To be OFFERED AT AUCTION at Auctions America’s Fort Lauderdale event, April 1-3, 2016.
Chassis No. 5662048649
Estimate: $190,000 - $220,000 US
General Motors scored a hat trick with the 1953 Motorama traveling shows. All three of the upscale divisions—Oldsmobile, Buick, and Cadillac—had prestige convertible “idea cars,” which were dramatic in design but close enough to the production models that they were ready to manufacture. These cars were named Fiesta, Skylark, and Eldorado, respectively, and they entered limited production during the year.
In the two years since the Eldorado was first introduced by Cadillac, it won itself a unique place in the heart of discerning motorists everywhere. For 1955 the Eldorado previewed the “rocket ship” tailfins that would eventually be adopted across the board. For the first time the Eldorado was immediately identifiable from the rear. A higher-performance engine with dual four-barrel carburetors was now standard and exclusive to the model.
The Eldorado sales successes inspired the creation of a companion style, a hardtop coupe, for 1956. To distinguish the two, the coupe was designated Eldorado Seville, while the convertible was the glitzier-sounding Eldorado Biarritz. Interestingly, the coupe outsold the convertible 3,900 to 2,150, although they were priced exactly the same at $6,501. The rear bumper design was new, with a pair of exhaust outlet ports stacked on each side and the lower flank sporting four vertical flutes. Larger displacement, higher compression, and new Carter WCFB carburetors increased brake horsepower to 305 from the smooth 365-cid V-8 engine. The Hydra-Matic was improved and re-engineered for smoother shifts. By now, the 1956 Eldorado Biarritz had a niche all to itself.
This brilliant Bahama Blue 1956 Eldorado Biarritz is fresh from a professional restoration that was executed to show standards. Along with the beautiful Bahama Blue bodywork, the Eldorado Biarritz has a white power-operated soft-top and complementary blue and white two-tone leather interior with blue carpets. It is also generously equipped and features the optional Autronic-Eye automatic headlight dimmer, new chromed Saber-Spoke wheels, whitewall tires, matching spare, gold-anodized exterior trim elements (including grille), electric dashboard clock, factory pushbutton radio; power six-way seat, windows, steering and brakes.
“Dagmars” provides an unmistakable focal point when viewed from the front. Other amenities include windshield washers and the engine compartment is correctly detailed, with the “batwing” air cleaner for the dual carbs being prominently featured. Among the work performed are a rebuilt engine, transmission and steering box. Also new brakes and wheel cylinders were installed, as well as stainless steel brake lines, fuel lines and exhaust system. The undercarriage is virtually spotless, in keeping with the rest of the presentation.
The restoration was carried out by the highly respected Mark Barker and displays precision panel fits with laser-straight metal and exquisite paint. Mr. Barker is well-known for being a multiple “best in class” winner at the Meadow Brook Concours d’Elegance (now known as Concours d'Elegance of America at St. John's). Aside from the limited-production long-wheelbase Series 75, the Eldorado Biarritz is the rarest 1956 Cadillac (2,150 built), and it’s easily the most stunning. This car may be the perfect example to further demonstrate this high level of quality that has rewarded him with show successes. This represents an opportunity to acquire a very fresh restoration on quite uncommon and respected model of car. Best of all…it’s a Cadillac. 1956 Cadillac Eldorado Biarritz Convertible