Amelia Island | Lot 125
1958 Cadillac Eldorado Brougham
$160,000 - $200,000 USD
| Amelia Island, Florida
22 May 2021
- One of just 304 built for the 1958 model year
- Specification matches its original build sheet from GM Historical Archives
- Once part of the famed John O’Quinn collection
- Includes select items from the coveted vanity set
It is hard to imagine an American automaker today building a four-door sedan that would be priced higher than a new Ferrari or Rolls-Royce. The 1950s however, was a different time. Ford had upped the ante with the introduction of its 1956 Continental Mark II, a two-door coupe so elite that the Blue Oval didn’t even bother calling it a Lincoln. General Motors needed an answer. A car so outlandish, so well-equipped, and so exclusive, that it would set the bar for American luxury.
Cadillac’s answer was the 1957 Eldorado Brougham, a four-door hardtop sedan that featured quad headlights; side windows that disappeared completely, frames and all; rear-hinged rear doors, which were a throwback to the 1930s; and a broad expanse of sparkling brushed stainless steel for the roof. The engineering staff worked out a litany of power accessories. The trunk lid and not only opened with the push of a button, but they closed with one too, and the doors would lock automatically when the transmission was put in gear. A memory front seat was a first for a production car, as were the forged aluminum wheels. Naturally, there was air conditioning. All of this high living came at a cost of over $13,000. Cadillac reportedly lost $10,000 on every car built, which was why the model lasted for only two years with just 704 examples produced, 400 in 1957, and 304 in 1958.
Although its early history is unknown, this Eldorado was once part of the famed John O’Quinn Collection. It is finished in Black over a white leather interior accented by black buttons, matching the original Cadillac build records from the GM Archives. It was restored in the late 1990s and the original air springs changed to conventional coil springs for reliability. Body contours and panel fit are described as very good, with the paint and brightwork free from flaws. The engine compartment is clean and appropriately detailed. The select items from the coveted vanity set include tumblers, acrylic cigarette case, perfume bottle, note pad, and vanity case.
The consigner has used the car sparingly during his ownership, having put just 500 miles on the odometer over the last few years; it has reportedly performed reliably during his tenure. Limited production and a stunning color combination will ensure this Cadillac as one of the highlights of a collection of Cadillacs, finned autos, or 1950s cars.