1-Of-5: 1969 Cadillac Fleetwood Station Wagon

Update 9/21/20 – This rare Caddilac wagon has been relisted here on eBay with a $1,500 price drop and the option to  make an offer. Is that enough to get this one sold though?

From 8/11/20 – Finding a custom coach-built Cadillac is not uncommon. Cadillac offered a commercial chassis available to coachbuilders for many different conversions such as hearses, funeral home flower cars, ambulances, and of course limousines. The least common conversion was the station wagon. Cadillac never made a factory-built station wagon, all were coach built. The seller claims this is one of five Fleetwood wagons made for 1969. Its running and complete but there are some rust issues to deal with. Check it out here on eBay with a BIN of $10,000 in Ontario, Canada near the New York border.

The coachbuilder of this car is not mentioned but this is no backyard conversion. A ton of work and engineering went into a car like this, its safe to assume this company also did Hearse/Ambulance conversions making the work not out of the ordinary. The vinyl top was probably needed to hide some of the surgery scars obtained when building the long roof. What’s interesting about this car to me is the presence of a B-Piller, most other wagons you see on the internet do not have one but this is a Fleetwood and not a DeVille. Several 1969 Cadillac Wagons were built and used for VIP transportation during the 1969 Indianapolis 500 but there is no mention of this car being one of those. Looking from the back we can see the rust in the lower quarter, this could be a challenging repair considering some of the custom work done. The tailgate swings open to the side revealing a rear-facing seat like most wagons from this era.

The interior is fairly well preserved and all of the seats look good. The dash is standard Fleetwood and looks no different than a regular sedan. The car was recently pulled out after a 20 years storage, the seller has made it roadworthy and reports a trouble-free 200 miles have been put on it since the recommissioning. The floors and frame are said to be free of rust.

Under the hood is the stout Cadillac 472 V8 which made about 350 horsepower when new. The Fleetwood sedan weighed in around 5,000 lbs. and with the added weight of the wagon conversion, all that horsepower is needed. This would be an interesting car to own and the price seems reasonable, but restoration costs will be huge. Possibly leaving it alone and making a good driver is the best option. Putting some logos on the side and making it a parts runner or customer shuttle for a shop is the direction I would go.

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Comments

  1. Weasel

    Brady bunch eat your heart out! Everyone can social distance in this beast.

    Like 13
  2. Kenneth Carney

    Finally, a Cadillac wagon that my SIL said she would drive! She likes it because it doesn’t look hearsey. If you
    look at the rear glass by the tailgate, you’ll see those small vent windows that will show up on GM’s midsize wagons just four years later. If you
    wanna spice things up, add a set of
    Buick 5-spoke road wheels from an
    Electra 225 and some woodgrain trim
    and call it done. ‘Twould be easy to do
    just by following the body contours on
    the sides of the car. And if you did that,
    you’d see what the big GM estate wagons would look like 2 years later.
    Cap it off with an Ice Blue metallic paint
    job, and you’ll have a winner. Just sayin’.

    Like 5
  3. Howard

    My uncle had something like this, but it was used as a transport for a funeral home company. It had no seats in the back and curtains that could be drawn when in use. He transported from LA to Sacramento and San Fransisco from the late 1960’s till the late 1970’s

    Like 5
  4. nlpnt

    Most of the Caddy wagon conversions I’ve seen clearly use contemporary GM B-Body wagon side window, roof and tailgate parts, usually resulting in a very awkward C pillar where the window lines bear no relation to each other. This seems to be a product of more effort to create an integrated appearance, although it would’ve been nice if they’d metal finished the roof instead of slapping vinyl over it. I’ve always thought their universality on hearses is a reason why vinyl tops are so rare on wagons.

    Like 2
  5. CCFisher

    The tailgate looks like a full-sized Pontiac wagon item, modified with exposed hinges. The rearmost section of the roof also appears to have been taken from a full-sized GM wagon. The rest appears to be fabricated, including the side glass. I think it makes for a much more “OEM” appearance than some of the later Cadillac wagon conversions.

    Like 1
  6. Mr Dave

    I saw one of the 5 that were made for the 69 Indy 500. It was in Rapid City, SD. I worked at Tires plus, owned by Bridgestone. The owner had tracked down the other 4, knew the status of each one, for example, one had been in an accident and the nose was replaced with a different year. Each of the 5 cars had a plaque on the dash stating it was built for the Indy 500. I was pretty good friends with the owner. I actually really looked closely at the car while it was in our shop, and the workmanship was immaculate! No clue where the car is now, though.

    Like 2
  7. Don

    I would question the validity of just 5 built.
    I have seen a few 69 fleetwood wagons that were retrofit as 🚑 ambulance back in that time period or funeral cars hearse or flower car…
    I would like to see actual data on production runs..5 seems rediculous low.

    This car is something you would have to love to buy + drive 🤔🤔

    Like 2
  8. Will Fox

    Sorry; this one’s too far gone for my taste. If I were to look for one, it would be a `76 model. Same coachbuilder probably made most of not all Fleetwood wagons `69-`79.

    Like 1
  9. RG in PDX

    Whadaya mean Caddy never made a factory built wagon? How about the CTS and CTS-V wagons?

    Like 3
    • Scott Allen Staff

      You’re right! I always forget Cadillac made cars after the ’80s HAHA. CTS-V is an awesome car. Thanks for reading!!

      Like 4
    • A.R. Shabazz

      Exactly, this one is simply their Grandpa.
      And to stick logo’s on them and use them to deliver parts or even as shuttles is nothing less than CADILLAC Blasphemy. 😪

  10. Maestro1 Member

    Scott, I would save the car and use it as as station wagon forever. In other words, i would restore it, but not concours level. And use it for what it was built for while enjoying the unique quality of a rare body design. It won’t be cheap to do, so it would have to be with me for a while to drive the investment out of it. And I assume it has A/C. If it doesn’t I would pass because in my territory Air is mandatory.
    I have no room. Somebody buy this: It’s the most intelligent design I’ve seen in Cadillac wagons.

    Like 2
  11. Jean DESJARDINS

    A corporation could fork out the dough to restore it and use it as a marketing tool maybe.

    Like 1
  12. Jeffrey Ames

    Saw a deep green metallic one at the 1969 International Auto Show in New York. I always had a thing for station wagons and Cadillacs so when I saw it I was one excited 15 year old!

  13. Claudio

    I think that the asking price is high
    The only guys that could have wanted this have all been driven in a hearse by now !
    Similar to model a and t demand , attrition is the name …

  14. Stevieg

    This is not based on a hearse conversion. The roof is too low. Whoever did this wagon conversion had passenger use in mind from day one.
    Very well built, I kinda like it even though it is not a hearse. Repairing the rust on the rear quarter panels wouldn’t be that big of a deal, the edges that are rusty are standard DeVille & Fleetwood components.
    If I were in the market for it, I would go and put my hands on it. If the mechanicals are solid, along with the frame & floors, it would make a great purchase for someone.

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