Unique Classic: 1960 Cadillac Eureka Hearse

There are a lot of unusual cars for sale on the internet, from completely bizarre custom creations to mash-ups between different types of vehicles. However, all cars have a club or niche fanbase that keeps these cars running and promote them at car shows. One such niche would be ‘the hearse’. Whilst some buyers would be put off by a vehicle that has spent most of its life transporting bodies, others see a classic which needs to be saved and restored. This brings us nicely onto our 1960 Cadillac Eureka Hearse, available for $32,500 on eBay here in Elgin, Illinois.

Interestingly, the Eureka company is still producing hearses to this day in Ohio and has been known for almost 100 years to customize such vehicles. Luckily, Cadillac produced a bare chassis for these companies to put their custom bodies on top, called the Cadillac Commercial Chassis, and produced all the way up until 1979. Given that the car we have here today is over 60 years old, befitting a hearse, it has only done 56,547 miles, less than 1000 miles per year. Thanks to this low mileage, the interior is in great condition with no rips or tears in the leather for the driver and the passenger. Behind this, where the casket rests, has taken a bit more of a battering and would need some work to put it back to shiny spec. These hearses have a unique way of sliding the caskets in and out, pivoting the casket through the side door.

Given the low mileage, most of those miles are unlikely to have been high-stress on the engine, which is the V8 390 and should easily bumble along the street. The seller says that the car runs and drives smoothly with its automatic gearbox, but they note that the Cadillac should be seen as a project. Under the floor, we see some surface rust, which would need attention soon, but it’s certainly far from being rotten.

On the exterior, we are treated to the classic lines of the Cadillac with a rather large and bulbous rear end and on most sides, there is little evidence of dents, dings, or rust. However, on the passenger rear side, there has been some damage with rust showing through which would need to be rectified by the next owner. Overall this Cadillac would not need a huge amount of work to get out on the road again, but how would you use a classic 1960s Cadillac Hearse?

Comments

  1. Moparman Member

    IMO, presentation is everything, and with an oddball like this, I would’ve at least mounted both wheel covers on the same side, if the other two and the missing fender skirt were not to be found. GLWTA!! :-)

    Like 5
    • Troy

      I agree even for the pictures make it appear to have all 4 caps

      Like 4
    • Miguel - Mexican Spec

      You are right. Maybe they think because it is a 1960 hearse they can get away with it but they are asking more than $30,000 for a project. That is crazy.

      • Senap Senap Member

        Correct my friend,

        Two things: Getting your final ride in an old hearse is like drinking re-heated stale Coffee or being the idiot to take that last Donut that has been in the box all day and it is closing time.

        The send off has to be great and it does NOT happen in an old Car,

        In a World where folks think “oh, I have an old car that is (classic) I can ask OUTRAGEOUS money for it and people will pay for it applies to the less than 5%, Duesenberg, K and R Code Mustangs, MOPAR, early Corvettes, Tri-5’s, Pontiacs when JDL was in charge, etc.

        A Cadillac Hearse? Said, No One……………………….

        Newsflash: The United States produced more cars between 1960-1980 than ANY other Country on the Globe. Most were S___ some were OK and few were Great.

        This example is the last ride a person took in their natural life, to ask $25K for an old Hearse that presents little or no value is shameful.

        If you had a nice ’60 Coupe with the Fins and Lights intact then we talk $25K, here we are talking $2,500 on a good day.

        Let’s face it, its Yard Art, Roof Art or a Parts Car.

        God Bless.

  2. Big Time Charlie

    Make it a shorty.

    Like 2
  3. Steve Clinton

    Compared to what other hearses go for, this is no bargain.

    Like 2
  4. Malcolm Boyes

    I’ve always wanted to make one of these into a great camper..you’d sleep like the dead back there!

    Like 5
  5. Troy

    I guess the value of these things is high personally I would turn it into a truck mostly to watch the collectors of these things faint in disbelief

    Like 4
    • Dave

      Thankfully it’s priced out of the reach of people who don’t have enough sense to preserve vintage coaches such as this

      Like 7
  6. sign guy

    “little evidence of dents, dings or rust”? I dunno, I’m seeing plenty of dings in both front fenders. Anyway, it’s a hearse with sharp pointed fins – what’s not to like?

    Like 4
  7. Dave Brown

    I am college educated. I am conservative. I was a funeral director and embalmer for 32 years. That Cadillac hearse has absorbed the impossible. I would never own an old hearse. In many ways, it is like a used casket. It needs crushed and recycled.

    Like 6
    • Bill McCoskey Bill McCoskey Member

      Dave Brown,
      In my youth I worked at a large funeral home, and I’ve seen it all. Driven hearses many times, with or without an occupied casket. I’ve owned around a dozen vintage Packard, Cadillac and Rolls-Royce hearses [and a few oddball makes as well]. I became a member of the Professional Car Society [for hearse, ambulance and limousine owners] about 1973, and have seen hundreds of vintage hearses at PCS events. They were [and are] great examples of the art of coachbuilding.

      What do you mean “…absorbed the impossible.” ? Every hearse I’ve seen, rode in, driven, or worked on in my restoration shop, didn’t have any unusual smells related to the funeral industry, no evidence of embalming fluids, etc. Basically ALL caskets by the time this hearse was constructed were sealed units once the lids were closed, so nothing untoward would be getting out during the occupant’s final ride to the cemetery.

      Any hearse retiring from it’s work at a funeral home of any decent reputation, would certainly be far more sanitary when compared to an ambulance. If you feel this needs to be crushed and recycled, then perhaps you should buy it for $32,000 and arrange for it’s demise at the crusher, assuming the guy operating the machine would even consider doing that to such a rare gem.

      If you think the inside surfaces of this hearse are like the inside of a used casket, I cringe just thinking about how the hearses must have been kept where you were a director. What you describe above simply doesn’t match the realities of the funeral industry in North America.

      And yes, I’ve slept in, camped, even “enjoyed the company of others” in the back of hearses and ambulances, and unlike a van, the heavy-duty hearse suspension means they don’t go rockin’ during use.

      Like 31
      • Angel_Cadillac_Diva Angel Cadillac Diva Member

        Thank you, Bill. When I read Dave’s review, everything you said was what I was thinking, especially the part about crushing and recycling. So, yeah, Dave, YOU spend the 32 thou and have it recycled.
        Some people……..

        Like 11
    • Moparman Member

      “I am college educated” Hmmm…..”It needs (TO BE) crushed and recycled”.:-)

      Like 6
      • DN

        Conservative. Well that just about speaks for itself.

        Like 5
    • Miguel - Mexican Spec

      It is in no way like a used casket.

      This is a hand built Cadillac wagon.

      How can a car guy not love this?

  8. Bob McK Member

    I would so love to own this. But I wouldn’t pay that kind of money. But, I bet someone else will.

    Like 2
  9. Angel_Cadillac_Diva Angel Cadillac Diva Member

    $32,500? The ’60 Coupe de Ville yesterday is in better shape and only $12,800.
    This thing, even though a niche hearse, needs body work, passenger side parking lights are missing, passenger side skirt is missing, pick a hub cap….. driver side rear had a ’60s and passenger side rear has a wire ’70s and nothing in the front.
    I love hearses and almost bought a couple back in the ’90s, but this one…… $9,000 tops, and I’m being generous.
    I don’t think this is a side loader as most side loaders have suicide rear doors which this doesn’t have.
    Oh, and fixing or replacing those rear interior coach lights are gonna be a bit*h!

    Like 8
    • Bill McCoskey Bill McCoskey Member

      Angel, you are so correct; This is an “end loading” hearse only.

      The easiest way to tell if it has the 3-way side loading capability is quite simple. The casket will be loaded onto a special casket table that can be extended out the side doors. Plus, side loading hearses don’t have a division window, as the front seat needs to be pushed forward allowing the casket table to extend forward as it comes out the side. Side loading hearses also don’t have a center post [or the post attaches to the rear side door by moving a lever] and both side doors must be open during the load/unload process.

      I can’t recall a single hearse coachbuilder in North America who offered a side loading hearse once the federal government required roll-over standards for vehicles, as the side opening [with doors open] was typically a whopping 12′ or more.

      Like 6
    • Ken Haughton

      If I could afford to this hearse is, at the most, a $5000.00 CDN vehicle. Go ahead and google these cars in Canada. The condition this one is in would be lucky to fetch more.

      Like 1
    • Miguel - Mexican Spec

      I bet this seller is counting on the Ecto-1 tax.

  10. Bill McCoskey Bill McCoskey Member

    As we all know, first impressions are often very important. A older luxury car without wheel covers or the wrong covers, doesn’t really leave a “good first impression”. If I was selling a 1960 Cadillac, of ANY model, and I was asking top dollar for it, I would certainly spend a small amount to put a set of the correct wheel covers on the car. Ebay has a set of 4 good used examples for only $149.95, that’s less than $38 per wheel cover.

    https://www.ebay.com/itm/134148023598?hash=item1f3bd8652e:g:3LoAAOSwJxViqpF4

    Like 6
  11. Fliphall

    Could be my last ride.

    Like 2
  12. Mike B

    Looking at pic 5 in the ad makes me wonder if they were saving money on disposition that could have translated to better maintenance?

    Like 1
  13. DN

    This was on Facebook MarketPlace about 2 months ago for $24k. Now in the hands of a greedy flipper / dealer. Might be sitting on it for awhile at this price. Maybe long enough to use it for his own service 🤣

    Like 3
  14. Chris

    Someone might buy this ,these coaches are unique cars .Also just like any other car restoration is a possibility. Also the person that drives this will be a Celebration of Life for this car. Beauty is the person enjoying the car. I had a 1970 Ambulance that me & my buddy restored it was 22 ft of a lot of fun

    Like 2
  15. Ken Member

    I saw a headstone one time we should all read!

    To all passers by, as you are now once was I.
    As I am now, soon you’ll be. Prepare for death & follow me.

    Try to get a long folks,
    Life is to short.

    Like 2
  16. Miguel - Mexican Spec

    I am not sure where you got your information about Eureka but they went out of business in 1964 and the name was sold and reopened in Canada.

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