Lot 426

Hershey 2023

1940 Cadillac Series 90 V-16 Imperial Sedan by Fleetwood


$88,000 USD | Sold

United States | Hershey, Pennsylvania



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  • A capstone of American luxury for 1940, the final year of Cadillac’s legendary Sixteen
  • Wears a still-stunning, older frame-off restoration
  • Powered by a fully rebuilt 431 cu.-in. V-16 engine rated at 185 hp
  • Cloaked in two-tone blue over black with a Tan Embassy Pattern Broadcloth passenger compartment
  • Equipped with desirable accessories, including dual side-mounted spare tires with covers, heater, divider window, and twin bumper-mounted Trippe fog lights

In December 1929, Cadillac’s Division President Lawrence P. Fisher announced to dealers that Cadillac was going to debut the ultimate in automotive luxury. Unveiled at the 1930 New York Auto Show, the marque’s shocking V-16 engine was a trump card that not only raised the stakes in the luxury car market but so stunned its contemporaries that few even attempted to design a rival sixteen-cylinder. Despite the deepening Great Depression, orders surged for Cadillac’s incredible new automobile.

But even the undeniable magnificence of the V-16s was not completely immune to the economic parrels gripping the country. As the 1930s progressed, the great V-16 Cadillacs became more and more difficult to sell. Consequently, ownership of such limited, pricey automobiles was generally reserved for the truly wealthy elite, a clique which saw its numbers dwindle as the decade progressed, leading Cadillac to retire the legendary engine in December 1939, ahead of the 1940 model year.

Wearing opulent seven-passenger Imperial Sedan coachwork by Fleetwood, one of these magnificent Cadillac Sixteens is offered for sale here. After being acquired by the consignor in 2008, the car was treated to a multi-year, no-expense-spared, frame-off restoration by the consignor’s highly experienced in-house restoration staff. Notable work included a painstaking rebuild of the V-16 engine at a cost of almost $30,000 and commissioning noted authority Dan Kilpatrick of Chouteau, Oklahoma to retrim the interior to original specifications.

Handsomely presented in two-tone blue over black fenders with the interior upholstered in Tan Embassy Pattern Broadcloth, this aptly named Imperial Sedan is equipped with a multitude of desirable options, including a heater, dual side-mounted spare tires with covers, and twin bumper-mounted Trippe Safety Light fog lights. The rear passenger compartment features all the proper accoutrements of Art Deco luxury, including dual cigarette lighters, foldaway jump seats, a padded footrest, privacy curtains, and divider window.

A capstone of prewar American opulence, this remarkable V-16 Imperial Sedan ensures its next caretaker will always arrive in style.