Low Mileage Luxury Barge: 1976 Cadillac Coupe deVille

On the ever growing list of incredible things younger people will never experience, perhaps one of the most glorious is riding around in and/or driving a seventies luxury car.  There is no better way to tick of the miles on America’s roadways than being in the pillowy front seat of one these luxury barges as it floats down the road.  While nearly all of these beasts have gone to that scrapyard in the sky, reader Ikey H. has found for us a very original, low mileage 1976 Cadillac Coupe deVille on craigslist in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.  This 32,000 mile cream puff looks showroom new in almost every way.  Is it worth the $10,750 asking price to ride in style just one more time?

Frequent readers know of my love for big Cadillacs.  This affection goes back to my grandparent’s fire engine red 1973 Cadillac Coupe deVille complete with a white vinyl top and white leather interior.  Nostalgia for this beloved road missile has brought me to the point that I am occasionally scanning the various classifieds for a relatively reasonably priced replacement for that Cadillac of my youth.  One thing I have learned is that I am not the only one looking for a good seventies Caddy.  If I want to play, then I will have to pay.

While I’d really like a 1973 model for obvious reasons, Ikey H. has located one of the nicest seventies Cadillacs I have ever seen.  The story the seller tells us is that this Caddy is a one owner car that has just 32,240 miles on the odometer.  From the list of recently repaired items, I think it is safe to assume that the car has recently been pulled out of long term storage.  The repairs and replacements include new tires, brake lines, front rotors, wheel bearings, rear wheel cylinders, battery, spark plugs, and a complete set of hoses and belts.

In addition, the brake drums have been resurfaced, and both the gas tank and the radiator have been “redone.”  The tank has a new sending unit, and a fuel filter was placed in the line between it and the recently adjusted carburetor.  An oil and filter change tops off this long list of repairs and improvements.

As you can see from the pictures above and below, the car itself is nearly immaculate.  The interior is free from tears, and the dash and door panels lack the cracking that is so common in these cars.  As for the exterior, the seller lets us know that there are a few very small areas that show some rust bubbling, but they are noticeable only when you get a close up look.  For a 1976 GM car, that is astounding.  Rust and 1976 GM cars usually go together like peas and carrots.

A look under the hood reveals the massive 500 cubic inch V-8 that was loved by drivers for its smoothness and low end torque.  Producing around 200 horsepower, it was not the powerhouse it once was before emissions controls and catalytic converters.  However, it had more than enough grunt to push these 5,000 lb. beasts far past posted the speed limits of the time.  They could, as the old joke says, pass anything but a gas station.

The only problem I see with this car is the slightly tipped down front bumper and some panel misalignment in that portion of the car.  The passenger side looks fine, but whoever drove the car must have hit something on the driver’s side.  Perhaps this was why it was garaged for so many years.  A close inspection would be warranted, but I am sure you could fix this damage fairly easily.

All and all, it is an amazingly nice Cadillac.  The seller has obviously worked very hard to get the car back on the road no matter the expense.  Is it worth the price?  I think so.  Where are you going to find another one in this condition?  Is it the right car for me?  No, I am still holding out for a 1973.  This Coupe deVille is tempting though…

Does this red road missile do anything for you?  Would you proudly drive this one to your local cruise night?

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  1. Max

    As a Car Enthusiast in general and also a classic collector back in 2016 I bought ALL Original 1978 Coupe Deville in Bronze exterior colour with brown leather interior has 17K original miles It’s a beauty part of my current classic collection ! It’s a Garage Queen and No It’s Not for Sale just sharing passion for the Hobby !

  2. Ken Carney

    Very nice indeed! 32K miles and no fin
    rot! Used to see these here in Florida with the plastic filler panels either rotting
    away or missing in action. This thing just
    screams luxury. Here ya go Max! Buy this one and you’d have the makings of a
    really nice luxury car collection. Add this
    and a Lincoln and have it all!

  3. Phil Maniatty

    1976 is a milestone year for Cadillacs and all GM cars. This is the last year for the “big” cars, as everything was downsized for 1977.

  4. Don

    Classic ’70s land yacht. :-)

    • Mark

      Worth every penny
      Personally I will ask $14-15000 – this is price is perfect
      I have 1989 brougham 4 door – 50.900 miles – I will never sell for $10.000

  5. Bill

    Zero effort steering, you can turn this tank with a pinky finger. Drove one around the shop when I was like 15 and I still remember it.

  6. don

    My mothers uncle in Schenectady NY. bought a brand new fire engine red 1973 Cadillac Coupe deVille with a white vinyl top and white leather interior too , so they always bring back fond memories for me as well . He was a retired doctor and a really eccentric guy ; when I was 13 I stayed over his house for a week . One day he said we were going to the store and he tossed the keys to me and said “you drive” ! I ended up driving him around that week. You can imagine how I felt driving that new Caddy around, but I must have looked foolish – I could probably have passed for a ten year old and had long hair too . The funny part was that he never asked me if I ever even drove a car before ! (I hadn’t )

  7. Will Fox

    Considering `76 model Devilles now bring upwards of $30K in the best condition, the price on this is a relative bargain! Mind you it’s not terribly loaded, but clean, damage-free from what I can see, and a very attractive color. I wouldn’t hesitate to take this on a weekend jaunt somewhere, and be in total comfort. Like steering your living room sofa down the road!

  8. Peter K

    This is a prime example of the land yacht cars that you still see today plying the roads on the deep south west. Lots of room inside to do what ever you want. Now if it was me I’d do something about that boat anchor motor to give it more pep.

  9. Justinx

    Technically this is a Cadillac Calais not a Coupe Deville. You can tell because it doesn’t have a hood ornament. Many owners added it like this example.

  10. Benvenito

    Love the Caddy, but the dude has to stop covering his collectors with plastic! Get a car cover that breathes!

  11. John Oliveri

    Needs a moonroof and white interior, proper cadi whitewalls and spokes to get me going, oh and a Barry White tape in the 8 track, then SOLD

  12. Barry Traylor

    For eating up the miles on a long trip on the interstate they can’t be beat.

  13. Del

    An identical twin to this car just sold at Auction here in Canada for 5 grand.

    Granted it had way more mileage than this but was immaculate. Looked identical to this one.

    5000 grand Canadian is about 3000 American

  14. Stevieg

    Justinx, this car is the DeVille, not the Calais. Calais has different, planner upholstery & doesn’t say the words “Coupe DeVille” on the rear quarter panels. I agree with you, it is not a car with a lot of “pop”, for a Cadillac, but it really is a Coupe DeVille.
    About a year ago I sold one of these. I bought it in Tucson. It was silver with a black back half vinyl top, padded of course, & a black leather interior. All it really needed was paint. The original paint was crisp from being in Tucson all it’s life. Interior was mint, good chrome, even the black vinyl on the top was good. I should have kept it & had it painted. It would have been a beauty!

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