Cadillac was formed from the remnants of the Henry Ford Co when Henry Ford departed along with several of his key partners and the company was dissolved. With the intent of liquidating the firm's assets, Ford's financial backers,called in engineer Henry Leland to appraise the plant and equipment prior to selling them. Instead, Leland persuaded them to continue the automobile business using Leland's proven 1-cylinder engine. Henry Ford's departure required a new name, and the company reformed as the Cadillac Automobile Company.
The Cadillac automobile was named after the 17th century French explorer Antoine Laumet de La Mothe, sieur de Cadillac, founder of Detroit in 1701.
Cadillac helped to define advanced engineering, luxury and style early in Automotive History and would come to be known as one of the world’s finest made vehicles. Precision manufacturing of truly interchangeable parts was an award-winning industry first in 1908. Cadillac was the first manufacturer to release cars with a fully enclosed cab as factory equipment in 1910. Standard electric engine starting and lighting was another award winner for 1912. Cadillac introduced the first production V8 engine for the 1914 model year. Cadillac was the first manufacturer to utilize the skills of a designer to produce a car's body instead of an engineer (1927). This gave the public a car that looked as good as it performed. Cadillac's engineers were first to design a manual transmission with synchronizers for increased drivability (1929) and were instrumental in the early development of the automatic transmission, beginning in 1932. Cadillac offered a production V16 engine from 1930 through 1940 and introduced the production independent wishbone front suspension in 1934. The marque introduced tailfins for 1948. From the late 1960s onward, Cadillac offered a fiber-optic indication system which alerted the driver of a failed light bulb.
1936 was a year of firsts for Cadillac: the first year for the legendary 346 V8, the first year for hydraulic brakes, and the first year for Harley Earl's revolutionary aerodynamic styling- introduced in 1934 on the iconic V16 Coupe-to be carried across the entire Cadillac line.
This car is "fully loaded" with dual side mounts and covers, master radio with antenna concealed under the left running board, variable speed heater, and wheel disks.
This unique example was special orderd by Ms Mary Millar-at age 24-of Oakland CA, who along with her parents was an avid Golfer and member of both the Claremont and Sequoyah Country Clubs in the Bay Area. She specified 4 features that make this car unique- Dual Opera Seats-an Arm Rest in the front seat-an enlarged " golf bag" trunk capable of handling 2 sets of golf clubs as well as a trunk in place of the rumble seat- and Custom Fabric interior supplied by her father' s company. Ms Millar picked up her new car at the Will Call Department in Detroit and drove it back to Oakland.
A California car its entire life, the car has traveled through few hands since new and is in amazing original unrestored condition. It has always been maintained by collectors, and kept in top running order. This is one of the finest original cars from the era, and presents as well as many restored cars. The car is in excellent condition mechanically, and can be driven and toured with confidence. Of course this unique example is a sure bet for inclusion in the most demanding concours events, many of which have Preservation Classes these days.
This is the only known 1936 Fleetwood Opera Coupe surviving out of the 168 Fleetwood Coupes built across the V8, V12, and V16 chassis. Only 2 Opera Coupes were built in 1936, this one and a V16 which does not survive, the rest were all rumble seat coupes.
If you are looking for a unique, and well documented car, this car stands alone.