: Test Drive Review......1973 Cadillac Coupe deVille!!!



I~LUV~Caddys8792
09-26-08, 01:08 AM
http://i83.photobucket.com/albums/j313/Chadillac8705/Photo-0330.jpg

Not as boat-like as I'd imagined....


So, like stated in the thread in the lounge, I've been wanting to drive a '70s (pre 1977) RWD Cadillac since I was 14, back when I first got interested in Cadillacs. The appeal of the sheer size, the power from the big block V-8s, the vintage Vegas style, and opulent luxury always appealed to me, but I never got a chance to test drive one...I've driven two late '70s Lincolns...liked one, was disapponited by the other, but never a Cadillac older than 1979.


Exterior design: 8/10
Of the 1971-73 Cadillacs, the 1973's look the best to me. The front clip looks the best to me, it looks the best integrated of the three years, and I love how big fat parking lamps occupy all the space between the high and low beam headlights. The 1971-73's look longer and lower than the 68-70s, and much lighter and aerodynamic than the 74-76s'. I'd have to say my favorite year for the '70s Cadillacs is 1976, but 1973 is 3rd, after 1975. I must say though, the '70s Lincolns, except for 1970-71, always looked better to me than the '70s Cadillacs.

Interior design: 7/10
The interior is a lot more ergonomically designed than the Lincolns from that era. It's not as showy or as plush, but everything is laid out so it's easier to read and use. While the interior lacks that over the top feel that the Lincolns and Imperials had, it's certainly not bare bones or stark. It's got a definite GM feel to it, like the way the dashboard is designed, down to the pleating on the seats and types of door handles used. The neat thing is, when sitting behind the wheel, when you look over your shoulder to merge, with the hardtop roof, your view is basically clear all the way until the C pillar, and that's a long way back. I should note that the interior was very quiet at speed, the build quality was still very good after 35 years (only one minor squeak in the dashboard...sounded like a leaf hitting the fan), and those were the heaviest ****ing doors I've ever opened in my life. The doors on my S320 seemed like they were made of paper afterwords, and not even the doors on that Mark IV were as heavy, and they were longer!

Seating: 8/10
The seats weren't as annoyingly soft as the seats in the '77 Town Car I drove...meaning there was still support and your ass didn't hit the frame when you plopped down in it. Obviously, there isn't gonna be any lateral bolstering, but who needs it anyways? It had a gold leather interior, with a one piece bench seat, which I never liked...I'm only 5'6" and have a lot of tall friends....so do they ride in back? But after 35 years, the leather was in awesome shape...no cracks or tears, and only one spot in driver's seat where the color had faded...and the leather was still pretty soft too, not as soft as the leather in that '72 Lincoln Mark IV I sat in last weekend, but certainly no worse than your average '90s era Cadillac. Rear seat legroom was immense too....probably close to an early '90s Brougham.

Engine: 9/10
The old 7.7L 472 CID OHV V8 is a beast! Acceleration and passing is effortless, torque is more than plentiful and readily accessible at any speed (ok, I didn't do over 65, but still...), and she will lay a nice patch from a stop.... :cool2: :cool2: :highfive::highfive: :bouncy:

There's nothing quite like seeing a 35 year old Cadillac smoke both rear tires, or hearing them squeal until about 25 mph.... :lildevil: The car was a bit quicker than that '78 Town Car I drove (460) and GOBS quicker than that '79 Mark V I drove (400....weak). The power delivery and acceration times mimic a 1990-93 Brougham with the throttle body injected 350, but the '73 seems to be a bit quicker from a 50mph roll. I did notice a bit of a lag in heavy acceleration. When I punched it from a stop, I put the pedal to the floor and had to wait a second (probably for the secondaries to open) then I was off. When accelerating from a roll, especially above 45 mph, I had to wait a few seconds after WOT before it kicked down and took off..

I have in front of me, a road test article from 1973 where they compared the Fleetwood Brougham, Town Car and Lebaron. They quote the FWB as having a 0-60 time of 10.2 and a 1/4 mile time of 17.6 @ 80 mph, so based off that, I'd say the CDV will do 0-60 in about 9.8-10.0 due to the 200 lb weight difference between the two...so not bad for it's era..not as quick as the late '60s models, but a lot better than anything that would come after it...until about 1990 or so. It's miles quicker/more powerful than anything from the '80s.....6.0L, HT4100, 307, etc etc.

I did notice though, that the 472 was very easy to start when cold, but it had a slightly rough idle...not sure why...maybe it was just out of tune? The 472 never really changes engine tone, even at WOT...it's like it never has to rev up to get more power building...gotta love the 4.06" stroke...!!


Transmission: 8.5/10
You can't go wrong with the THM400...it's truly bulletproof and built to handle what 7.7L can dish out. My only gripe is that it was slow to downshift, but for cryin' out loud, it's 35 years old (and not electronically controlled...) Under normal acceleration, it shifts perfectly and never skips a beat, even at WOT.

Steering/Handling: 7.5/10
For something that was 35 years old, it wasn't bad. I imagined a lot less feel from it...it wasn't bad at all...very comparable to a RWD 1980's-1990's Brougham. On curvy roads, I felt fairly confident in the tight turns, much more so than that '77 Town Car I drove (THAT was scary), but I could definitely tell that it's not what it was designed for. In fairly wide turns,it was easy to manuver, but when it got real tight, I had to slow way down, partially because I wasn't sure exactly how wide it was, and it felt like the front two wheels were gonna break loose from the tie rods if I didn't.. But in normal driving, the steering is most excellent for a land barge.

Suspension: 8.5/10
Not nearly as floaty, or as bouncy or as godforsakenly numb as a Town Car, whether it be a 1977 or a 1994. Driving that '77 made me wanna puke, but this was a lot better...it felt far more contemporary and normal. If I went over a big bump or dip in the road, the whole car wouldn't rock back and forth forever...maybe a second or two, but not bad at all. It definitely isn't as smooth over little bumps and cracks as a newer luxury car, but it's very good for it's era. But if you were after the smoothest, most numb ride possible, the Lincoln would be your choice. But not for me....I like a bit of balance TYVM.

Equipment: 6/10
It had a nice FM radio....sounded good for an old stock system...definitely not something from my era, but for 35 years old, it was quite clear and defined. The A/C still worked wonderfully, blows cold, runs quiet, easy to use and figure out. The lights on the instrument panel were way too dim for the modern era, but it was easy to read everything. I thought it was kinda neat to have a high beam switch on the floor...never used that before, and I don't recall this one having any tell tales on the front fenders, but I think it had 'em in the rearview mirror. Otherwise it had power mirrors, locks, windows, seats, rear defrost. It only had lap belts, no shoulder belts, center armrests for front and rear.

Overall: 80/100
I like how it drives more than the Lincolns from that era. It handles much better than the Continentals/Town Cars, and the 472, atleast for 1973, offers better acceleration than the 460 did in that '77, even with the '77 weighing in at 300lbs less. I like how that '79 Mark V drove more...the handling/steering was much improved over the T/C, but that 400 was a slug. I'm sure a 460 Mark V (and hopefully the IV) would be the best combination of Lincoln's excellent design and Cadillac's better driveability. But as far as '70s Cadillacs go, it's tough. I know the early '70s models have the most power and are the quickest, which is important to me, but the mid '70s models look the best and offer the most luxury, which I like too, so it'd be a tough choice. But I'd say when I get that '70s land barge I want so badly, it'll still be the Lincoln....either a Mark IV or a 460 powered (77-78 only) Mark V. I like how the Mark IV looks more, but I've heard the V drives a lot better.

I enjoyed every second of it though!

77CDV
09-26-08, 01:28 AM
It had to have had the front fender lamp monitors, as they were standard by 1973. That hesitation you mention on acceleration is endemic to these cars, a result of all the smog equiptment being ladeled on at the time. Glad you liked the car overall. Personally, I prefer the front end of the 72 (more elegant grille and slimmer bumper).

Lord Cadillac
09-26-08, 02:13 AM
Great review! Thank you for posting this! :)

I~LUV~Caddys8792
09-26-08, 12:02 PM
More feedback please!!! :D :cool2:

orconn
09-26-08, 12:49 PM
As always, I enjoyed your review. It's great to hear your generation's take on a car that was new when I was your age. Let's face it these cars were at their best going in a straight line on the freeway ...... with no need to slow down quickly or make any thing more than a minor change of direction. On quality level on the "showroom floor" the paint and leather couldn't hold a candle to that eras Jags and Mercedes (BMW was known for the 2002 not their luxury cars as yet) which used lacquer paints and great smelling leather and real wood which topped the industrial leather and chrome plated plastic used in American luxury cars of the era (and remember Mercedes and Jaguar could still be had for the price of a decked out Buick Electra in the early seventies). However, used and taken care of as most Americans did in those days the Cads and Lincolns stood up better to use and abuse than their European counter parts. My impression at the time was that Cadillac's, not Lincoln's, quality improved with the introduction of the 1977 models, but deteriorated again in the 1980's.

Thanks again for a fun and enlightening review, Chad! Hope to read more in the future.

P.S. I wish cars still had floor headlight dimmer buttons, much better than than the column stock lever ubiquitous since the mid eighties. The column mounted dimmer switch was better for manual transmission cars (as most European cars were and are even today, but not as useful for automatics.)

gdwriter
09-26-08, 03:07 PM
Another fun review to read. I've always liked the looks of the 71-73 DeVilles for some reason. I like the grille and rectangular headlights on the 75-76, but I much prefer the taillights and coupe roofline on the 71-73. I think one of these would be fun as a weekend cruiser.

There are lots of 70s-era GM cars still out on the road, so despite the spotty build quality of the era, they're fundamentally soild.

77CDV
09-26-08, 03:16 PM
BTW, Chad, if you liked the Caddy's handling better than the Lincoln's, you'd love the contemporary Imperial.

I~LUV~Caddys8792
09-26-08, 04:06 PM
No kidding! I'd love to drive one of those, but it's so hard to find one. They seem like a great compromise between a Cadillac and Lincoln from that era. It handles better than a Cadillac, rides the "firmest", but has that great baroque look like a Lincoln does, and offers that super, super plush interior like a Lincoln does. I think I'd love to have a 1974-75 Lebaron Sedan, but it's so hard to find. The only negatives that I know of so far is that the Imperials had the smallest motor (lol) and they were the slowest of the three.

Eric Kahn
09-26-08, 06:03 PM
for about a year in 1997, my only car was a 69 coupe Deville, lots of power, no hesitation, just drove great, only problem I had towards the end of my ownership of it was the climate control wa sfailing due to vacuum leaks in the under hood programmer, wish I could get another one like it, my 76 eldorado just is not quite the same as the coupe

Red_October_7000
09-27-08, 02:27 AM
I too have noticed how in a modern automatic there is nothing for the left foot to do. At CAP we have a 1978 Ford F600 rack body truck that will keep your left food busy forever -not only do you need it to work the (very heavy) clutch, (truck has a 3+low "rock crusher" so you're forever upshifting until you hit 40 and then you just mash it to go faster... tops out at about 70 with the motor screaming, probably limited but there is no tacho so who knows, but you'd never want to hold that speed.) you use your left foot to change the beams AND to dispense windshield cleaner! I understand that on luxury cars from the 30s and 40s, and possibly later, the radio seek was on the floor as well! 4 things for the left foot to do! And now there is nothign for it to do so manufacturers put in a little rest for it because it is of no use...

bicentennialcadillac
09-27-08, 02:56 PM
I'm daily driving my '76 right now while the '79 is down for repair. The '71-'76 cars are MILES ahead of the '77-'79s in every respect, but I love them all.

77CDV
09-28-08, 12:11 AM
No kidding! I'd love to drive one of those, but it's so hard to find one. They seem like a great compromise between a Cadillac and Lincoln from that era. It handles better than a Cadillac, rides the "firmest", but has that great baroque look like a Lincoln does, and offers that super, super plush interior like a Lincoln does. I think I'd love to have a 1974-75 Lebaron Sedan, but it's so hard to find. The only negatives that I know of so far is that the Imperials had the smallest motor (lol) and they were the slowest of the three.

And best of luck ever finding one outside the desert southwest since they didn't sell many to begin with and their unibody construction coupled with poor rust inhibition and questionable build quality means the vast majority cashed out to rust long before you were born. I can't imagine many survived the upper midwest winter road salt-fests, and even out here in sunny SoCal, you don't see many Mopar products from that era.

Craig

I~LUV~Caddys8792
09-28-08, 12:44 PM
There is one for sale in my area, but it's at a collector car museum, so that would be tough to get them to let me test drive it. It's a white 1975 Lebaron sedan, with a burgundy velour interior and 50k miles on it, and they want $3950 for it.

http://ellingsoncarmuseum.com/

Click on cars for sale, then scroll down until you see Chrysler, it's the second Chrysler listing.

Aron9000
09-28-08, 10:08 PM
There is one for sale in my area, but it's at a collector car museum, so that would be tough to get them to let me test drive it. It's a white 1975 Lebaron sedan, with a burgundy velour interior and 50k miles on it, and they want $3950 for it.

http://ellingsoncarmuseum.com/

Click on cars for sale, then scroll down until you see Chrysler, it's the second Chrysler listing.

My buddy has a 76 or 77 New Yorker. It looks almost exactly like that car, only his was white on white leather.

Night Wolf
09-30-08, 10:21 PM
I test drove a '76 Town Car last weekend... car was NOT as described... man "mint" "show room" "collector" "original owner" "garage kept" "runs excelent" "paint like new" "good tires" can mean such vastly different things to 2 different people....

anyway... I can honestly say, and I thought I'd never say this.... but... I did not like that car.

As Chad said, from the outside, it is a sweet looking car, the front end with hideaway headlights, the slab sides and unmistakable Lincoln back end. Under the hood the "Power by Ford" factory valve covers were cool...

but I just didn't like the interior... just as that review said, as soon as you get in the car, all dimesions just shrunk in half, I mean it kinda feels tight inside it... to the point of not being comfortable. In all honesty, a co-workers new Honda Fit we take to lunch somedays feels much more roomy inside... thats just crazy.

As for driving it, eh, I didn't reallly go far, or fast or anything, it's a boat, but not like I was thinking, definitly rode smoother then my '96, but showed it in the handling too. The Speedo was neat as it changed color from 0 to your speed. Car felt it was going alot slower then it was... hit 70 and didn't seem like 70.... the old guy told me to "get on it" so I did and it pulled hard, the then said that it didn't kick down into low gear, to floor it as soon as I make the turn, so I did.... that was 1st gear, and I was just surprised a stock, average condition smog-era cruise liner would pull like that... put you in the seat and pulled hard... Hard to compare anything really, I'd still say my '96 is faster.

All in all, as sweet as the car was, it was just not me... as soon as I sat in it I knew I didn't like it (well I knew it was not for me when I first saw it in person, but I mean the car as a whole) I wonder if I'd have similar feelings on the Mark IV if I drove one... I used to think the "total waste of space" thing was cool, but eh, I didn't like it at all. When I got back in my '96 the whole car seemed to be about twice as big from the inside, then on the whole ride home (hour) I coudln't help but enjoy the fact how much my particular '96 is such a great car for me.

I dunno, I don't remember the 70's Caddys having that swallow you whole feeling.... I still think a '72 Eldorado convertbile would be my top pick.

Aron9000
10-01-08, 12:27 AM
I test drove a '76 Town Car last weekend... car was NOT as described... man "mint" "show room" "collector" "original owner" "garage kept" "runs excelent" "paint like new" "good tires" can mean such vastly different things to 2 different people....

anyway... I can honestly say, and I thought I'd never say this.... but... I did not like that car.

As Chad said, from the outside, it is a sweet looking car, the front end with hideaway headlights, the slab sides and unmistakable Lincoln back end. Under the hood the "Power by Ford" factory valve covers were cool...

but I just didn't like the interior... just as that review said, as soon as you get in the car, all dimesions just shrunk in half, I mean it kinda feels tight inside it... to the point of not being comfortable. In all honesty, a co-workers new Honda Fit we take to lunch somedays feels much more roomy inside... thats just crazy.

As for driving it, eh, I didn't reallly go far, or fast or anything, it's a boat, but not like I was thinking, definitly rode smoother then my '96, but showed it in the handling too. The Speedo was neat as it changed color from 0 to your speed. Car felt it was going alot slower then it was... hit 70 and didn't seem like 70.... the old guy told me to "get on it" so I did and it pulled hard, the then said that it didn't kick down into low gear, to floor it as soon as I make the turn, so I did.... that was 1st gear, and I was just surprised a stock, average condition smog-era cruise liner would pull like that... put you in the seat and pulled hard... Hard to compare anything really, I'd still say my '96 is faster.

All in all, as sweet as the car was, it was just not me... as soon as I sat in it I knew I didn't like it (well I knew it was not for me when I first saw it in person, but I mean the car as a whole) I wonder if I'd have similar feelings on the Mark IV if I drove one... I used to think the "total waste of space" thing was cool, but eh, I didn't like it at all. When I got back in my '96 the whole car seemed to be about twice as big from the inside, then on the whole ride home (hour) I coudln't help but enjoy the fact how much my particular '96 is such a great car for me.

I dunno, I don't remember the 70's Caddys having that swallow you whole feeling.... I still think a '72 Eldorado convertbile would be my top pick.

Nothing against your town car, I'm sure its a nice car, but if you think a 4.6 mod motor is fast in that car, you really need to drive something with some torque and real power, like a LS1 Corvette, an LS1 fbody, a 300c with the hemi or even a stock LT1 powered b-body.

I~LUV~Caddys8792
10-01-08, 11:35 AM
Cool review Rick! I'm sure your '96 would be faster than it's 20 year old brother, but that 460 sure can pump it out!

What'd you think of the seats? That, along with the steering and suspension, was one of the things that I liked least about that '77 I test drove two years ago.

Night Wolf
10-01-08, 05:32 PM
Nothing against your town car, I'm sure its a nice car, but if you think a 4.6 mod motor is fast in that car, you really need to drive something with some torque and real power, like a LS1 Corvette, an LS1 fbody, a 300c with the hemi or even a stock LT1 powered b-body.

I never tried to claim my 4.6 was anything spectacluar when it comes to speed, I was simply basing a very loose comparison of the car I just drove to mine.

But, please tell me you are kidding when you are trying to compare a stock '96 Town Car to a LS1 Corvette/F-body or HEMI 300C in terms of speed... I mean... right? cause really....

Actually, stock for stock, I'd like to see what my Town Car would do against a stock '94-'96 Fleetwood, I think it would be interesting.

My Town Car feels quick for what it is though, stock gearing was 3.08 I've got 3.27 as part of the ride control package, that may help a little... other then that it's all stock, maintained very well, but stock. It just feels alot quicker then others make them out to be. My car dosen't float like a co-workers '94 does, in the world of Town Cars, I'd say mine has a firm ride... but then again my car can also take turns quite differently then most Town Cars... besides the various upgrades to the suspension from the ride control package it's got stiffer front shocks then factory and poly bushings which seem to help. Maybe not everyones cup o' tea, but just about perfect for me, I'm very happy with it.

I guess for me I'm not all caught up in the power thing like I once was, and I never really owned a high power car, but my 120hp 4cyl Isuzu is plenty for my day to day driving, and I have no problem with the power it's got... then when I get in the Town Car it feels faster to me... it is perfectly capable of doing any day to day operation with ease, it'll go 0-60 fast enough for me, it'll go 60-100 fast enough for me, it'll cruise at 90 fine, I've got no reason to want more power out of it.


What'd you think of the seats? That, along with the steering and suspension, was one of the things that I liked least about that '77 I test drove two years ago.

Seats were ok, didn't have the sink-in feeling I thought they would, or maybe I was just expecting them to be much more softer, I'd say they were about as soft as the '94 TC I've been in. Steering... I dunno, I was on stright roads and made 90* turns, defintly the classic 70's land barge light steering tho... almost became annoying when trying to drive stright tho... worse then driving downt he highway in my '96 with steering effort switch set to lo (which is annoying in itself) suspension... I liked it, it float, pulling out of the driveway where there was bumps and dips it just kinda bobed up and down like the land barge it was, whereas my '96 hit them like a typical bump.... really my '96 felt like a sports car in just about all aspects after driving the '76... yet it was similar is so many ways... quite an odd experience.

Chad, if you ever get the chance, I think you'd have fun driving my Town Car... I dunno, from what you've described that you like a balance of ride/handling/comfort/power etc... it seems, atleast to me, that you may be impressed with my Town Car... maybe not the materials and build quality compared to the benz, but the driving dynamics.... probably one of the things I like most about the car. Not all are like that tho, mine has the ride control package from the factory, then I totally went thru it and replaced nearly all worn out parts, all new steering and suspension with upgraded parts etc it's actually pretty impressive, and a whole lot different then when I first got it... If it wasn't for my tires which have a very soft and flexible sidewall, I think it could handle alot better too... but these tires do nothing for improving handling, thats where all the current body sway comes from. When I had the same tires on my '93 Coupe DeVille, it did the same things that it didn't do with the tires before it. Ah well, always a tradeoff...

Heh, it's been awhile since i made a long post...

I~LUV~Caddys8792
10-01-08, 07:31 PM
Did the '76 have the leather seats or the velour ones? If I remember correctly, the 1977's shed a lot of weight...I think they went from 5200 lbs in 1976 down to 47-4800 in 1977. So if that one was as quick as you make it sound for a mid '70s land yacht, then it might be quicker than that '77 I drove?

Rick, I bet I'd like the handling/suspension/steering feel of your '96 much more than any other mid '90s Town Car or LT-1 Brougham. Now as far as power and acceleration goes, that's gonna be a different story.

Night Wolf
10-01-08, 11:54 PM
Did the '76 have the leather seats or the velour ones? If I remember correctly, the 1977's shed a lot of weight...I think they went from 5200 lbs in 1976 down to 47-4800 in 1977. So if that one was as quick as you make it sound for a mid '70s land yacht, then it might be quicker than that '77 I drove?

Rick, I bet I'd like the handling/suspension/steering feel of your '96 much more than any other mid '90s Town Car or LT-1 Brougham. Now as far as power and acceleration goes, that's gonna be a different story.

It had white leather seats.

It was an odd car, it was white, white leather and white carpet, red dash. It had no vinyl top at all, yet it had the "ring" that went between the front and rear doors with the opra light and around the roof, almost like a landau top should be there but I didn't see any indication that there was one... also this car did *not* have the oval opra windows that I thought they all did. It was a 1976 Contential Town Car, which from my understanding all the made was the Contential, and the Town Car was a package ontop of that. I think in '77 they went to the taller and better looking grille design? I much prefer that over the '76.

As soon as I walked up to the car I was not interested in it, because as it was described was not the condition it was in, I really wanted to leave at that point once I established I wasn't interested in it, but the guy offered for me to drive it so I figured why not... it wasn't a long drive or anything special, just kinda down the road a couple miles few side roads and back.

I was pretty impressed with the power... I mean compared to todays cars it isn't anything to go crazy over, but it really moved along quite well... like I said I only did a couple WOT runs, and one from a stop when it actually was in 1st... and it pulled hard, I'd say better then my '79 did. Then again the car was just so big that it could have felt like it was accelerating faster then it was, I know I looked at the speedo and it was passing 70 pretty quick tho.... old guy in the car was just like yeah thats right keep it to the floor, shes in that low gear, don't let off it just yet.... but.... yeah one persons description can mean something totally different to another.

I dunno, you need to get your butt down here some time for one of these Caddy meets so you can drive the Town Car :thumbsup: By then it would probably have like 150k on it... but all is well. I don't know how fast it is, it is defintly quick to me atleast. I found a trick out the other day but if I put the shifter in 1 and run wide open, it'll shift at a slightly higher RPM but a much more positive shift into 2nd... since it's all electronic controlled... thats cool cause if I was to ever auto-x the car (as I have had thoughts of doing, just can't find it around here) just leave the shifter in 1 and turn OD off, then it would automatically default to the lowest gear for the given speed and never shift into OD... that could be quite fun. Although 1st runs to 35 or 40 under WOT, but if the shifter is in 1 it won't downshift into 1st until 28mph... still neat tho, I was quite surprised at how much firmer it shifted.

The sorta local (like 35miles?) 1/4 mi drag stirp has their test n tune nights... I wanna see when the next one is, I'd really like the race the Town Car, see how it compared to my other cars I've had and if it beats the 15.9 as my fastest car that my '93 Coupe ran.... plus it would still be cool, it's been a long time since I've been to the track. Maybe then I would be able to get a baseline to what it runs.

Reason why I said you would like the power tho, cause you mention alot you like the low end torque of a V8, with the Town Car as soon as you jab the gas it's moving, in fact since I normally drive the Zu, I am used to giving it alot more throttle input (plus it's more fun to drive like that) so when I get in the Town Car I'm really jumping off fast from a stop until I adjust again. But besides the low end torque it's got nice midrange and top end power too, accelerating at any speed is sorta just instantanious (sp?) but I think your Benz accelerates above 80 faster... it still hits the 107 limiter without much trouble... overall it's a nice package, I've thought about adding some go-fast parts, but... for what? it's powerful and fast enough as it is, plus I like keeping it stock. I can't complain about it, and personally I am starting to really like the 4.6 OHC alot... kinda sorta making me think about manual trans Mustang GT convertibles.... cheap and not bad... not in the same category as the E30 tho....

I~LUV~Caddys8792
10-02-08, 12:34 AM
I'd be quite impressed if your Town Car could break into the 15's. I always thought those were a low/mid 16 second car?

But regarding that 1976, you're positive it's a '76 right? Because the opera windows were made standard on the Town Cars in 1975. 1974 was the last year that they did not have opera windows. The 1974 grille is closer to the 1976 than the 1977, but like the 1977-79's, the width between the grille bars is uniform, unlike the 1975-76's.

It's cool to hear that the Town Car is quicker than your '79. I wonder if it would be able to keep one tire spinning through first gear too? :lildevil:

Night Wolf
10-02-08, 01:00 AM
I'd be quite impressed if your Town Car could break into the 15's. I always thought those were a low/mid 16 second car?

But regarding that 1976, you're positive it's a '76 right? Because the opera windows were made standard on the Town Cars in 1975. 1974 was the last year that they did not have opera windows. The 1974 grille is closer to the 1976 than the 1977, but like the 1977-79's, the width between the grille bars is uniform, unlike the 1975-76's.

It's cool to hear that the Town Car is quicker than your '79. I wonder if it would be able to keep one tire spinning through first gear too? :lildevil:

Yes, it was a '76, first the guy said '75, then '76, sticker ont he door put the build date at 05/76. I don't know why it didn't have the oval windows either.

I dunno if it would run 15's, it may, then again the Coupe had the same power but was lighter, so I dunno, it would be fun either way.

Don't quote me on faster then the '79, it's been 2.5 yrs since I've driven that car... but it just seemed so, could be mistaken... defintily has some power tho.

Fleet
10-02-08, 05:48 AM
Here are some road test specs from various magazines:
--------------------- Engine-- Axle ratio- Weight-- 0-60-- 1/4 mile

'95 Lincoln Town Car- 281 ci.-- 3.08------ 4,177 lb- 9.0 sec- 16.9@83
'73 Cadillac Fleetwood- 472---- 2.93------ 5,200--- 10.2-- 17.8@80
'74 Cadillac Fleetwood- 472---- 2.93------ 5,250--- 12.0-- 17.98@77.5
'75 Coupe de Ville----- 500---- 2.73------ 4,950--- 10.9-- 17.66@78.32
'78 Coupe de Ville----- 425---- 2.73------ 4,270--- 10.6-- 18.2@78.8

Also:
'75 Lincoln Continental- 460--- 3.00------- 5,200--- 9.5-- 17.12@81.37
'69 Cadillac CDV------- 472--- 2.94------- 4,780--- 9.4--- 16.5@83.8
'64 Cadillac SDV------- 429--- 3.21------- 4,900--- 8.5--- 16.4@86

Night Wolf
10-02-08, 04:25 PM
Here are some road test specs from various magazines:
--------------------- Engine-- Axle ratio- Weight-- 0-60-- 1/4 mile

'95 Lincoln Town Car- 281 ci.-- 3.08------ 4,177 lb- 9.0 sec- 16.9@83
'73 Cadillac Fleetwood- 472---- 2.93------ 5,200--- 10.2-- 17.8@80
'74 Cadillac Fleetwood- 472---- 2.93------ 5,250--- 12.0-- 17.98@77.5
'75 Coupe de Ville----- 500---- 2.73------ 4,950--- 10.9-- 17.66@78.32
'78 Coupe de Ville----- 425---- 2.73------ 4,270--- 10.6-- 18.2@78.8

Also:
'75 Lincoln Continental- 460--- 3.00------- 5,200--- 9.5-- 17.12@81.37
'69 Cadillac CDV------- 472--- 2.94------- 4,780--- 9.4--- 16.5@83.8
'64 Cadillac SDV------- 429--- 3.21------- 4,900--- 8.5--- 16.4@86

The '95 TC has the stock 3.08 gears, 3.27 were part of the Ride Control Package and 3.55 were tow package. I think the weight on my title said either 3,900 or 4,000lbs. Either way, I'd like to take it to the track and see, almost seems to be a hit and miss, sometimes people say the car is pretty quick, then others say it is slow, maybe it's just what you've been used to? I think it would be faster then a 16.9, as that is what my '89 Oldsmobile Eighty Eight ran, and the TC seems faster.

It also lists for '78 Coupe DeVille an 18.2, however I ran a 17.5 with my stock '79 Sedan DeVille d;Elegance, it was a consistant 17.5, couldn't believe it, the whole night didn't matter what, it was 17.5. U guess that puts it slower then the '75 Continental, but alot of those numbers seem to be off a bit.

Fleet
10-02-08, 05:33 PM
Regarding the magazine test times, there are a few differences from the test car and our cars...

- There were usually two aboard and test equipment, which added weight.
- Cars were sometimes not broken in.
- Many times the transmission was left in "Drive."
- Times would vary according to the skill of the driver.

As for the mid-'90s Town Cars, my '95 doesn't have a huge amount of torque.. it does not roar off the line! But once going it accelerates pretty well and feels like a high-16/low-17 second car.

Aron9000
10-03-08, 01:27 AM
As for the mid-'90s Town Cars, my '95 doesn't have a huge amount of torque.. it does not roar off the line! But once going it accelerates pretty well and feels like a high-16/low-17 second car.

That's why I've never liked the Ford mod motors, not enough torque. If you rev them up they have decent power, but I like a lot of torque in a big heavy car.

FLNCHM5
10-03-08, 04:39 PM
Thanks for the review.... I think you are spot on! On the other hand, I am a bit biased.. :duck::cool2:

Aron9000
10-03-08, 05:22 PM
I knew a guy with a white 1973 Coupe Deville, I think it had the D'Elegance package. Inside was pretty cool, it was burnt orange carpet, dash door panels, the seats were orange and gold striped velour.

Pete Benson
10-04-08, 06:00 PM
Probably a '74. Velour wasn't offered on the deVilles until then, and that was also the first year for the d'Elegance package.

Aron9000
10-05-08, 03:16 AM
Probably a '74. Velour wasn't offered on the deVilles until then, and that was also the first year for the d'Elegance package.

I know it had round headlights in the front, might have been a 74. It also had that cool "see through" cadillac crest hood ornament. Like the one on the left.

http://www.cadillacville.com/default2/webstuff/model71/Pictures/Hood%20Ornaments.jpg

77CDV
10-09-08, 05:59 AM
Collectible Automobile's current issue features the 1975-1979 Lincoln Continentals. Check it out.

I~LUV~Caddys8792
10-09-08, 11:22 AM
GASP!!!!!!

The bookstore will be my first stop on the way home tonight!

77CDV
10-10-08, 01:09 AM
GASP!!!!!!

The bookstore will be my first stop on the way home tonight!

Don't squirt your boxers just yet. It's the Town Cars, not the Contis.

I~LUV~Caddys8792
10-10-08, 09:20 AM
Oh, that's better than nothing.

ryannel2003
10-10-08, 10:47 AM
I've got a big picture book on Cadillac's, and the difference between the '76 and '77 is pretty big. I always liked the look of the early 70's cars though, especially the front end. However, there is something about the 50's cars that had me at hello...

Caddy73
11-13-08, 12:30 AM
A very interesting review. I have always been a super fan of the 73 Coupe Deville. I knew two families that owned them back in the mid seventies. They had a very mellow exhaust note that was unique from previous or subsequent models. I learned to drive in the 74 Coupe Deville my folks owned. It was nice but lacked the exhaust note and solid clunk of door closing that I noticed in the 73 models. Always wanted to drive a 73 though:)





Not as boat-like as I'd imagined....

pompste
11-13-08, 10:40 PM
All this interesting reading on the early 1970`s true land yachts has me yearning for past.When i occasionally see an early 1970`s Sedan Deville and/or Fleetwood on the road,i honestly yearn to own one those truly gigantic rides!
Except for the 1993-1996 Fleetwoods----we`ll never see truly big luxury rides made ever again in this modern era----and that`s sad for sure---not even having an option to buy a modern luxury "land yacht".
When i see what Cadillac luxury offered in the early 1970`s and compare those to the shrunken down versions offered today,i always think "what the h--l happened?
I own a mint 1995 Sedan Deville--even this model was a shrunken down version compared to the early 1970`s models-----but my ride looks respectably large on the roads today since all the newer models of all carmakers have made all their rides smaller.This car feels "solid"---heavy doors and they all close tight and smooth.
I hope to drive an early 1970`s Caddy someday!

FLNCHM5
11-14-08, 03:54 PM
A very interesting review. I have always been a super fan of the 73 Coupe Deville. I knew two families that owned them back in the mid seventies. They had a very mellow exhaust note that was unique from previous or subsequent models. I learned to drive in the 74 Coupe Deville my folks owned. It was nice but lacked the exhaust note and solid clunk of door closing that I noticed in the 73 models. Always wanted to drive a 73 though:)

It's funny you say that.... The past couple shows I've been to people have commented that they like the sound of my exhaust. A couple people have asked what kind of mufflers I've put on it. Granted, it's still the 35 year old original pipe and muffler but my CDV has more of a rumble than any other early 70's Caddy's I have been around. I'm kicking around the idea of dumping the single pipe this spring and going with true duals. With only 51,000 do I really want to change anything?? :hmm:

billc83
11-14-08, 06:08 PM
I~LUV~Caddys8792-

You came by and gave me positive feedback on a few of my review, so I figured I'd return the kind words...

I really liked your "Retro Review" of the '73 Coupe Deville. It's informative and well written. I've never had the chance to drive an older 70s Cadillac (or Lincoln, for that matter), so I found the comparisons to similar Lincolns interesting. Overall, I really good review!

Caddy73
11-14-08, 09:20 PM
Wow!! Original pipe and muffler. Would love to see some pics of your CDV!! I agree about not changing anything. Why mess with perfection :)




It's funny you say that.... The past couple shows I've been to people have commented that they like the sound of my exhaust. A couple people have asked what kind of mufflers I've put on it. Granted, it's still the 35 year old original pipe and muffler but my CDV has more of a rumble than any other early 70's Caddy's I have been around. I'm kicking around the idea of dumping the single pipe this spring and going with true duals. With only 51,000 do I really want to change anything?? :hmm:

I~LUV~Caddys8792
11-15-08, 11:14 AM
I~LUV~Caddys8792-

You came by and gave me positive feedback on a few of my review, so I figured I'd return the kind words...

I really liked your "Retro Review" of the '73 Coupe Deville. It's informative and well written. I've never had the chance to drive an older 70s Cadillac (or Lincoln, for that matter), so I found the comparisons to similar Lincolns interesting. Overall, I really good review!

Wow, thank you. :)

FLNCHM5
11-18-08, 10:24 AM
Pics as requested by Caddy73 :D

It's Harvest Yellow w/ Brown leather and top. I'm currently the second owner. When I bought it 3 years ago w/ 48,000 miles it still had the original tires on it! So far I've done a water pump, full tune up (fluids-belts-etc..) tires (obviously), an R134 upgrade and new brakes all the way around. Otherwise, it's completely untouched.

I loved this review... but as I said in a previous post, I biased. :D

I~LUV~Caddys8792
11-18-08, 11:42 AM
That looks like the same color combo as that '73 CDV I drove...except yours might be one shade lighter of yellow...hard to tell though.

Caddy73
11-19-08, 01:31 AM
Wow! Thanks for sharing your pics. Your ride is beautiful!! If you ever participate in any car shows near Chicago, please let me know. I would love to check out your CDV in person. Thanks again.


Pics as requested by Caddy73 :D

It's Harvest Yellow w/ Brown leather and top. I'm currently the second owner. When I bought it 3 years ago w/ 48,000 miles it still had the original tires on it! So far I've done a water pump, full tune up (fluids-belts-etc..) tires (obviously), an R134 upgrade and new brakes all the way around. Otherwise, it's completely untouched.

I loved this review... but as I said in a previous post, I biased. :D

77CDV
11-19-08, 11:42 PM
What a clean, great-looking example! Thanks for sharing pics of her with us.

David5865
09-06-09, 06:56 PM
Love the reviews. I can compare a previous '76 Fleetwood and my recent '76 Lincoln Continental Mark IV with my current '73 Coupe DeVille. The Caddy's drive similar and I much prefer them to the Mark IV. This '73 is my favorite so far. Perhaps because she's all original and everything works with less than 20K original miles. Talk about a time capsule, she's like stepping back in time. Anyone know where I can find an online picture of a '73 Caddy original window sticker? I found a blank reproduction and want to fill it out, modeling it after one that is already printed so as to have it look as original as possible.

I~LUV~Caddys8792
09-06-09, 07:02 PM
So the full size Cadillacs drive "smaller" than the personal sized Lincoln? Interesting...

Go on....

David5865
09-06-09, 09:05 PM
No, I'm not saying the full sized Caddy's drive better than personal sized Lincolns. I was saying that my '73 and '76 Caddy's drive similar to each other, but that overall, I prefer my Caddy's to the Lincoln I had, that's all. But the '76 Mark IV that I had and recently gave away was too much of a project car to really enjoy.

I~LUV~Caddys8792
09-06-09, 09:22 PM
Oh, sorry, I misread what you posted. I LOVE the Mark IV's...the way the look, their interiors, the easily modifiable and well known 460 V-8, etc etc, but I always heard that the Lincolns felt boatier and less connected than the Cadillacs did, which would mean that I'd rather own the Cadillac in the long run..

David5865
09-06-09, 09:37 PM
Well, in comparing the big Caddy's and Lincoln coupes ('76 and earlier) the Caddy's have a much longer wheelbase and so are more comfortable, but yes, the Lincolns ride more pillow-like. The Caddy's, to me, feel more connected to the road, but not in a way to suggest they don't ride well, they do - very luxuriously. I too, love the look of the Mark IV compared to the Caddy. The Mark IV looked more like it's own car and not a remake of a Torino. The Caddy on the other hand looks typical GM, like a Buick or Pontiac that has been rebadged, but I agree with you that I still prefer the Caddy. I find it more reliable as well. I had a '76 Fleetwood with the 500 engine and wished I never sold it. On the highway, it got 18 mpg and was the "grand dame" of American luxury of it's day. In fact, nothing rides as well ever since. It's all about the wheelbase which was 133. My '73 Coupe rides on 131, pretty close to the same ride quality. I think, but am not sure, that the Mark IV was around 124 inches. So, the Caddy has a much more accomodating rear seat. Plus being a hard top coupe, with the windows down, it's much easier to get into than the Mark IV.

I~LUV~Caddys8792
09-07-09, 11:07 AM
I agree entirely. The Lincolns felt and looked much more seperate from corporate Ford than the Cadillacs did with GM.

DopeStar 156
09-08-09, 12:33 AM
Just did the front brakes on my 76 Coupe and it stops much better than it used to which is impressive for a car of that size......

77CDV
09-09-09, 09:01 PM
^Funny how that happens....

HAZZARDJOHN
09-09-09, 09:28 PM
Just did the front brakes on my 76 Coupe and it stops much better than it used to which is impressive for a car of that size......

Really? My brakes have been better than my tires for the ten year I have owned it. Any more than normal braking and the tires lock up. It is embarrassing sometimes. I was at a store and a car started to back up with no lights, I hit the brakes a little more aggressive than normal and squeal the tires like a pig. Everyone looked at me like I was some jerk or something. It has happened a few times to me.

~HJ

77CDV
09-09-09, 10:27 PM
Sounds like they're a bit too tight, John.

I~LUV~Caddys8792
09-09-09, 11:29 PM
My Astro does the same thing. It's really annoying. When you say "it's too tight", I assume you mean the rear drums, right?

HAZZARDJOHN
09-10-09, 12:36 AM
Sounds like they're a bit too tight, John.


How are front disk brakes that are over 20 years old too tight? (I have a receipt from 1987 when the brakes wer last done, they are still like new though) serious question. I didn't know you could make them tighter than stock. I just think the tires are not able to hold back the 5000# car

77CDV
09-10-09, 02:16 AM
Chad's on the right track. It's usually the rear drums that lock up. When I had the brakes on my '69 done as part of the grand mechanical refresh, they were touchy as hell, the rears would lock up at the mildest tap of the pedal. A minor adjustment to the cylinders corrected that. Now, my '77 once did the same thing, but that was because one of the rear cylinders was leaking.

HAZZARDJOHN
09-10-09, 10:16 AM
Oh I see, it is my fronts that lock up. Not the rears.