierarchy as the epitome of elegance. They were the most luxurious owner-driven sedans from the brand. The 1960 Cadillac Series 6900 Eldorado Brougham is the last of this distinguished coachbuilt series. NotoriousLuxury presents an encore performance…in the continuing saga of “As the Standard of the World Turns.”

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Eldorado Broughams are among the rarest of all Cadillac motorcars. They were coachbuilt by Fleetwood for the 1957 through the 1958 model years in Detroit. These luxury sedans required countless hours of manpower while in theatre, because of the extensive handcrafting that was involved in order to build them. They slowed the Fleetwood assembly line tremendously. These magnificent Broughams sold for an ostentatious $13,074. Due to the nature of their build, Cadillac didn’t make a profit.

A decision was made to farm out their production to Pininfarina of Italy who are prominent coachbuilders specializing in the world of bespoke craftsmanship. This decision by GM freed the Fleetwood assembly hall to build more of the top-selling Fleetwood models such as the Series Sixty-Special. It was more cost efficient for Cadillac. Pininfarina handbuilt the Brougham for the 1959 and 1960 model years.

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Very little has ever been written about the 1960 Eldorado Brougham. Many automotive enthusiasts have never even seen one. They are elegantly exotic in appearance. It takes the eagle eye to discern them from the standard Cadillac models for 1960. These were the most opulent custom crafted models in the Cadillac model range. The Eldorado Brougham was so swank, it was only briefly mentioned in the sales brochure. Interested clients were advised to contact a Cadillac dealer for details because the car was so highly bespoke –

It’s the Cadillac of Cadillacs and the finest expression of the new era in automotive design. The 1957-1958 Detroit-built Series 70 Eldorado Broughams were totally exclusive from other Cadillac models sharing no sheet metal or trim. The 1959-1960 Series 6900 Eldorado Broughams shared mechanical components, floor platforms, dash panels, wheels, bumpers, fender skirts, and headlamp bezels with other Fleetwood models.

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1957-1958 Cadillac Series 70 Eldorado Brougham

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1960 Cadillac Series 6900 Eldorado Brougham

Pininfarina hand-built the custom bodyshells. This added a romantic aura to this ultra-exclusive model…what could be more alluring than an Italian hand-built Cadillac? None of the standard Cadillac sheet metal was integrated into the Brougham. The roofline and glass are totally unique to the glamorous Italian-built Broughams.

The 1960 Brougham is the styling-lead to the 1961 Cadillac model design. This is apparent in the windshield, roof design, and lower overall silhouette. The Brougham’s sleek pillarless design is highlighted by smaller power rear quarter windows that automatically open when the coordinating rear door opens for ease of entry and exit. The Broughams are crafted a tad bit lower than standard Cadillac models. 

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1960 Cadillac Series 6400 Eldorado Seville hardtop coupé

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1960 Cadillac Series 6900 Eldorado Brougham

There’s very little to distinguish the Brougham from a head-on view. Many dispute the fact the 1960 Eldorado Brougham isn’t totally unique from the rest of the standard Cadillac and Eldorado models. Due to the fact that the Broughams were not top-selling models, it wasn’t feasible to make them as exclusive as the 1957-1958 Detroit-built models. They had their own separate set of production tooling and dies than the standard 1957-1958 Cadillac models. The proof is in the photos, YOU be the judge.

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The custom crafted 1960 Series 6900 Eldorado Brougham has an intriguing rear end design. It has tail lamps that are modified slightly and built into the bumper nacelles elegantly. The upper slim recessed taillamps from the standard models are eliminated. The Brougham’s tail fins are trimmed lower. It introduced lower body fins called “Skegs” which would be featured on all Cadillac models for 1961 and 1962. The Eldorado has always featured styling that would eventually be found on other Cadillac motorcars.

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Cadillac featured a gracious styling continuity when it reigned as the “Standard of the World.” The 1961 Cadillac Series 6300 Sedan deVille shown displays the 1960 Eldorado Brougham inspired roofline and glass.

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The lower fins aka “kegs” balanced the styling theme gracefully

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The Brougham’s expanse of glass influenced the 1961 Cadillacs

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The tail fin design of the 1960 Eldorado Brougham isn’t as radical as the standard Cadillac models. The iconic tail fins were starting to disappear. The Eldorado Brougham has an overall lower profile.

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The Eldorado Brougham is almost verbatim up front

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The Eldorado Brougham has a customized appearance

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1960 Cadillac Fleetwood Series Sixty-Special

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The 1960 Eldorado Brougham is built as body on frame construction. Cadillac’s rugged tubular-center X-frame permits a lower body design for improved appearance, and enhanced stability with a lower center of gravity. The majestic Eldorado Brougham has the same dimensions as the Eldorado Biarritz and Eldorado Seville except for its height. It has the luxury length of 225” with a low 55” height and is 79.9” wide. It rides upon a long 130” wheelbase. Model #60-69 body style #6929P 1960 Series 6900 Eldorado Brougham four-door hardtop sedan had a base price of $13,075 and only 101 were built.

The 1960 Eldorado Brougham was the most expensive American automobile for the day. There was no better symbol of one’s success than to view the world from behind the wheel of an Eldorado Brougham. This was a supreme achievement in motoring. Bigger is better was the premise behind these luxury land yachts. It was all about those “Car wars” – every American automobile manufacturer stretched the limits in design. Luxury was the theme. No one really cared about fuel economy because the cost of a gallon of petrol was insignificant.

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Cadillac was the undisputed luxury leader. Harley Earl and Bill Mitchell, chief designers for GM, created automotive masterpieces for the 1950s – 1960s. The Eldorado Brougham epitomized the Cadillac brand with an eloquence no other motorcar could replicate. These handcrafted beauties command top dollar, many of which fetch at least six figures today. They will never be forgotten. Cadillac at the time, was considered as prolific opulence…the envy of the driveway…the “Standard of the World” was the most desired luxury automobile in the entire world.

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These magnificent motorcars were decadently luxurious. The custom tailored interiors were completely in character with Cadillac. This is eloquence in the grand Cadillac tradition. There were two sumptuous broadcloth styles and all leather trim available. Deep plush nylon or mouton carpets were available to lavishly complete the experience tastefully. As far as appointments and amenities – it was a luxury car complete.

Virtually every comfort and luxury feature was provided in the grand Cadillac manner. Standard equipment includes: a heating and air conditioning system, electric door locks, power trunk release, signal-seeking radio with power antenna, two electric clocks (one for front seat passengers and another for the rear compartment), remote control outside rearview mirror, power windows, power vent windows, cruise control, power 6-way front seat, automatic parking brake release, Guidematic headlamp dimmer, power steering & brakes, and air suspension.

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The Eldorado Brougham epitomized the Cadillac brand…

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The Brougham was the most luxurious owner-driven model 

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The 1960 Eldorado Brougham is powered by the Cadillac 6.4 litre 16-valve 390 CID V8 engine. This naturally aspirated powerplant is equipped with three Rochester 2-bbl carburetors in the formidable Eldorado tradition with equalized manifolding, mechanical fuel pump, dry-pack type air cleaner, overhead valves, hydraulic lifters, intake silencer and automatic choke. The engine is mounted at three points in rubber.

This superb Cadillac V8 cranked 345 hp @ 4,800 rpm with 590 Nm of peak torque @ 3,400 rpm. Longitudinal acceleration is rated as 0-60 mph in 10.7 seconds, 0-100 mph in 29.7 seconds with a top speed in the 124 mph ungoverned range. It can do the ¼ mile @ 82 mph in just 17.9 seconds. Remember, this is a 5,420 pound all-iron land yacht with NO aerodynamics. Eldorado models were always tuned to be the most spirited performers of all Cadillacs. 

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The engine is mated to GM’s Jetaway/Flashaway Hydra-Matic 4-speed automatic transmission without torque converter. Hydra-Matic Drive is the step-gear type with controlled fluid coupling on the forward gear-set which delivers nearly imperceptible shifting. These transmissions provided two drive ranges – the left hand position reduces engine speed to increase economy.

For more efficient hill climbing and descending, the right hand position is used to improve acceleration with the first, second, and third gears available. This selection is used to increase the engine braking effort when descending grades. Lo-range is available for driving in deep sand, mud, or snow. This range is also useful for very steep inclines where only first and second gears are required. The famous Hydra-Matic Drive is a highly efficient and reliable transmission…in fact, this was so reliable and efficient that Rolls Royce adapted it into their automobiles back in the day –

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The famous Cadillac Red-Carpet ride was also the envy of the industry. The front suspension uses the traditional upper and lower control arms with spherical joints and helical coil springs. The rear suspension is the Cadillac 4-link drive with helical coil springs. The Eldorado Brougham came standard with air suspension. It is set up with individual air springs in rubber bags at each wheel that would automatically maintain the correct ride height for optimum performance and perfect poise regardless of load or road conditions.

The rubber bags were pressurized by an electric motor regulated by leveling valves. It also had manual height control to adjust for steep sloping driveways and inclines. Sadly, this idealistic system was unreliable and prone to fail at embarrassing times forcing the driver to “limp” into the dealership for repairs that did not last. The 1960 model year was the last time Cadillac used air suspensions.

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The Eldorado Broughams were more of an “image car” for General Motors. They are among the few Cadillac models that did not make a profit for the division. They are also the rarest of the rare Cadillac models with 400 built for the 1957 model year, 304 for 1958, 99 built for 1959, and 101 built for 1960. The 1957-1958 Detroit-built Eldorado Broughams are certified milestone vehicles by the Milestone Car Society which is dedicated to distinctive domestic and foreign motorcars built during the first two post-war decades.

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1957-1958 Cadillac Series 70 Eldorado Brougham

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1959 Cadillac Series 6900 Eldorado Brougham

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Special thanks to Jim Hailey & Daniel Schmitt & Bob Adams

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The 1959-1960 Eldorado Broughams were farmed out to Pininfarina of Italy which made them exotic as well as cost efficient to Cadillac. This move freed the Fleetwood assembly hall to build more of the Series Sixty-Special, Eldorado Biarritz, and Eldorado Seville models which outsold the Broughams. The 1959-1960 Italian-built models did not have the superior build quality of the Detroit-built models. They required a lot of extra hand finishing and electrical work by the Fleetwood division once the cars were returned to the USA.

They were more of a liability than an asset at the time. These cars have a charisma among collectors despite the issues they had. Ultra-luxury cars such as these are examples of American extravagance for the day. They epitomized the Cadillac brand with their coachbuilt enigma. The 1960 Eldorado Brougham leaves its indelible impression…in the continuing saga of “As the Standard of the World Turns.”

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Welcome to Greg’s World of NotoriousLuxury © 2017

It’s Yesterday Once More: The Incomparable 1968 Cadillac Fleetwood Eldorado

Posted in "As the Standard of the World Turns", Cadillac, Cadillac Historical, Classic American Marques, Notorious Retrospect with tags , , , , , , , , , on January 26, 2017 by 99MilesPerHour

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…in the continuing saga of “As the Standard of the World Turns”

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Cadillac Style – “The only way to travel…is Cadillac Style.” What is Cadillac Style? A Cadillac Fleetwood is Cadillac Style. This is Cadillac in its most eminent form. Fleetwood used to do all upholstery work for every Cadillac model…but a Cadillac Fleetwood is a very very special version of the epochal “Standard of the World.” Fleetwood crafted the entire car. It was so special during its heyday, it had its own dedicated assembly line.  A Fleetwood-bodied Cadillac was crafted by talented artisans to be not only the finest automobile in the world…but it was also the paradigm of all luxury sedans.

The only two-door Fleetwood model ever, is the magnificent Fleetwood Eldorado. (Excluding the mid-1980s Fleetwood Brougham two-door coupé as it is merely a Coupe deVille with a custom padded roof and Brougham-style interior…it was not an exclusive Fleetwood-bodied Cadillac) The most notable are the 1967 – 1970 Fleetwood Eldorado model years. They are the pioneers for Cadillac’s front-wheel drive models. The 1968 Cadillac Fleetwood Eldorado makes a cameo appearance…in the continuing saga of “As the Standard of the World Turns.”

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The majestic Fleetwood series catapulted Cadillac to “Standard of the World” status. These ultra-luxurious motorcars were crafted mostly by hand and augmented the Cadillac model hierarchy annually. For the 1968 model year, the fabulous Fleetwood Eldorado was in its second production year as the world’s foremost personal luxury car.

It was the only automobile in its class to offer the impressive traction of front wheel drive…Automatic Level Control to maintain its poise regardless of load or road conditions…and the maneuverability of Variable Ratio Power Steering – all as standard amenities. Model #68-693 Body Style #69347H 1968 Fleetwood Eldorado two-door coupé had a base price of $6,605. It debuted September 21, 1967 and a total of 24,528 were built for the model year. The Fleetwood Eldorado is a unique expression of Cadillac excellence.

Timeless in styling, superb Cadillac engineering, and impeccable craftsmanship…to put it simply – the Fleetwood Eldorado was designed to be one of the finest production automobiles in the world. It introduced a completely new concept which placed it in a class no other motorcar could match. GM is the purveyor of the personal luxury automobile.

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GM was the first American automobile manufacturer to offer front-wheel drive since the 1936-1937 Cord 810/812 series. It was the Oldsmobile Toronado that started the dance. It used the GM “E” platform from the 1963 Buick Riviera. The Oldsmobile Toronado was introduced in 1965 as a 1966 model. One year later the 1967 Cadillac Fleetwood Eldorado was introduced. The Eldorado, Toronado, and Riviera all shared the same platform; however, the Buick Riviera didn’t adopt front-wheel drive until the 1979 model year. Cadillac fine-tuned the Eldorado to suit the most demanding connoisseur.

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Big news for Cadillac’s 1968 model year is the introduction of an all-new powerplant. Cadillac V8 engines were legendary and this one is no exception. It is the largest engine to power a passenger production automobile for the 1968 model year – 

The spirited 7.7 litre 16-valve 472 CID V8 cranks an impressive 375 hp @ 4,400 rpm packing a prolific punch with 712 Nm of peak torque @ 3,000 rpm. Cadillac’s unsurpassed craftsmanship was never more evident. It is equipped with a Rochester 4-bbl downdraft Quadrajet carburetor with equalized manifold, mechanical fuel pump, dry-type air filter, and a new automatic choke. An Air Injection Reactor system was introduced to reduce hydrocarbons in the exhaust. The engine is built with a cast iron block and cylinder heads, overhead valves, and hydraulic lifters.

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Cadillac engineers spent many years developing this powerful new V8 engine. It underwent over half a million miles of lab testing to study performance and fatigue life of engine components. This rigorous fatigue testing was far more punishment than would be experienced during the life of the car. Radioactive isotopes determined oil consumption. It was not only lab tested, it was taken out into the real world for over two million miles of road testing on every type of road in all-weather conditions. To date, this was only the fourth time Cadillac designed completely new engine architecture.

The first Cadillac V8 engine was designed in 1914, the second in 1936, and the third is the monumental 1949 version with an overhead valve design that utilized wedge-shaped combustion chambers for higher compression ratios. Cadillac is the first automobile manufacturer in the USA to build a production V-type water-cooled 8 cylinder engine by the way. Cadillac received accolades for the 1914 V8 instantly for its quiet, efficient operation, and notorious dependability. The 472 CID V8 shows the same dedication to quality. For example, every crankshaft in a Cadillac engine was dynamically balanced which means it is balanced while rotating. This is done to cancel vibration for enhanced overall operation.

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The 472 CID V8 aggrandized the 1968 Fleetwood Eldorado’s performance. Longitudinal acceleration is rated as 0-60 mph in 8.1 seconds, 0-100 mph in 22.4 seconds with an ungoverned top speed in the 128 mph range. The engine is mated to the GM Turbo Hydra-Matic THM 425 3-speed automatic front-wheel drive transmission. Cadillac adopted the Olds Toronado’s “Unified Powerplant Package”(UPP). This technical engineering was a unique manner of transferring the engine’s power directly to the front wheels. The longitudinal mounted engine/transmission configuration is driven by a silent chain that changed the direction of power by 180 degrees.

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Body by Fleetwood

A Fleetwood-bodied Cadillac is unequalled in all of motordom. Uncompromised luxury and elegance with impeccable fit and finish highlighted the majestic Fleetwood series. It’s preeminence in the luxury car segment is without conjecture the finest expression of automotive excellence. The Fleetwood Eldorado’s long, low architecture was like nothing else on the road at the time. Cadillac had once again created an automotive masterpiece.

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Its stunning front end ensemble is augmented by hidden headlamps. The outer ends of the wide egg crate grille work opens downward to expose the twin headlamp clusters. The parking lamps are relocated from the bumper to the fenders. Those prominent knife-blade fenders run the entire length of the car’s architecture separate from the body ending at the rear with sharp, angular end caps housing the taillamps. Both hood and rear deck lid are sculpted to compliment the Fleetwood Eldorado’s dramatic design. The rear end styling is equally intriguing. The shark fin design with a deeply contoured bumper gives the car a futuristic flair.

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The Fleetwood Eldorado’s avant-garde silhouette retains the poised dignity which was the hallmark of every Cadillac of the genre. The hood is one of the longest in the industry, it had been lengthened to provide a cove to hide the windshield wipers cleverly. Cars from this period are styled with a long nose and short rear deck. The Fleetwood Eldorado sports this design well.

The long low roofline with wide rear sail panels uses small rear quarter windows for privacy. A contoured back glass completed the look of luxury tastefully. The Cadillac Eldorado has always been the styling predictor which showcased designs that would eventually find their way to other Cadillac models. It is the 1967 Fleetwood Eldorado that highly influenced the styling for the 1969-1970 Cadillac Calais, DeVille, and Fleetwood models.

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1970 Coupe deVille and the 1968 Fleetwood Eldorado

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1967 Fleetwood Eldorado

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The comfort zone…

Welcome to the inner world of Fleetwood Eldorado. It’s luxury on the grand Cadillac scale in the gracious Fleetwood manner. This is elegance modern cars cannot replicate. The comfort of the wide notchback front seat rivals that of your living room sofa. Have a seat…pull down the padded standard front seat center armrest. Adjust the optional 6-way power seat. Relax in traditional Cadillac luxury.

One of the benefits of front-wheel drive is the absence of the transmission tunnel hump which equates to more legroom for passengers to stretch out. Activate the optional Automatic Climate Control – set the temperature – no further intervention is necessary. Automatically lock both doors with one touch from the optional power door lock button for added security and peace of mind. The instrument panel has been revised with more padding for safety.

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There are two cloth styles for 1968 available for Fleetwood Eldorado. Deauville and Diamond cloth with vinyl bolsters adds character. The optional full leather trim provides not only a regal touch of distinction but also adds longevity to the interior. The optional Strato bucket seats lends a unique sporting appeal to Fleetwood Eldorado’s demeanor. The bucket seat style interior comes with head restraints and a locking center console. The passenger seat has an optional recliner. All interior knobs and switches have been redesigned to be safer to lessen injury.

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Structural logistics

The 1968 Fleetwood Eldorado is a large, comfortable automobile unlike the dinky under-embellished puddle jumpers with front-wheel drive made today. It’s built as body on frame construction. The fully boxed perimeter frame has hidden bulkheads for safety and is specially designed for front-wheel drive. These cars float along; boulevard travel is negligible.

Its torsion bar front suspension has upper and lower control arms with rubber bushings to absorb road shock and cancels vibration before it reaches the cabin. The rear suspension is equipped with single-leaf springs, two horizontal and two vertical shock absorbers. Cadillac’s exclusive Automatic level Control was standard on all Fleetwood models to maintain vehicle poise under any load or road conditions. The Fleetwood Eldorado has the luxury length of 221”, is 80” wide, 53” in height, and rides upon a long 120” wheelbase.   

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The luxury leader – Cadillac Style

Cadillac’s engineering prowess was never more evident. Apart from the all-new V8 engine, the Fleetwood Eldorado for 1968 is bristling with bravado. Cadillac’s triple braking system highlights its safety features. The power braking system is equipped with unique self-adjusting shoes and heat dissipating drums. The brakes automatically calibrate themselves each time the car is driven in reverse and the brakes applied.

The sophisticated hydraulic master cylinder uses two separate reservoirs to provide independent operation of the front and rear brakes. In the event one system fails, the other will bring the car safely to a halt. The parking brake is a true auxiliary brake. Its automatic power vacuum release will not lock in position with the engine running and the vehicle in gear. Front disc brakes were optional. Cadillac led the industry with innovation and technology that took the competition years to catch up.

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For the 1968 model year Cadillac further enhanced its reputation as the “Standard of the World.” The 1967-1970 Fleetwood Eldorado is a milestone vehicle. It was created by Bill Mitchell chief designer for General Motors. The Eldorados from this genre were unlike any Cadillac that preceded them. The personal luxury car had been under research and tested as early as 1961. It was designed to be a large and luxurious Cadillac with traditional virtues yet contemporary acclaim…Cadillac Style – 

The Fleetwood Eldorado is tomorrow’s classic today.  With its Cadillac Style and gracious appointments, the 1968 Fleetwood Eldorado in my opinion is one of the foremost motorcars to bear the charismatic “Standard of the World” title. It retains the poised dignity which was the hallmark of every Cadillac. This is what made the brand the most desired luxury car in the entire world – it’s a shame the brand sank into obscurity. It’s going to take a miracle for the brand to return to its exponential integrity to save it from the mediocrity it currently resides. So, after DTS…CTS…ATS…XTS…and CT6, what’s next – the OMG?

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This editorial is dedicated to “That Hartford Guy!”                                                This one’s for you…kid –  

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Here’s your baby immortalized for prosperity!

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The formidable 1970 Cadillac Fleetwood Eldorado

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The 1967 Eldorado-inspired 1970 Cadillac Coupe deVille

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There’s no more deep-seated luxury like this

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1968 Fleetwood Eldorado custom convertible

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Here’s a dream with a little bit of fantasy from the creative master Casey Art & Colour http://artandcolourcars.blogspot.com/

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This is his Eldorado to counter Lincoln’s Continental

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Special thanks to Daniel Schmitt Classic Cars http://www.schmitt.com/

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“As the Standard of the World Turns” is Greg’s World