The Gray Lady


Cadillac Automotive "Firsts" 

This page presents automotive industry firsts attributable to Cadillac 

1902 Cadillac    Kettering Starter  Harley Earl 1927 LaSalle     1935 Cadillac

    1902                                   1912                                                   1927                                                          1935

1948 Cadillac


1902 The first to join together a Ford chassis and an Olds engine, and call it a Cadillac!

1905 —The introduction of the first four cylinder engine led the industry, and enabled a Cadillac to travel at speeds up to 50 m.p.h.

1910 —Cadillac became the first manufacturer to offer closed bodies as standard equipment 

1912 —Cadillac introduced the electric self starter, electric lighting and ignition system  

1914 —Cadillac introduced the first production (flathead) V-8 engine

1926 —Cadillac uses security plate (safety) glass

1927 —Cadillac markets the first car to be designed by a stylist (LaSalle/Harley Earl)

1928 —Cadillac equips their automobiles with the synchro-mesh (clashless) transmission

1930 —The first V-16 engine in a production car is produced by Cadillac

1934 —The first independent wheel suspension system is presented

1935 —The first all steel roof

1948 —The industry's first fins

1957 —The Cadillac Eldorado Brougham is the first car to feature Cruise Control,
                                                                                     with quad headlamps,
                                                                                     with electric memory seats, and
                                                                                     with electric locks.

1964 —First production car with automatic headlamps ("Twilight Sentinel").  They came on automatically at dusk.  They could also be set by the driver to remain on after he/she left the vehicle and switch themselves off after a pre-set time; thereby providing the exiting occupants a lighted way.

1965 —First manufacturer to offer telescopic steering wheel adjustment

1981 —Cadillac's new V-8-6-4 engine is the first engine with "variable displacement" cylinder de-activation.  While cruising, only 4 cylinders are working. When accelerating, the power came from all 8 cylinders.

1989 —Allante convertible is the first car with "Active Suspension" (a speed-sensing damping system)

1990 —Allante is the first production car to be fitted with electronic traction control

2000 —Cadillac is first to fit a "Night Vision" system to its cars; utilizing thermal imaging technology.  Introduced on the DeVille.  [More info on "Night Vision" - ]

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Created 14 May 2009 - 15:01:32 Hrs. .

Copyright © 2009, G. David Yaros.  All rights reserved.