This was a car photographed by a friend of mine in Sweden some time ago. At the time she posted the pics, I went nuts. An unrestored Eldorado Biarritz? A blue chip collector car, one of 1,320 built, worth a ton? Just simply driven and enjoyed?
Yes, that’s right, another Cadillac post. You know the drill! I am nothing if not predictable. So let’s check out this week’s Klockau Lust Object. The 1967 Eldorado, though made possible through the production of the remarkable 1966 Oldsmobile Toronado, was a sharp car-literally and figuratively.
I first became aware of these via ads in old National Geographics back in middle school. Though the cars were only about twenty years old then, they blew my mind. Nothing like the Mini Me Eldorados then in production (circa 1987-89). Slightly later on I was given some old “Spectraflame” Hot Wheels my Uncle Dave had as a kid. One of those was a deep blue Custom Eldorado – which I still have.
So, if you read Parts I and II of my Ettleson Cadillac car show posts, you’ll know I was in Chicagoland about a month ago. I always take Interstate 80, and if they are still open when I pass by on the way home, I always stop by the Peru Antique Mall, clearly visible from 80 itself, in Peru, IL. When I attended the Shirey Cadillac show on Memorial Day weekend, I discovered and bought a 1971 Cadillac Fleetwood Eldorado dealer promo there.
At that time, there was also a gold 1969 Fleetwood Eldorado promo sitting right next to it in the showcase.
But I picked the ’71 as it was missing only its stand-up hood ornament, while the ’69 had both taillights absent.
Do you remember the GM 5.7-liter Diesel? Even those of a certain age who haven’t directly experienced one undoubtedly have heard of them. My parents’ friends down at the marina had a Dark Jadestone 1982 Delta 88 Diesel coupe, and I can distinctly remember its lud-lud-lud-lud engine beat. The Werthmanns had good luck with that car, and kept it for 10 years. While theirs ran like a top, that wasn’t exactly the most common experience…
Oldsmobile was the pioneer in engineering GM’s Diesel V8. The engine was also available for the Cadillac Seville in 1978, and for the Eldorado, Fleetwood Brougham, Coupe deVille and Sedan deVille in 1979.
Despite many horror stories over the years, the much-maligned 5.7 Diesel, when properly maintained, could be reliable. However, many of the buyers of GM cars fitted with this engine were quite unfamiliar with the additional care and feeding diesel engines required vis a vis the gasoline V8s many of them traded off for one of these. As a result, many of them experienced headaches from their cars. The whole GM Diesel V8 episode turned many Americans off to Diesel engines for years. Though by 1982 they had been reengineered and as a whole were much less needy. But by them it was too late; people were staying away.
The 1979 to 1985 Cadillac Eldorado was downsizing done right. So many times, when emission standards, fuel economy and plain, simple customer tastes change, the results can sometimes be…awkward. But in the late ’70s, GM had it down pat, thanks to Design VP Bill Mitchell.
Mitchell was one of the best. He took over as head of GM Design when Harley Earl retired in 1958. But Mitchell was an old hand by then. He’d been with GM for decades, and produced some great designs decades before he was awarded the helm.
As has been consistently proven here at RG over the past year and a half, I am a big fan of Cadillacs (and Lincolns, and Imperials, and Olds 98s-never mind, we’ll be here all day!) I am especially enamored of the triple-yellow Cadillacs that were available between the late ’70s and early ’90s. And while the 1986-1991 Eldorado and Seville are a favorite target for half-baked blogger hit pieces, I do have a soft spot for these Mini-Me Eldos. Especially the restyled and re-engineered 1988-91 models. So when I saw what may be the best ’91 Eldo in existence, and in triple Cameo Ivory, I could not help but share its Broughaminess with all you fine folks.
In the Year Of Our Lord 1961, the Cadillac Eldorado, the most expensive Cadillac short of the factory limousines, got an all-new look. As did the rest of the line. It was somewhat scandalous at the time, but the new Cadillacs greeting showroom browsers in Autumn of 1960 were, believe it or not, somewhat smaller. Ye gods! What is the world coming to?
Was 1976 Peak Brougham? Perhaps it was. Sure, the phenomenon of V8, RWD luxocruisers with crushed velour and landau tops went on for decades after, but in ’76, it was everywhere, and in screw the fuel economy, fully full-sized form. Also, it was the last year for the gigantic Eldorado convertible.
There’s just something about 1950s Cadillacs. It really was their decade. Depending on the era, there’s always that gotta have it vehicle. In the ’30s it was a Duesenberg, in the ’40s most likely a Packard, but in the ’50s a Caddy was the American Dream on four whitewalls. Harley Earl, the head of GM Design back then, did whatever the hell he wanted. And usually, it worked. Take, for instance, the 1956 Cadillac lineup.