Written by independent automotive journalist David C. Neyens
The 1956 Cadillac Series 62 Custom Convertible that will be offered with No Reserve at Barrett-Jackson’s auction in Scottsdale, January 22-30.
Rightly advertised as the “Standard of the World” for much of its history, GM’s Cadillac Motor Division reached the summit of America’s luxury-car market by 1947 when it convincingly outsold Packard and never looked back. Throughout the late 1940s and 1950s, strong buyer demand was understandable, given Cadillac’s fabulous styling overseen by legendary GM design chief Harley Earl and his team. Cadillac stylists drew inspiration from the growing crop of sleek jet-powered aircraft, endowing Cadillac’s entire model range with the incomparable impression of power, presence, and prestige.
Underneath their dramatic exteriors and elegant passenger compartments, postwar Cadillac models featured the American automobile industry’s most advanced engineering to match, including powerful V8 engines, automatic transmissions, and sophisticated underpinnings. In fact, as soon as Cadillac’s proprietary V8 engine launched for 1949, it was favored by hot rodders and racers alike, powering the ferocious road-and-race cars from Allard and Cunningham, along with the builders of countless 1950s American racing specials. Those large-displacement Cadillac engines were eventually eliminated by the 1980s in the quest for lower costs and a simplified GM product portfolio, but the recent Cadillac CTS-V did feature one of The General’s most powerful and sophisticated V8 powerplants ever — the supercharged and intercooled LSA.
Channeling that rich heritage with a modern twist is this stunning 1956 Cadillac Series 62 Custom Convertible that will be offered with No Reserve at Barrett-Jackson’s auction in Scottsdale, January 22-30. It is the product of a frame-off restoration and custom build completed by the award-winning Joe Peck Customs in Van Nuys, CA. Built over a 7-year timeframe including thousands of hours’ worth of labor, virtually no possible expense was spared and no detail was overlooked. This Southern California car was completely disassembled and stripped, with the frame and body sandblasted and prepped for paint before each part was individually refinished and then reassembled. All original chrome and stainless trim pieces were straightened, dipped, and polished by ABG Polish, yielding an amazing visual complement to the Cadillac’s iconic bodylines and custom paint finish. The interior is a work of art in itself, retaining the Cadillac’s original elegance, trimmed with custom upholstery by award-winning specialist Albert Lara from North Hollywood, CA. Just one example of the extreme quality of this build is provided by the steering wheel, painstakingly restored using an original factory mold for uncompromising accuracy.
Consistent with the rest of the car, the Cadillac’s beefy original frame was also carefully stripped, cleaned, and repainted in a gorgeous red finish. Custom-notched, it now accommodates a GM LSA V8 crate engine — the same used by Cadillac’s modern CTS-V sports sedan. Delivering 556 factory-rated horsepower, this supercharged and intercooled mill is nicely upgraded with the efficiency of a Concept One accessory-drive pulley system. A GM 6L90 6-speed automatic transmission delivers the power to the street via a virtually bulletproof Ford 9-inch rear end, equipped with posi-traction and 3.25 running gears. Adjustable RideTech shocks are at all four corners, and 2-inch drop spindles up front give the car a wicked stance. Premium supporting features include a custom-built stainless steel fuel tank from Rick’s Tanks, complete with a Vapor Works fuel control system. A polished Mattson’s radiator and intercooler system ensure the potent supercharged LSA engine runs nice and cool.
Other great highlights include all new glass, new suspension components, and the stopping power of 4-wheel Wilwood power disc brakes. Power steering delivers cruising ease and a power top mechanism and power window lifts provide heightened passenger comfort. A set of 17-inch Wheel Smith Cadillac wire wheels, wrapped in low-profile Diamondback Red Line tires, provides a great period look with modern grip and riding characteristics.
Legions of owners and enthusiasts have long considered the 1956 Cadillac Series 62 difficult, if not impossible, to improve upon. This amazing example, built by modern day craftspeople, proves the feat is indeed possible.
Title: HIGH STANDARDS: This 1956 Cadillac Series 62 Custom Convertible Kicks It Into Overdrive With A Modern Twist
Sourced From: www.barrett-jackson.com/Media/Home/Reader/1956-cadillac-series-62-custom-convertible/
Published Date: Tue, 16 Nov 2021 17:00:39 +0000