Are you the owner of a vehicle with a subscription model for specific features on your car such as GM's SuperCruise hand-free driving or Toyota's remote-start feature? A reporter would like to speak with you; please reach out to [email protected] by Friday, September 22 for more details.

1962 Cadillac - any driving experiences out there?



  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Member Posts: 64,481
    That's a strategy of course. Ebay is a pretty cheap way to get publicity from around the country.

    Actually, if you took a shabby '62 Eldo and went through it top to bottom, doing a nut and bolt restoration, you'd have way over $30K in it.
  • parmparm Member Posts: 724
    would you be able to sell it for that much? Probably not, unless you find the right buyer.

    As a commercial real estate appraiser, I have a saying that "cost is not necessarily synonymous with value."

    In my opinion, one thing you have to consider when buying a restored car is "how well do I like the restoration?"

    As an example, let's say you restored a '62 Eldorado to true concours standards in terms of quality and selected a color combination you think looks absolutely fabulous, but makes others turn away in horror. I'd say your chances of recouping your restoration costs are pretty slim.

    My point is, if I'm going to shell out the bucks to cover a "true" restoration, then I'd just assume pay to restore a car myself. That way, I can call the shots with regard to color, quality and authenticity of the parts used, etc.

    However, by doing so, I inherently take a risk knowing my tastes and perceptions may not be in tune with the mainstream of the market. Hence, "cost is not necessarily synonymous with value."
  • carnut4carnut4 Member Posts: 574
    of the 62s [and the nearly identical 61s] better than the 63-64s, which are also very close to each other in styling, and less attractive-at least to my eye.
    Guess I've said that before.
    Both gorgeous cars, but that white one seems really stunning.
  • andre1969andre1969 Member Posts: 25,451
    ...after having my white Dart for 9 years (actually had it longer, but for 1 1/2 years it was primer-black). In the case of that white '62 though, I'd make an exception!

    Just out of curiosity, is there really any advantage to a '62 Caddy over a '61? Anything that makes one more desireable than the other? I tend to group them together, since I'd love to have either one, but I guess the slightly lower fins might make the '62 a bit more tasteful.
  • parmparm Member Posts: 724
    I should be able to answer off the top of my whether there are any mechanical differences between a '61 and '62, but can't say with a 100% certainty. However, I'm 99.9% sure the only significant difference is the exterior styling.

    As you probably know, the rear grill of the 61's have a horizontal pod for the back up/tail lights along with higher fins. Whereas, the 62's have a smaller, vertical light pod and also smaller fins. Personally, I don't care for the horizontal pod of the 61's. They look to "Buck Rogers" for my taste.

    The other main difference is in the front grill. The 61's have round driving/fog lamp fixtures. Whereas, the 62's have a square opening.

    Mechanically, I think they're pretty much identical.
  • isellhondasisellhondas Member Posts: 20,342
    I think they simply cleaned up the '62's a lot. I like the tailights and grills in the '62's much better.

    I don't think there were any mechanical differences.
  • ghuletghulet Member Posts: 2,564
    ...'62 was the first year for 'cornering lamps' (the white, non-flashers on the side), which Cadillac invented. There weren't any notable mechanical differences, just styling and some colors that were unique to '62s (including the cool butternut yellow, I think). Of course, if either of those makes any difference in a decision between a '61 and '62, I'd be surprised. '63 was the first year for the tilt wheel, '64 was the first year for the 429 and climate control a/c, 66s had optional tilt/telescope wheel and heated seats. Gadgets galore.
  • isellhondasisellhondas Member Posts: 20,342
    In the Seattle Times this morning.
  • parmparm Member Posts: 724
    This is probably my favorite color for a '62 Cadillac. Per chance, is this car for sale? Inquiring minds need to know.

    To ghulet: I'm impressed with your knowledge of early 60's Cadillacs. Thought I was the only one in this town hall "touched" enough to follow that stuff.

    By the way, the yellow that was available in 1962 was called Maize which is also one of my favorite colors.
  • parmparm Member Posts: 724

    The opening bid on this car was something like $17,500 or $17,900 so you'd naturally expect this car would receive zero bids. In fact, it didn't receive any bids for most of its auction period. However, as the auction is winding down, 4 people apparently feel this car is worth this much. The seller apparently also wasn't very confident about his asking price, because he's removed the reserve.

    The bidding is now up to $18,600 with roughly 21 hours to go. Hard to believe.

    Still, as we all well know, this doesn't mean the car will sell when the auction ends. Plus, we also don't know if these represent "real" bids or shill bids.

    I wouldn't be surprised to see this car back on Ebay.

  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Member Posts: 64,481
    Provable original miles are worth a lot of $$ in the collectible car market, so that's what's pulling the car up. That repaint had better be the best in the world, though, or the crap is going to fly when that car is unloaded in the buyer's driveway.

    I love how people write ads:

    All original except for the paint

    Everything works except for the clock, which is an easy fix.


    It's NOT original if it's been repainted

    If the clock is so easy to fix, why didn't you do it?

    This kind of nickel and dime miserliness reminds me of going to these high-class auctions. Invariably, a $100,000 car rolls up to the ramp and....and....RUNS OUT OF GAS!

    So, what's the story. You didn't want to give the new owner the ten gallons?
  • parmparm Member Posts: 724
    "Restored original".

    I enjoy asking sellers, "Well, which is it?" Because it can't be both.
  • parmparm Member Posts: 724
    The latest issue of CPI shows a '62 Cadillac convertible (a non-Eldorado) in Excellent condition to have a value of $18,950. CPI's definition of excellent essentially means the car is one of the best examples on the planet. With 15 hours to go in this auction, the bidding is up to $18,600. So, if this car is as good as advertised, then it would appear the market is in perfect harmony.

    It's just that after seeing countless ads then seeing the car, I've become pretty skeptical. As a result, when someone tells me a car is in "excellent" condition, I immediately assume it's condition is no better than good. A car advertised as being "good" is usually no better than fair to average.

    Thus, when I saw the write-up on this white '62 Cadillac convertible, I figured we were dealing with a car that was perhaps very nice, but not one that was truly exceptional - which, at over $18K and according to CPI's definition of "excellent", it apparently is.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Member Posts: 64,481
    My experience as an appraiser over many years seems to show that most cars thought of as "restored" or "pristine" are actually #3s.

    #1 cars basically do not exist. Well, they do, but they are never driven so most of us won't see them unless we go to concours often.

    #2 cars are, to the casual eye, perfect, but in fact are usually wonderful cars but with flaws that show up in closer examination, or some errors is restoration. #2s are usually driven, but not a lot, or they are former #1s just coming off the show circuit and ready to go back "to the real world".
  • grbeckgrbeck Member Posts: 2,358
    ...a #1 car at the Hershey meet yesterday. It was a 1958 DeSoto Adventurer convertible that had originally been equipped with the rare fuel injection option (but had since been converted to carburetors). Only 82 were ever built, and, according to the poster the owner had prepared, only 5 are left in the world.

    The paint, panel fit and interior workmanship put a brand-new Lexus to shame. No 1958 DeSoto left the factory in that condition. It's a stunning car, but you can't really drive it and keep it in that condition. It was nice to look at, though.
  • isellhondasisellhondas Member Posts: 20,342
    Well, I posted that link before I pulled it up myself. I didn't get a photo but it sounds like you did?

    I looked this morning and the ad is now gone. Looks like a one day ad or something? Strange!
  • isellhondasisellhondas Member Posts: 20,342
    Yeah...that clock is "easy" to fix, so why doesn't the guy fix it?

    Other things I've heard (and hear in the business) that I get a kick out of...

    " It's ALL freeway miles!"

    The car is running rough...

    " It just needs to be driven" or...
    " I think I got bad gas"

    " Oh, the A/C "just" needs a charge"

    " I think the transmission needs the bands adjusted"

    " Oh...that whine in the rear end has been there for years, it's no big deal"

    " The paint just needs "rubbing out".

    " It only smokes when it's big deal"

    I'm sure you guys can think of more.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Member Posts: 64,481
    " It's ALL freeway miles!"

    (This means that the pistons, valves, rods, etc. do not actually move while the car drives on the highway)

    " It just needs to be driven" or...
    " I think I got bad gas"

    (needs new injectors /carb , gas tank boiled out, complete tune up, ten years of maintenance)

    " Oh, the A/C "just" needs a charge"

    (needs a new compressor, evaporator, dryer, climate control panel, belts, hoses, and freon)

    " I think the transmission needs the bands adjusted"

    ( mean the rubber bands holding the internal parts together_

    " Oh...that whine in the rear end has been there for years, it's no big deal"

    (Well, LOL, that one could be true!)

    " The paint just needs "rubbing out".

    (better yet, sanding down to bare metal, and then maybe some additional paint of the same color to get that luster back!)

    " It only smokes when it's big deal"

    (nothing new valve seals, guides and valves wouldn't fix).
  • isellhondasisellhondas Member Posts: 20,342
    I've heard all of these and more as I know you also have.

    Funny how problems are minimized when people are selling and amplified when they are buying.

    In Real Estate it's even worse.

    ALL freeway miles...the seller NEVER ONCE drove it on a surface street!

    I also like.."It has an ALL leather interior"

    If they only knew how little leather there really is in most modern cars.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Member Posts: 64,481
    It takes 5 cows to cover a Lexus. I read that recently.
  • parmparm Member Posts: 724
    Well, maybe I'm not destined to own a Cadillac convertible. Every time I make a play for one, a road block seems to get thrown in my way.

    Not that I'm giving it serious consideration, but the thought of owning a hardtop has popped up from time to time. Here's a '64 Coupe Deville that looks interesting.

    It's the right color and includes A/C which would be a "must have" in a hardtop.

    Several folks have told me that a hardtop is a much better choice in terms of living with a classic car - particularly for doing power tours. You eliminate the risk of getting fried by Mr. Sun and also eliminate (or at least greatly reduce the likelihood of) leaks, rattles and wind noise during "top up" driving in a convertible.

    Been a long, long time since I owned a convertible (Well OK, it was my parent's. It was a '65 Tempest that I learned to drive in). So long that I can't remember what I'm missing.

    Still, I'd think that nothing would beat a convertible on a warm summer evening. On the other hand, you could make the argument that those opportunities are relatively few compared to the time when a hardtop would be equally as satisfying. A Couple Deville is a no-post car. So, with all the windows down, you'd kind of get a quasi-convertible experience, no?

    Oh yeah, did I mention that hardtop is A LOT LESS EXPENSIVE!?

    I fear I'm beginning to waiver . . . . .

  • ghuletghulet Member Posts: 2,564
    ...buying an old car is a fairly big undertaking, and a big expense. Not a decision to be taken lightly. We understand, Parm.

    Personally, if I were to not get a convertible, I'd probably buy a four-door hardtop. In a closed car, I always like the convenience of four doors to haul my peeps around. Also, sedans are generally cheaper still than two-door hardtops. Some of the Cadillac sedans of that era are quite tempting. How 'bout a Fleetwood?:
  • speedshiftspeedshift Member Posts: 1,598
    Hold out for a convertible. Take my word for it--I've owned eight--a convertible is far more entertaining.
  • ghuletghulet Member Posts: 2,564
    I couldn't find a Fleetwood on eBay worthy of posting here, at least not from the mid '60s. How 'bout a nice six-window Sedan de Ville?

  • ghuletghulet Member Posts: 2,564 should look for a later convertible instead of a '62, Parm? The '65-68s are still really nice, a bit more modern, and quite a bit less money in general.
  • parmparm Member Posts: 724
    There is one other advantage of a hardtop. It better insulates you from the intrusions of modern society that seem to occur at an alarming rate. Specifically, the god-awful rapp music emanating from the mega-watt stereo in the car occupying the next lane at what seems like every other stop light or the clatter of a jack hammer and other equipment.

    We all conjure up only the most pleasant of experiences when driving a convertible. But, unless you live in a Norman Rockwell painting or in an area where the sun is always at your back (and not in your eyes), sometimes I wonder if a convertible is all that it's cracked up to be.

    No, I didn't have a bad today and I don't mean to sound overly cynical. It's just that there are times I think to myself, "Man, I'm glad I'm not in a convertible". And, I don't live in a dangerous or bad urban area. Hey, I live in Indiana. How bad can that be, right?

    On the other hand, I'm not looking at getting a Caddy convertible as my daily driver. So, to some degree, before sliding behind the wheel, I would probably have a "flight plan" mapped out that would take me through only the most scenic of routes.

    So, is it actually possible to drive into a Normal Rockwell painting? You know, the one of the quiet, little hamlet when the autumn leaves are turning with the church steeple in the background.
  • speedshiftspeedshift Member Posts: 1,598
    Any hamlet is going to look better from a convertible. The convertible experience is vastly better than a closed car and that's no exaggeration.

    All my convertibles were pretty ordinary cars but they would have been far more ordinary as coupes.

    Let's see, '61 Impala, '61 Bonneville, '62 Monza, '63 Starfire, '65 Impala, '65 Wildcat, '65 Tempest, '67 Le Mans...nope no world beaters there but they were some of the most enjoyable cars I've owned. Even the Tempest and Le Mans, two of the loosest cars I've owned.

    I don't count the '65 MG-B as part of that group--it was not an ordinary car.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Member Posts: 64,481
    It really depends on where you live I think. If your summers are hot and humid, that's no fun, leaving you May, June, Sept, Oct, when it isn't raining.

    Convertibles are a lot more useful in Colorado and New Mexico and parts of California where you can count on maybe 300 days of sunshine a year without bugs, humidity and airborne missiles.
  • parmparm Member Posts: 724
    You're right, the 1965-68 Cadillac convertibles are less expensive. I have looked at a few, but not seriously. They just don't do it for me with regard to style and appeal. I suppose my interest would heat up if I found one in exceptional condition at a reasonable price and in close proximity to where I live.

    Right now, I can honestly say that a 4-door is not in the picture. But, thanks for the suggestion.
  • lokkilokki Member Posts: 1,200
    I've owned a few over the years.

    The secret truth is that there are only about 5 days a year when you really want to put the top down. You'll do it a little more often, because it's a convertible, dammit, and you should.

    But.... those 5 days ayear make it all worth while.

    Women talk big about loving convertibles, but don't really like to ride around with the top down. It's too hot or too cold, or too dusty. Failing all of those, it's too windy and a scarf or a hat makes her feel silly. There are very few exceptions to this rule..... but one of those few exceptions can make it all worth while.

    Hold out for the convertible.
  • isellhondasisellhondas Member Posts: 20,342
    Of convertables but then I do lean to the practical side.

    I do admire them but would lean toward a Coupe De Ville myself. Much less money, less to maintain and if it became necessary I could use it as a daily driver if I had to.

    It's no fun being in a convertable when the sun is beating down on you either.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Member Posts: 64,481
    My personal take is that I vacillate back and forth --LOL!

    Sometimes I say "okay, convertible but only a SMALL sports car, because the American converts are such flexi-flyers and rattle and shake".

    Then sometimes I say "Yeah, but the really SERIOUS sports car driver wants a coupe for structural rigidity and long-range comfort"

    Then sometimes I say "But you know, straight line cruising on a summer day in a full-size convertible is very pleasant and stressless, as opposed to being in some buzzy little sportscar".

    So you know, I don't know!
  • speedshiftspeedshift Member Posts: 1,598
    Well, you need to start with the supposition that old American cars are pretty ordinary and offer an ordinary driving exerience unless their top goes down. There are a few exceptions but not many, and the exceptions are generally beyond the means of the average buyer.

    I also think that owning and driving any old car just isn't enough for the average hobbyist, especially one with some discernment. The car has to be distinctive and fun. You've got to look good and feel good driving it.

    Parm has already ruled out a number of models, the ones he's interested in are a cut above average and he likes only the best examples. And he's got enough money ($20k?) to get a nice example. He's also willing to research the cars and the market so I think he's on the right track.

    With all that momentum I'd hate to see him come home with a sedan. It'll be anticlimatic and it'll look weird to his family and friends. Come home with a convertible and he'll be a hero.
  • parmparm Member Posts: 724
    I think a year or two ago, I was thinking $20K would be what it would take to buy the classic car I wanted. Of course, I was more into Mustangs back then which are generally more expensive - at least for ones worth having. But, now I'm closer to $10K (less if possible).

    That's partly because my available funds are "less available" now. But, it's more due to the fact that I know a heck of a lot more about these cars than I used to - and that's partly due to the education I've received from folks like you all in addition to my membership in various car clubs and participation in other Cadillac chatrooms. More importantly, I've done my homework with regard to what these cars really sell for vs. what they're listed for. With knowledge comes power.

    Actually, that's not correct. With MONEY comes power. But what I lack in the bank account, I try to make up for with some knowledge. So far, this has kept me from making any stupid mistakes (ie., like paying $5 for a 5 cent piece of bubble gum). On the other hand, it's also kept me from driving a classic car on the weekends. Still, it costs zero to be patient and even I can afford that.
  • carnut4carnut4 Member Posts: 574
    though I have a practical side too. The topic here is "62 Cad Convertible," and I think that's what you should hold out for. The 62 Cad is my favorite of all 60s Cads, and the values bear this out. There's a reason, and the other years just don't compare-in style-at least to me.
    So, I think go for the 62 Vert, and be willing to pay top dollar for a top example, and be happy knowing it will always be worth at least what you paid, and everywhere you go, people will notice [and so will you] thatyou have something special.
    Next to that, I'd go for a 62 Coupe DeVille. Like the one I saw at the Portland swapmeet-that gorgeous Maize color, matching leather interior, 54,000 original miles, no wear showing anywhere-simply GORGEOUS!-asking $12,500. Maybe a little high, but one could negotiate. Hey, I looked at that car for a long time.
    But, I say go for a 62-whether it's coupe or vert.
  • parmparm Member Posts: 724
    What is it about Oregon/Washington and Cadillacs! :-)

    A very high percentage of the Cadillacs I've seen that look very nice &/or that I'd like to pursue are located in the Northwest Territory. Does Welcome Wagon present new residents with 1962-64 Cadillacs? As a hospital promotion, are new babies sent home in a classic Cadillac?

    Once again, fate has dealt me a cruel blow by planting me in Indiana.
  • carnut4carnut4 Member Posts: 574
    Anyway to deduct it as an "expense" or something?
    Also, if you found an interesting car, delivery shouldn't be too expensive, and could be negotiated with the price.
    But I know-I've seen some very interesting cars in my hunt, too-and they always seem to be halfway across the country-or worse, in Florida!
    Interesting about Cads and the NW. I would guess California.
  • jsylvesterjsylvester Member Posts: 572
    For me, newer cars generally drive much better, so the simplicity and the intangibles (style, back to basics feel, etc.) are what make an older car enjoyable. I would get a hard top only if I was looking for a muscle car that needs the extra stiffness.

    I drive my convertible nearly every weekend, and to run errands during the week if to a safe place. The rule of thumb I use is anything over 50 degrees outside is drivable with the top down.

    Over 100 degrees, maybe not. Oh yeah, never in the rain, snow, etc. either. Rust is not your friend.
  • chris396chris396 Member Posts: 53
    I love to drive with the top down and the heater up on a cold fall day.
  • speedshiftspeedshift Member Posts: 1,598
    Yeah but at $10k I'm beginning to have second thoughts. I don't have much idea where prices are these days but I have a feeling $10k won't get you much in a convertible.

    Maybe carnut's suggestion, a very clean hardtop, works better in that price range. Carnut's Impala SS is a great cruiser and just as important it's a car he's always wanted. Maybe there's a car like that out there for Parm.
  • ghuletghulet Member Posts: 2,564
    ...I think $10k will likely buy only a second-rate '61-64 Cadillac convertible, but it should probably buy a pretty nice '65-70. Parm, are there other (than the early '60s Cadillac) convertibles you're fond of?
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Member Posts: 64,481
    Oh SS, you can get a very nice full size American convertible for $10K, and any number of "classic" sportscars.

    And what's with this "rain" business? Good grief. man, these are not Ferraris made in numbers under 50. These are big healthy American cars, they can get WET!

    Okay, slush and salt, sure, why expose the car, but these ads about "never been in the rain" are kind of amusing to me.

    Water doesn't rust cars automatically. You just need to pay attention to door drains, trunk seals and the rest. It's not a big deal.

    I don't think someone should be intimidated into not driving their favorite car just because it's raining. Seems too cautious to me, and a bit pretentious when the car is, after all, a big brute of a 70s model domestic car that should easily be able to handle a bit of water.

    These cars are not French poodles.
  • parmparm Member Posts: 724
    To ghulet: Yep, I'd be interested in a variety of different cars. I think I've started about half of the forums in the Classic Car Townhall. Generally, a full-size (perhaps a mid-size like a Cutlass) convertible ranging anywhere from a '68 Chrysler 300 (possibly a 66-68 Newport or Imperial) to a Bonneville, Olds 98 and others.

    To speedshift: I can't get a decent convertible for around $10? Watch me. Actually, to get a truly stunning car, you're right. But, for around $10K, I think I can get a very nice cruiser that may have a couple of blemishes I can live with (ie., perhaps needs a new top, or some interior work), but it should be a solid car and look very nice from 10ft.

    No, I don't expect a 100 point show car for $10K. But, on the other hand, that's not what I'm looking for.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Member Posts: 64,481
    I think you can even get a stunning car for $10K with some patience and if you stay in the 1970s--like say a '74 Caprice or "74 LeSabre. Of course, there is more supply in some parts of the country so depending where you are, this may not be as easy.
  • speedshiftspeedshift Member Posts: 1,598
    Well, Parm, I hope so but you seem mighty discerning. I don't see you happy with less than near perfection.

    Why would anyone want a land yacht from the '70s? Maybe if they're the first cars you remember (why would anyone want a '56 Stude? two '56 Studes?) or if you're into wretched excess, but otherwise it seems like a clearcut waste of money. They're cheap for a reason. The market has spoken.

    But I've already had my fling with cars of dubious value. I shouldn't keep others from having that pleasure.
  • andre1969andre1969 Member Posts: 25,451 chime in about 70's cars! I'd LOVE to have a '72 Impala 'vert or a '75 LeSabre 'vert. But then, that's just me! Of course, I wouldn't take a 3rd mortgage out on the house to get one! (well, maybe just another advance on the HELOC ;-)

    Still, I don't think something like that would be Parm's thang!
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Member Posts: 64,481
    I saw a '64 Cadillac convertible rusting away yesterday. Wasn't too bad, actually, and interior was actually very decent. If you got it for $10 or so you might actually break even, presuming a top value of around $12,5K.
  • speedshiftspeedshift Member Posts: 1,598
    Okay, I went to Hemmings and had a quick look at what $10k will get you.

    A '61 Corvair wagon with a 327 in the back--no, it's not a convertible. But what a great ride for the family.

    A '65 Bonneville with 421 and 8 lugs.

    A "barn fresh" '65 GTO convertible four speed, supposedly documented. Barn fresh and ready for restoration, physically, mentally and spiritually. That's important. A car has to have its head in the right place or it's not worth restoring.

    And a lot of other stuff that sold for $1500 when I was buying back in the '80s. Another reason no "classic" will be leaking fluids on my garage floor anytime soon.
  • parmparm Member Posts: 724
    Wow. I didn't realize my $10K target would draw this much attention. But, that's a good thing. The gauntlet of challenge has been laid before me. Actually, I brought it on myself.

    As a point of clarification, there seems to be a misconception that I'm in the market for a 1970's convertible. My main area of interest is the 1960's. However, if I found a very nice '71 or '72 Cutlass convertible optioned to the max (A/C, buckets & console, factory tach, Rally wheels, etc.) in very nice condition with a ridiculously low asking price, I'd be all over it. But, that's fantasy land thinking.

    While they might be nice cars for some, I just don't in vision getting excited about a LaSabre or any other GM convertible from the mid-70's. Too much plastic and shoddy workmanship for me.

    That's why I'm "stuck in the 60's". Not that the workmanship of these cars was appreciably better, but they have more style in my opinion. Also, by leaning toward a Cadillac, I'm at least at the top of the food chain for that era.
  • speedshiftspeedshift Member Posts: 1,598
    Barn fresh, field fresh, back yard fresh, wrecking yard fresh, impound yard euphemisms always excite me.
This discussion has been closed.