Automotive Mileposts  
Production Numbers
Fleetwood Eldorado by Cadillac
INTRODUCTION DATE: September 18, 1969
Style Number:
Series Code: H
Vehicle Production Number: Starts at H0100001
*Eldorado only; view 1970 Cadillac Production for data on rear drive models.
1970 Cadillac Fleetwood Eldorado front quarter detail


500 Cubic Inch V-8 (400 Horsepower at 4400 rpm)
Bore and stroke: 4.30 x 4.304 Inches
Compression ratio: 10.0:1
Torque: 550 ft. lbs. at 3000 rpm
Carburetor: Rochester Model 4MV Quadrajet (Special for Eldorado)
Exhaust System: Dual Exhaust to Muffler, One Outlet Pipe from Muffler

Turbo Hydramatic (Front Wheel Drive)
WHEELBASE: 120 Inches

Length: 221 Inches
Width: 79.94 Inches
Height: 53.8 Inches
Weight: 4,630 Pounds
Tread Width: 63.66 Front, 63.0 Rear
Cadillac's subtle
announcement of
something potent
lurking under
the hood...the
500 cubic inch V-8!
Eldorado script and "8.2 LITRE" badge on front grille

The 8.2 Litre Debut

A Cadillac with 550-ft. lbs. of torque? Yes, it's true. Imagine the surprised look on the faces of high performance addicts in their 1970 Corvettes—complete with the $3,000 LS7 454 CID 460 horsepower Tri-Power Engine setup—when the light turns green and that huge Cadillac sitting next to them burns rubber from the front wheels! While most Eldorado drivers don't behave this way, it has certainly occurred over the years. It's an unusual feeling driving these cars; they don't behave the way you would expect an automobile of this magnitude to behave. They hold the corners like they were on rails; they accelerate rapidly enough to scare you if you hold the pedal down too long. The variable-ratio power steering was precise, and the standard automatic level control kept everything on an even keel, regardless of load. Cars this size aren't supposed to handle this way—smaller performance cars are designed for this. Cadillacs are meant to isolate their occupants in comfy quiet, with no indication that anything else is going on outside. Right? Well, maybe, but this Cadillac certainly wasn't typical if that was the case.

1970 was the fourth and last year of the first generation body style that was introduced in 1967 and ran very successfully through 1970. Face-lifts each year managed to keep the styling fresh, but change was certainly needed for 1971, as cars in the personal luxury field were normally expected to change their appearance every few years to keep up with current styling trends. The body style Cadillac would introduce for 1971 would basically have to carry the Eldorado through the 1978 model year, as government mandated safety and emissions requirements would eat up a large percentage of the money that would have previously been used for styling changes. The Eldorados that followed the 1970 models would be glamorous in their own way, but never again would they exhibit the crisp lines and sleek styling of the 1967-1970 models. Even some Cadillac enthusiasts agree that quality slipped after 1970, and there are those who are normally considered dedicated Cadillac fans, but they're not fans of the Eldorados that came after 1970.

A story was repeated to us that the new 1971 Eldorado and the also new for 1971 Oldsmobile Toronado may have had a bit of a connection. The Toronado was completely restyled for 1971, and its new styling bore more than just a slight resemblance to the look the Eldorado had just shed. Some believe Oldsmobile's stylists had seen the new 1971 styling, and felt Cadillac was about to make a horrible mistake with it. It's said that Olds stylists, hoping to capture a few disgruntled Caddy customers, who would be reluctant to purchase one of the new models because of its styling, might consider a Toronado instead. At least, that's how the story goes. (We've not verified it, nor have we tried to, so take it for what it's worth.)

A restyle in 1975 brought back a hint of the first generation Eldorado's styling, with the removal of the heavy-looking rear fender skirts and new rectangular headlamps up front, which cleaned up the styling considerably, and gave the car a slimmer, sleeker look overall. The 1975 restyle would serve the Eldorado through 1978.

Cadillac was careful to protect the image it had so long worked to establish, and all references to performance for 1970 were limited to statements such as "...unusually spirited performance", "brilliantly responsive", and "responsiveness that leaves the sixties far behind". All of those statements are true, and true to Cadillac's advertising slogan "the standard of the world", the 1970 Eldorado was the world's finest personal luxury car.

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