Big Luxury: 1975 Cadillac Fleetwood Wagon

big-luxury-1975-cadillac-fleetwood-estate

If you’ve ever caught yourself thinking, “I sure wish I could bring eight of my closest friends and family members along with me in my Cadillac Fleetwood”, then this 1975 Cadillac Fleetwood Estate might just be the car for you. Even if you haven’t ever had this thought and just want a luxurious wagon that you can haul the whole family in, take a look at this nine-passenger Caddy here on eBay.

big-luxury-1975-cadillac-fleetwood-estate-grill

There weren’t many of these big wagons built and while they were offered as an option at Cadillac dealers, they were conversions performed by one of several coachbuilders. This one was built by R.S. Harper and was based on the top-of-the-line Fleetwood Brougham. The seller has had it for the past ten years and bought it with the intent of restoring it, but they haven’t gotten very far on it.

big-luxury-1975-cadillac-fleetwood-estate-interior

When this was new it was one of the most luxurious wagons you could buy, it is luxurious by even today’s standards. This one was ordered with all the options, including Dark Brown leather seats. To make entry into the third row easier, it also was ordered with fold down middle row seats. This one is going to needs lots of work to get the interior back to its original condition, but once it is, it will make a very nice grocery hauler.

big-luxury-1975-cadillac-fleetwood-estate-motor

Moving a car this big and heavy around requires a big motor with lots of torque. Under this Caddy’s hood is a 500 cui V8, which put out 210 hp and 385 pounds of torque. It won’t win any races, but it’s more than enough for driving around town. The seller hasn’t started it since they parked it in their garage, so assume it is going to need some work.

big-luxury-1975-cadillac-fleetwood-estate-side-view

If you’re looking for a unique wagon, but want the ultimate in luxury, this Cadillac might just fit the bill. It will obviously need work, but the seller has some parts for it plus a parts car. Let’s just hope the seller’s reserve is as reasonable as they claim.

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Comments

  1. Jeff

    That puts the big back in big luxury

  2. Will

    I always said I want a Cadillac when I became a Grandpa. This is it.

  3. Connor

    Would love to restore this and use it as a daily driver, but unfortunately my wife would kill me if I brought home something this big.

  4. John Petty

    You car guys may have noticed this (where the hood sits against the door ) The Cadillac front end sitting on a Oldsmobile chassis and body doe’s not make it a Cad it’ a Cadsomobile

    • dcthompson

      Can you explain? I can’t envision the detail (hood sits against the door) you mention.

      To me, the vehicle looks like a Fleetwood with a station wagon grafted on to where the trunk would normally be. Are you suggesting that the body mods are more extensive?

      I’m not interested–just curious. I have seen only one Cad wagon before, and it was at an estate auction in Grosse Point, Michigan. A wealthy antiques dealer had a new Cad wagon there. It looked like a civilian hearse.

    • stigshift

      John, the hood is merely out of adjustment on that side, and is sitting a bit higher than it should. Considering Oldsmobile never offer that body style (pillared hardtop) on it’s wagons, that is a genuine Cadillac Fleetwood converted into a clamshell wagon.

      • stigshift

        Neil, It is NOT an Oldsmobile. It is a Cadillac Fleetwood that has had a full-size GM wagon body added after the rear doors. The two cars have nothing in common other than the rear body architecture. The Fleetwood’s wheelbase is 6 inches longer. Notice the Olds’ doors and roofline? Now look at the Caddy. The Olds has window frames on the doors, as do all of the factory GM wagons of the clamshell era (’71-6). The Fleetwood does not.

      • ron bajorek

        correct

  5. MadHungarian

    Stuff like this always makes me wonder just who decides to take an ultra rare custom car and let it rot.

    • John Petty

      As A old body man and car builder I notice these things (the contours of the hood where it sits against the door is different than the door contour the Cad and Oldsmobile had differan contours but a good body man could correct that

  6. Mark E

    Battlecar galactica! Glad they mentioned the engine! My father drove Mercury Grand Marquis during this period, which had Ford’s 460 V-8 and got 12mpg all day long. Doubtlessly as comfortable as a livingroom couch on the highway too!

  7. jeff

    If it was metallic pea and had fake wood trim it could be the queen family cruiser from National Lampoons Summer Vacation

    • Will

      Maybe if you cant tell GM products from ford products.

  8. Charles

    This is only the second one of these Caddy wagons that I have ever heard of. I have never seen one in person. Evil Kenevil had one that was mentioned in a magazine article many years ago. If memory serves, the custom builder used an Olds Custom Cruiser wagon shell and chassis. The large GM cars of that era sharred most of the window glass, door shells, electrical, A/C, and chassis parts, although the wagon chassis was different in the rear of the car from the sedan. From what I remember, the Caddy quarter panels were grafted on to the Olds body. Everything else that made it a Cadiliac are mostly bolt on, and the engine and all parts Cadiliac were bolted to the Old’s chassis. Some of the parts had to be custom made.

    For the value of a nice example of one of these, I can’t see this car being worth the time, money, and effort to restore? It looks pretty rough in the pictures.

    It would be an interesting car to own. Everyone on the car show circuit would argue about its origins. Does anyone know how many were made?

  9. Seb

    I love this kind of station wagons! I would love to have one some day. Just for a summer would be great. A nice road trip with family or friends!

  10. ted

    Hey wouldnt it be something to take a used hearse or amblulance and make it a wagon too lower the top and refurbish the back end ? Just thinking here

  11. twwokc

    This isnt a bad starting spot for a restoration. Parts really should not be a problem though I am sure some parts were fabricated. Get the build sheet and take it back to original. IMHO.

  12. Chris A.

    What an awesome find. Pure 1970’s style. Perfect high school prom car.

  13. ConservativesDefeated

    Thats a BIG garage. Years ago in the mid seventies a light yellow Cad wagon conversion sat in front of a home in New Orleans off of Broadway and Claiborne…forever.

    You cant really grasp how large this is unless youre next to it. Luxobarges!. If you have forty or fifty grand to burn on a restoration.go nuts. The manifest rust in the engine compartment and the moldy interior says something to me……..But what the hell!

  14. Dan10

    It is pretty easy to bump the 500 Cad hp a couple extra hundred with a cam swap and some new heads. Vroom vroom.

  15. rancho bella

    This thing makes the family truckster look like a Mini wagon……….the Griswolds would be jealous.

  16. dj

    I have to agree with others. You can’t tell it from the drivers side as much. But if you go to the auction and look at the pass side, you can see it. The lines of the hood and front fender don’t follow through into the doors and rear fender. It’s either been made or the whole pass side is full of gallons upon gallons of bondo. Now this doesn’t take away from it being different.

  17. Charles

    Caddy fenders and hood with Oldsmobubble doors. it would have been a better conversion if they had used the Caddy doors.

    • stigshift

      Since it’s a Cadillac Fleetwood, and Olds doors won’t fit that body, those would be Cadillac doors.

  18. Charles

    Something is odd about the door glass also. It looks like the higher roof-line of the Fleetwood was used, as the glass looks taller than the Olds glass usually looks. Maybe it is an optical illusion, or maybe they grafted the rear portion of the wagon roof to the Caddy body? Either way there is a lot of parts on this car that just does not go together.

  19. dcthompson

    Well, I admit that it isn’t a very attractive conversion. In fact, I would call it much worse. At the best the station wagon rear end looks like what it probably is–an add on where the trunk used to be. At worst I would call it an (expletive deleted).

    In 1973 I saw a very handsome Caddy wagon in Grosse Pointe, Michigan. it looked like a hearse in civilian clothes, but without the raised roof. I would love to own it today.

  20. twwokc

    Its a Cadillac with the clamshell roof added. The arched door glass was unique to the Fleetwood . You can see where the Fleetwood roofline ended and the clamshell was added.
    That Talisman parts car is a rare bird.

  21. Chris A.

    Looking at the tires and wheels, it seems the left side is non-Caddy while the right side does appear as on Caddys of that vintage. That left side whitewall tire with the gold stripe, was that a stock Caddy tire?

  22. twwokc

    @ Chris A. Normally when you saw the gold stripes you were looking at a Vogue tire. Those were usually dealer installed. Most Cadillac dealers also offered Tru-spoke wire wheels. Not unsual to see a Caddy rolling on Vogues and Tru-Spokes.
    This are wire covers on the left side of this car,not Tru spokes. Looks like wheel covers off of a 76 Cadillac on the right side. Seems 76 covers had black or color keyed centers.

  23. Charles

    There is a very nice conversion 76 Caddy Fleetwood wagon conversion for sale for 19,800.00. The car is on Carsonline.com. It is a sweet well maintained like new original example with 48K miles on it. For my money I would buy the ready to show and drive version instead of the rebuild it for 50K version.

  24. dcthompson

    Wow! Not that is a nice ride. You’re right–a far, far better deal, even if the subject barn find were free.

  25. bhoffschneider

    i am the new owner of this cadillac and yes its a cadillac fleetwood then the clamshell and rear end are grafted so it has rear leaf springs doors,1/4’s and front end are all cadillac i have been looking for years for one so cost was not part of it

    • Jesse Mortensen Jesse Staff

      Please keep us updated bhoffschneider! I think everyone would love to see some photos of how it looks now and what you have done to it. Send any updates to mail@barnfinds.com and I will be sure they get published. Thanks!

  26. Will

    Holy thread resurrection Batman! Yes please keep us updated. New pics would be great.

  27. bhoffschneider

    i bought this about 8 months ago and its coming to n.carolina next month to to be redone i just found it here when i was looking for parts i will post more when it gets going

    • kbrenner

      Funny to see all of the comments doubting the cars pedigree. I am the former owner who posted it on e-bay. If one looks at the VIN it IS a Fleetwood with a clamshell “B-body wagon grafted to it. Accesory data plate confirms it as such as well.This car was done by R.S.Harper who worked for ASC coachcraft (the sunroof people) before opening his own shop in ’74. Engine is 500 cid 4bbl carb and runs fine.These cars were more heavily modified than the cars done at Traditional coachworks in Chatsworth Calif. Rear suspensions were converted to leaf spring (a Fleetwood is coil) and spare tire sat vertically on passenger side while fuel tank sat vertically on drivers side in true station wagon fashion. And for the Hungarian who wondered how the car was in such poor shape—I fully understand and it was worse when I purchased it but I own two other coachbuilt Caddy wagons and just don’t have time, money and space for all of them along with my Pontiacs. Bill—–enjoy your new cruiser.

  28. CharlesS.

    Which GM clamshell body did they use to do the graft? Olds, Pontiac, Chevy?

    Did they graft part of the wagon frame to accomodate the leaf springs?

    • kbrenner

      Any GM “B” body would work and to be honest most “donor” cars were salvaged. I have a letter from Mr Harper to a prospective customer from back in 1974 quoting the price of the conversion at just under 9,00.00. That is over and above the price of the Fleetwood or Sedan de Ville. Harper did conversions on both styles and you could order the 2-way tailgate (like 69-70 GM wagons had) or the clamshell gate like this car had. Could you imagine how expensive it would be if he used all brand new GM sheetmetal? 9,000.00 was a boat-load of $$$$in 1975 money!!! Some trivia for you—–Elvis had a Caddy wagon with the 2-way tailgate. The 1974 film “Gone In Sixty Seconds” (the original film not the Nicholas Cage remake) has a 1972 Caddy clamshell wagon in the background of a warehouse scene.

  29. Tom heflin

    I have a line on a 1975 custom caddy wagon as outlined above. Has a 500cid and needs some resto work. How many were built and what’s it worth in semi rough shape? Engine is solid and interior is fair. Exterior shows rust in the rear 1/4’s thanks!

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