Cadillac was going for the ultimate in prestige, power and smooth performance when it began production of its V16-powered luxury cars in 1930, the first automaker to offer such a multitude of cylinders. Cadillac built the top-of-the-line cars through the start of World War II, although sales were sparse after the introduction year as the Great Depression took hold.
The engines were complex to build and fitted into luxurious bodies, so the price tag was steep. Even so, Cadillac is said to have lost money on every V16 model sold.
The Pick of the Day is arguably the best-looking of the breed, a 1930 Cadillac V16 sport coupe by Fleetwood, complete with rumble seat and original 165-horsepower engine under its long hood. Adding to its allure, it was once owned by music legend Neil Young, and then was housed in an East Coast museum until 2016.
The Caddy has about 55,000 miles indicated on its odometer, according to the private seller in Ann Arbor, Michigan, offering the car on ClassicCars.com, who adds, “Upon careful inspection, this mileage appears to be original and accurate.”
The seller offers a very complete description of the car, which is considered a True Classic by the Antique Automobile Club of America.
“According to the Cadillac V16 data base, this car is believed to be one of only about six survivors,” the seller wrote for the ad. “Unlike most of the coupes that were built with a straight windshield and a straight lower body sill, this desirable Fleetwood #4276 coupe features a slanted windshield, chrome window reveals and curved lower body sills or coach sills. It is probably the best-looking and sportiest of all of the Cadillac coupes ever produced.
“This is an extremely original vehicle. It has never been disassembled or restored. Instead, it has always been well cared for and refurbished as needed. Many years ago, the car was repainted in its original color of Botswain Blue. The paint certainly shows the expected signs of its age but presents extremely well from all angles.
“The blue leather upholstery was more recently replaced and looks great. The matching blue rumble seat is likely to have its original material. The polished wood trim in the interior is original and extremely well-preserved.
“This is a great-looking car with an extraordinary visual presence.”
The coupe is “rock solid and tight,” the seller adds. “The doors open and close with authority, and the body margins and panel fitment are better than most restored cars.”
“Under the hood, this rare V16 retains its original engine #702246,” the ad continues. “The engine bay appears mostly original and, of course, retains all of its proper components such as the original carburetors, vacuum tanks, valley cover, distributor, etc. The car runs and drives well but will likely require some sorting out before any long tours are attempted.
“The chassis retains much of its original paint. When you crawl underneath this car, you really realize what a good car this is. The underneaths of the doors, fenders, floors etc. are just smooth as the tops.”
The original build sheet shows that this “great and honest” car has all its correct components, the seller notes.
The seller is asking $385,000 or best offer for this spectacular classic Cadillac.
To view this listing on ClassicCars.com, see Pick of the Day.