- 1 1959 Cadillac Coupe de Ville – Style and Luxury Landmark of the 1950s
1959 Cadillac Coupe de Ville – Style and Luxury Landmark of the 1950s
The 1959 Cadillac Coupe de Ville marked the high point of 1950s American automotive styling and luxury. Its exaggerated tailfins, chrome details and plush interior defined Cadillac as the aspirational automobile of the era. The 1959 Coupe de Ville exemplified why Cadillac was recognized as the “Standard of the World” at the time.
Evolution of Postwar Cadillac Style
Cadillac styling in the postwar 1940s and 1950s trended towards increasing flamboyance. Design elements like wraparound windshields, prominent chrome grilles and towering tailfins showcased Cadillac’s confidence and innovation. The 1959 models under famed GM designer Bill Mitchell took this styling excitement to new heights.
1959 Cadillac Coupe de Ville – Landmark Tailfin Styling
The 1959 Coupe’s most striking feature was its enormous tailfins projecting over a foot from the rear fenders. Combined with dual bullet tail lights and a flowing body shape, the fins epitomized the aerospace and science fiction themes influencing 1950s American design. This bold styling attracted buyers seeking to stand above more staid sedans.
“Dagmar” Front End Styling
Up front, the 1959 Coupe de Ville featured Cadillac’s distinctive “Dagmar” chrome front bumper treatments. Named after a 1950s television personality known for attributes similar to the bumper design, they also housed parking lights and turn signals. Combined with the dramatic rear fins, the Dagmars completed the unique styling.
Bespoke Custom- tailored Interiors
Inside, De Ville models pampered passengers with custom-tailored interiors trimmed in fine leather and wool broadcloth fabrics. No expense was spared for materials and build quality, with hand-fitted elements. Available comforts included 6-way power seats, automatic heating and cooling, and a futuristic automatic trunk release.
Powerful and Smooth V8 Engines
Few luxury amenities mattered if performance was lackluster. Cadillac V8 engines provided silky smooth abundant power. Displacements ranged from 5.7L up to 6.4L, many with triple carburetors. GM’s Hydra-Matic automatic transmission delivered seamless shifts. Performance lived up to the confident exterior styling.
1959 Cadillac Coupe de Ville Continuing Cadillac’s Styling Leadership
The striking styling of the 1959 Coupe de Ville continued Cadillac’s lead in introducing innovative designs. Buyers embraced the aeronautical theme and confidence the big coupe exuded. Cadillac built on this momentum throughout the 1960s with engineering and luxury advancements combined with dramatic style.
Thanks to its advanced features and jaw-dropping styling, the Coupe de Ville excellently represented Cadillac at the top of the American luxury automotive world. Its design language still inspires nostalgia and appreciation today as a symbol of 1950s optimism and indulgence.