Subtle Stereo: 1978 Cadillac Coupe DeVille – NOW $16,500
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January 6, 2023 Update – After a brief pause following the expiration of their last ad, the private seller posted a fresh Craigslist ad.
December 12, 2022, Update – We confirmed the listing for this “Classifind” expired, so with no replacement found, we’re assuming this ride is “Sold?” until we come across a replacement listing.
November 10, 2022 Update – We confirmed the seller just replaced their expiring Craigslist ad with a fresh listing. In it, the price, description, and pictures remain the same.
Like it or not, we often cringe at some of the aftermarket stereo system “upgrades” made to classic cars. An exception is this 1978 Cadillac Coupe DeVille we first spotted in November 2022 and can now be found here on Craigslist in Lee’s Summit, Missouri (Kansas City), where the current caretaker kept the car’s original AM/FM/CB factory stereo in place while subtly integrating a trunk-mounted amplifier and modern speakers into the factory grille locations.
Currently offered for $16,500 (the original ask was $18,000), Classic.com, the analytics and search engine for the collector car market, confirms the ask falls mid-pack in the five-year rolling average of this guide’s summary for fifth-generation Cadillac Coupe DeVilles produced between 1977 and 1984. By clicking on the green dots in the graph below, you can navigate to each comparable car sold as a way to help you evaluate the price of the Coupe DeVille featured here:
As a second data point, the Collector Car Market Review Online Tool reveals the seller’s ask falls between this guide’s #2 Very Good” estimate of $10,100 and its #1 “Excellent” appraisal of $16,300.
1977 was Cadillac’s 75th anniversary and saw the introduction of the downsized DeVille coupes and sedans. These new cars featured a higher roofline, resulting in a vehicle that was over nine inches shorter, four inches narrower, and 1/2 ton lighter than the previous year, but with a larger trunk and more headroom and legroom. These were also the first DeVilles ever to be marketed without fender skirts over the rear wheels. The old door pull straps returned for 1977 and on. Gone was the 190 horsepower, 500 cubic inch V8, replaced for 1977 by a 180-horsepower 425 cubic inch V8 variant of similar design. The reduction in size and weight was implemented to improve fuel economy and emissions as a result of the United States Federal Government’s passage of Corporate Average Fuel Economy (“CAFE”) regulations.
For 1977, the lineup included the two-door Coupe de Ville for US$9,654 ($43,170 in 2021 dollars ) and the four-door Sedan de Ville for US$9,864 ($44,109 in 2021 dollars). The $650 d’Elegance package, an interior dress-up option carried over from the previous generation of De Villes, continued for both models. 3-sided, wrap-around tail lamps were a 1977 feature only (although they would re-appear in 1987). Coupe de Ville’s popular “Cabriolet” option, priced at $348, included a rear-half padded vinyl roof covering and opera lamps. An optional electronic fuel-injected version of the standard 7.0-liter powerplant, adding 15 horsepower, was available for an additional $647. Sales figures were 138,750 Coupe de Villes and 95,421 Sedan de Villes for an all-time sales record of 234,171 De Villes sold.
In addition to a redesigned grille and hood ornament, 1978 saw slim, vertical tail lamps inset into chrome bumper end caps with built-in side marker lamps (Cadillac would retain this “vertical tail lamp inset” design feature on De Ville through 1984, and again from 1989 through 1999). Electronic level control – which used suspension-mounted sensors and air-filled rear shocks – kept the car’s height level regardless of passengers and cargo weight, and was available for $140. Sales dropped slightly from 1977 to 117,750 for the $10,444 Coupe de Ville, and 88,951 for Sedan de Ville, priced at $10,668 ($47,704 in 2021 dollars ).
The Bionic Disco YouTube Channel features this video 1977 Cadillac commercial pitching the newly downsized DeVille series:
This 1978 Cadillac Coupe DeVille is a nice survivor example in a great color combination that features the final iteration of Cadillac’s reliable big block motor. The trunk-mounted subwoofer might not be for everyone. However, the good news is it’s easily removable.
Here’s the seller’s description:
Valve cover gaskets
New American Classic white wall tires (installed in July)
New front speakers, rear deck speakers, 12″ sub, amp Bluetooth audio“
Show or go: What would you do with this 1978 Cadillac Coupe DeVille? Please comment below and let us know!