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Cadillac History, the birth of a company: CADILLAC

Old 03-24-2007, 12:11 PM
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Default Cadillac History, the birth of a company: CADILLAC


"Named after Antoine de la Mothe Cadillac (1656-1750), French explorer in North America, first Mayor of Detroit.

Cadillac uses as its emblem the arms of Antoine de La Mothe, seigneur de Cadillac, born in Gascony on March 5, 1656 of minor nobility. He founded Detroit in 1701, and was governor of Louisiana. His arms were: Quarterly, 1 and 4: Or a fess between three martlets sable, 2 and 3: quarterly gules and argent three bars azure. The count's coronet is fanciful, as was often the case in 17th and 18th c. France.

The first Cadillac car was completed on October 7, 1902 and the following January was shown at the New York Auto Show, where it impressed the crowds enough to gather over two thousand firm orders. The Cadillac's biggest selling point was its refinement; it was simply a better made vehicle than its competition.

Cadillacs were sent to England, where in Feb.-Mar. 1908, three late 1907 Model K's successfully completed the Royal Automobile Club's Standardization Test. As a result of these test results, the Cadillac Automobile Company was awarded the Dewar Trophy for 1908 (actual award date was Feb., 1909). The Dewar Trophy was an annual award for the most important advancement of the year in the automobile industry.

Cadillac was purchased by the General Motors conglomerate in 1909. "

much much more details of Cadillac history here:


Old 03-24-2007, 04:46 PM
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Default RE: Antoine de la Mothe Cadillac

Anyone know what the original name of Cadillac was, prior to one of its founding board members leaving?
Old 03-24-2007, 08:58 PM
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Default the FIRST Cadillac was a FORD ... WOW ..

Cadillac: A History of Innovations Since 1902

For Release -
GM, January 6, 2002

Detroit - Cadillac's reputation for design and technological innovation goes back a century to when Henry M. Leland built the first Cadillac automobile. Cadillac's pioneering spirit has enabled it to rapidly advance noteworthy technological discoveries from the laboratory to the assembly line, enhancing the performance and prestige of Cadillac vehicles. "Innovation is rooted in Cadillac's heritage," said Mark LaNeve, Cadillac general manager. "Breakthrough design and technology made Cadillac the standard of the world. As we begin our second century, we are applying the same type of creativity in order to deliver innovations that will once again win over our customers."
Among Cadillac's many innovations, it was the first automaker to use a self-starter, the first with an independent front-wheel suspension and first with the syncromesh transmission. Cadillac offered the first mass-produced V8 engine and the first mass-produced vehicle stability system. Other major innovations include the modern overhead valve V8 engine, America's first transverse-V8/front-wheel-drive automobile, the 32-valve Northstar V8 and the evolution of the Northstar System with its integration of performance and control systems. Cadillac's tradition of pioneering technological advancements with real customer benefits continues today, with features such as Night Vision, DVD-based navigation, XM Satellite Radio and next-generation MagneRide active suspension damping - known as Magnetic Ride Control. Following is a chronology of significant Cadillac innovations, listed by model year.

1903 The first Cadillac automobile was completed on October 17, 1902. Powered by a 10-horsepower, single-cylinder engine and costing $750, the car sold out at its introduction during the 1903 New York Automobile Show. The first Cadillac engine used mechanically actuated overhead valves and a square bore-stroke ratio. Steering was by a rack-and-pinion gear. An early innovation was the use of special split-core fasteners, which locked a nut on its thread with no need for lock washers.

1907 President and general manager of Cadillac, Henry M. Leland, imported the first set of Johansson gauges (Jo-blocks) from Sweden to facilitate the manufacture of precise automobile components with standardized dimensions.

1908 Cadillac became the first American automaker to win Great Britain's prestigious Dewar Trophy, given to the manufacturer making the year's most significant automotive advancement. This happened after a demonstration during which three randomly selected Cadillacs were disassembled, their parts scrambled, and reassembled using only simple hand tools. An immediate 500-mile demonstration run proved the ready interchangeability of each car's 721 standardized component parts. Soon after, Cadillac adopted the slogan, "Standard of the World."

1910 Cadillac introduced closed bodywork - called a limousine - as a standard catalog offering. Also in 1910, a Delco coil and breaker-point ignition system was first offered as a major improvement in reliability over magneto ignition.

Cadillac was the first company to adopt a sophisticated Delco electrical system to handle self-starting, ignition and lighting functions. The Royal Automobile Club of Great Britain awarded Cadillac the Dewar Trophy for the second time, making it the first car company to win the award twice.

Cadillac unveiled the first mass-produced V8 engine. One significant innovation with the 70-horsepower, 314-cubic-inch (5.1 liter) L-head design was the thermostatic control of cooling-water circulation. The engine, multi-plate clutch and gearbox were combined in one bolted-together assembly. The United States War Department purchased over 2,000 standard Cadillac V8 models for use in Europe during World War I.

Cadillac began controlling the engine's fuel mixture thermostatically. Except for choke operation during starting, the driver was relieved of all carburetor adjustments.

A fundamental advancement in the design of V8 automobile engines was the incorporation of a fully counter-weighted two-plane crankshaft. All primary and secondary forces were balanced to vastly improve the smoothness of V8s in Cadillac automobiles. The introduction of lacquer paint reduced manufacturing time and improved the finish of car bodies.

Cadillac introduced a smaller, more maneuverable, sporty "companion car" - the LaSalle. It was the first U.S. car to be designed by a stylist, Harley Earl.

Security Plate safety glass, double-acting Delco shock absorbers, and chrome-plated trim items were introduced for all models. Cadillac eliminated gear clash during shifting by the introduction of a new "Synchro-Mesh Silent-Shift" transmission. Bronze-on-steel cones matched speeds during shifting to facilitate the smooth meshing of gears.

Cadillac introduced the world's first V16 engine for passenger-car use. This engine featured overhead valves with hydraulic lash adjusters, twin carburetors, dual exhaust, and a beautifully finished exterior design. It delivered 160 horsepower from 452 cubic inches (7.4 liter). A V12 derivative introduced later in the same model year produced 135 horsepower from 368 cubic inches (6.0 liter).

To clear the floor and facilitate comfortable three-abreast seating in the front seat, Cadillac relocated the gear shift to the steering column. Cadillac also introduced an all new 16-cylinder design for a limited number of luxury models. This 431-cubic-inch (7.1 liter) L-head engine used twin carburetors, water pumps and distributors to generate 185 horsepower. Cadillac offered the first sunroofs available in America.

1941 Cadillac introduced a fully automatic transmission consisting of a fluid coupling, four forward speeds, and a hydraulic "brain" one-year after Oldsmobile pioneered this innovation in its 1940 models.

Theindustry's first curved windshields were introduced by Cadillac and other GM models. This also marked the first use of the Harley Earl-designed tail fin.

Cadillac initiated the '50s-era horsepower war with the introduction of a modern overhead-valve V8 rated at 160 horsepower. The 331-cubic-inch (5.4 liter) engine featured high compression, a short stroke and lightweight construction. The first Cadillac Coupe de Ville introduced the two-door hardtop body style.

Three safety innovations by Cadillac were an "autronic eye" which automatically dimmed the headlamps, a one-touch system for washing and wiping the windshield, and a padded instrument panel cover.

Cadillac's ultra-luxurious Eldorado Brougham introduced the quad headlamp system, a brushed stainless-steel roof panel, a power seat with memory, automatic door locks, "wide oval" (low profile) tires, forged-aluminum wheels and air suspension. One feature common with mainstream Cadillac models was a foot-operated parking brake that automatically released when the transmission was shifted into gear.

Low-pressure freon-filled shock absorbers improved Cadillac's ride quality.

Self-adjusting brakes were adopted.

Comfort control was introduced by Cadillac to provide customers with the auto industry's first thermostatically regulated heating, ventilating and air conditioning system. A Twilight Sentinel automatically turned headlamps on at dusk and off at sunrise. Front seat belts became standard Cadillac equipment.

The introduction of Delco Superlift rear shock absorbers provided automatic load-leveling capability. A tilt and telescoping steering wheel adjustment was also added to Cadillac models.

Variable-ratio power steering permitted quick parking maneuvers with a slower ratio for more stable highway control. Electric seat warmers and a stereo radio were added as optional equipment.

With the U.S. industry's first closed cooling system, engine coolant lost as a result of momentary overheating was automatically captured and returned to the radiator.

Computerized anti-lock rear brakes were introduced as optional equipment.

Along with Buick and Oldsmobile, Cadillac pioneered the use of an air cushion restraint (airbag) system to protect the driver in the event of a frontal collision.

1975 Cadillac was the first U.S. manufacturer to use electronic fuel injection.

Digital electronics were programmed by Cadillac to operate a Seville trip computer. Two years later, integrated circuits took command of fuel injection, ignition and vehicle diagnostics.

Cadillac introduced America's first transverse-V8, front-wheel-drive automobile. Another advanced feature in the new DeVille line was a viscous-damped, torque-converter clutch.

A multiplex wiring arrangement was introduced on the Cadillac Allanté to control exterior lighting.

1990 Allanté became the first front-wheel-drive vehicle with electronic traction control. The system controlled wheelspin by adjusting application of the individual front brakes, then by reducing engine power by cutting off fuel to individual cylinders.

The Northstar engine was introduced as the first step in what eventually became the Northstar System. The 4.6-liter, 32-valve V8 was first installed in the Allanté and became available in other front-wheel-drive Cadillacs a year later.


Old 03-24-2007, 09:26 PM
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Default the FIRST Cadillac was a FORD ... WOW ..

Birth of a company, Cadillac

Leland & Faulconer ===================> 1905 merger ==> Cadillac Motor Co
Henry Ford Company ===> 1902 ==> Cadillac => 1905 merger ==> Cadillac Motor Co


Anyone know what the original name of Cadillac was, prior to one of its founding board members leaving?

Summary -

The very 1st Cadillac was a car built by the Henry Ford Company, a partnership of sorts. The company was renamed CADILLAC after Henry Ford was outsted by the partners.
The partners kept the assets and the said car but H. Ford removed and took his engine. He was also given $900 in severance pay and allowed to keep the design of his next car.

Leland then installed his powerfull 10hp, single cylinder engine and the car become the 1902 Cadillac - that specific car was completed on October 7, 1902 and the following January (1903), it was shown at the New York Auto Show
where it SOLD OUT at $750 each.

Leland, on the 2nd week of the show, announced that no more orders would be accepted. He feared the company might not be able to meet the orders for the 2,000+ cars that had sold on week one.

Henry M. Leland - a machinist, inventor, engineer and automotive entrepreneur.

He learned precision engineering and manufacturing in the firearms industry, where ultrafine tolerances were required. He applied this expertise to the nascent motor industry as early as 1870 as a principal in the machine shop Leland & Faulconer, and later was a supplier of engines to Ransom E. Olds's company, Oldsmobile. He also invented the electric barber clippers, and for a short time produced a unique toy train, the Leland-Detroit Monorail.

L&F's Detroit location paid off nicely around the turn of the century when the horseless carriage began to go into production. The experience with bicycle gears resulted in their being awarded a contract to produce transmissions for Ransom E. Olds' "curved dash" Oldsmobile. Later, they made engines for Olds. Later, Olds turned down Leland's offer for a much-improved version of the engine, Leland looked for another market.

Asked to appraise the value of the assets of the defunct Henry Ford Company (originally Detroit Automobile Co.) for liquidation by its creditors, Leland instead convinced them to stay in business, and consider his engine to power a new car.
Leland was hired by William Murphy and his partners of the Henry Ford Company as an adviser in 1902, then later to sort through problems on the shop floor. A clash quickly came when he gave orders to Henry Ford.

Ford had believed that he was in charge, however, the partners took Leland's side, and Ford was shown the door.
Ford got $900 cash and the designs for a new car he was working on.

The partners got the car Ford had been hired to produce. Taking Henry Ford's car they removed his engine and replaced it with the precision single cylinder engine produced by Henry Leland.

The directors lost no time in renaming the company Cadillac.

Leland sold Cadillac to General Motors on July 29, 1909 for $5.6 million but remained as an executive until 1917.

He left in dispute over the company's involvement in the war effort and formed the Lincoln Motor Company

In 1922 Lincoln became insolvent and was bought out by the new Henry Ford's Ford Motor Company.

The deal made with the former Ford backers called for Leland and Faulconer merely to supply engines, transmissions, and steering gears for the Cadillac.

That part of the operation moved with Leland-like precision. But at the Cadillac factory on Cass Avenue, chassis and body assembly lagged woefully behind.

In October 1905, the Cadillac and Leland and Faulconer operations were merged into a new Cadillac Motor Car Company, with Henry Leland -- now in his sixties -- as general manager, his son Wilfred as assistant treasurer under Murphy.



Old 03-28-2007, 05:42 AM
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Default RE: the FIRST Cadillac was a FORD ... WOW ..

found the 1st Cadillac ONE CYLINDER engine
the museum has it on display, but i cant find a decent
photo of it.

at any case, this is it.


Carriage Wheels to Cadillac:
Henry Leland and the Quest for Precision
American Precision Museum, Windsor, Vermont


Old 03-28-2007, 06:00 AM
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Default RE: Antoine de la Mothe Cadillac

[align=center] Birth of a company - Cadillac

Leland & Faulconer ====================> 1905 merger ==>Cadillac Motor Co
Henry Ford Co. ==>1896 ==> 1902 ==> Cadillac =>1905 merger ==> Cadillac Motor Co

[align=center]El Fin

copyright © Stealth Inc. 2006, 2007


Old 05-20-2007, 11:49 AM
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Default RE: Antoine de la Mothe Cadillac

[align=center]Part 2[/align]

Old 04-16-2008, 10:00 PM
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Default Cadillac History, Antoine de la Mothe Cadillac

Sometime ago, we were offered the use of the historical information contained in this website:



The site has detailed information on just about every Cadillac ever built.

Old 04-17-2008, 09:00 AM
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Default RE: Cadillac History, Antoine de la Mothe Cadillac

After clicking on the link, click on the 57 caddy, there is some pininfarino stuff there.
Old 10-11-2012, 06:27 AM
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a great article contain many information like the person like me...thanks for publish this one....Nice article,real estate lawyer brooklyn ny

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