: Fleetwood Review: August 16, 1992

04-26-06, 10:22 AM
George Moore

The Indianapolis Star
August 16, 1992
Tradition abounds at Cadillac Motor Car Division, and none is more ingrained than the image of the big rear-wheel drive Cadillac. The big Caddy is as much a part of Americana as hot dogs and baseball, harking back virtually to the beginning of the automobile industry. So it is appropriate that in a day of downsizing and front-wheel drive that Cadillac has announced production of a brand new rear drive.
Production began earlier this month on a new rear-drive 1993 Cadillac Fleetwood Brougham sedan that is a complete styling departure from the 1992 model.
The new car is bigger than the one it replaces, and is the largest production sedan made in the United States.
Long, and long on style
It's a little difficult to know where to begin describing this car.
The Fleetwood Brougham is 4.3 inches longer than its predecessor '92 model, not exactly a diminished version of transportation in its own right. The overall length stretches out to 225.3 inches (over 18 1/2 feet), and the new body also is 1 1/2 inches wider at an even 78 inches.
It is fairly common knowledge in the auto business that the styling of the current rear-drive Brougham was getting a bit dated, hence a new body that represents acres of flowing sheet metal wrapped in an aerodynamic theme. The automobile is designed to retrieve the traditional Cadillac buyer who deserted to the Lincoln Town Car due to the Caddy's 12-year-old body style.
"I really think that a lot of traditional Cadillac buyers got tired of the old body style and bought Lincolns," said Dave Moll, general sales manager for Tukwila Cadillac- Peugeot. "And those people will be back in our store. It's the big car these people want."
The car obviously was designed to suit a specific Cadillac market.
"Designed by our clients"
"They went to the voice of the customer," said Dave Watts, general sales manager for Lockhart Cadillac. "This car is pretty much designed by our clients."
The automobile is a true six-passenger car, with the increase in length translating into increased interior room. There is almost enough room to hold a dance in the back seat, with legroom now being 43.9 inches. That's up from the '92 Brougham's 41.2 inches.
Headroom also is increased to 39.1 inches, up from the '92's 38.1 inches.
Initially some of the automotive press got carried away and reported that the new rear drive would be based on the Buick Roadmaster's 116-inch wheelbase chassis. But they didn't do their homework on this one.
"It's Cadillac's own body and chassis," Watts said, " with 121 inches of wheelbase."
Division management is as cognizant as anyone that aerodynamics for fuel efficiency is the name of the game in today's automobile styling. The '93 sedan's co-efficient of (air) drag has been reduced to 0.36, down from the '92's 0.49. It's pretty slick engineering considering the new body is considerably wider than the one it replaces.
The lower drag helps contribute to the EPA fuel consumption rating of 16 miles per gallon in the city and 25 miles per gallon on the highway. For an automobile weighing over two tons (4,367 pounds) and powered by a 5.7-liter V-8, the fuel rating is considered excellent. It's sufficiently efficient that the Fleetwood Brougham is not subject to a gas-guzzler tax.
There is only one engine being offered for '93, General Motors' 350-cubic inch V-8. Eliminated is the 5.0-liter (305-cubic inch) V-8 offered as standard for the 1992 Brougham.
The engine is one of GM's tried and proven power plants, developing 185- horsepower and a stump-pulling 300 foot-pounds of torque. While owners of this type of automobile are not considered drag racing advocates, engineering says 0-60 miles per hour comes in at 10.5 seconds.
Lots of sales forecast
Dealers naturally are waxing enthusiastic about the marketing potential of the Fleetwood Brougham, and the expected return of some people they haven't seen in a while.
"We have a tape that we obtained when Mrs. (Freda) Lockhart was inducted into the Hall of Fame for Cadillac," Watts said, "and using that, we've already gotten 14 orders."

04-26-06, 03:43 PM
Sort of a weird review, but I guess is a pretty good look at the "atmosphere" surrounding the intro of the car.