1975 Battle Of The Silken Giants
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Cadillac or competing brand model ? Why ? Discussion, 1975 Battle Of The Silken Giants in Item Specific Cadillac Discussion; Found this link to an old comparison test between the Cadillac DeVille, Imperial LeBaron, and Lincoln Continental on an Imperial ...
  1. #1
    gothicaleigh's Avatar
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    Post 1975 Battle Of The Silken Giants

    Found this link to an old comparison test between the Cadillac DeVille, Imperial LeBaron, and Lincoln Continental on an Imperial fan site. Interesting read:

    http://www.imperialclub.com/Articles...ants/index.htm

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    Re: 1975 Battle Of The Silken Giants

    Wow that is cool. Thanks a lot for posting it!

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    Re: 1975 Battle Of The Silken Giants

    That's some pretty interesting reading, thanks for posting.

    Brian

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    ReagansRollsRoyce is offline Cadillac Owners Fanatic
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    Re: 1975 Battle Of The Silken Giants

    Very cool. I want to ask a general question, maybe somebody knows the answer.


    I've made a study of looking through a lot of old Cadillac, Lincoln etc reviews from the last Fleetwoods in '96 to all the way back to the 1950s. Even in 1975, the very biggest cars were viewed with wonder and reverence, things that were true status symbols and very stylish as well.

    The 1982 Cadillac Sedan DeVille Review in Consumer Reports (in my college library's massive CR collection) paints a picture of a downsized, technologically advanced Caddy that is less powerful yet still possessing "the old mystique" (direct quote). However, it doesn't seem to be quite the status symbol anymore. Yet at the same time, some things are considered virtuous..for example, the Cadillac is praised for having its headlights on the old fashioned knob as opposed to the turning stalk for one of its rivals, it is hailed for its "majestic" ride, and a similar era Ford is praised for its legible horizontal spedometer against the round kind we see now that had apparently been introduced in a competing Chrysler model.

    By 1987 (5 years later!!), however, SOMETHING must have happened, for all full sized cars that are reviewed have many negative adjectives attached to them in reviews after this point. The rides are no longer called "majestic" but "wallowy". The dashboards are not called "convenient" but "out of the past" or "hopelessly old fashioned". The cars are constantly called "ponderous" or "clumsy", and it is certainly intimated that only over 60's would buy such a "dinosaur"

    My Question: When, exactly, did Cadillacs, Lincolns etc. go from being a prestige car to an "old people" car, at least in the eyes of reviewers. Surely the prestigious people that bought them as late as 1975 could not all have reached old age by 1987!! I cannot believe fuel economy is the cause either, after all the 1980s Broughams can get 20 mpg on the highway, not too shabby for the 1980s! When did successful people switch from Cadillacs to BMWs and Lexuses, and what was it that did it? Because surely a successful 40 year old in 1975 would buy a Caddy, not a BMW. What made him decide that by age 50 Caddies were too "old man?"

    Maybe you all, who might have been around longer than I (I'm 22) would know?

  6. #5
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    Re: 1975 Battle Of The Silken Giants

    ...But the neatest gadget on the imperial was this little button on the floor which you press with your toe and automatically changes stations on the AM/FM Radio. You dont like the station. Just step on the button and you get the next one on the dial. If youre out in the country and dont have anything else to do you can watch the station indicator moving back and forth across the dial, searching vainly for a station...

    Funny when you look back and see how many of the big options today are really just recycled versions of things that had existed even back then. That foot control really just became what we know as steering wheel controls today. Some old cars had a very cool feature that would seem out of place today. It was basically a piece of glass or plastic that sat atop the dash to the side of the drivers view and had ridges in it. When you would approach a traffic light at night, you could see what color the light was just by looking over at the glass, instead of craning your neck up to see the light.

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    Randy_W is offline Banned
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    Re: 1975 Battle Of The Silken Giants

    Quote Originally Posted by Playdrv4me
    ...But the neatest gadget on the imperial was this little button on the floor which you press with your toe and automatically changes stations on the AM/FM Radio. You dont like the station. Just step on the button and you get the next one on the dial. If youre out in the country and dont have anything else to do you can watch the station indicator moving back and forth across the dial, searching vainly for a station...

    Funny when you look back and see how many of the big options today are really just recycled versions of things that had existed even back then. That foot control really just became what we know as steering wheel controls today. Some old cars had a very cool feature that would seem out of place today. It was basically a piece of glass or plastic that sat atop the dash to the side of the drivers view and had ridges in it. When you would approach a traffic light at night, you could see what color the light was just by looking over at the glass, instead of craning your neck up to see the light.
    GM called that "Wonderbar" and was available from the mid 1950's until the '70's!

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    Re: 1975 Battle Of The Silken Giants

    I think folks preferred saving money on gas Japan's way, and suddenly, people in the industry decided that everything Japan did was the right way, for whatever reason.

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    Re: 1975 Battle Of The Silken Giants

    Quote Originally Posted by ReagansRollsRoyce
    Very cool. I want to ask a general question, maybe somebody knows the answer.


    I've made a study of looking through a lot of old Cadillac, Lincoln etc reviews from the last Fleetwoods in '96 to all the way back to the 1950s. Even in 1975, the very biggest cars were viewed with wonder and reverence, things that were true status symbols and very stylish as well.

    The 1982 Cadillac Sedan DeVille Review in Consumer Reports (in my college library's massive CR collection) paints a picture of a downsized, technologically advanced Caddy that is less powerful yet still possessing "the old mystique" (direct quote). However, it doesn't seem to be quite the status symbol anymore. Yet at the same time, some things are considered virtuous..for example, the Cadillac is praised for having its headlights on the old fashioned knob as opposed to the turning stalk for one of its rivals, it is hailed for its "majestic" ride, and a similar era Ford is praised for its legible horizontal spedometer against the round kind we see now that had apparently been introduced in a competing Chrysler model.

    By 1987 (5 years later!!), however, SOMETHING must have happened, for all full sized cars that are reviewed have many negative adjectives attached to them in reviews after this point. The rides are no longer called "majestic" but "wallowy". The dashboards are not called "convenient" but "out of the past" or "hopelessly old fashioned". The cars are constantly called "ponderous" or "clumsy", and it is certainly intimated that only over 60's would buy such a "dinosaur"

    My Question: When, exactly, did Cadillacs, Lincolns etc. go from being a prestige car to an "old people" car, at least in the eyes of reviewers. Surely the prestigious people that bought them as late as 1975 could not all have reached old age by 1987!! I cannot believe fuel economy is the cause either, after all the 1980s Broughams can get 20 mpg on the highway, not too shabby for the 1980s! When did successful people switch from Cadillacs to BMWs and Lexuses, and what was it that did it? Because surely a successful 40 year old in 1975 would buy a Caddy, not a BMW. What made him decide that by age 50 Caddies were too "old man?"

    Maybe you all, who might have been around longer than I (I'm 22) would know?

    What ahppened between 1983 and 1987?

    Japaneese cars... Toyota and Honda became best sellers... almost over night....

    they were much smaller, better on gas, more nimble, and more "modern" interriors (something the Japaneese have been better at, atleast visually... IMO)

    Then instead of part of the compatition, it was thought to be the standard... so when comparing American cars to the imports... that is how they got the comments...

  10. #9
    LittleNo is offline Cadillac Owners Fanatic
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    Re: 1975 Battle Of The Silken Giants

    Very cool. I want to ask a general question, maybe somebody knows the answer.


    I've made a study of looking through a lot of old Cadillac, Lincoln etc reviews from the last Fleetwoods in '96 to all the way back to the 1950s. Even in 1975, the very biggest cars were viewed with wonder and reverence, things that were true status symbols and very stylish as well.

    The 1982 Cadillac Sedan DeVille Review in Consumer Reports (in my college library's massive CR collection) paints a picture of a downsized, technologically advanced Caddy that is less powerful yet still possessing "the old mystique" (direct quote). However, it doesn't seem to be quite the status symbol anymore. Yet at the same time, some things are considered virtuous..for example, the Cadillac is praised for having its headlights on the old fashioned knob as opposed to the turning stalk for one of its rivals, it is hailed for its "majestic" ride, and a similar era Ford is praised for its legible horizontal spedometer against the round kind we see now that had apparently been introduced in a competing Chrysler model.

    By 1987 (5 years later!!), however, SOMETHING must have happened, for all full sized cars that are reviewed have many negative adjectives attached to them in reviews after this point. The rides are no longer called "majestic" but "wallowy". The dashboards are not called "convenient" but "out of the past" or "hopelessly old fashioned". The cars are constantly called "ponderous" or "clumsy", and it is certainly intimated that only over 60's would buy such a "dinosaur"

    My Question: When, exactly, did Cadillacs, Lincolns etc. go from being a prestige car to an "old people" car, at least in the eyes of reviewers. Surely the prestigious people that bought them as late as 1975 could not all have reached old age by 1987!! I cannot believe fuel economy is the cause either, after all the 1980s Broughams can get 20 mpg on the highway, not too shabby for the 1980s! When did successful people switch from Cadillacs to BMWs and Lexuses, and what was it that did it? Because surely a successful 40 year old in 1975 would buy a Caddy, not a BMW. What made him decide that by age 50 Caddies were too "old man?"

    Maybe you all, who might have been around longer than I (I'm 22) would know?
    many answers you find in hollywood productions over all the years. to say it short:

    - in 1975, "the bad guys" drove new black cadillacs
    - in 1985, "the bad guys" drove the same, but now old, cadillacs form 1975, and the "good guys" drove imports, thats from where the "old man image" came
    - in the 90's there was a little come back for american cars
    - today every black rapper drives a black Escalade

  11. #10
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    Re: 1975 Battle Of The Silken Giants

    well I think cadillac has always been a symbol of "wealth" and it formed this 'old man' persona a while back when the only people who could really afford the cars were 'wealthy'. i think the switch was made because other companys and cars started getting more expensive which was a bigger sign of wealth. with all these luxury brands to choose from, i'm not surprised cadillac isn't the 'leading' luxury brand of car. what, a rolls royce phantom costs around 400,000? new cars, new symbol of power. the 'old man' persona just stuck.

  12. #11
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    Re: 1975 Battle Of The Silken Giants

    The quality problems of the 70s and 80s didn't help any American manufacturer's image, and the advent of Lexus in '89 showed that a Luxury car should be extremely well built and exclusive, not just a B-body frame with some different body panels and an Olds 5 liter. BMW and MB had always been around, but as time moved on, the quality and image Caddy had hurt their sales with the younger crowd.

    Brian

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    Re: 1975 Battle Of The Silken Giants

    Thanks for the answers everybody. Those all sound like good reasons. I did a little thinking myself from what I know about history and came up with two of my own possible reasons. Don't know what you'll think of them: One I hadn't thought of that might apply too, is that the Lexus, etc are more "personal luxury cars". The idea of "personal" luxury probably appeals more to the Baby Boom generation that could first afford luxury cars in the 1980s, as opposed to the more family sized luxury emphasized by the old Cadillacs, because that generation is much more individually oriented. I suppose its like comparing a boardroom on wheels to your own well appointed but small office...more emphasis on individual comfort.

    That, and the other thing I was thinking is, once Cadillac started gradually de-powering its engines...425, 368, 4.1, 307, the cars didn't have the same acceleration ability that they had with the 472s. So maybe the "old man" bit started because once the Caddies could no longer "keep up with traffic", only older people, strictly abiding by the then-55 mph speed limit, would want to buy them. BMWs, Lexuses, however, could still zip along, at least comparatively and so appealed to the hipper younger rich. That would make sense too because by the time Cadillac introduced Northstar and "sped up" its engines again, it was almost too late. Maybe the new Caddies will change that, though I like the big old boats much better.

  14. #13
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    Lightbulb Re: 1975 Battle Of The Silken Giants

    In addition, Cadillacs depreciated rapidly, so seemingly everyone could afford one and they lost some mystique.

    BTW, my first car, at 21, was a 1977 Lincoln Coupe. I loved it, but I didn't keep it too long.

    I really miss the big boats.... I guess the new big boat is the SUV.

  15. #14
    ReagansRollsRoyce is offline Cadillac Owners Fanatic
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    Re: 1975 Battle Of The Silken Giants

    Quote Originally Posted by Ormond
    I really miss the big boats.... I guess the new big boat is the SUV.

    It definitely is the "new big boat". I think, however, at risk of offending legions of Escalade owners, that is not as classy as its predecessor big boat, the Fleetwood/Brougham.

  16. #15
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    Re: 1975 Battle Of The Silken Giants

    I'll agree with that. As to the downsized engines, I believe an 80-84 Brougham does 0-60 in 22 seconds. With that type of acceleration, one bought in 1983 might be crossing the 1/4 mile line right now.

    Brian

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