I had to look twice while glancing through the Vicari Auction catalog for their upcoming auction in Biloxi , Misssissippi on October 4-7, 2023. They have a listing for a 1956 Cadillac Eldorado Seville. This unit is often described as a test model for the upcoming 1957 Cadillac Brougham that previewed the quad headlights for GM.
Previewing the 1957 Cadillac Brougham
The 1957 Cadillac Brougham was the height of style and luxury for the 50s. I don’t know what made the bean counters at Cadillac approve these builds because they certainly couldn’t make up the losses in volume. The Broughams were hand built and were the most expensive car produced in their time. They were even more expensive than a Rolls Royce Silver Cloud. Let that sink in. These American titans were the MOST expensive car made in their day!
Of course, the luxury car had interior options to match. Air conditioning was standard, along with separate front and rear heaters. The power front seat had a six-way “memory” setting, transistor radio, electric automatic door locks, plus the ever-popular Autotronic headlight dimming control (it seems that even today’s economy cars have that offering now). How about power windows, power trunk latch, and polarized sun visors? All of this technology and wizardry was available over 60 years ago.
1956 Cadillac Eldorado Seville
So this 1956 Cadillac Eldorado Seville model has the rare (and illegal at that time) quad headlights and unique window trim, and rubber-tipped bullets. The “tuxedo” black and white is always a head-turner, and the leather interior is well done. Who doesn’t love that bat-wing air cleaner atop the original 365 CID engine? The car also rides on power everything (brakes, door locks, front seat, steering, and windows).
So seeing the 1956 test vehicle was a great surprise. It first came to my attention at the RM Auction in 2014, where it sold for $49,500. The following year Worldwide Auctioneers sold it for $52,250. Here’s hoping the price jumps because the proceeds go to an orphanage in the Philippines.
Photos courtesy of Vicari Auction Company