Today’s Rare Ride started out as a rather ordinary Cadillac Brougham, but was completely transformed to any reason by a well-heeled client into something unusual. I’m a bit lost here.
At its core, the Cadillac Brougham was a “new” model for the 1987 model year. names formerly used for larger rear-wheel-drive vehicles. The company’s largest rear-wheel-drive model until 1986 was the C-body Fleetwood Brougham. In 1985, the DeVille was downsized, became front-wheel-drive, and switched to the new C-body platform with d other items from Buick and Oldsmobile. The rear-drive C became the rear-drive D, although nothing changed.
Cadillac needed the Fleetwood name for a “different” upscale version of the C body, although the name was already used as a trim package on the base DeVille. So in 1987 the Fleetwood Sixty Special arrived in stretched C-body form, and the full-size D-body offering lost its first name and became Brougham. To continue?
Base options on the Brougham were few and included the Elegance trim package and a “Premier” vinyl roof. The d’Elegance was a tufted and extra luxurious carryover from the previous Fleetwood Brougham model. Elegance-equipped examples were identified by rear seat lamps, handsome wood trim, and tufted seating surfaces that were usually upholstered in high-gloss leather. d’Elegance was also available as a package on the Fleetwood front-wheel-drive car, for added confusion.
Brougham was first produced at Cadillac Assembly in Detroit, but moved in 1988 to Arlington, Texas, where it would remain for the remainder of its tenure. Power arrived via three V8 engines for more examples. Initial power arrived via the high-output Oldsmobile 307 LV2 V8 (5.0L). In 1990, a facelift brought the Chevrolet 350 V8 (5.7 L) as an option. The following model year, the 307 LV2 was replaced as the base engine by a Chevrolet 305 V8 with fuel injection. Some examples were assembled as commercial frame cars between 1986 and 1990 and used the Oldsmobile 307 LG8 engine and a TH400 automatic instead of the TH200 used on other Broughams. A 4L60 transmission replaced the TH200 in 1990.
The aforementioned 1990 facelift was the only time the Fleetwood/Brougham changed after 1980. GM changed Cadillac’s flagship only because of pressure from Lincoln’s new-for-1990 (and much more modern) Town Car. A new instrument cluster appeared, along with composite headlights, a new taillight design and “more flush” bumpers replacing the old ’70s battle bumper look. Brougham completed its life in 1992 when the larger whale body Fleetwood replaced it at Arlington for one last run from 1993 to 1996.
In 1990, our subject Brougham was built in Arlington and then sent to Corporate Coachworks in Springfield, Missouri. A buyer in Cincinnati wanted a widebody limo in which to do business and travel in the utmost luxury, and Corporate Coachworks made it happen. The company went out of business in 1991, but spent years creating standard and widebody limousines of various brands.
At the rear of the B-pillar, the company designed what appears to be a four or five-inch width extension on each side. This required unique window splices and panels. The width extension ran all the way to the end of this Rare Ride, which meant a wider boot lid, bumpers and a seriously improved rear track. As a result, the rear passenger area seats six adults face to face, with room for the TV/VCR setup, a credenza, several glassware storage cabinets, two coolers that drain outside the car and a wall telephone.
The Brougham Big Boy has only done 34,000 miles since 1990 and is now for sale through its original owner in Cincinnati’s upscale Indian Hill neighborhood. This very special limo is yours for $15,000.
[Images: GM, Corporate Coachworks]
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