Cadillac is part of the American car manufacturer giant, General Motors, and they build and design luxury cars. Their primary markets are Canada, the United States, and Chin. Cadillac cars are distributed in over 34 markets all across the world. Cadillac cars are considered to be at the top when it comes to luxury cars in the United States. In fact, in 2017 alone, the car manufacturer was able to sell over 156,440 vehicles in the United States and 356,467 units worldwide. In this article, we are going to talk about the momentous events that shaped Cadillac’s history.
Important Events in Cadillac History
Cadillac was founded in 1902 by Lemuel Bowen, Henry M. Leland, William Murphy. The company was formed on by the remnants of the Henry Ford Motor Company when a dispute between Henry Ford and his investors forced Henry Ford Motor Company to shut down. That’s where Lemuel Bowen and William Murphy came into the picture. They were Ford’s financial backers, and they were asked to call in an engineer, which was Henry Leland, to prepare for the liquidation of the company’s assets.
Henry Leland decided that it was pointless to let go of the company; that’s why he persuaded William and Lemuel just to continue manufacturing cars using a single-cylinder engine. Once they tested and proved that the motor is working, Henry Leland earned Bowen’s and Murphy’s trust. That’s why they formed a company called Cadillac Automobile Company, which is named after the famous French explorer, that founded Detroit in 1701.
After its creation, Cadillac released their first cars, the Tonneau and the Runabout. These cars were a type of horseless carriages, and they were powered by single-cylinder engines that Leland invented.
General Motors purchased Cadillac in 1909. After that, it became GM’s luxury car division. They started to produce commercial and institutional cars like hearses, funeral home flower cars, limousines, and even ambulances. In 1910, Cadillac began to create the first car that has a closed frame body-style.
Some years after that, Cadillac launched cars that have an electric powered headlight system and ignition. This innovation won the company two Dewar Trophies. Cadillac was also the pioneer when it comes to mass-producing v8 engines and using fast-drying Duco Lacquer Paints.
Not only that, but Cadillac also launched the first-ever type-16 cylinder engine to be used in passenger cars. Those cars were smooth, powerful, and quiet, with a 160 HP and a 120 lb-ft torque. In 1937, Cadillac released its car called Lassalle, which was a V8 engine, and it was able to set a speed record of 82 MPH. They were also the company that introduced vehicles with sunroofs in America.
The ‘40s were a prosperous time for Cadillac because they introduced vehicles with fully automatic transmission, which they called the Hydra-Matic Transmission. Cadillac launched the M-24 Tank, which was used during World War II. The Tank was powered by Hydramatic Gearbox and a Cadillac V-Engine.
Towards the end of the 1940s, Cadillac went the extra mile when they introduced a new, small, economic, and efficient V8 engine. When the 1950s came, Cadillac launched their most famous “American Dream Car,” and they called it the Cadillac Eldorado. They also started several innovations in their cars, such as the first automatic headlight dimmer, first wrap-around windshield, and the signal-seeking automotive radio.
In the ‘60s, Cadillac didn’t let down its consumers because they still added more innovations in the automotive industry. They launched the first automatic vacuum-operated parking brake release, automated air-conditioning and heating system, first sidelights in the front fenders, and of course, the first car with power steering solution.
In fact, Cadillac was the first car manufacturer that offered power steering as a piece of standard equipment on all of the models that they released.
In the early ‘70s, Cadillac cars featured an advanced computerized rear-wheel skid-control braking system, which they called the Track Master. They were also the ones who pioneered the use of compulsory safety requirements we now call the airbag system. In the ‘80s, Cadillac launched cars that have an electronic fuel injection system and the catalytic convertor.
When the ’90s came, Cadillac was the first American car manufacturer that introduced the 365-days a year, 24 hours, seven days a week, roadside assistance program. This was also the time when they introduced a limo home feature that enables the engine to run for 50s miles without having to use an engine coolant. Cadillac also created a unique induction system that allows perfect distribution, and it can now be found in almost all of their cars today.