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Tuesday, 29 October 2013 16:37

1949 Cadillac Coupe De Ville

Car Biography

Charlie Wilson was the CEO of General Motors from 1946 through 1953 and President Eisenhower’s Secretary of Defense from 1953 through 1957. When Wilson left GM in 1953, the corporation gave him an extraordinary gift honoring his long service. What he got was the original Cadillac prototype Coupe De Ville by Fleetwood, the rarest of General Motors Transportation Unlimited Exhibition show cars. Just four different prototypes were built. Only one survives: “Engine Charlie’s” Coupe de Ville. Wilson drove it during his tenure as Secretary of Defense.

This first Coupe de Ville was a radical departure from Cadillac’s showroom offerings of the Forties. Powered by a new 331 cubic inch engine — GM’s first overhead valve V-8 — and mated to a 4-speed automatic transmission, the prototype Coupe de Ville took two months and $30,000 (1949-dollars) to build.

The de Ville featured GM’s first one piece curved windshield, and rode on a 133 inch wheelbase, seven inches longer than Cadillac’s production coupes. Inside was a two-way radio/telephone, power windows (even the vent windows were powered), power seats, chrome wheel arches and a three-piece rear window, lipstick holder, perfume atomizer, a back seat secretarial kit and leather seats and trim,  The de Ville was the star of GM’s 1949 Waldorf Astoria Transportation Unlimited show.

“I have many cars but the Coupe de Ville restoration has been the most exciting. This will be the first time in 64 years the oldest surviving Motorama Dream Car will be displayed publically,” said Steve Plunkett. “What’s interesting is Eagle Ottawa has been a supplier of leather to the Big Three for generations and 64 years later they’re supplying the project again.”

- See more at: http://www.oldcarsweekly.com/car-shows/1949-cadillac-show-car-to-appear-at-amelia-island-concours-delegance#sthash.bu5vNYMt.dpuf

Charlie Wilson was the CEO of General Motors from 1946 through 1953 and President Eisenhower’s Secretary of Defense from 1953 through 1957. When Wilson left GM in 1953, the corporation gave him an extraordinary gift honoring his long service. What he got was the original Cadillac prototype Coupe De Ville by Fleetwood, the rarest of General Motors Transportation Unlimited Exhibition show cars. Just four different prototypes were built. Only one survives: “Engine Charlie’s” Coupe de Ville. Wilson drove it during his tenure as Secretary of Defense.

This first Coupe de Ville was a radical departure from Cadillac’s showroom offerings of the Forties. Powered by a new 331 cubic inch engine — GM’s first overhead valve V-8 — and mated to a 4-speed automatic transmission, the prototype Coupe de Ville took two months and $30,000 (1949-dollars) to build.

The de Ville featured GM’s first one piece curved windshield, and rode on a 133 inch wheelbase, seven inches longer than Cadillac’s production coupes. Inside was a two-way radio/telephone, power windows (even the vent windows were powered), power seats, chrome wheel arches and a three-piece rear window, lipstick holder, perfume atomizer, a back seat secretarial kit and leather seats and trim,  The de Ville was the star of GM’s 1949 Waldorf Astoria Transportation Unlimited show.

“I have many cars but the Coupe de Ville restoration has been the most exciting. This will be the first time in 64 years the oldest surviving Motorama Dream Car will be displayed publically,” said Steve Plunkett. “What’s interesting is Eagle Ottawa has been a supplier of leather to the Big Three for generations and 64 years later they’re supplying the project again.”

- See more at: http://www.oldcarsweekly.com/car-shows/1949-cadillac-show-car-to-appear-at-amelia-island-concours-delegance#sthash.bu5vNYMt.dpuf
   This car belonged to Charlie Wilson which was the CEO of GM from 1946 through 1953 and president's Secretary of Defense from 1953 through 1957.
 
   When Wilson left GM in 1953, the corporation gave him an extraordinary gift honoring his long service. What he got was the the original Cadillac prototype by Fleetwood, the rarest of General Motors Unlimited Transportation Exhibition cars. just of four different prototypes were built. only one's survives. Wilson drove her during his tenure as Secretary of Defense.
 
   The Coupe de Ville was a radical departure from Cadillac offerings. Powered by a new 331 cubic inch engine - GM's first overhead valve V-8 and mated to a 4-speed automatic gearbox.
 
   The building of the show car took two months and ca 30 000 dollars.
  
   The De ville featured one piece curved windshield, power windows (even the vent windows were powered) power seats, chrome wheel arches, three piece rear window, two radiotelephones, lipstick holder, perfume atomizer a secretarial kit in the back seat . leather seats and trim.
 
   The car rode on a 133 inch wheelbase and was seven inches longer tha production's coupes of Cadillac.
 
   What is interesting is Eagle Ottawa has been a supplier of leather for the Big Three cars and now, it's supplying the project again.
 
 
   Ten samochód należał do Charlesa Wilsona, prezesa GM w latach 1946-53 i następnie amerykańskiego sekretarza obrony w latach 1953-57.
 
   Gdy Wilson opuszczał GM, firma podarowała mu w prezencie wyjątkowy samochód za wieloletnie zasługi dla firmy. Otrzymał on bowiem prototyp cadillaca, zbudowanego na bazie modelu Fleetwood, najrzadszego z pokazowych samochodów z imprezy Transportation Unlimited. Z wszystkich czterech prototypów tylko de Ville przetrwał do dzisiaj. Wilson używał go podczas swojej służby rządowej.
 
   Coupe de Ville było radykalnym odejściem od dotychczasowych modeli Cadillaca. Napędzane było zupełnie nowym silnikiem, widlastą górnozaworową ósemką o pojemności 331 cali sześciennych i zblokowaną z 4-biegową skrzynią automatyczną.
  
   Budowa tego samochodu zajęła 2 miesiące i kosztowała 30 tysięcy ówczesnych dolarów.
 
   Na wyposażeniu de Ville znalazły się jednoczęściowa przednia panoramiczna przednia szyba, elektryczne szyby (nawet fletnerki były uruchamiane elektrycznie!), elektryczne siedzenia, trzyczęściowa tylna szyba, dwa radiotelefony, podstawka na szminkę i dezodorant, zestaw sekretarski w tylnej części, skórzane siedzenia i ozdoby.
 
   Rozstaw samochodu wynosił 133 cale, sam samochód był dłuższy o siedem cali od seryjnych modeli Cadillaca.
 
   Ciekawostką jest to, że firma Eagle Ottawa, która zaopatrywała w skórzane siedzenia samochody "Wielkiej Trójki", istnieje do dzisiaj i oczywiście brała udział w renowacji tego samochodu.
 
Source: Old Cars Weekly
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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