Caddy Spa-Car star of Shannons February Melbourne Auction
MELBOURNE – Jan 28,2014: A stunning eight-wheel custom-built 1977 Cadillac Eldorado Biarritz Coupe equipped with a built-in spa, BBQ, whiskey bar, strobe lighting and musical horns is one of the star attractions of Shannons Melbourne Late Summer Auction on February 17.
With an overall length of 7.3 metres, a weight of 2.5 tonnes and powered by a thumping 8.2-litre V8 engine with six exhaust pipes, the 1977-model Caddy dwarfs the smallest car in the Auction – a no-reserve, 3.1 metre-long 1963 Fiat 600D Sedan – both in size and sheer ‘wow’ factor.
But it’s the Caddy’s quirky equipment, rather than its sheer size, that drops jaws 'whenever it appears at Custom and Rod Shows around Australia, making it the ultimate promotional magnet.
When it arrived in Australia from Texas in the late 1980s, the car was a fairly standard 1977 left-hand-drive Eldorado Biarritz Coupe, but its new Brisbane-based owner soon changed that.
His most eye-catching customisation was to convert the Caddy to an eight-wheeler, using tandem-axle Holden One Tonne Ute components extensively, with the four front wheels driving the monster machine.
However it was the Caddy’s next Australian owner – the Melbourne-based vendor – who themed it even more outrageously after purchasing the car in 1999.
The large, two-person open Jacuzzi set into the rear deck just behind the passenger compartment is car’s greatest jaw-dropper, guaranteeing its occupants celebrity status at a Drive-In, a Custom show, or any promotional venue the Caddy appears at.
However travelling with the spa full or occupied is definitely not recommended – or allowed!
A real ‘BBQ stopper’ is the car’s four-burner gas cooker that ‘parks’ on the chassis rails and emerges from the Caddy’s massive engine bay via a clever cantilever mechanism, while its two small LPG bottles are tucked away behind the car’s left hand front light assembly.
An in-dash TV, an original eight-track tape deck, a CCTV camera in the right hand front mudguard (so the driver can view oncoming traffic before sticking the Caddy’s huge nose out too far), strobe lighting and an attention-grabbing six-pipe exhaust system are amongst other highlights of this unique show car.
After its most recent modifications were completed in the early 2000s, the car was repainted in its current sparkling white, with its off-white leather upholstery contrasting with the car’s blood red carpets.
According to the vendor the Cadillac Spa-Car drives well despite its enormous size, but as it can’t be registered in Australia it will need to be trucked or trailered to shows, where it is always the centre of attention.
Because of its proven crowd-pulling power, Shannons expect the Caddy Spa-Car to appeal to those looking for an arresting promotional or show vehicle.
They are quoting a guiding range of $24,000-$32,000 – a fraction of the cost involved in its extensive customisation - however Shannons National Auction Manager Christophe Boribon said the spectacular Cadillac could easily bring much more because of its uniqueness.