ebay Find: 1984 Cadillac Seville – Hustle and Bustle


Hey you? Yes You! Do you want a Cadillac that looks as though someone sawed most of the trunk and awkwardly welded the rest back in? Boy do I have the car for you!

What was in the water in 1980-1982 that made Cadillac, Chrysler and Lincoln to come out with bustlebacks? Was it something passed around at a party in 1978 or so? Since GM had been showing some concepts with bustlebacks since the late 60s, and we all know how enamored Bill Mitchell was with European coach work, we’ll give the credit to Bill and GM. But Lee Iaccoca jumped on it as soon as he heard about it for his 1981 Imperial, and Lincoln rushed to get theirs out by 1982. By which time the bustle back was as good as dead, as far as a styling trend/gag.

Nobody who was shopping for a luxury car in the early eighties ever cross-shopped this Seville with a 300D, 300SD or BMW 5-Series. The people who bought them probably still saw the Germans the same way the late General Patton did. Paul’s rant on the many ways in which this Seville was a failure and a perfect representation of GM’s downfall is here. But if you’re in the “love” camp of love it or hate it, here’s an example that will suit you just fine.


The ad blurb is interesting. Apparently the reason that very few bustleback Sevilles were preserved is, and I quote, “because of the popularity of the midsized coupes of this era” and that “The demand for this body amongst collectors have more than doubled in the last 5 years as many Cadillac aficionados are snapping up the best examples for their collections.” Right…I’ll play along. This particular Seville has been kept in incredible condition. Polished to a shine, without a single blemish or faded piece of chrome. It’s a 1984 Seville finished in Silver Frost Metallic with a lovely Sandstone leather interior. There’s no rust, no dents and the whitewall tires are included in the price.

The odometer is (apparently) showing 57,888 miles.

That interior really is the only reason why someone who isn’t completely seduced by the styling would purchase one. Yes, I know it’s not as logical and probably not as high-quality as the Germans but I just look at those tan seats that wood(ish) applique and those chromed switches and I’m filled with an irrational desire to climb aboard and drive anywhere.


But will I get there? The engine under the hood is our old friend the HT4100 V8. Better than the Olds Diesel but not quite as good as a V8-6-4 with its clever tech disabled. The gasket-killing powerplant remains present, correct and mated to the 4-speed automatic that was the only option on the Seville.
I have to admit that’s going to be a bet. The car has been obviously pampered throughout its life so we can hardly say “well, if it was going to fail it would’ve by now.” And prices to get it fixed won’t be any lower now than they were back when it was in production.
The other problem of course is how much it’s actually going to cost. It’s sitting at $2000 with no reserve at the time of writing. Is the fact that it’s absolutely mint enough to defuse a possible ticking time bomb? How much would you pay for it? The listing is here.