Eldo-Camino: 1974 Cadillac Eldorado

Although a bit strange in the looks department, this Cadillac “Flower car” was purchased off of ebay several years ago and then lovingly restored to its current condition. Originally from California, this Eldorado has always been a rust free example, and was previously used for parades decked out with all sorts of horns and other various makers of noise. In ready to drive condition, this Caddy pickup is currently bid to $787.77 with the reserve not met. Check out this neat conversion here on ebay out of Edgewater, Florida.

Thankfully the current seller is well versed in American iron, and performed a great deal of work on this massive 500 cubic inch V8. Currently in great health, the engine had the top end and oil pan pulled to remove sludge.  New gaskets, lifters, timing chains, water pump, fuel pump and oil pump were added. Also a few minor modifications were thrown in, with a later style GM electronic ignition, and a set of electric fans. Although that is all a mouth full, the seller did not stop there when it came to maintenance. All of the front suspension has been gone over with a fine tooth comb, and many of the suspension parts were replaced. The only downside is the factory air shock leveling system is dead, but new air shocks have been installed with a custom line that you can add air to or relieve air from by the license plate to level the suspension manually. Despite all of this work, the engine bay almost appears untouched which I appreciate, as some mechanics can get a bit hap hazard with routing hoses and wires as the factory did when new. Kudos to the seller for his work!

The only area that appears to have been left untouched is the interior as the seller mentions the “interior needs updating.” Although the fabric on the door panels is faded and worn, overall the interior looks to be in nice shape. The dash looks excellent, with no cracking or any dry/discolored areas. There is a steering wheel wrap installed, but the steering wheel looks to be in nice condition. The carpet still looks springy and plush, so perhaps all this Caddy needs is the seats and door panels reupholstered to have a truly great look.

After all of the extensive mechanical work, the seller also fixed a few things with the body that really transformed this car. When purchased, there were horns on the roof, as well as truck style running lights. He promptly removed those, and took the car to a couple of friends. His first friend repaired the fiberglass pickup bed, and also remolded the fiberglass bed to the steel body of the Caddy. Friend number 2 performed some minor body work and repainted this beauty. The results are stunning, really showing a quality build. Thankfully the seller had the talent and appreciation to transform this forgotten oddball into a beautiful oddball. With a “useful” pick up bed, what would you use this Cadillac for?

Fast Finds

Comments

  1. 35yrbodyman

    What’s with the hood/grille gap? Was it a special hood to allow cooling for slower speeds? Maybe an incorrect replacement hood at some point made to work? Not nitpicking, rather, I’m a bit curious. Interesting car.

    • Rich

      The hood cap was strictly ornamental and was offered as an aftermarket or dealer installed item and there were several different styles Cadillac in that. Offered several additions that wear reflective of the superfly Cadillac and other pimp additions as they called it at the time you can check out the El deora as an example

    • Drew V

      That looks to be a factory gap, even though,it appears a piece of trim is missing right over the grille… There are several pics on Google that show this…

      • Drew V

        This pic shows there is a trimpiece missing…

  2. Deiss

    It’s the reflection on top of the chrome grill not a gap

  3. Doug

    Looks like a Flower Car for funerals. Everyone thinks they are pickups and perhaps this one is someone’s personal conversion. However many of the major hearse manufacturers (not Cadillac) made these sepecial order vehicles for the funeral industry

    Like 1
    • Miguel

      NO, this car in no way looks like a flower car. California didn’t use flower cars anyway, they were an East Coast vehicle.

      None of the coach companies in 1974 used the Eldorado chassis to build a flower car.

      This is a custom built car from who know who but it definatley is not a funeral car.

  4. boxdin

    Is it a flower car or a pickup conversion?

    • macvaugh

      Flower cars don’t normally have a tailgate, which is suggested as being present on this car. They are also customarily steel or aluminum diamond plate to withstand the metal stands for flower arrangements. This is fiberglass lined.

  5. GP Member

    Nice car, I like it. They did a really nice job. White color looks great.

  6. jw454

    Kudos to the seller if he’s the one that removed the truck horns and cowboy light from the roof in the “before” photos.

    • Jim Z Member

      Yep. Had to.
      Shoulda seen all the junk under the hood, too!

  7. whippeteer

    Not a flower car, it’s a conversion.

    • RS

      That back window looks like they ordered it from JC Whitney. It ruins the car.

  8. Rock On

    The quality of people’s driving abilities and manners on the roads have dropped so much in recent years that I may have been tempted to keep the extra horns on the roof!

  9. Nova Scotian

    I’d use it to haul my ATV. Way better than climbing the ramps on a pickup truck….and safer!

  10. John Member

    Great cars, the 69-70’s, had a 69 S.D.V, got 20 MPG going south on pre finished I-75 back then, no speed limit, 6 people in vehicle, no problems W/car, traded for a 74 which was a rustbucket but gave great service
    John

  11. Stu

    Maybe if you throw in a new or a good used casket.

  12. KevinW

    Back in the early seventies there was a Cadillac dealership in New Orleans that sold El Camino and station wagon conversions. I wonder if this was made by the same company that did this one.

  13. Steven

    Its a flower power car, who watched that one show on Vel Channel of where Junk Yard Restorations as Andy’s dad had one of these and yes custom built for the Funeral home business.. Bout like a el camino and Ranchro as you can’t hual anything heavy in them..

  14. Bill McCoskey

    I remember seeing a black version of one of these in the Maryland suburbs of DC. As I recall, the tailgate was all fiberglass and didn’t drop down with hinges. It had a couple of pins at the base that fit into holes in the bed. A U-shaped bracket at either side of the tailgate accepted 2 more pins that came out of the sides of the tailgate. You need access to the truck bed? Just grab above the license plate & lift the tailgate up and set it off to the side.

    Don’t know if this was a kit or not, but now it looks like there were at least 2 built!

    Actual Flower Cars used in the funeral business were almost all produced in the northeast USA and eastern Canada. There was a shop in Ontario that specialized in one-off Flower cars too.

    • Jim Z Member

      This tailgate does not drop down, it has the pins as you suggest.
      A bolt on either side holds it tightly in place.
      I also replaced the rubber strip under the tailgate.

  15. Scott

    Miguel,
    I just came across this posting and you are in fact wrong. I was born and raised in Southern California and we did in fact have flower cars. The first I ever saw was at my Grandfathers Funeral in September of 1966. There was a flower car at both of my Grandmothers Funerals as well as my Uncles. I recall seeing many Funeral processions over the years that had a flower car all of which were in California.

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