Author Topic: Harley Earl's 1959 Cadillac Renditions  (Read 2099 times)

Offline Jon S

  • Posts: 2555
  • Name: J. Schapiro
Harley Earl's 1959 Cadillac Renditions
« on: November 15, 2015, 05:22:41 PM »
Anyone have information on Harley Earl's designs for the 1959 Cadillac before Bill Mitchell's designs were approved?
Jon

1958 Cadillac Sedan De Ville
1973 Lincoln Continental Coupe
1981 Corvette
2004 Mustang GT

Offline Jon S

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  • Name: J. Schapiro
Re: Harley Earl's 1959 Cadillac Renditions
« Reply #1 on: November 15, 2015, 06:57:54 PM »
I recall seeing a picture of Harley's design. It was very 1958ish and totally unlike the Bill Mitchell version.
Jon

1958 Cadillac Sedan De Ville
1973 Lincoln Continental Coupe
1981 Corvette
2004 Mustang GT

Offline Blade

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  • CLC Number: 27905
  • Name: Tibor Kiss
Re: Harley Earl's 1959 Cadillac Renditions
« Reply #2 on: November 15, 2015, 07:50:24 PM »
Jon,

I got these that made it to clay model.
Tibor K.

1959 Cadillac Series 62 Convertible
1959 Cadillac Series 62 Sedan

Offline Jon S

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  • Name: J. Schapiro
Re: Harley Earl's 1959 Cadillac Renditions
« Reply #3 on: November 15, 2015, 07:51:43 PM »
Those are the ones I remember. Thank you!
Jon

1958 Cadillac Sedan De Ville
1973 Lincoln Continental Coupe
1981 Corvette
2004 Mustang GT

Offline Bob Hoffmann CLC#96

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Re: Harley Earl's 1959 Cadillac Renditions
« Reply #4 on: November 16, 2015, 12:27:56 AM »
Guys,
With all due respect to Harley.
 That car is butt ugly. I guess the 58 Olds WAS his swan song. I think he needed to retire.
Bob
1968 Eldorado slick top ,white/red interior
2015 Holden Ute HSV Maloo red/black interior.
             
Too much fun is more than you can have.

Offline Coupe Deville

  • Posts: 652
  • Name: Gavin William Myers
Re: Harley Earl's 1959 Cadillac Renditions
« Reply #5 on: November 16, 2015, 12:56:02 AM »
wow.. Ive seen those pictures before, but looking at them again i see a little bit of everything in there now. Some 56,57,58, Cadillac's, I see some 60 Buick in the front end, 57/58 Eldorado fins on the back, but you can still see the raw body of the 59' in there. The shapes of the hood remind me of my 1972 Deville!

-Gavin
-Gavin Myers CLC Member #27431
"The 59' Cadillac says more about America than a whole trunk full of history books, It was the American Dream"

Offline Jon S

  • Posts: 2555
  • Name: J. Schapiro
Re: Harley Earl's 1959 Cadillac Renditions
« Reply #6 on: November 16, 2015, 07:30:28 AM »
wow.. Ive seen those pictures before, but looking at them again i see a little bit of everything in there now. Some 56,57,58, Cadillac's, I see some 60 Buick in the front end, 57/58 Eldorado fins on the back, but you can still see the raw body of the 59' in there. The shapes of the hood remind me of my 1972 Deville!

-Gavin

. . . and a little 1964 Ford in there too!
Jon

1958 Cadillac Sedan De Ville
1973 Lincoln Continental Coupe
1981 Corvette
2004 Mustang GT

Offline Blade

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  • CLC Number: 27905
  • Name: Tibor Kiss
Re: Harley Earl's 1959 Cadillac Renditions
« Reply #7 on: November 16, 2015, 07:50:58 AM »
And that's why Chuck Jordan decided to throw the whole thing out and start from scratch. They thought it was big, bulky and heavy looking so while Harley Earl was away in Europe researching new car styles the designing team snuck over to Chrysler's lot, after seeing the new '57 styles (such as the New Yorker or the 300) the light went off and a new '59 began to emerge. You can still tell the resemblance between the '59 Cadillac and the '57 Chryslers.

Cheers!
Tibor K.

1959 Cadillac Series 62 Convertible
1959 Cadillac Series 62 Sedan

Online Eric DeVirgilis CLC# 8621

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  • Name: Eric DeVirgilis
Re: Harley Earl's 1959 Cadillac Renditions
« Reply #8 on: November 16, 2015, 09:30:04 AM »
That's right Tibor.

As ironic as it is, we have the Chrysler's "Forward Look" of 1957 to thank for the 1959 Cadillac as we know it.

The decision to scrap the original '59 plans meant the division had only two years from drawing board to completion, a major accomplishment in itself as it was a normally a task that would require three. This, in the age of slide rules and clay was no small achievement which meant many long nights in the studio burning the midnight oil.

Shortness of time meant no special Eldorado sheetmetal; Eldorado buyers would have to be content with a Series 62 with deluxe trim. Whether that was a good thing or not is a moot point in the present day...

In addition the the series of images of the originally planned 1959 Cadillac above, there were also some pictures of the originally planned 1959 Eldorado Biarritz whose fins, as I recall, rose nearly as high as the "whale tail" of the late '60s Plymouth Superbee. It has been some time since I saw those images nor do I recall where. If someone has access to them, I'd be grateful if they would post them here.   

It would be no exaggeration to say the 1959 Eldorado Biarritz as originally designed would make the production 1959 Biarritz look conservative.  :o
« Last Edit: November 16, 2015, 10:00:08 AM by Eric DeVirgilis CLC# 8621 »
A Cadillac Motorcar is a Possession for which there is no Acceptable Substitute

Offline Blade

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  • Name: Tibor Kiss
Re: Harley Earl's 1959 Cadillac Renditions
« Reply #9 on: November 16, 2015, 10:16:44 AM »
Right Eric! Up to 1959 the Eldorado traditionally had a taller fin than the other models, however this did not work on the new design. The fins on the new '59 were already taller than any other previous year's - or any other car matter of fact. Chuck Jordan said they tried several concepts for the Eldorado but all ended up looking out of proportion and were leading them back to the same problem of why the bulky original design failed the first place: overdone. So they came up with the idea of using a different trim where a chrome line runs just under the fin making them appear taller.

I thought they went the right direction with the forward look but interesting by the mid 60s this was abandoned and the trend was heading back to the boxy style again. 

Cheers!

Tibor K.

1959 Cadillac Series 62 Convertible
1959 Cadillac Series 62 Sedan

Offline Dan LeBlanc

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  • Name: Dan LeBlanc
Dan LeBlanc
1977 Lincoln Continental Town Car

Offline Blade

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  • CLC Number: 27905
  • Name: Tibor Kiss
Re: Harley Earl's 1959 Cadillac Renditions
« Reply #11 on: November 16, 2015, 10:44:11 AM »
Dan, I believe that was one of the '58 Eldorado prototypes that didn't make it to production but you're correct the dual lights on the fins were already present. Dave Holls implemented these later on the production '59s. (Image attached is Dave Holls's original concept)

By the way, great article on your car in the Self-Starter!
« Last Edit: November 16, 2015, 04:00:01 PM by Blade »
Tibor K.

1959 Cadillac Series 62 Convertible
1959 Cadillac Series 62 Sedan

Online Eric DeVirgilis CLC# 8621

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  • Name: Eric DeVirgilis
Re: Harley Earl's 1959 Cadillac Renditions
« Reply #12 on: November 16, 2015, 11:11:47 AM »
Thanks Dan but that's not it.

It was a clay model and if I'm not mistaken, the fins did not have the bullet taillamps.

The fins more closely resembled those of the 1959 Cyclone Concept -which is to say ridiculously high - before it had been modified with tiny fins as it exists today.

I also remember the rear bumper was highly stylized with a large single exhaust port right in the center - similar to a Chrysler concept car whose name I can't recall right now. (I think it may have been Cyclone also).
A Cadillac Motorcar is a Possession for which there is no Acceptable Substitute

Offline Dan LeBlanc

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  • Name: Dan LeBlanc
Re: Harley Earl's 1959 Cadillac Renditions
« Reply #13 on: November 16, 2015, 11:56:08 AM »
Dan, I believe that was one of the '58 Eldorado prototypes that didn't make it to production but you're correct the dual lights on the fins were already present. Dave Holl implemented these later on the production '59s. (Image attached is Dave Holl's original concept)

By the way, great article on your car in the Self-Starter!

Thanks Tibor.  My print version should be in the mailbox any day now.
Dan LeBlanc
1977 Lincoln Continental Town Car

Offline Walter Youshock

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Re: Harley Earl's 1959 Cadillac Renditions
« Reply #14 on: November 16, 2015, 12:14:12 PM »
The Chrysler was the Turbine which actually was kind of "produced" as there were a few put out on the road and several survive.

Look closely at the '55 Eldorado and you can see many of the cues that evolved into the '59.  One thing I never understood was why Chrysler was using curved door glass in 1957 and it took Cadillac until 1965...
CLC #11959 (Life)
1957 Coupe deVille
1991 Brougham

Offline Jon S

  • Posts: 2555
  • Name: J. Schapiro
Re: Harley Earl's 1959 Cadillac Renditions
« Reply #15 on: November 16, 2015, 12:25:51 PM »
The Chrysler was the Turbine which actually was kind of "produced" as there were a few put out on the road and several survive.

Look closely at the '55 Eldorado and you can see many of the cues that evolved into the '59.  One thing I never understood was why Chrysler was using curved door glass in 1957 and it took Cadillac until 1965...

The Chrysler Turbine was introduced at the 1964 NY Worlds Fair.
Jon

1958 Cadillac Sedan De Ville
1973 Lincoln Continental Coupe
1981 Corvette
2004 Mustang GT

Offline Blade

  • Posts: 609
  • CLC Number: 27905
  • Name: Tibor Kiss
Re: Harley Earl's 1959 Cadillac Renditions
« Reply #16 on: November 16, 2015, 03:41:59 PM »
Oh ... Eric, I think you're talking about this one:
Tibor K.

1959 Cadillac Series 62 Convertible
1959 Cadillac Series 62 Sedan

Offline Blade

  • Posts: 609
  • CLC Number: 27905
  • Name: Tibor Kiss
Re: Harley Earl's 1959 Cadillac Renditions
« Reply #17 on: November 16, 2015, 03:51:13 PM »
....  One thing I never understood was why Chrysler was using curved door glass in 1957 and it took Cadillac until 1965...

Walter: the only Rolls Royce I've ever driven was a '72 Corniche, still had flat door glasses. I guess the luxury line just prefers to stay on the conservative side with some features.
Tibor K.

1959 Cadillac Series 62 Convertible
1959 Cadillac Series 62 Sedan

Online Eric DeVirgilis CLC# 8621

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  • Name: Eric DeVirgilis
Re: Harley Earl's 1959 Cadillac Renditions
« Reply #18 on: November 16, 2015, 04:00:54 PM »
Oh ... Eric, I think you're talking about this one:

Similar but the one I remember was a different clay model with much larger fins - along the lines of the original Cyclone concept.
A Cadillac Motorcar is a Possession for which there is no Acceptable Substitute

Offline Coupe Deville

  • Posts: 652
  • Name: Gavin William Myers
Re: Harley Earl's 1959 Cadillac Renditions
« Reply #19 on: November 16, 2015, 04:45:49 PM »
There is a great video documentary about the 1959 Cadillac, that I posted here a long time ago. I will post it again because It talks about the early design of the 59', and they actually interview Chuck Jordan. Its a two part video on youtube. It is such a great video, especially for the younger ones of us who work on 50's Cadillac's, but never got to live during that time..

Part 1: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tEme7EV0YPQ

Part 2: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RjT0PaMURz8


Enjoy!

-Gavin
-Gavin Myers CLC Member #27431
"The 59' Cadillac says more about America than a whole trunk full of history books, It was the American Dream"

 

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