Stored 25 Years! 1955 Cadillac Miller Ambulance

If you like vintage and antique Professional Cars or emergency vehicles, you need to see this! It’s a ’55 Caddy with Miller ambulance body, and it’s for sale here on eBay out of Illinois. Hurry, though, because time is running out! Read on if you’re curious to see more about it!

A.J. Miller Company opened for business in 1853, making horse-carriages. By the turn of the 20th century, they got into automobile manufacture, and eventually shifted to coachbuilding for ambulances and hearses. As many small companies sometimes find, Miller’s eventually determined in the early 1950s that they could not stay competitive in the market, so after 103 years in business, they sold the whole kit-and-caboodle to bus manufacturer Wayne Corporation in 1956. Soon after, Wayne combined their new acquisition with their existing coachbuilder company, Meteor, to for what we now know as Miller-Meteor. Movie buffs will recall that the original Ghostbusters car is a Miller-Meteor body on a ’59 Cadillac chassis.

We now look at the car presented. The seller is a bit shy with details, and some of the pictures provided look like older film-camera pictures that have been scanned into a computer. We are told that it has a clear title and most of its original equipment, and that it was last running about 25 years ago. We can see a vehicle that looks like it has seen better days, but might not be a lost-cause basket-case. We wish there were more pictures of the rear compartment and underbody, but we can surmise its general overall condition from what we see.

I don’t know about you, but if you’re still with me this far, you must appreciate old emergency equipment like me! I would absolutely love to buy and restore an old ambulance someday!

That’s what I think, what do you think? Let us know in the comments!

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Comments

  1. Chris

    Some one needs to save this .

    Like 5
  2. Gaspumpchas

    Agreed, Chris, seems very complete and with the correct glass in it like this one, it would be a looker back in fire engine red! Good luck and stay safe!
    Cheers
    GPC

    Like 4
  3. Miguel

    Title from South Dakota, car in Illinois and the owner is in California.

    A lot of questions need to be asked.

    Like 11
  4. Kenneth Carney

    Haven’t seen one in years. A lot of small
    town volunteer fire departments bought
    these whenever they could. The last one I
    saw was about 50 years ago where it was
    being used by the local rescue service in
    Danvers, Illinois, which wasn’t too far from where I grew up. Theirs was red and
    white and looked great for its age. As I
    recall, it ran great too. Somewhere in its
    life, the town ponied up enough cash to
    rebuild the engine at least once. When
    they did, the mechanic bored the block
    out to 345 cubic inches, milled the heads,
    added a Crane Cam, balanced and blue-
    printed the whole thing, and capped it off
    by putting a 2 carb manifold from an
    Eldorado down to the bat wing air cleaner! The guy who built it told me
    later that it had 10.5:1 compression
    and pumped out somewhere over 300HP!! Don’t know where it went after
    it was retired, but the guy who bought it
    got one hot ride for his money.

    Like 12
  5. Will Fox

    That engine is NOT the 331 C.I. V8 the `55s came with. Looks more like a Chevy 350 or something, but it’s NOT the original motor. Makes me wonder what else was jerry-rigged on this ambulance….

    Like 1
    • local_sheriff

      No Chevy engine here – that’s a 50s Cadillac engine. Notice the high mount fuel pump and the driver side canisters. It does have a radiator that appears non-OE though as the stock unit should be taller on the inlet side

      Like 4
  6. Poppapork

    Wow, 20 minutes away from my house! Too bad i won’t fit in my garage:(
    I can take a look at it if someone needs help

    Like 7
  7. Jered

    Having a 1970 Bonneville superior ambulance with the 455 ci and a 1969 Cadillac Miller meteor Ambulance with the 472 In my driveway I can say they draw the attention and put a smile on my face. Only other car that comes close is my adam12 car. They’re all fun. Also I’m somewhat near there so I may have to go see it. 🤷‍♂️

    Like 5
    • local_sheriff

      It’d be great to see your ambulances; simply love their presence and the level of craftmanship going into them. This Caddy sold at $3.100 which should not be a bad price for a finned ambulance with all glass and trim

    • karl

      Which Adam12 car ? My favorite is still the 1968 ; I had a 318 powered 68 Belvedere sedan with the same color interior as the one used on the show – it always brings back some cool memories when I see the show !

      Like 2
      • Jered

        Mines the ‘68 Belvedere with all the lights/ siren/ LA police badging.

        Like 4
  8. Ben T Spanner

    In 1965 I had a college room mate who couldn’t pass the draft physical, but he was healthy enough to work 6 months of the year as a railroad brakemen. He paid 1/2 of the rent year round. He bought a 1953 Cadillac Hearse combo. It could be used as a hearse or ambulance. Because of the Hydromatic plant fire it had Dynaflo. He left it with me along with a gas credit card and asked to exercise it. I did, daily.
    One dark and rainy night I pulled out of the alley behind a cop.I noticed my high beams were on, and hit what I though was the dimmer switch. Nope, it was the siren and light in the grill. The cop pulled over and began to escort me.
    I got on a freeway, and he followed. I pulled over at the next exit, an point to an imaginary radio, and said the the call was cancelled. He saluted and drove offf.

    Like 18
  9. don

    Looking at the supplied Ebay photos this car looks rough . I also think ambulance was originally white, which would go with the green and white interior . Still would be a real beauty if it could be restored !.

  10. 1Ronald

    Sold yesterday $3100 with 6 bids.

    Like 1
  11. Kenn

    I find it difficult to believe that this was never under water. At least the front third. Look at that engine compartment – isn’t that mud?

    Like 1
  12. TimM

    I agree this car should be saved but what do you do with it if you restore it back to an ambulance??? I of coarse know you drive it but it’s not going to the drag strip and it’s not going to be the family vacation mobile (although that would turn some heads) so I would be afraid of it just sitting around waiting for the parade on the 4th of July!!!

  13. vintagehotrods

    Back up for sale, relisted for $2000 with zero bids.

  14. Paolo

    Ed Roth used something like this as a rolling office and bedroom when he was towing some of his early creation around the country on the show circuit in the early days.

    Like 1
  15. Gunningbar44

    Bo Diddley used a similar model when he was touring in the 50s.

    Like 1
    • Paolo

      I got to see Bo and Lady Bo several times at the Keystone Berkeley nightclub when he was making regular appearances there in the late 70s and early 80s. Tickets cost around $10-$12. Glass of beer .50 cents. Bottle of Bud $1
      Bo Diddley put on a great show.

      Like 1
  16. Danh

    Bet you’ll never guess we’re the gas fill is…”

  17. vintagehotrods

    I’ll bet this old ambulance could tell us some tragic stories, if it could only talk. Many times in a lot of towns, these were hearses for the local funeral homes and they also served as ambulances. In those days they just threw you in and got you to the hospital as quickly as possible, no medical treatment. You either you went to the hospital or the embalming table! I got my ride in Sioux Falls local Miller Funeral Home 1969 Cadillac ambulance/hearse one afternoon in June of 1971 when I bounced off an old lady’s car when she turned left in front of me on my motorcycle on East 10th Street in Sioux Falls, breaking three vertebrae in my back. Oh the memories……..

    Like 1
    • Paolo

      Ouch!

  18. vintagehotrods

    Old Cadillac ambulances are really cool, especially this year! Check out the frosted side glass where its says “Ambulance – Oxygen Equipped” in that classic style of lettering I’d love to know where it came from in South Dakota to look into its history.

    The pics that were scanned look like they were taken in a salvage yard of old cars and I can think of couple in eastern South Dakota. One is Oakleaf Old Cars http://www.oakleafoldcars.com/ that is still in business near Hartford, SD. The other one was King Ziegler’s Salvage, between Kaylor, SD and Scotland, SD, which was unfortunately crushed about fifteen years ago after he died. It was full of old cars from the late thirties to the sixties. King was a WWII vet and a really great guy, and he would let you wander through the yard all day if you wanted to, taking the parts off you needed. He was ahead of his time because you pulled your own parts, like the self service yards today. When his heirs decided to crush it out we had a week to take what we wanted, it was a sad day the last time I was there. I was going to come back for more but I hit a deer with my pickup on the way home and then it snowed hard a few days later. Here’s a great article about him by Bernie Hunhoff in South Dakota Magazine from 1996.

  19. vintagehotrods

    It won’t let me post the link, so just Google this instead:

    King Ziegler’s Car Farm – South Dakota Magazine

    Like 1
  20. Bob McK Member

    Sold for $3100 then relisted for $2000. Somebody may be playing games here. Buyer beware. The pictures look really old.

  21. chrlsful

    floats my boat…
    Hey may be w/some pontoons?

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