: 1930 V-16 odd ball barn find ambulance?

01-27-13, 12:53 PM
Hello, I just recently purchased a 1930 cadillac v-16 ambulance/limo from a private collection that has been in storage for many years. I am trying to find out some info on the car. It is believed to have been converted from sedan/limo to an ambulance for the navy? Also it was converted to 35,36 front rad shell and fenders and wheels and believe at same time of conversion to ambulance. there are to badges on the side that state Gibson motorcoach and trying to find info on this company as well to know if they did the complete conversion and or more history on the car. The car is unbelievable condition and has been stored inside since 1956 and currently getting it road worthy but would like to decide on what to do with the car with what I find out about its history. I am new to the forum and any help much appreciated. Regards Jeff

01-27-13, 03:51 PM

01-28-13, 11:27 AM

01-28-13, 01:04 PM
Congrats for your aquisition :thumbsup: Ive found some info about this model on Internet:

http://www.bonhams.com/auctions/20582/lot/384/ (good pics with excellent resolution)

It seems a unique model indeed as maybe only this model was transformed by this coach builder. V-16 is also a legendary plus. Seems well preserved so restoration would not be too difficult.

01-28-13, 03:39 PM
Thanks as bought it from Bonham I was looking for an even more depth history but hard to find more than the Bonham description.

01-29-13, 11:22 AM
My dad lived 100miles outside ny city and had a similar car but they had swapped in a ford flathead v8. He has many stories of cool cars he has owned. He used to maintain dusenburg for rich, old widow. Drove it a number of times.

01-30-13, 09:01 PM
How do I get a job like that cheers

Chris Cummings
02-05-13, 11:41 AM

I'm new to the forum as well, but I watched that car on the Bonhams website with a lot of interest. The body was a 1930 Cadillac Series 4375-S seven-passenger sedan, according to the body tag on the cowl. A friend of mine told me that the engine number corresponds to a Series 4361-S five-passenger town sedan. It appears to me that the front fenders were heavily modified to resemble those of a 1934 Packard, and the radiator shell has been fabricated to resemble one from a 1934-1935 Cadillac (although there are significant differences). From the photographs, the work appears to have been done in a very professional manner. Extending the back end of the sedan body and incorporating a rear door like that took a lot of careful thought and skillful execution. Those wood and steel composite bodies aren't easy to stretch.

The grey paint and the shape of the scraped-off places where the lettering used to be on the doors and rear windows led me to guess that the car had served on a naval base, perhaps during World War II.

The generator on the driver's side is non-original, and was clearly added to accommodate an emergency vehicle's need for extra power for lighting and siren operation. There's a non-stock voltage regulator on the firewall that must have been added to control the new generator. The original vacuum fuel pumps have been replaced with electric units. And the air intake horns for the carburetors have been cut short, with some kind of home-made air regulating arrangement wired over the openings.

You have a very unique and fascinating vehicle. Of course, it's your choice what to do with it. Even though you don't have much of the early history of the car, it shouts "I have a story!" and you'll never see another one coming at you on the road. At any car meet you take it to, you will be the center of attention.

I own a 1930 Cadillac V-16, and I can give you information on parts, service, etc. You should join the Cadillac & LaSalle Club, if you're not already a member, and the Professional Car Society is full of folks who know a great deal about hearses, ambulances and limousines, and who might be able to tell you about Gibson Motorcoach.

Congratulations on your magnificent catch!

Chris Cummings