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1962 Cadillac - any driving experiences out there?

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Comments

  • parmparm Posts: 723
    Well, this certainly looks like a nice '59 Cadillac. However, these aren't my cup of tea. I find these to be rather gaudy and ostentatious. They're fun to look at, but I wouldn't want it parked in my garage.

    Good thing for me too, because these usually sell for big bucks in that the '59 (and also the 1960 model) represent the height of chrome and fins.

    Now, if you can only find me a nice 1962 or 1964 Cadillac convertible? - and yes, I'd like fries with that ;-)

    I might even consider a '66 or '67 as well.
  • speedshiftspeedshift Posts: 1,598
    Gaudy? Ostentatious?
  • ghuletghulet Posts: 2,628
    ......I think most Americans have a fondness for the image of the '59, but I don't think it's worth a 50-100% premium just to have those fins. I'd rather have some of the modern niceties of a mid '60s car. I like the subtleness of the '63-66 much better, too.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 45,331
    I think it's the most horrible creation on 2 wheels next to maybe a '58 Buick. I actually get a physical pain in my chest when I look at one. Fortunately I regain my sense of humor and just laugh at it.

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  • badgerpaulbadgerpaul Posts: 219
    The '59 just helped to make the '60 so much better looking in comparison.
  • speedshiftspeedshift Posts: 1,598
    I'm shocked--shocked!--that someone would think the '59 is gaudy.

    ;-);-);-);-);-);-);-);-);-);-);-);-);-);-);-);-);-);-);-);-);-);-)
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 45,331
    True, very true, you need UGLY in this world so that you can point to the BEAUTIFUL. Your point is well taken. So in that sense the '59 Cadillac serves a good purpose.

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  • speedshiftspeedshift Posts: 1,598
    Shifty, you mention the '59 in another thread as a car that will never be a serious collectible. Let me play devil's advocate and suggest that a car can achieve a fairly high level of collectibility by representing the pinacle of bad taste for an era.

    I also suggest that there's a part of our collective psyche that positively relates to towering tail fins. The '59 Cadillac didn't happen by accident. It met a need then and it continues to meet it.
  • andre1969andre1969 Posts: 22,066
    ...the '59 Caddy probably outsold the '59 Lincoln and the '59 Imperial by a margin of 10:1 or more. Neither of those other two cars will win any beauty contests either, although in a twisted sort of way, I kinda like the Imperial.

    The Caddy might have been the pinnacle of tailfins, chrome, and overblown gaudiness, but I can think of a few cars that I'd consider uglier. Strip off a lot of that chrome and what's left really isn't that bad, although I like the '57-58 and '61-62's much, much better.

    Interestingly, I don't think the mid-line cars in '59 were all that bad. It seems that the bad taste seemed to gravitate more toward the low-end Chevy/Ford/Plymouth models and high-end Caddy/Lincoln/Imperials. In comparison, cars like Pontiac/Olds/Buick, Dodge/DeSoto/Chrysler, and Edsel/Mercury (okay, maybe the Edsel blows this theory ;-) looked pretty tasteful. To me, at least...
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 45,331
    speedshift

    Hi, I believe I said that the '59 Cadillac would never become a "classic". It is already a collectible, so I don't think I would have said that. If I did, that was a mistake, I meant that I didn't believe it would ever be regarded as a "classic" because classics by definition have to be beautiful and....well, most people, or at least the ones who decree "classic" status (the people who restore, sell, judge and collect important cars) wouldn't consider this car atttractive.

    Outrageous, yes, and a real crowd-stopper. But then, a traffic accident is also a crowd stopper.

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  • parmparm Posts: 723
    The yellow 1962 Series 62 Cadillac convertible sold on Ebay yesterday for $10,300 which is about what I expected. Actually, given that this car has factory A/C (even though it doesn't work) I would have expected around $11,500.

    This was a no reserve auction, so the $10,300 represents a bona fide sale price. I was glad to see this value as it is very supportive of the value I'm offering for the '62 Eldorado convertible in my area.

    I just printed off this auction result from Ebay's website and mailed it to my seller. This is just one piece of a mountain of market evidence I've supplied to the seller that supports my offer price. Anyway, I'll just have to see what happens now.

    By the way, I chuckled uncontrollably with our congenial hosts' analogy equating a '59 Cadillac to a traffic accident. One thing about a '59 Cadillac though, is that it's actually big enough to hold the crowd it stops!
  • speedshiftspeedshift Posts: 1,598
    Sorry, you're right, you said it would never be a classic, not that it would never be a collectible.

    Actually I wasn't defending the car. It just strikes me as such a remarkable example of balls out John Wayne bigger than life conspicuous consumption that it's deserving of recognition. Not applause, just recognition--maybe a moment of stunned silence.

    I think the '59 is a motif for the over-the-top optimism that's in the subconcious of every American. The '62 is the same motif but with a fig leaf. It's part of what makes us great but it can be a little embarassing in its purest form.
  • speedshiftspeedshift Posts: 1,598
    http://www.fleetwood.demon.nl/cf/co00/coe.html


    I'll take the '58, no contest.


    The '63's rear "jet exhaust" treatment is interesting. In '64 they took off the fender skirts--hubba hubba.

  • andre1969andre1969 Posts: 22,066
    ...that's a good thing!
  • jsylvesterjsylvester Posts: 572
    I like the 58 or the 64. I don't like any of the 70's models - they all just look big and boxy.
  • andre1969andre1969 Posts: 22,066
    ...it'd be a hard choice between the '58, '61, and '62. I like the way the '58 has that low, sloped, rounded-off rear deck that almost makes it look like a big sportscar. The '62 looks a bit cleaner than the '61 by virtue of the slightly smaller fins, although I find them both very attractive.

    As for the '70's Eldorados, now normally as a design ages, they tend to look tackier and tackier. However, I think the '75-76 Eldo looks better than the '71-74! Just something about the way it was squared off, I guess, but the earlier ones just look bloated and ponderous, whereas the '75-76 just looks more chiseled and sleek. Well, relatively speaking!
  • ghuletghulet Posts: 2,628
    .....has always been my favorite Cadillac. My neighbors had a '66 Fleetwood Brougham (triple black) when I was a kid (we had an orange Datsun 510). I never understood why we didn't have a Cadillac!
  • jrosasmcjrosasmc Posts: 1,704
    My favorite Cadillacs have always been the 1973 models.
  • badgerpaulbadgerpaul Posts: 219
    My Dad always looked forward to buying a Cadillac and bought a new '73. While it was a great looking car, it certainly wasn't the quality car people at the time had come to expect from Cadillac. All the pollution plumbing under the hood kept it from running right until it was well warmed up, just about the time you got to where you were going. From the first, the paint around the side trim blistered. The interior hardware wasn't attached very well and might come off in your hand. When it was traded off for a new Lincoln I don't recall a single tear being shed.
  • andre1969andre1969 Posts: 22,066
    ...I used to drive past a 1974 Sedan DeVille that was sitting for sale in someone's front yard. It looked to be in pretty good shape, but was a really odd-looking green. Almost like someone took all the metallic out of the olive green, and mixed a little gray into it. I was tempted a few times to stop and see how much they wanted for it, but then it finally got moved.

    Last time I noticed, they had another car there for sale...a light brown 1980-84 gen Buick Electra with a LeSabre front-end clip (only difference is the grille and the lack of portholes). One thing I remember about Cadillacs of the '70's is that the soft-touch material on the door panels and armrests, while it looked good when it was new, fell apart really quickly. Not to mention dashboards cracking, pull-straps coming off, etc.
  • ghuletghulet Posts: 2,628
    I feel fortunate, based on what I've heard, that I've never owned a '73-75 car; it sounds like they were both slow and gas-guzzlers, because of the really bad smog stuff. I did come kind of close to buying a '74 Cadillac when I bought my '71 Deuce. Naturally, that car was a gas guzzler, but it was pretty 'gutsy'. My '77 Caprice wasn't fast, but it was a relatively efficient big car.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 45,331
    Also keep in mind that these cars are very expensive to fix and restore, and you've just rattled off what could easily amount to thousands of dollars in fix-ups.

    Museum cars are among the worst types of car to buy by the way.

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  • parmparm Posts: 723
    Well, the other shoe finally dropped and the 1962 Cadillac Eldorado convertible I was trying to purchase was sold to someone else. This car was very pretty and had received some appreciable restoration work about 10 years ago or so. The exterior didn't need hardly anything and looked nearly new from 10ft away. There was some chrome pitting, but not overly so. The interior was also nice and had new seat leathers when the restoration was done.

    However, this car lacked A/C (which is surprising for an Eldorado) and also had a lot of niggling electrical problems. Plus, the brakes needed work and there were some issues with the engine. And, there may have been issues with the transmission as it didn't shift as smooth as it should. Furthermore, I would've had new foam rubber installed all around as the seat cushions were lumpy and uneven.

    In 1996, this car sold for $16,000 at the Fall Kruse auction in Auburn, Indiana. However, for the last six years or so, the car had been sitting in a club museum in Kokomo. The owner admitted to me he paid too much for the car back in 1996. In January of this year, the owner donated this car to the museum under the condition that they sell it to raise money.

    I was offering $10,000 and provided a mountain of market evidence that convincingly supported why this car isn't worth more than $10,000. I could have purchased it for $13,000 and would've if it didn't have the strikes against it I mentioned. I found out that the board just sold the car for $12,500.

    I'm disappointed not to get this car as I've been working on this deal for about 4 months. However, I'm not depressed as anything over $10,000 was too much. As pretty as this car is, it has too many things going against it with the lack of A/C and the electrical problems being the biggest offenders.

    I had to deal with a board of directors which didn't help facilitate making a deal on this car. You can't look a committee in the eye and it was hard to communicate with them. As an example, I was never given their initial asking price. I was told to just "make us an offer". After I offered $10,000, they said I could buy the car for $13,000. I elected not to counter with anything more. I just found out that they were initially thinking $17,000 which is laughable. Still, I had no way of knowing they had come down $4,000. I sort of feel like I greased the skids for the buyer at $12,500.

    So, that's the second 1962 Cadillac convertible I've lost out on in 4 months. Ironically, the first one just showed up on Ebay this week and I referenced it a few months ago in this forum. I'll provide the Ebay link in another post.

    Back in Feb./March, this car sold in a private sale for $18,000 which, again, is more than it was worth. I was more in the $12,000 range. This car lacks A/C as well, but it's a Series 62 which isn't as surprising. Seeing the buyer now listing it on Ebay after having owned it for just a few months is kind of strange. The photos he's using are from the previous owner and shows snow in the background. You think he would've at least used new photos taken on a nice sunny day.

    I've communicated with the current owner and he told me he's put a high reserve on it. Thus, I doubt it will sell. I told him I'd be interested in it, but that I'd only be willing to pay its value - as determined by the market.

    Maybe I'm just too cheap. Of course, the fact I'm on a limited budget also drives what I'm willing to offer. Thus, I haven't crossed the line where you start thinking with your heart instead of your head. Perhaps someday I'll be able to afford to. But, for now, I can only afford to think with my head.

    Oh well. Collector cars are like buses. If you miss one, another will surely come along.
  • parmparm Posts: 723
    Here's the Ebay link to the car I mentioned above.


    http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/aw-cgi/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=1829021769


    I know quite a bit about this car and it is nice. But, the seller's reserve is no doubt in the $20K+ range which is way over-priced.

  • speedshiftspeedshift Posts: 1,598
    Parm, for what it's worth I have clients who tell me the same thing--"it's only worth X". And usually diligent buyers have a good feel for value. But if you say it's only worth X and then it sells above X, and if that happens more than once, then I'd begin to think the market is telling you something.

    I've found that the analytical types--accountants, engineers, stock brokers--are at a disadvantage in a hot market or with hot properties. They buy with their head, not their heart. Unfortunately the hot properties inspire emotional bidding, something the analytical types can't and don't want to compete with.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 45,331
    Buyers determine the market, that's true, but you do need a fair sampling to decide if there really is a trend upward, especially on common cars. If the car were incredibly rare, then almost every sale would be a partial determinant, but when there are thousands out there, you can't really declare a change of value in the marketplace based on 4-5 sales.

    Dealers know the market very well because that's how they pay the rent; not only by what price they sell at, but what price they buy at.

    Another issue is that every used "classic" is a different car. The ones shown on this board might in fact have a significantly different level of quality.

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  • speedshiftspeedshift Posts: 1,598
    Oh sure, one transaction doesn't make a market. And as you say, collectibles aren't commodities--identical units--so it's harder to categorize their value, especially the ones that deviate from the norm.

    But Parm seems to have an eye for the exceptional cars, or at least the ones in exceptional condition. I just have a feeling that these cars may take longer to sell, since they're priced above where they "should" be, but that their outstanding appeal will eventually generate an emotional offer above what the prudent buyer would pay. And Parm is what I'd call a prudent buyer.

    Of course a car can't be priced too far above the norm or it won't have any credibility but in Parm's case an exceptional car sold for an apparent 25% premium.

    And selling by committee can't be the best way to extract the maximum sales price--or can it :-)? Maybe this is a variation on the "I have to talk to my manager" theme.
  • parmparm Posts: 723
    Buying a hot car/property based on emotion is fine until things cool off. Then you're left with an expensive paperweight. I'd much rather be accused of paying too little for a car than too much.

    $12,500 wasn't terribly out of line of the car in Kokomo, but it was more than I was willing to pay. Now, if this car had either factory A/C or more solid electricals, then I would've paid the eventual purchase price.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 45,331
    If a collectible car is truly exceptional in every way, of pristine show quality and as good as the day it was made, well then you can throw the price guides out the window. But if it's a car that is driven daily, probably the price guides are right in the ballpark. Collectible car markets do change of course, but not very quickly. Even a 10% jump in value in a year is quite exceptional and '62 Cadillacs are not super "hot" commodities.

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