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Lot 611
1957 Cadillac Eldorado Brougham


Selling on Saturday Evening

CHASSIS NO: 5770086374

• The finest original, preservation class Brougham extant
• Believed and known to have just 6,230 original miles from new
• The ultimate in American luxury cars; 1 of only 400 built for 1957
• Nearly $100,000 in recent sympathetic reconditioning to preserve originality
• Rebuilt and working factory air suspension; amazing functionality

365 cid OHV V-8 engine, dual Carter four-barrel carburetors, 325 HP at 4,800 RPM, four-speed Hydra-Matic automatic transmission, four-wheel power-assisted drum brakes, independent front suspension, rear live axle with semi-elliptic leaf springs; wheelbase: 126”

For 1957, Cadillac introduced the last word in luxury motoring, a hand-built limited edition hardtop sedan known as the Eldorado Brougham. Twice the price of regular production Cadillacs (the list was $13,074.00), the Brougham was designed by Ed Glowacke and based on the Park Avenue and New Orleans show cars from 1953-1954. Bustling with technology, the Brougham had numerous unique features, from the pillarless four-door hardtop construction to the brushed stainless-steel roof, quad headlamps and special exterior ornamentation. Under the hood, Cadillac fitted the largest and most powerful V-8 available, a 365-cubic-inch dual four-barrel unit with air suspension as standard equipment.

The list of features unique to the Brougham is extensive, to say the least; an automatic memory seat, polarized sun visors, an Autronic Eye, automatic trunk lid release and parking brake release, electric door windows and locks, and a high-pressure air-conditioning and dual heating unit. The radio was a signal-seeking twin speaker unit with electric antenna. The buyer could choose from no less than 44 different upholstery combinations, with a choice of Mouton, Karakul, or lambskin carpets. The 1957 Brougham is famous for the vanity items that accompanied each and every one of the 400 units built, ranging from magnetic drink tumblers and cigarette holder in the glove compartment to a ladies' compact and Arpege Extrait de Lanvin perfume with atomizer housed in the rear armrest. Competing with the Continental Mk II and the very best European cars from the likes of Rolls-Royce, Facel-Vega and Mercedes-Benz, the Eldorado Brougham was favored by the jet set when new, and values have been steadily climbing in recent years thanks to a resurgence of interest in these amazing automobiles.

This Eldorado was purchased new by Sampson Motors of Los Angeles, California, in 1957. The car was donated to the Indianapolis Motor Speedway Foundation in 1977 by Riley Brett, who finished 15th in the 1921 Indianapolis 500 and co-owned Sampson Motors. The car was later displayed at Lilly House at Newfields in Indianapolis, Indiana, and spent the past decade at the IMS Museum’s climate-controlled storage facility. The current owner acquired it from the museum.

The car’s odometer reads 6,230 miles which are believed and known to be original. The overall original condition of the car, the door jamb service decal from 1968, and the history of the car all suggest the mileage is indeed correct. The originality of this car is truly amazing. It looks and feels like a low-mileage car should. The seller of this rare Cadillac has spared no expense to make it run and drive as smoothly as Cadillacs from this era are famous for. To that end, a comprehensive, bumper-to-bumper mechanical restoration to preserve its incredible originality was commissioned from a reputable restoration shop. Since the car has been off the road for the last 45 years, it needed attention to be roadworthy and safe to drive again. Restoration work included a complete rebuild of the complicated air suspension system. Many of these cars have been converted to standard coil springs, however, the system on this car was untouched and still intact, so the decision was made to restore it correctly. The brake system was completely overhauled, as well as restoration and service of all the various electrical components on this heavily accessorized car. Nearly $100,000 was spent on this Cadillac to ensure it performs as well as it looks.

Designed to dazzle the world, the Cadillac Eldorado Brougham is as compelling today as it was in 1957. Thanks to the attrition suffered by cars even as cherished as these, the uniquely American luxury experience it offers is now even more exclusive than when the model was introduced. For the discerning collector of highly original, low production, hand built automobiles, this remarkable Cadillac represents the pinnacle of American cars of the Fabulous Fifties.

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