Classic Car

The Classic Beauty of a 57 Cadillac Coupe Deville

The 1957 Cadillac Coupe Deville represents the pinnacle of American automotive styling and luxury in the fabulous 1950s. With its enormous fins, acres of chrome, and expansive dimensions, the ’57 Coupe Deville oozes swagger and confidence. Underneath the dramatic styling lies a powerful V8 engine and comfortable ride that could whisk passengers across the country in style and comfort. More than six decades later, the 1957 Coupe Deville remains an automotive icon and a shining example of Cadillac’s mantra – “The Standard of the World.”

The Classic Beauty of a 57 Cadillac Coupe Deville

History of the 57 Cadillac Coupe DeVille

The Coupe Deville first appeared in Cadillac’s lineup in 1949, replacing the long-running Series 61 and Series 62 coupes. For 1957, Cadillac thoroughly redesigned the Coupe Deville with inspiration from the 1953 Le Sabre concept car. The resulting design featured:

The Iconic 1957 Cadillac Eldorado Biarritz A Classic American Beauty

Notable Restyling Features

  • Prominent tailfins that protruded nearly 3 feet from the rear fenders
  • An elongated hood and dashboard to accentuate the car’s length
  • Sweeping spears along the sides inspired by the P-38 Lightning fighter plane
  • Distinct egg-crate grille pattern on some models

Engine Upgrades

  • Larger 345 cubic-inch V8 engine options
  • Fuel injection introduced on some Eldorado models
  • Horsepower raised to 285-305 ponies
READ MORE >>  Restoring a 55 Cadillac Coupe DeVille

The 1957 redesign was both flamboyant and functional, updating the Coupe Deville for the space age while retaining Cadillac luxury.

Features and Specifications of the 57 Cadillac Coupe DeVille

The 1957 Coupe Deville came loaded with features and technology befitting its “Standard of the World” status:

The Classic Beauty of a 57 Cadillac Coupe Deville

Size and Dimensions

  • Overall Length: 221.9 inches
  • Wheelbase: 129.5 inches
  • Width: 79.8 inches
  • Height: 63 inches
  • Curb Weight: ~4600-4800 pounds

Comfort and Convenience Features

  • Power windows, seats, and ventilation
  • Automatic Climate Control
  • Automatic transmission
  • Power steering and brakes
  • AM radio
  • Electric clock

Safety and Performance

  • Dual master cylinder brake system
  • Front coil spring suspension
  • Rear leaf spring suspension
  • Hydraulic valve lifters
  • Large drum brakes all around

For 1957, the Coupe Deville offered advanced technology wrapped in dramatic styling sure to announce one’s arrival in style.

Design and Styling of the 57 Cadillac Coupe DeVille

The styling of the 1957 Coupe Deville represents the pinnacle of Cadillac’s embrace of aircraft and space age themes in the 1950s.

The Classic Beauty of a 57 Cadillac Coupe Deville

Inspiration and Influences

GM styling chief Harley Earl took inspiration from:

Concept Cars

  • The 1953 Cadillac Le Sabre concept with its curved windshield and elongated proportions

    Aviation Design

  • Lockheed’s P-38 Lightning fighter plane, echoed in the Coupe Deville’s fins and body sides

    Space Age Fascination

  • The launch of Sputnik sparked interest in rockets and spacecraft, seen in the Coupe Deville’s prominent tailfins

Signature Design Features

The 1957 Coupe Deville incorporated these ground-breaking styling features:

Dramatic Fins

  • Nearly 3-foot high tailfins capped with chrome bullet tips

    Flowing Forms

  • Curved windshield, dash, and body sides appeared ready for entry into the space age

    Distinctive Grille

  • Egg-crate grille design (on some models) previewed Cadillac’s 1958 styling

The 1957 Coupe Deville looked like no other car on the road and announced the owner had arrived in glamorous style.

The Classic Beauty of a 57 Cadillac Coupe Deville

Performance and Engine Options for the 57 Cadillac Coupe DeVille

The 1957 Coupe Deville delivered smooth, powerful performance thanks to Cadillac’s advanced V8 engines:

Standard Engine

  • 345 cubic inch (5.7 liter) V8
  • 4-barrel carburetor
  • 250 horsepower

Optional Engines

Triple 2-Barrel “Tri-Power”

  • 345 V8 with 3 2-barrel carburetors
  • 285 horsepower

Fuel Injected V8

  • Eldorado models
  • 303 horsepower
  • First mass-produced fuel injected engine
READ MORE >>  Unlocking the Mystery of Antique Car Values A Comprehensive Guide

The Classic Beauty of a 57 Cadillac Coupe Deville

Transmission

  • Hydra-Matic 4-speed automatic transmission

Cadillac’s powerful and advanced engines enabled the big 1957 Coupe Deville to deliver sports car-like performance in a full-size luxury package.

Notable Models and Variants of the 57 Cadillac Coupe DeVille

While style varied little across models, the 1957 Coupe Deville lineup offered these notable variants:

Series 62 Coupe Deville

  • Most affordable Coupe Deville
  • Available with standard V8 or Tri-Power engine
  • Less exterior chrome trim

Deville D’Elegance

  • Additional luxury features
  • Full chrome exterior trim
  • Contrasting cloth and leatherette upholstery
  • Electric door locks

Eldorado Brougham

  • Flagship luxury model
  • Hand-assembled construction
  • Air suspension system
  • Contrasting broadcloth upholstery
  • Available fuel injected V8

The Classic Beauty of a 57 Cadillac Coupe Deville

With models ranging from the well-equipped Series 62 to the ultra-luxurious hand-built Eldorado Brougham, the 1957 Coupe Deville offered prestige and performance to suit different tastes and budgets while maintaining a consistent style.

Collectibility and Value of the 57 Cadillac Coupe DeVille

Over 60 years since they originally rolled off dealer lots, 1957 Coupe Devilles remain highly collectible:

Surviving Numbers

  • Approximately 1,800 still registered worldwide (source: Hagerty)

Current Valuations

  • Low-mileage originals list for $70K to $90K
  • Show-quality restorations bring $150K+
  • Eldorado Broughams often top $250,000

The Classic Beauty of a 57 Cadillac Coupe Deville

Key Factors for Values

  • Condition and maintenance history
  • Documented original components
  • “Survivor” cars with original patina

The spectacular fins and space age style of the 1957 Cadillac Coupe Deville, combined with its inherent collectibility as a Full Classic, promise continued strong values for exceptional original and restored examples.

Maintenance and Restoration Tips for the 57 Cadillac Coupe DeVille

Proper maintenance and judicious restoration are key to preserving a collectible 57 Coupe Deville. Recommendations include:

Prioritize Original Components

  • Retain original engine, body panels, glass as feasible
  • Document original parts for provenance

Focus on Rust Prevention

  • Drain and flush fluids to prevent corrosion
  • Treat body cavities with rust inhibitor annually
  • Address small rust areas quickly

The Classic Beauty of a 57 Cadillac Coupe Deville

Maintain Mechanics

  • Rebuild suspension, brake, and drivetrain components as needed
  • Upgrade to aluminum radiator and electric cooling fans

Consider a Rotisserie Restoration

  • Facilitates access to all body areas
  • Easier to properly treat rust and apply paint

With attentive annual maintenance and careful restoration focused on corrosion prevention and authentic details, a 57 Coupe Deville can deliver decades more motoring enjoyment.

Famous Owners and Pop Culture References of the 57 Cadillac Coupe DeVille

The 1957 Coupe Deville’s flamboyant fins soon captured Hollywood’s imagination:

READ MORE >>  Restoring an Old BMW M3

Notable Owners

  • Elvis Presley – Custom painted purple Coupe deVille
  • Frank Sinatra – D’Elegance model with gold trim

Movie TV Appearances

  • “American Graffiti” – White Coupe Deville featured prominently
  • “The Sopranos” – Tony Soprano drove a pink ’57 CDV
  • “The Matrix” – Agent Smith extracts a tracking device from a `57 CDV

Representing success, style, and the vibrant optimism of 1950s America, the 1957 Coupe Deville became woven into post-war popular culture, associated with celebrities and increasingly featured in music, movies and television.

The Classic Beauty of a 57 Cadillac Coupe Deville

Comparison to Other Classic Cars of the Era

The 1957 Coupe Deville stood apart from rival luxury coupes:

Chrysler 300C

  • Legendary Hemi V8 performance
  • More restrained styling
  • Less Focus on passenger room

Packard Clipper

  • Full-sized 2-door luxury model
  • Classic Packard styling cues
  • Out of production after 1956
    
    

    The Classic Beauty of a 57 Cadillac Coupe Deville

    
    

    Ford Thunderbird

  • Iconic two-seat sporty coupe
  • Better handling than most domestic coupes
  • Less interior room and overall luxury

With its unique fighter-plane inspired styling, Cadillac luxury features, and powerful V8 performance, the 1957 Coupe Deville had no direct rival that could match its blend of flamboyance, innovation, and exclusivity.

Future Prospects for the 57 Cadillac Coupe DeVille

The 1957 Coupe Deville’s spectacular styling and enduring popularity promises continuing strong interest from collectors:

Survivors Will Be Sought After

  • Low production numbers make originals increasingly rare
  • Current owners not likely to part with them
    
    

    The Classic Beauty of a 57 Cadillac Coupe Deville

    
    

    ### Restoration Will Continue

  • Parts availability expected to remain adequate
  • Younger enthusiasts discovering 1950s cars

Values Should Appreciate

  • Iconic American design maintains appeal
  • Full Classic status cemented

Sixty years on, the Sputnik-era styling, Cadillac luxury, and exclusive credentials of the 1957 Coupe Deville seem assured of providing pleasure, pride, and steadily increasing value to collectors for decades to come.

The Classic Beauty of a 57 Cadillac Coupe Deville

Conclusion

The 1957 Cadillac Coupe Deville represents the pinnacle of American automotive styling, luxury, and performance. Its dramatic design symbolized American optimism and confidence in the dawning space age while advancements like fuel injection demonstrated Detroit’s engineering prowess. For the lucky original owners and passionate collectors who have preserved these iconic coupes, the 1957 Cadillac Coupe Deville remains the Standard of the World.

The Classic Beauty of a 57 Cadillac Coupe Deville

Discover the Classic Beauty of a 60 Cadillac Coupe Deville

Restoring a 1957 Cadillac Coupe DeVille

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button