Archive for Luxury Sedans

Cadillac: The Standard of Excellence

Posted in "As the Standard of the World Turns", Cadillac, Cadillac Historical, Classic American Marques, Editorials, Extreme Luxury, Grande Marque, Luxury Sedans with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on September 27, 2015 by 99MilesPerHour

A tribute to the traditional Cadillac

Lead photo

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

Tradition

Cadillac was once a formidable brand in the automotive industry. It was the standard of excellence in every aspect…superb fit & finish, remarkable engineering, absolute power…and prestige beyond belief world-wide. No automobile in the world achieved the admiration and respect as a Cadillac. Whatever one desired in a high-end luxury automobile…Cadillac either offered it or was in the process of building it. Always the innovator…always the epitome of luxury…and always the leader!

Fleetwood-bodied, hand-crafted automobiles catapulted the brand to an even higher standard of automotive excellence. The Cadillac DeVilles were and remain America’s favorite luxury cars. The formidable Eldorado had the entire industry in awe…with its poised dignity which was the hallmark of every Cadillac. Whether one chose the elegant open tourer, a spacious four-door sedan, the personal luxury of a two-door hardtop coupé, or a luxurious limousine…Cadillac designed and built the industry’s finest. NotoriousLuxury rekindles the passion of this lost art… in the continuing saga of “As the Standard of the World Turns.”

Crest 1

The Cadillac crest

Crest 4 1963 B

1963 Cadillac crest

Crest 4 1963

The famous insignia that adorns the legend is a coat of arms from the French de la Mothe Cadillac family. It was registered as an American trademark on August 6, 1906. In the language of ancient heraldry it’s described as: “Quarterly, the first and fourth gold…a fess sable between three Merlettes of the same – posed two in chief and one in base. Second and third gules quartering argent…three bars azure.”

What does this mean? Translated, it describes a quartered shield with the uppermost left and lower right corners gold containing black bands with two legless birds above and one below the band. The uppermost right and lower left corners contain two red quarters, and two silver quarters with blue bars. The “couronne” or coronet is for the six counts of France. For symmetry, the original de la Mothe Cadillac family arms and the trademark of 1906 contain seven round pearls. Evolution of the crest through the years has displayed as many as 18 but no less than seven.

Crest 2 1941 B

1941 Cadillac crest

Crest 2 1941

Crest 3 1955 B

1955 Cadillac crest

Crest 3 1955

The first and fourth quarters represent the de la Mothe arms. The Merlettes are ancient heraldic adaptations of the Martin and are shown without beaks and legs. The Merlettes are given for a difference to young brothers to signify, in order to raise themselves they are to look to the wings of virtue and merit; and not to rely on the legs having but little land to set their feet upon. The second and third quarters were added to the de la Mothe arms to signify the favorable marriage which increased their estates. The red stands for prowess and boldness in action…the silver for purity, charity, virtue, and plenty. The azure blue signifies knightly valor – 

Fleetwood crest B

Fleetwood laurel wreath and Cadillac crest

Fleetwood crest

The laurel wreath augmenting the crest was used for Fleetwood…the senior most models in the hierarchy. DeVilles, Calais, and Series 62 models used a prominent “V” under the crest in either gold or silver. Contemporary Cadillac models use an abstract interpretation of this legendary design. Some agree this new design separates the make-believe Cadillacs from the genuine “Standard of the World” editions…

Crest 5 1965 B

1965 Cadillac crest

Crest 5 1965

Crest 6 1974 B

1974 Cadillac DeVille crest

Crest 6 1974

1959B tail fin

The formidable fins – 

1948 tail fin

1948

1949 tail fin

1949

Cadillac’s chief designer Harley Earl “started the dance” of which the entire automotive industry followed suit. This man designed Cadillac masterworks. It was his 1948 Cadillac creation that started it all – he designed the 1948-1949 Cadillacs patterned after the Lockheed P-38 war-time aircraft.

The beautifully tailored fins are artfully integrated into the rear fenders. These are separate bolt-on features which flow gracefully into the doors. Within a few years, tail fins sprouted in every division at GM…not to mention how the rest of the industry emulated but could not replicate the design. Harley Earl and Chrysler’s chief designer Virgil Exner instigated the “Tail Fin Wars” of the 1950s.

1952 tail fin

1952

1953 tail fin

1953

The next tail fin design appeared on the 1950-1953 Cadillacs. They have the same basic style only a bit more elegant and refined. Back-up lamps were moved from below the rear deck lid and repositioned beneath the taillamps for the 1951 model. Cadillac is one of the early pioneers of back-up lamps. The basic theme of the taillamp/back-up lamp combo ran through the 1956 model year designs.

1954 tail fin

1954

1955 tail fin

1955

1956 tail fin

1956

The 1954 model year introduced a higher tail fin to offset the overall lower silhouette. Cadillacs were redesigned to be longer, lower, and wider than previous models. The fins are more “kicked-up.” This is the most remembered style establishing Cadillac as the tail fin leader. This design went basically unchanged from 1954 until 1956. Cadillac didn’t redesign their offerings from a blinding flash of inspiration…change was evolutionary. The 1955 Eldorado sported its own unique shark-fin design which inspired the next model year for the standard Cadillac.

1956 Eldorado tail fin

1955-1956 Eldorado

1957 tail fin

1957

1957-1958 Eldorado tail fin

1957-1958 Eldorado “Chipmunk-Cheeks”

For the 1957 model year the tail fins were completely redesigned for the standard Cadillac models. They are a modified version from the 1955 Eldorado. The fins are lower and tapered into the architecture fashionably. The 1957 Eldorados received their own distinctive tail fin redesign. They are a bit sharper and more prominent than the previous version.

Rounded faired-in fenders received the nickname “Chipmunk-Cheeks” because of the appearance for the rear-end design of the Eldorados. The 1957-1958 Eldorado Seville and Biarritz used their new design; however, this was not inherited by any other Cadillac models. The 1957-1958 Cadillacs sported an even lower silhouette than previous designs. Automobiles were becoming more streamlined…Cadillac led the way in the entire industry with elegant designs, impeccable craftsmanship, and that poised dignity which was the hallmark of every Cadillac.

1958 tail fin

1958

1958 Eldorado Brougham tail fin

1957-1958 Series 70 Eldorado Brougham

1959 tail fin

1959

Tail fin drama continued. The tail fin shocker came with the 1959 redesign. The iconic 1959 Cadillac tail fins are the tallest and the largest in the industry. All Cadillac models shared the same design. They represent American excess to the hilt. Either you love ‘em or you hate ‘em…there is no in-between. Some say they are the summit of gaudiness…some say they are elegant, and then there are some who are undecided. Because of this controversy – 1959 Cadillacs especially Eldorados, fetch six figures easily on the auction block.

1960 tail fin

1960

1961 tail fin

1961

1962 tail fin

1962

Refinement for the mighty tail fin began the 1960 model year. The designers knocked them down a notch planing them into the architecture for a cleaner look. The restrained use of ornamentation also provided an understatement of Cadillac elegance. From 1960 onward, the tail fin began to disappear into oblivion. The 1961 model trimmed the fins tastefully and added lower fins called “Skegs” to the redesign. They were trimmed again for the 1962 model year. The finale for the beloved fins are the 1963-1964 model years. They disappeared completely for the all-new 1965 redesign. Cadillac will always be remembered for luxury, opulence, and tail fins!

1963 tail fin

1963

1964 tail fin

1964

1965 tail fin

1965…tail fins are banished into history

1966 tail fin

1966

1967 tail fin

1967 Calais, DeVille, and Fleetwood

1967-1969 Eldorado tail fin

1967-1969 Fleetwood Eldorado

1968 tail fin

1968 Calais, DeVille, and Fleetwood

1969 tail fin

1969 Calais, DeVille, and Fleetwood

1970 tail fin

1970 Calais, DeVille, and Fleetwood

1970 Eldorado tail fin

1970 Fleetwood Eldorado

1971 tail fin

1971-1972 Calais, DeVille, and Fleetwood

1971-1972 Eldorado tail fin

1971-1972 Fleetwood Eldorado

1973 tail fin

1973 Calais, DeVille, and Fleetwood

1973 Eldorado tail fin

1973 Eldorado

1974-1976 tail fin

1974-1976 Calais, DeVille, and Fleetwood

1974-1976 Eldorado tail fin

1974-1976 Eldorado

1977-78 Eldorado

1977-1978 Eldorado

Pink Cadillac 3

The luxury of choice

Pink Cadillac 1

The traditional Cadillac offered more body styles than any other luxury car manufacturer. There is no more romantic architecture than a Cadillac convertible. They are the glamour cars of the stars. The elegant open tourers are still the most desired convertibles in the entire world. These elegant Cadillac creations have inspired music by Aretha Franklin and Elvis Presley with “Pink Cadillac.” They have inspired movies such as “The Solid Gold Cadillac” with Judy Holiday in 1954. They were also used in parades such as the very first Cadillac Eldorado of 1953 driven in the inaugural parade for Dwight D. Eisenhower.

And we cannot forget the 1973 Eldorado convertible pace car for the 57th 500 Mile International Sweepstakes held at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway on Wednesday May 30, 1973. There is no more dramatic manner in which to travel Cadillac-style than open air motoring in an elegant Cadillac convertible coupé. Whether it be the classic Series 62…the classic DeVille…or the “Gilded One” it is the ONLY way to travel…Cadillac-style – 

Pink Cadillac 2

1959 Series 62 convertible

Pink Cadillac 4

Pink Cadillac 5

1957 Fleetwood 1

1957 Fleetwood Series Sixty-Special

1957 Fleetwood 2

The most distinguished automobiles in all of motordom are the impeccably hand-crafted Fleetwood-bodied Cadillacs. This is luxury on the grand Cadillac scale…in the grand Cadillac manner. These most revered models are more than austere, ostentatious bling as today’s kitschy-faux make-believe luxury cars. The Fleetwood-bodied Cadillacs are the most luxurious owner and chauffeur-driven models in the history of the brand. All Fleetwood crafted cars were built on their own dedicated assembly lines. Their individually longer wheelbases provide more rear seat passenger room.

The magnificent Fleetwood Series Sixty-Special Broughams are decadently luxurious with ultra-exclusive accommodations that offer limousine-style luxury in an owner-driven sedan. It is the Fleetwood Series Sixty-Special that reinforced the “Standard of the World” title. Unfortunately…there will never, ever, be another hand-crafted Cadillac Fleetwood…they epitomized the brand’s integrity as the finest automobiles on the planet. No car in the luxury automobile arena could have been made more personally yours than a Cadillac Fleetwood. Will there ever be another LUXURIOUS Cadillac to be the pride of the US…and the envy of the world?

1957 Fleetwood 4

1957 Fleetwood 5

1957 Fleetwood 3

1959 Fleetwood Series Seventy-Five 1

1959 Fleetwood Series Seventy-Five 

1959 Fleetwood Series Seventy-Five 2

The most eloquent sedans in the world are the Cadillac Fleetwood Series Seventy-Five nine-passenger sedan and Imperial formal limousine. Executive-style grace with spacious accommodations is expedited in a refined and most dignified manner. This is the ultimate expression of the “Standard of the World.” These opulent sedans are still seen at foreign embassies, palaces, and in the driveways of luxurious estates. Some things are just too good to be forgotten.

These hand-crafted Fleetwood-bodied masterpieces will still be in service…when today’s make-believe luxury cars are rusting in peace at the local scrap yard. Cadillac commercial chassis were popular as ambulances during the 1950s throughout the 1970s because of their notorious reliability and high-speed capabilities. They were also built as hearses of the utmost dignity. Some mortuaries still have them in service just because…there is nothing in today’s market that even comes close to the poised dignity that was the hallmark of every traditional Cadillac Fleetwood –

1959 Fleetwood Series Seventy-Five 4

1959 Fleetwood Series Seventy-Five 5

1959 Fleetwood Series Seventy-Five 7

1959 Fleetwood Series Seventy-Five 6

1959 Fleetwood Series Seventy-Five 3

1976 Fleetwood Series Seventy-Five 1

1976 Fleetwood Series Seventy-Five

1976 Fleetwood Series Seventy-Five 2

1976 Fleetwood Series Seventy-Five 3

Good taste never goes out of style…

1976 Fleetwood Series Seventy-Five 4

1976 Fleetwood Series Seventy-Five 5

1976 Fleetwood Series Seventy-Five 6

1976 Fleetwood Series Seventy-Five 8

1970 Coupe deVille 1

1970 Coupe deVille

1970 Coupe deVille 4

America’s sweethearts –

The Cadillac DeVille remains America’s favorite luxury car. They are available as the Coupe deVille, Sedan deVille, and the DeVille convertible. They enjoyed the highest resale value and repeat ownership of any American-built luxury car. The elegant Coupe deVille and Sedan deVille sold more automobiles than the combined aggregate totals of the competitors.

The Cadillac DeVille ruled the industry from 1949 until the 2004 model year when it became the DTS; maintaining the poised dignity Cadillac invented. The Cadillac DeVilles are among the most successful and longest production runs in the history of the brand. Their preeminence in the luxury car arena is achieved through years of growth and innovation. These elegant motorcars stole the hearts of enthusiasts world-wide in one svelte swoop.

1970 Coupe deVille 5

1970 Coupe deVille 6

1970 Coupe deVille 10

1976 Sedan deVille 1

1976 Sedan deVille

1976 Sedan deVille 5

1976 Sedan deVille 2

1976 Sedan deVille 4

1976 Sedan deVille 3

1976 Sedan deVille 8

Their six-passenger roominess combined with legendary Cadillac comfort and conveniences are what retained their following annually. They are smooth, responsive, and quiet beyond belief. The Coupe deVille is the only two-door luxury car that offers as much interior room as the competitor’s four-door sedan. It was the primary choice among the ladies with its intimate personal luxury and high style. Features and accessories were available to make it as unique as its driver.

The Sedan deVille is the luxury sedan that doubles as a family sedan. With its four-door convenience, it is like your own personal limousine. It was the perennial favorite among luxury car buyers. The Sedan deVille offered more comfort and convenience features and accessories as standard equipment than its competition. Open air touring with a youthful zest makes the DeVille convertible the number one choice among convertible lovers. Its fully automatic, power folding fabric roof disappeared at the touch of a button. The DeVille is the grandest of all open tourers…Cadillac-style. Its luxury has no peer. The Cadillac DeVille was the only luxury convertible built in the land at the time. It is one of the world’s most dramatic automobiles.

1970 DeVille 3

1970 DeVille convertible

1970 DeVille 5

1970 DeVille 6

1970 DeVille 7

1976 Eldo convt 4

1976 Eldorado convertible

1976 Eldo convt 2

No story regarding Cadillac could be complete without mention of “The Gilded One.” The totally avant-garde Eldorado was the Flagship from Cadillac the entire world will never forget. They became the most dramatic models in the history of the brand. Elegance, innovation, and engineering excellence made them one of the world’s most desired dream cars. The Eldorado introduced styling, features, and accessories that eventually found their way to other future models.

The superb Cadillac engineering, advanced design and dedication to excellence spawned the formidable 1967 Fleetwood Eldorado. It is the ultimate personal luxury automobile. The Fleetwood Eldorado is the only car in the world to successfully combine the positive traction of front-wheel drive, the agility of Variable Ratio Power Steering, and the perfect balance of Automatic Level Control. During its tenure, the Cadillac Eldorado was available as a convertible coupé, a two-door hardtop coupé, and an ultra-luxurious four-door hardtop sedan. They were the glamour cars of the 1950s through the 1970s…and remain so –

1976 Eldo convt 3

1976 Eldo convt 6

1976 Eldo convt 7

1956 Series 62 convt 1

1956 Series 62 convertible

1956 Series 62 convt 4

The traditional Cadillac was the most desired automobile in the entire world. It was the standard of excellence and second to none in the manufacture of luxury motorcars. It is a legend, and an American institution. A Fleetwood-bodied Cadillac is a hand-crafted masterpiece from the master craftsmen that garnered the title of the “Standard of the World.” The DeVilles remain America’s favorite luxury cars in every respect. The Eldorado began as the Flagship and evolved into the finest personal luxury car in the world. Cadillac had a luxury car for every luxury car buyer…whether coupé, convertible coupé, sedan, or an opulent limousine – the only way to travel…was Cadillac-style. NotoriousLuxury salutes the traditional Cadillac…in the continuing saga of “As the Standard of the World Turns.”

1956 Series 62 convt 3

Special thanks to the finest classic automobile dealers in the business: Daniel Schmitt Classic Cars, Bob Adams Classic Cars, Jim Hailey’s Classic Cars, MJC Classic Cars, Park Ward Motors Museum, and Matt Garrett & GM Classics. You are the best in the industry!

1956 Series 62 convt 5

1956 Series 62 convt 7

1956 Series 62 convt 6

“As the Standard of the World Turns”

Greg's World

NotoriousLuxury IS Greg’s World…

Advertisements

1958 Cadillac Fleetwood Series Sixty-Special

Posted in "As the Standard of the World Turns", Cadillac, Cadillac Historical, Editorials, Luxury Sedans with tags , , , , , on February 3, 2015 by 99MilesPerHour

Eloquence…in the continuing saga of

1

“As the Standard of the World Turns”

2

The eminent Fleetwood Series Sixty-Special was the “Standard of the World” in magnificence and dignity. It was the most distinguished name in motorcars. Every Fleetwood model was truly a masterpiece. A Series Sixty-Special was the most luxurious owner-driven Cadillac in the model hierarchy. The 1958 edition was the Flagship sedan placed a notch below the fabulous Eldorado Brougham.

The eloquence of the Fleetwood Series Sixty-Special made it “The Cadillac of Cadillacs.” The admiration afforded this supreme achievement in motoring was astonishing. Automotive elegance such as this, that was so captivating, is gone forever. The Fleetwood Series Sixty-Special presents an encore performance…in the continuing saga of “As the Standard of the World Turns.”

3

This is another jewel that was sold by Bob Adams Classic Cars, aka Classic Auto Brokers out in beautiful Scottsdale, Arizona here in the US of A. He only handles the best as exhibited by this pristine example of automotive history.

4

For the 1958 model year Cadillac created a new inspiration – a luxury automobile of such superb design, such precise hand-craftsmanship, and such universal appeal – one look and it was evident…it’s from the master craftsmen. By any criterion, a Cadillac Fleetwood was in fact the finest automobile ever created in its day. It was unmistakably Cadillac in stature and majesty.

 A Fleetwood was the ultimate in exclusivity and supremacy. They were hand-crafted on an exclusive assembly line for quality control. The Fleetwood Series Sixty-Special – as with all Fleetwood models – was built at a highly restricted pace to retain its exclusivity. Fleetwood hand-tailored all Cadillac interiors to absolute perfection. The Series Sixty-Special was hand-crafted in its entirety by Fleetwood.

5

6

The Fleetwoods were the last of the hand-crafted Cadillacs. With their individually longer wheelbase and custom-crafted body shells, the Fleetwood Series Sixty-Special sedans were universally acknowledged as the most aristocratic motorcars in the world. Fleetwood was luxury, spaciousness, and good taste. It was a sumptuous automobile with a subtle aura of distinction.

Fleetwood’s extraordinary grace and charm were complimented by outstanding Cadillac ride qualities and over the road comfort. No car in the world at the time was as renowned for its magnificent motoring luxury as Cadillac. The Fleetwood Series Sixty-Special made it the epitome of opulence unsurpassed by any motorcar in the world. Driver and passengers enjoyed conveniences, appointments, and sheer elegance that were unique in the fine Fleetwood tradition. It was luxury and comfort on the grand Cadillac scale, in the grand Cadillac manner.

7

The Series Sixty-Special was young Bill Mitchell’s first design assignment from Harley Earl. It began in 1936 and materialized two years later as a trend-setting luxury sedan. This is a milestone vehicle. The Sixty-Special was an all-new design in luxury motoring. The lack of running boards, fender-mounted headlamps, and faired-in trunk design were copied not only by the rest of General Motors, but the entire automotive industry.

Its design influence could still be seen many years later in the luxurious Fleetwood Series Sixty-Special Brougham such as the thin door posts, chrome window bands, and long wheelbase. It was the Fleetwood Series Sixty-Special that earned Cadillac the reputation as “Standard of the World.” This eminent series reigned until the 1976 model year. The Series Sixty-Special is still popular among enthusiasts and collectors world-wide.

8

The 1958 Fleetwood Series Sixty-Special was designed for those who regard their motorcars as prized possessions. Once one has been behind the wheel of a Fleetwood; it is difficult to find the same satisfaction at the wheel of any other motorcar. With all its refinement, grace, distinction & dignity, The Series Sixty-Special had a completely unique air of authority. It was in a class by itself in luxury and sheer magnificence. However grand the occasion…an arrival in a Cadillac Fleetwood was a notable one. It was an impeccable reflection of achievement. The formidable Cadillac crest was the hallmark of one of the finest possessions an individual may own –

9

The 1958 Cadillacs were built as body on frame construction. They used Cadillac’s rugged tubular-center “X” frame. This design permits lower body mounting for improved appearance. It also lowered the center of gravity and improved overall stability. The “U” shaped rear section allowed greater trunk capacity. The “X” frame provided greater torsional rigidity with less vertical deflection than conventional frames. Through the use of rubber bushings, there was no metal-to-metal contact. The rubber absorbed road impact, while it cancelled vibration and road noise before it reached the interior.

10

The 1958 Series Sixty-Special rode upon an individually longer wheelbase of 133” as compared to the standard 129.5” wheelbase of the Series Sixty-Two and DeVille models. The Series Sixty-Special had the luxury length of 225” and was 80” in width. The front suspension used the traditional upper and lower control arms with spherical joints, and helical coil springs.

The rear suspension used Cadillac’s four-link drive. Lower control arms fastened to the frame outriggers and to the rear axle housing permit up and down motion of the axle but deters it against fore and aft motion. The helical coil springs mounted between lower control arms and frame cushions vertical motion of the car only. They fully absorb road shocks with minimum upset to the frame and body resulting in a more level ride over uneven surfaces. The shocks are mounted in an inverted “V” fashion to further resist sideways motion to the car.

12

11

Also standard for the 1958 model year were Cadillac’s four-wheel power assisted drum brakes and Cadillac’s power steering. Regardless of the model, Cadillac was always a car complete. They offered more features and accessories as standard equipment than the other luxury brands. Cadillac also offered more features and accessories as optional equipment than the competitors. Cadillac was the “Standard of the World” in comfort and convenience.

In all of motordom, there was only one true luxury sedan…the incomparable Fleetwood Series Sixty-Special. The artisans and styling genius of Fleetwood craftsmen built these illustrious long wheelbase sedans with refined techniques and contemporary engineering. These distinctive motorcars bear many distinguishing design features to emphasize their ultra-exclusive character.  The most dramatic styling feature of the Sixty-Special’s exterior is its stunning chrome body side ensemble. The lower rear fender incorporates a single flowing panel of ribbed anodized aluminum with a stainless-steel molding. The fender skirts blend into this theme.

44

The distinctive rear-end design is augmented by a textured chrome molding across the lower deck lid. Twin bullet taillamps with up-swept tail fins are totally in character with Cadillac tradition. Exhaust ports at the end of the bumper caps added an exclusive but detrimental touch. Most people re-route the exhaust tail pipe below the bumper to save the chrome from deterioration.

13

14

15

16

20

The Fleetwood Series Sixty-Special is endowed with a spacious interior. The appointments and furnishings are luxurious in every respect. Mojave cloth was available in three shades and an additional three selections in broadcloth. Seven beautiful selections of exclusively patterned nylon and metallic leather bolsters were also available.

Standard Fleetwood luxury includes: front and rear center folding arm rests, power windows, power 2-way front seat, power vent windows, left and right outside rear view mirrors with driver’s side remote-controlled, and courtesy lighting. Popular options for the 1958 model year include: air conditioning, air suspension, power door locks, tri-power carburetion, automatic headlamp dimmer, Sabre-Spoke aluminum wheels (set of 5), gold-finish radiator grille, remote control trunk release, radio, and white wall tires.

21

24

25

26

27

28

31

32

33

34

35

36

37

38

39

40

41

47

48

The 1958 Cadillacs are powered by the Cadillac 6.0 litre 16-valve 365 CID V8 engine. It is equipped with a Carter AFB 2862S 4-bbl downdraft carburetor with equalized manifold, mechanical fuel pump, intake silencer, automatic choke, and dry-type air cleaner. The engine block and cylinder heads are made of cast iron. The crankshaft runs in five main bearings.

The engine produces 310 hp @ 4,800 rpm with 549 Nm of peak torque @ 3,100 rpm. Longitudinal acceleration is rated as 0-60 mph in 11.4 seconds, 0-100 mph in 34 seconds, and 0-110 mph in 57.5 seconds. These times are great for a 4,930+ pound automobile with NO aerodynamics. The top speed without governor is 117 mph. It could do the ¼ mile @ 80 mph in 18.3 seconds.

51

50

The engine is mated to GM’s Hydra-Matic Drive (Jetaway, Flashaway) 4-speed automatic transmission. It is the step-gear type with controlled fluid coupling on forward gear set for smoother shifting. It provides two Drive Ranges, Lo Range, and reverse. FYI: Did you know that Rolls Royce used both the Hydra-Matic and Turbo Hydra-Matic automatic transmissions in their luxury saloons? Well…guess who taught them how to be a luxury saloon?

56

Many years ago Cadillac focused on a single goal; and that was to be the “Standard of the World.” Cadillac Fleetwoods were very special. They had their own dedicated assembly lines. Fleetwoods are the last of the hand-crafted Cadillacs. The Series Sixty-Special augmented the model hierarchy for the 1958 model year. It was the most luxurious owner-driven Cadillac sedan offered.

A Fleetwood was a luxury automobile of superb design, precise hand-crafting, with universal appeal. The Fleetwood Series Sixty-Special is unmistakably Cadillac in stature and majesty. It was in a class all by itself in luxury and magnificence. However grand the occasion, the arrival in a Cadillac Fleetwood Series Sixty-Special was a notable one. This is another star performer…in the continuing saga of “As the Standard of the World Turns.”

55

Last 1

Last 2

1958 Cadillac Fleetwood Series Sixty-Special

1970 Rolls Royce Silver Shadow Formal Limousine

Posted in Classic Exotic Luxury, Editorials, Extreme Luxury, Grande Marque, Luxury Sedans, Rolls Royce with tags , , , , , , on December 29, 2014 by 99MilesPerHour

The rare factory division makes it a limousine

1

The “Spirited Seventies” were no more eloquently stated than the 1970 Rolls Royce Silver Shadow LWB saloon. To make it even more exclusive, one could have requested the rare factory privacy division. The option transformed the Long Wheelbase saloon into a formal limousine. The Silver Shadow series was four years old; it had already begun refinement to make the best car in the world…even better. If formality is a requisite, here’s your saloon…should you find one available to purchase – these are extremely rare and collectible.

2

3

15

This formal saloon is for the owner that wishes to retain his privacy but required a shorter wheelbase than a traditional extra-long wheelbase limousine. The Silver Shadow Long Wheelbase versions were introduced May 1969 for the US market and 1970 for Europe. The very first LWB saloons were test piloted in 1967 and ten were built. The wheelbase is 4” longer than the standard Silver Shadow. Only 2,776 LWB saloons were built during the Silver Shadow’s production which makes them highly collectible.

The Silver Shadow is the first Rolls Royce to be built as monocoque construction. This fuses the bodyshell with its platform to make a strong one-piece entity. It lowers the center of gravity making the vehicle more responsive and handling more precise. It also provides a larger cabin with its construction being less obtrusive. It also eliminates squeaks and rattles.

21

37

The 1970 Silver Shadow had no exterior changes from its original 1965 design. A distinguishing feature of the LWB saloons is the Everflex roof treatment and “RR” badges affixed to each rear roof sail panel. The added length was anonymously added into the rear doors to retain the Silver Shadow’s original design.

These elegant formal limousines never pass unremarked. A Rolls Royce always maintains styling continuity and the poised dignity that is the hallmark of the brand. The Silver Shadow series was the most significant model since the Silver Ghost. Its styling was modern for the day, but it retained the traditional qualities long associated with the brand.

18

22

23

The cars fitted with the privacy division lost the 4” gain provided by the longer wheelbase. Not many were fitted with this option for this reason alone. The LWB saloons equipped with the power glass division had an additional heating/cooling unit mounted in the boot. US laws prohibited this feature because it would require the fuel tank to be relocated.

The cabin of the Silver Shadow is appointed in the traditional Rolls Royce fashion. The featured saloon is fitted with a leather upholstered chauffeur’s compartment and a luxurious knit upholstering the passenger compartment. This is an extremely rare example of a Rolls Royce’s bespoke nature. Hand-crafted wood veneers are hand-polished to an extra high gloss. A unique cross-banded veneer graces the cabin of the features model. All veneer work is mirror-matched to the opposite side of the car.

24

27

33

35

No two Rolls Royce’s will ever share the same wood pattern. Each component is a piece of incomparable craftsmanship. Eight slivers of invisibly joined hand-cut veneer makes an elegant statement. The wafer-thin sheets are inspected, shuffled, and book-matched before they are hand-cut. The craftsman then creates the pattern, this is why no two cars will ever share the same detail. The veneer pattern is recorded in the car’s history book which follows the car through its production and signed by each of the artisans that help to build it.

A Silver Shadow LWB saloon is hand-crafted in the Rolls Royce tradition with a richly appointed cabin. The Wilton hand-tufted 100% wool carpet lines the cabin and the boot. The rear seat passengers have carpeted footrests. The LWB saloons fitted with the privacy division had rear seat controls for the radio, windows, door locks, and the division itself. For vehicles outside the US, controls for the added heating/cooling unit for the rear compartment.

30

28

29

32

The Silver Shadow came equipped standard with every luxury that its competition offered as options. Power windows, power door locking system with centralized locking feature that included the boot lock, power fuel filler door, power antenna, power seats, power assisted steering and brakes, and courtesy lighting are just a few of the many features and accessories Rolls Royce provides as standard equipment.

19

34

36

Cloud III 2

Every Rolls Royce motorcar is the natural successor to the previous model. Development for the Silver Shadow took 11 years. It was a major departure from the past. Styling cues from its predecessor the Silver Cloud; were refined into a modern interpretation. It offered more interior room in a smaller exterior package. The Silver Shadow is the democratized Rolls Royce. It is 3.5” shorter and 7” narrower than the iconic Silver Cloud series. It took a special automobile to replace the “Clouds.” The world still has a love affair with both the Silver Clouds and the Silver Shadows.

Cloud III 3

5

The Silver Shadow introduced new technology. Its most innovative feature is the high-pressure hydraulic dual-circuit braking and hydraulic self-leveling system. The master cylinder has dual-pistons with dedicated hardware and brake lines to facilitate independent front and rear brake system operation. Should one system fail, each wheel will still be halted independently. New technology also replaced the drum brakes with discs. Its rear suspension was independent replacing the live axle design. The difference these two systems made was immediately evident in the Silver Shadow’s overall operating efficiency.

6

7

The self-leveling system was controlled individually for the front and rear suspensions. It was changed for the 1969 model year to delete the front system since it was the rear suspension that did most of the work anyway. If you are planning to purchase a Rolls Royce of this vintage make certain this hydraulic system for the brake and ride height control system are in excellent operating condition. Restoring the hydraulics is obscenely expensive to restore.

8

9

Performance ratings for early Rolls Royce models isn’t available nor are these rare automobiles available for testing. Whenever Rolls Royce was quizzed regarding performance aspects, their reply was “adequate.” I always use Bentley performance specifications. The 1970 Bentley “T” series was really a badge-engineered Rolls Royce anyway. They both share the legendary 6.75 litre 16-valve 412 CID alloy V8 engine.

The 1970 model year was the first year for increase in displacement from the former 6.2 litre V8. The 6.75 litre V8 adapted to the emissions control devices that were mandated by the EPA. I like the 6.75 litre better of the two. This naturally aspirated V8 engine is equipped with two SU HS8 carburetors. The engine is mated to GM’s THM-400 3-speed automatic transmission.

38

The engine produces 217 hp @ 4,500 rpm with 530 Nm of peak torque @ 2,500 rpm. Longitudinal acceleration is rated as 0-60 mph in 9.9 seconds, 0-100 mph in 34.3 seconds, 0-110 mph in 72.2 seconds with a top speed of 115 mph. It could do the ¼ mile @ 80 mph in just 17.3 seconds. These figures are calculated burning premium leaded fuel. These were the proverbial good old days…

12

39

The 1970 Rolls Royce Silver Shadow LWB formal saloon is the ultimate in British hand-crafting. The factory power glass division transformed the formal saloon into a limousine. This rare factory option makes the Silver Shadow LWB formal limousine highly sought by collectors world-wide. It is designed for the owner that wishes to retain their privacy without the larger wheel based traditional limousine.

These luxurious personal limos are equipped with every option to make each journey a pleasant experience. It is automobiles like the Rolls Royce Silver Shadow LWB formal limousine that represents a time when hand-crafted automobiles were stately and dignified in all their majesty. Rolls Royce limousines are luxury in the grand Rolls Royce manner. A Rolls Royce is the quintessential Flagship…”Nil fato relinquemus” 

10

13

Special thanks to Rodd Sala at Park Ward Motors Museum

14

logo 2

41

42

“The quality will remain long after the price has been forgotten”