Cadillac, the one-time “Standard of the World,” is nearly synonymous with American luxury.
But while the automaker’s cars have always been pretty expensive, only a few models have crossed the six-figure price tag threshold.
Excluding Cadillac’s concept cars and coachbuilt one-offs and limiting the list to vehicles assembled by the company itself, we’re talking about only a small handful. We’ve rounded up some of the priciest from that group.
2018 Cadillac Escalade Premium — US$104,000
You’ll have to try, but, yes, you can order a six-figure Cadillac from a dealer today. Opt for the Premium trim of the Escalade and tick off all of the boxes, and the MSRP will land somewhere just north of a hundred grand. When it bows in 2019, the CT6 V-Sport might help you pull off the same trick.
1957 Cadillac Eldorado Brougham — US$13,070 new, $114,000 inflation-adjusted
Despite being one of the most expensive Cadillacs built up until that point, the ’57 and ’58 Eldorado Broughams still lost the company money, costing GM almost twice as much as it charged customers.
How did that happen? Production costs were high, with the cars being hand-built and loaded with features, and the demand was lower than expected, with just over 700 built across those two years. $13,000 was about double the price of a typical Cadillac, and even more than a contemporary Rolls-Royce.
2006 Cadillac XLR-V — US$110,000 new, $137,000 inflation-adjusted
Nothing touches the vaunted Corvette in the GM stable—the company’s infamously killed off many a Pontiac, Oldsmobile and Buick model that got too close to its halo car in terms of performance.
It’s shocking, then, that somehow Cadillac got the green light to built its own convertible two-seater on the C5 Corvette platform for 2004. The ‘V’ was the supercharged performance model, which turned 443 horsepower out of its Northstar V8.
1930s Cadillac 452 V-16 — up to US$8,150 new, $153,000 inflation-adjusted
No icon stands taller in Cadillac history than its V-16-powered cars, first unveiled in 1930 and built through to 1940, and for good reason—the Series 452 cars were some of the finest cars in the world in their day, and represent the company at its zenith.
The 452-cubic-inch engines propelled the cars to up to 160 km/h – only a Duesenberg was faster – and cost roughly US$140,000 in today’s dollars. One example, a 1934 Model 5885 Convertible Coupe now owned by London, Ontario’s Steve Plunkett, is known to have retailed for $8,150 new, or $153,000 in 2018. A 1931 Dual-Cowl Sport Phaeton is pictured.
1941 Cadillac Custom Limousine ‘The Duchess’ — US$14,000 new, $240,000 inflation-adjusted
We know we said no one-offs, but we’re giving this one a pass since it was built “custom” by GM itself. The car was commissioned by England’s Duke of Windsor, the once-king Edward VIII, who was renowned as a style icon of the period.
The price he paid for the Series 62 limousine – nicknamed “The Duchess” after his wife, Wallis Simpson – could fetch you 10 production Cadillacs at the time. One of the most well-known Cadillacs ever, it failed to sell at an RM Sotheby’s auction a few years ago, but was shortly after picked up by London, Ontario collector Steve Plunkett.