: CLOSE call with Fleetwood



bmwnick
08-19-09, 03:17 PM
HOLY CRAP!!!

I almost wiped out the FWB yesterday. I'm buzzing along a 2 lane parkway here on Long Island at about 65mph (flow of traffic) when out of nowhere everything in front of me abruptly slows down to about 20mph.

I attempt to bring the FWB down to 20mph (on BRAND new brakes) but momentum just would NOT have it!!! It was UGLY!!...With my brakes screeching, I move to the right to avoid crushing the Acura in front of me and scaring the CRAP out of the lady in the Altima in the right lane who I just cut off! That FWB was rocking like the fishing boat in "The Perfect Storm" but I luckily recovered it without a scratch to me or anyone else. I can't say that the skid marks on the parkway were the ONLY "skid marks" that I may be responsible for .........but it all turned out OK.

I love looking at my Fleetwood but for evasive manuvers I'll take my Bimmers ANYDAY!!

theGman
08-19-09, 03:27 PM
Wow. I guess I'll slow down for a few hours at least. Glad it ended well!

sven914
08-19-09, 04:22 PM
Good thing you have ABS. Otherwise you would have been picking Acura out of the grill until your court date.

I did something similar to that on a 4 lane highway, when I was 18, and had just gotten the car (and my license). I was coming up to a stop light, while tailgating the car in front of me. The people in front of them jambed on their brakes for some reason and stopped short of the intersection. I jambed on my brakes and felt the tyres lock up, so I had to start pulsing the pedal, and every time I hit it, I hit it too hard and locked the tyres. So at the last minute I got off the brake and nailed the gas and went into the left turn only lane, and rocketed through the intersection. Luckily there was no one coming.

bmwnick
08-19-09, 04:42 PM
Good thing you have ABS. Otherwise you would have been picking Acura out of the grill until your court date.

I did something similar to that on a 4 lane highway, when I was 18, and had just gotten the car (and my license). I was coming up to a stop light, while tailgating the car in front of me. The people in front of them jambed on their brakes for some reason and stopped short of the intersection. I jambed on my brakes and felt the tyres lock up, so I had to start pulsing the pedal, and every time I hit it, I hit it too hard and locked the tyres. So at the last minute I got off the brake and nailed the gas and went into the left turn only lane, and rocketed through the intersection. Luckily there was no one coming.

ABS can only work so well with all of that weight and momentum on 15" tires. My X5 has z-rated 19" Michelins and a sport suspension and my 650 CV has 19" z-rated Bridgestones and an Active Suspension....both of those cars are rolling on a LOT of soft rubber and stop on a dime. I've got to REALLY adjust my driving habits with the FWB.

sven914
08-19-09, 05:05 PM
Well BMW is designed for performance at Autobahn speeds. Everything they put on the road, was first proven on the raceways. Also the X5 and 650 series are newer and more expensive than your Fleetwood Brougham, which gives them the most state of the art electronics and sensors for sensing ride instability.

The Fleetwood Brougham was designed to be luxurious, but affordable for the average upper-middle class family. Stopping on a dime is not Cadillac's thing, and their mentality was to sacrifice breathtaking performance for large elegant styling. Had Cadillac wanted to fill their cars with every sensor and computer imaginable, and skyrocketed the price to that of a new Rolls, then it would stop on a dime and probably take hairpin turns at 70.

bmwnick
08-19-09, 05:11 PM
Well BMW is designed for performance at Autobahn speeds. Everything they put on the road, was first proven on the raceways. Also the X5 and 650 series are newer and more expensive than your Fleetwood Brougham, which gives them the most state of the art electronics and sensors for sensing ride instability.

The Fleetwood Brougham was designed to be luxurious, but affordable for the average upper-middle class family. Stopping on a dime is not Cadillac's thing, and their mentality was to sacrifice breathtaking performance for large elegant styling. Had Cadillac wanted to fill their cars with every sensor and computer imaginable, and skyrocketed the price to that of a new Rolls, then it would stop on a dime and probably take hairpin turns at 70.

Considering the fact that I only paid $6000 for the FWB I don't feel "cheated" at all by the lack of stopping power or the lack of manuverability. I just need to drive the BMW's the way that they were designed for and drive the FWB the way that IT was designed for.......slow and PRETTY!!!

sven914
08-19-09, 05:21 PM
Yeah I forget to do that with my 06 Impala. I usually drive the Brougham, so I when I drive the Impala I forget that it is fuel injected and has ABS. I'm always pumping gas on start up and the brakes when I try to stop. I also have a problem with spinning the tyres, because it actually moves when I hit the gas.

flux1414
08-19-09, 05:50 PM
I found my '81 Deville (may she rest in pieces) to be surprisingly nimble for what it was. I dodged many a deer in that yacht, the trick was to time the steering input with the body rolls juuuust right :). One time, I had to drive that thing from Detroit to the top of the UP and right on my way out of town I lost the rear brake line. I was a poor college student (and it was a Sunday) so I just went for it and sure enough a speed trap on 75 caused traffic to stop very abruptly. I managed not to destroy a Avalanche with only my front brakes...that car rocked :).

My new old '80 isn't too bad either.

jey
08-20-09, 02:39 PM
Glad to hear everyone is ok. That is why I bought 17" wheels and Pirelli PZero Rosso tires for the Fleetwood. There's so much rubber there now that I have yet to activate the ABS or traction control. Safety features are great but there is nothing like a good set of tires when it comes to defensive driving.

bmwnick
08-20-09, 04:17 PM
Glad to hear everyone is ok. That is why I bought 17" wheels and Pirelli PZero Rosso tires for the Fleetwood. There's so much rubber there now that I have yet to activate the ABS or traction control. Safety features are great but there is nothing like a good set of tires when it comes to defensive driving.


The 17's and PZero's must look great but I think that as a performance upgrade it's like putting a pair of $200 Nikes on Pavoratti. :)

I'm just gonna drive SLOWER.

dirt_cheap_fleetwood
08-20-09, 06:33 PM
The FWB actually stops surprisingly fast for its size. The Autoweek test had it going from 60-0 in only 125 feet, which is right on par with many newer, smaller cars.

I had to do a similar maneuver while pulling a trailer once. I damn near pissed my pants. I was coming back into the city down I-88 and came over a crest doing 60 mph with a 13,000 lb trailer only to see that traffic in front of me was completely stopped. I had no warning at all. I reached down and locked up the trailer brakes so as not to put the truck sideways and proceeded to slide about 400 feet down the right hand shoulder past some very surprised people.

Cadillacboy
08-20-09, 06:51 PM
Glad, you fend off a nasty incident , I find FWB's brakes find too . Let's not forget we have more than 200 inches car and considering the size our rides has , maneuverability is not that bad at all

Aron9000
08-21-09, 03:58 AM
I think the brakes are pretty good on these old sleds IMO. I had a scary moment in the rain when this broad pulls out from a driveway right in front of me. I was doing 40mph and had to stand on the brakes with the horn, middle finger, and ABS going full tilt. Came about three feet from rear ending her.

You really forget how much mass is behind these cars until you have to do something like that.

Stingroo
08-21-09, 08:13 AM
I think the brakes are pretty good on these old sleds IMO. I had a scary moment in the rain when this broad pulls out from a driveway right in front of me. I was doing 40mph and had to stand on the brakes with the horn, middle finger, and ABS going full tilt. Came about three feet from rear ending her.

You really forget how much mass is behind these cars until you have to do something like that.

LOL I like that. Horn, ABS, middle finger. You drive like me!

dirt_cheap_fleetwood
08-21-09, 09:52 AM
LOL I like that. Horn, ABS, middle finger. You drive like me!

Haha. The first two are broken on my Lincoln. All I have is middle finger and yelling out the window. :(

Bro-Ham
08-21-09, 11:57 AM
Nick,

You're lucky your Cadillac dancing lesson ended without tragedy! I like to think of driving a grand Cadillac as being like skippering a motoryacht: once you figure out all the ins and outs you can do some amazing things with maneuverability yet it's still a great big boat! These cars are what they are!

I should also say, I had a 1990 Brougham d'Elegance a few years ago and I put Goodyear Eagle V-rated whitewall tires on it. The ride was sacrificed although the car felt more stable. It's hard to find speed rated whitewalls these days and Rolls-Royce owners from the 1970's through mid 1990's with the same 235/70-15 tire size as your Floatwood are ticked because very few manufacturers still make an H or V speed rated whitewall in that size except maybe Avon. The extra weight of the RR makes the ride of the V rated tires acceptable. A big Cad rides better with S rated but handling and braking can be ridiculous.

I have to address the references to yelling and using the middle finger on our automotive journeys. Remember, we drive Cadillacs, not leser cars. Lead by example and show your impeccable manners and composure under any circumstances. Unless you were purposely targeted by road rage or an aggressive driver the best solution is 911 to turn over the license number for law enforcement to handle. You never know when a nut job may pull out a gun and take a shot and you sure wouldn't want a cap popped in your a55 over something stupid. :)

My 3 cents.

Happy motoring!

Dave

Stingroo
08-21-09, 06:13 PM
lol dirt cheap. That's like my dad's Mazda. The driver's side door has no door panel, and the window won't go down, and the horn works, but intermittently. Luckily it can stop, but getting your point across can be a taxing job.

bmwnick
08-26-09, 12:59 PM
Nick,

You're lucky your Cadillac dancing lesson ended without tragedy! I like to think of driving a grand Cadillac as being like skippering a motoryacht: once you figure out all the ins and outs you can do some amazing things with maneuverability yet it's still a great big boat! These cars are what they are!

I should also say, I had a 1990 Brougham d'Elegance a few years ago and I put Goodyear Eagle V-rated whitewall tires on it. The ride was sacrificed although the car felt more stable. It's hard to find speed rated whitewalls these days and Rolls-Royce owners from the 1970's through mid 1990's with the same 235/70-15 tire size as your Floatwood are ticked because very few manufacturers still make an H or V speed rated whitewall in that size except maybe Avon. The extra weight of the RR makes the ride of the V rated tires acceptable. A big Cad rides better with S rated but handling and braking can be ridiculous.

I have to address the references to yelling and using the middle finger on our automotive journeys. Remember, we drive Cadillacs, not leser cars. Lead by example and show your impeccable manners and composure under any circumstances. Unless you were purposely targeted by road rage or an aggressive driver the best solution is 911 to turn over the license number for law enforcement to handle. You never know when a nut job may pull out a gun and take a shot and you sure wouldn't want a cap popped in your a55 over something stupid. :)

My 3 cents.

Happy motoring!

Dave


Dave,
Good advice to all.

I'm running some cheap-ass Toyos on the original wheels right now. I took off my spokes and Vogues because the offset and fitment was wrong on the rims and they shimmied. I'm waiting for a spare set of OEM wheels to come back from the chromer so I can mount up my new Vogues again with the chrome OEM wheels. Hopefully the Vogues are better than the Toyos but I'm STILL going to drive the FWB SLOOOOOW!!!

jey
08-26-09, 02:50 PM
With the horn being so loud and obnoxious by itself, I don't think I have ever felt the need to give any other signals while driving the Cadillac. If you can't hear the horn, there's no point yelling or waving.

After the last incident where a lady pulled a turn right in front of me, I just about fell of my chair when the insurance rep told me the driver didn't hear a horn or anything. You can't fix stupid I guess.

dirt_cheap_fleetwood
08-26-09, 06:22 PM
I use my horn quite frequently, especially since the one in the Lincoln is broken. Its like a special treat to be able to holler at the retards on the road without having to roll the window down. :)