I like Cadillacs. I like Broughams, even if they are not Cadillacs. And in case you’re wondering what I’ve been up to lately, I am now helping Richard Bennett with his Facebook Group, The Brougham Society. So the Broughamtastic types of cars I’ve really been sinking my teeth into over at TBS are now getting some CC love!
So: Like Cadillacs? Check. Like Broughams? Check. Thus, you can naturally assume how I feel about Cadillac Broughams. And this one is a Doozy. One of my favorite Cadillacs is the 1980-86 Fleetwood Brougham and its non-Fleetwood, just-plain-Brougham 1987-92 Brougham. The newly downsized 1977-79 Cadillacs were also attractive luxury vehicles, but with the 1980 refresh, Cadillac created a future classic.
If you like American luxury cars, you have to agree this was a great design. Strong, bold and clean, with squared-off styling that left no doubt you were looking at a Cadillac. From the bold grille, to the quad headlights, to the rear finlets and vertical taillights, this was the car to arrive in here in the Midwest. If only Cadillac had said screw it to CAFE and kept the 368 CID V8 in these cars after ’81…
But I’m not here today to talk about Cadillac’s stumbles in the early ’80s. I am here to tell you about what they did right–and as far as style was concerned, the traditional “big” Cadillac had it in spades. So did the Eldorado, and even the polarizing Seville–especially if you loved Hooper-bodied Rolls-Royce Silver Wraiths and Daimler DS420 limousines.
The Seville may or may not have been the best idea at the time, but the 1979-85 Eldorado and these deVilles and Fleetwoods were beauties.They were so classic that they lasted through model year 1992 with only new “Euro” side trim, flush headlamps and a slightly retouched instrument panel.
In mid-’80, the Fleetwood Brougham, a four-door sedan exclusively since its inception decades before, introduced a coupe model. Like the elegant sedan, it offered even plusher accommodations, a padded vinyl roof, and a limousine-style backlight.
Fleetwood Coupes utilized a landau-style top instead of the full-length version used on the four-door, but added a frenched-in opera window instead of the more conventional quarter light used on the more common Coupe deVille. The chrome rocker trim from the sedan was also applied.
The Coupe, as attractive as it was, never sold like its four-door companion, and 1985, the year of our eBay find shown here, was the last time you could get the “big” Fleetwood Brougham Coupe. That same year, a non-Brougham “Fleetwood Coupe” appeared on the downsized, FWD C-body, but it obviously did not have the sheer presence and heft of the 1980-85 Brougham Coupe.
I love these cars. And I also love these Cadillacs (and Lincolns, and Imperials…) in triple white. This one is just a stunning time capsule, with only 43K miles on it. The condition is amazing. And the blue trim contrasts nicely with all that plush white leather.
I am sure there are plenty of readers rolling their eyes and thinking “Tom, you are a hopeless case. Don’t you know this is just a Caprice coupe with a metric ton of gingerbread on it? A W126 Mercedes or equivalent BMW 7er would be so much more dynamically superior!” Well, that may be, but if I saw this car at a show with an ’85 500SEL and ’85 735i, I would check out the Caddy first. Such Broughaminess may even make the Bimmer and the Merc nigh on invisible. Look! White leather! Twenty-odd wreath-and-crests! Cadillac script on the overhead console!
And, approximately fourteen square feet of simulated wood trim! Chrome pedals, too. It’s all these little touches that make me love these cars. The great exterior styling makes it even better! And you will not be seeing woodgrained radio knobs on any of those high-falutin’ German sedans.
Even the driver’s seat is pristine on this car. Someone really loved their Cadillac. I can imagine driving this down to the golf course to hit a bucket of balls, passing Paul as he heads down to the lumberyard. Different strokes for different folks, you know!
The back seat is equally appealing, if not better than the front seat. I love that woodgrained reading lamp with the Cadillac emblem. I have also always loved the micro-mini Cadillac emblem on the side shields of the front seat. This is just a wonderful car, and certainly a car of its time and place. Especially if that place was a country club in Grosse Pointe in the fall of 1984.
So, what price Broughaminess? Well, there were seventy-five bids for this Cadillac, and it finally hammered down for $16,500. Whoever got it will have one of the best-looking ’80s Cadillacs, in one of the best possible color combinations. What a beauty!
All photos courtesy of eBay. View the auction here for lots and lots more photos!