Nicer Nova: 1976 Cadillac Seville 36K Survivor – SOLD!
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April 10, 2022, Update – We confirmed the seller of this “Classifind” deleted their listing, so we’re now able to call this one “SOLD!” While this one got away, please reach out either by email or call us directly if you’d like to be informed when we come across something similar.
Cadillac’s problem of attracting younger buyers is not a recent phenomenon. In fact, it dates back to the mid-seventies when they recognized the growing popularity of smaller, luxury imports produced in West Germany. Realizing their traditional “bigger is better” design philosophy was lost with these buyers, Cadillac launched its “international-sized” Seville. We just spotted this 36K original mile, Ember Glow Firemist over Dark Firethorn leather, 1976 Cadillac Seville originally listed in March of 2022 in Sebring, Florida. The seller reports that all of the features on their Seville work as designed and the car features both new tires and a battery.
Currently offered for $18,000, a check of the Collector Car Market Review Online Valuation Tool confirms the asking price is optimistically set $5,100 higher than this guide’s #1 “Excellent” estimate of $12,900. Conversely, the Hagerty Insurance Online Valuation Tool reveals the seller’s as falls between this guide’s #2 “Excellent” estimate of $12,800 and its #1 “Concours” appraisal of $22,500.
As stylish as Cadillac’s new “internationally-sized” Seville was, few people realized how well the division’s engineers were able to hide the car’s Chevrolet Nova roots. The Seville’s unibody construction included a bolt-on subframe with a rear suspension based on the rear-wheel-drive 1968–74 X-body (Nova/Ventura) platform. It also featured a rear differential with thicker front subframe bushings similar to the second-generation F platform used in the Camaro and Firebird. Substantial re-engineering and upgrades from these humble origins earned it the unique designation “K-body” within GM.
Also shared with the X-body platform was part of the roof stamping and trunk floor pan (for 1973 and newer vehicles). Cadillac stylists added a crisp, angular body that set the tone for GM styling for the next decade, along with a wide-track stance giving the car a substantial, premium appearance. A wide chrome grille flanked by quadruple rectangular headlamps with narrow parking and signal lamps just below the header panel, while small wrap-around rectangular tail lamps placed at the outermost corners of the rear gave the appearance of a lower, leaner, and wider car. The taillight design was similar to that used on a rejected Coupe DeVille concept.
Seville engineers chose the X-body platform instead of the German Opel Diplomat in response to GM’s budget restrictions—executives felt re-engineering an Opel would be more costly. Another proposal during development was a front-wheel-drive layout similar to the Cadillac Eldorado. This proposal was also rejected because of budget and production capacity constraints.
Introduced in mid-1975 and billed as the new “internationally-sized” Cadillac, the Seville was almost 1,000 pounds (450 kg) lighter than the full-sized Deville. The Seville was thus more nimble and easier to park, as well as remaining attractive to customers with the full complement of Cadillac features. More expensive than any other Cadillac (except the Series 75 Fleetwood factory limousines) at US$12,479, the Seville was modestly successful. It spawned several imitators including the Lincoln Versailles and the Chrysler LeBaron. To ensure the quality of the initial production run, the first 2,000 units produced were identical in color (Georgian silver) and options. This enabled workers to “ramp up” to building different configurations. Total 1976 Seville production was 43,772 vehicles.
The King Rose Archives YouTube Channel provides this vintage 1975 Cadillac Seville launch footage:
We don’t come across very many first-generation 1976 Cadillac Sevilles and when we do, none are ever as nice as this example.
Here’s the seller’s description:
“1976 Cadillac Seville 36,800 original miles. The car is 100% Original, always garage kept, and well maintained. Every option works as it should, the ac system has been updated and blows nice and cold. Also has new tires and a battery. Car runs and drives excellent with no issues whatsoever. I am open to a reasonable offer, this is a private sale
from my collection. Located at my home in Sebring Florida.”
Show or Go: What would you do with this 1976 Cadillac Seville? Please comment below and let us know!