Differences between 1986-1989 and 1990-1992 Broughams
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RWD 19xx-1984 DeVille and Fleetwood,
1985-1996 Fleetwood and Brougham Forum Discussion, Differences between 1986-1989 and 1990-1992 Broughams in Past Cadillac Vehicle Discussion; Can anyone state the main differences between these two styles of the brougham, the digital dash and more faux trees ...
  1. #1
    DanD is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    Differences between 1986-1989 and 1990-1992 Broughams

    Can anyone state the main differences between these two styles of the brougham, the digital dash and more faux trees from the faux forest are 2 things I know, but are there any major mechanical differences between them?

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    csbuckn is offline Cadillac Owners Master
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    Re: Differences between 1986-1989 and 1990-1992 Broughams

    The motor. 86-90 have carbed Oldsmobile 307, 90-92 have fuel injected chevy motors. 90 was a crossover year, it had both fuel injected motors and carbed motors.

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    DanD is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    Re: Differences between 1986-1989 and 1990-1992 Broughams

    Other than the motors, is there any differences between them? I know about the new head lights and digital dash, but I've also heard that the 90s ones have been lifted a couple inches. Is that true?

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    cadillac kevin's Avatar
    cadillac kevin is online now Cadillac Owners Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by DanD
    Other than the motors, is there any differences between them? I know about the new head lights and digital dash, but I've also heard that the 90s ones have been lifted a couple inches. Is that true?
    The 350 powered 90 (and maybe 91 and 92) cars had FE2 suspension. The car is lifted 1 inch and had a firmer ride thanks to 9C1 (police caprice) spec shocks, springs, and sway bars. It was part of a towing package.
    Benzilla and Benzilla like this.

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    Seville fan is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    Re: Differences between 1986-1989 and 1990-1992 Broughams

    I think the lifted cars were only the ones with the Chevy 350. A 90 with the Olds 307 or 91-92 with the Chevy 305 were not lifted, I believe. I've read where the 350 cars had to be lifted due to suspension upgrades needed to handle the additional power but that always seemed odd to me since the 77-81 cars with the big block engines did not need to be lifted. Lifted cars had a harder ride for sure.

    The 90+ models also got the door mounted seat belts. On the outside they got the additional lower bodyside cladding and the single "Euro" style headlamps. The vinyl top was changed too, on the 90+ models they extended it around the rear door quarter windows. This so-called carriage roof was optional before 90 but made STD after that.

    I believe the paint type was changed from lacquer to base coat clear coat. My car has lacquer (non metallic) and looks like new but needs more maintenance. Some of the early BC/CC cars had separation of the clear so watch for that.

    The believe the tranny was upgraded on the 90+ models to the 700 series, at least with the Chevy engines.

    I don't like the carriage roof, cladding, wrap around front bumper, digital, door seat belts and jacked up ride height so I bought an '86 with the 307 and a perfectly functioning carb. Love the car but many others prefer the 90-92 with a Chevy engine.

    I think that has to do with their carbs being out of tune on the 307 because when they are the car is slow. Mine has plenty of power around town you barely have to touch the gas. On the highway in top gear it's loafing around at about 1,600RPM and does great. It's only going up a hill with a full load when you'd want more power.

    The 307 is smooth and quieter than the 305/350 cars. Highway mileage is excellent. Sounds more like a a Cadillac engine to me. I will admit though that the FI would give you less hassles. With the 307 you need to find a guy who is good on those old computer controlled carbs or do it yourself.

    If they made a 80-89 body style with normal ride height and Chevy 350 I would have gotten that though. I've heard so many people say that.

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    cadillac kevin's Avatar
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    Another thing to consider- if you live in an environment wher ethere is alot of salt used on the road, don't buy a 90-92 (at least not a white). The cladding seems to cause alot of body rot. Alot of ones (both on the street and in the junkyard- very common on white cars) have nasty rot under/ peeking out around the cladding. It seems to hold salt against the body. I've seen ones in the junkyard, and the car looks nice until someone removes the cladding, at which point you can see that the bottom half of the car body is gone from rust (the car would have fist sized rot holes in the body in the doors and holes I can stick my arm through sideways on the quarters). I have never seen rot anywhere close to that bad on even the most neglected 77-89 cars.


    Personally, I don't like the euro look. I think the cladding/ wrap around front bumper kills the clean look of the car. I also hate door mounted seat belts both from an asthetic and functionality standpoint (the whole idea of them was stupid on anything but a coupe with long doors).
    Cadillacboy and Cadillacboy like this.

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    Vladillac Khrougham is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    Re: Differences between 1986-1989 and 1990-1992 Broughams

    After months, of driving by the white '92 Brougham I eventually bought, I checked it out at night after the lot as closed and wrote down the VIN, I alays disliked vinyl tops (didn't yet know they were standard that year) and was disappointed when I peeked inside and saw a digital dash and never liked the rear white out "euro" tail lamps, but after months of it nagging at me I bought it the next day, 5-mins before closing, it as raining, cold and they never seem to move inventory. the price had dropped over time to $2,300, it had over 170k, but a great interior and I was sure I could talk them down to $1,800. They would not budge. I bought it with out test driving it, it had no inspection so I had to pick it up the next day. That night I was sure i had made a mistake. But she cleans up nice, water beads up on the paint which shines like almost new, the leather is in great condition and the 305 engine has been smooth and trouble free for the past 4K miles.

    I originally planned to retrofit an analog speedometer, traditional quad headlights and all red taillights and eventually repaint he blue, but now all those things are growing on me. I did try and change the tail lamps to red just to see what they looked like but found out that the bezel and brackets are different so it's not just a casual swap (although I do have a pair of rear chrome taillight housings from an '88 that would fit all red lights but not sure if they are interchangeable with the 92 on the other side, even the "euro" headlamps are growing on me. I would prefer B-pillar mounted front seat belts, but the goofy door mounted "automatic" ones dont bother me enough to want to retrofit them. Although the grey lower body cladding and 90-92 bumpers do bother me still. The 1980 style vertical slat grille I know like as much as my perviously preferred 'egg crate' style but I have a spare egg crate I salvaged and switch between them every couple of weeks. I wish switching casually switching back and forth between taillight styles was as easy. They ay I see it, the only bad FWB/Brougham is a repairable/restorable one that was claimed by the crusher.

    The only other differences I have noticed are the center dash with two vertical vents rather than horizontal and radio size/type. Also I think the earlier ones had a lighter more blonde wood grain trim, then a darker, but similar pattern and lastly a dark but "burled" wood pattern. The 90-92s also lack wood grain knobs, equipped with plain black ones and the top of the door locks have an upper black plastic cap with the crest and wreath stamped on top.

    Oh and ABS, I think in the 90s cars sold in the US were required to have at least two out of the three following as standard equipment:
    * Airbags.
    * Antilock Brakes.
    * "Active" restraints.

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    brougham is offline Cadillac Owners Master
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    Re: Differences between 1986-1989 and 1990-1992 Broughams

    A 1990 5L car is essentially the same as an 80s brougham except for how they look. Mechanically 91&92s are more like the 93-96s.

    Quote Originally Posted by Vladillac Khrougham View Post

    Oh and ABS, I think in the 90s cars sold in the US were required to have at least two out of the three following as standard equipment:
    * Airbags.
    * Antilock Brakes.
    * "Active" restraints.
    The only requirement was for passive restraints. It needed to either have a drivers side air bag or automatic seat belts. ABS was was just a luxury they decided to make standard on Broughams.

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    Vladillac Khrougham is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    Re: Differences between 1986-1989 and 1990-1992 Broughams

    Quote Originally Posted by brougham View Post
    A 1990 5L car is essentially the same as an 80s brougham except for how they look. Mechanically 91&92s are more like the 93-96s.



    The only requirement was for passive restraints. It needed to either have a drivers side air bag or automatic seat belts. ABS was was just a luxury they decided to make standard on Broughams.
    Sorry I just assumed that since it was at the end of it's production that GM would not have went to the trouble and expense to include an ABS unless required. But then again; since the R&D and tooling for the FWB/Brougham had already been paid for, the cost of production would have basically been limited to parts, labor and overhead/administration. As the significance of such a wide profit margin is dependent on sales volume, I guess it would be a prudent risk to invest in the inclusion of this system in an attempt to stem the model's falling sales by raising it's value.

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    brougham is offline Cadillac Owners Master
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    Re: Differences between 1986-1989 and 1990-1992 Broughams

    Quote Originally Posted by Vladillac Khrougham View Post
    Sorry I just assumed that since it was at the end of it's production that GM would not have went to the trouble and expense to include an ABS unless required. But then again; since the R&D and tooling for the FWB/Brougham had already been paid for, the cost of production would have basically been limited to parts, labor and overhead/administration. As the significance of such a wide profit margin is dependent on sales volume, I guess it would be a prudent risk to invest in the inclusion of this system in an attempt to stem the model's falling sales by raising it's value.
    Don't forget they also went to the trouble and expense to update the car during 1990/1991.
    They went out of their way to advertise that all 1991 Cadillac models had ABS so it was probably not just for Brougham sales but also a gimmick to help boost the Cadillac name. ABS was the hot new must have option back then and the same system was used in the other 91-93 RWD cars and modified for the 94-96s so they made their money back on it.

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