1915 Cadillac Type 51

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The Type 51 was not only the first Cadillac with a V8, but also the first American car with such an engine. Oldsmobile introduced its V8 in 1916, and Chevrolet in 1917. It was a large, comfortable and powerful car. The production of which was started in September 1914, and it was in this year that the legendary Ford Model T, costing 300 dollars, was put on the assembly line. The presentation was made by Cadillac head Henry Leyland.
1915 Cadillac Type 51 replaced the four-cylinder Model 30 and surpassed the six-cylinder cars of competitors by the number of cylinders. Of course, in the U.S. produced and more luxurious cars. We can remember at least a stunning Pierce – Arrow Model 66, but this car was more expensive at times.
So this is a Cadillac with a V8 engine, produced 18 years before the mass-produced Ford V8. It was a reliable car that in May 1916 traveled from coast to coast, from Los Angeles to New York in 7 days, 11 hours and 52 minutes. It is worth remembering that at that time there were not as good roads as today and not everywhere had asphalt or concrete pavement.

Price and value of a 1915 Cadillac Type 51.

In ’14, you could buy a brand new Cadillac Type 51 for $2,500. Recall that in the same ’14, you could buy a conventionally assembled Ford Model T for $300. The most expensive Type 51 Berline Limousine was sold for 3,600 dollars, which is equivalent to 104 thousand dollars in 2022. As you can see, it was an expensive car. But despite the high cost, only for 1915th 13 002 such cars were sold, which was a significant figure even for much more affordable cars.

Gaburites and photos.

The wheelbase of the base models was 122 inches ( 3,099mm). Cars whose bodies were made to order received an extended chassis with a wheelbase of 145 inches. The production of the bodies was done by Fisher.
Just from the photo you can see that the wheel rim was wood, but the rim itself was metal. There were two spare tires attached to the rear of the car along with the rims. On the wide footrests you can see the duffel boxes. Now this solution seems strange, but at that time it was an attribute of a large and comfortable car.

Interior equipment of 1915 Cadillac Type 51.

This was the first production Cadillac with a left-hand steering wheel. Prior to this, the steering wheel had been mounted on the right side, now the right-hand steering wheel was optional. The transmission and parking brake lever was mounted between the front seats – like on modern cars. The ignition switch was also built into the front panel. Although it was installed closer to the passenger, but the electric starter made it very easy to start the engine and, consequently, to operate the car.
The windshield could be opened, which was the norm for cars in those years and provided better ventilation of the cabin. The steering wheel could be tilted for more comfortable boarding and alighting. Along the metal, front dashboard, there are gauges.

Specifications and engine of the 1915 Cadillac Type 51.

The gasoline V8 has two separate cast iron blocks that are attached to a single, common aluminum engine crankcase. Notably, the exhaust manifolds are mounted between the blocks, a solution that began to be used again, on modern cars, about 20 years ago. The blocks are separated at a 90-degree angle.
The 1915 Cadillac Type 51 was powered by a 314 cubic inch (5.1L) engine. With a cylinder bore of 79.4mm, the piston stroke is 130.2mm. Maximum power of 70 horsepower is achieved at 2400 rpm. Such an engine holds 5.67 liters of engine oil and 19.8L of cooling system. Coolant is supplied to the intake manifold. The engine is equipped with two cooling system pumps and two thermostats.
Suspension is leaf spring.

It is a large, powerful and comfortable machine. The power of 70 horsepower was very significant for those years. By comparison, a twelve-cylinder 1915 Packard Twin Six with a 7-liter engine developed 85 horsepower. But as for Cadillac, probably the matter was not only in power, but in convenience and problem-free operation of this car. And let’s remember, under the hood of this Cadillac was the first V8 in the United States.

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