This is a 1930 Cadillac V-16, Series 452, Engine No. 702298 owned by the Nawab of Bahawalpur. It is now in the care of the Bashir family of Lahore, Pakistan.
452 cu.in (7400 cc) sixteen cylinder overhead valve 60° degrees angle, water cooled engine. Three speed manual transmission with synchromesh on 2 nd and third gear. Enclosed torque tube propeller shaft. Vacuum assisted mechanical brakes. 7.50 x 19 inch wire wheels, Approx. 6000 lbs, 2727 kgs weight.
COMMENTS ON THE CADILLAC V-16 SERIES 452
The Cadillac V-16 Model 452 was and will remain an icon of superlative design excess for the world to marvel at, due primarily to the sixteen cylinder engine, which not only propelled the company into the stratosphere of grand Marques and also pulled a really heavy 6000 lbs monster effortlessly on the road albeit with great trepidation in the time of the great depression.
It seems there is little chance that such a car is approved for production again by a car company, as was done by the Board of Governors on that fortuitous day because they were keen to be the best in the World. So proud were they of the 16 cylinder engine that the cars did not get Chassis numbers and only engine number and body style was the identification. Cadillac also decided not to sell chassis to body builders and offered in house body styles, with very few
exceptions. 98 % were factory bodied out of a choice of 65~70 styles built mostly by Fleetwood, the 31 bare chassis supplied to outside carrosserie are of special interest. Out of these the four bare chassis in Right Hand Drive are a further rarity.
THE TEN RIGHT HAND DRIVE CARS
In the entire series 452 production, just ten were right hand drive cars. Of those ten only four were supplied as bare chassis to coach builders as a major exception.
THE FOUR RIGHT HAND DRIVE BARE CHASSIS
a) 702297 Landaulet limousine, Vanden Plas, Brussels Belgium, commissioned by Lendrum & Hartman for Queen Wilhelmina of the Netherlands, but cancelled and sold to Mr. Guinness of Guinness Brewery.
b) 702298 Sports Sedan, Vanden Plas Brussels Belgium, commissioned by Lendrum & Hartman, bought by Nawab of Bahawalpur from their showroom after London Motor Show and various concourse de elegance successes on the continent.
c) 702873 Convertible Victoria, Lancefield U.K,
d) 703136 ~ 703152 ~ 700066 Boat tail 2 +2 by Pinin Farina commissioned by Maharaja of Orrcha.
THE TWO VANDEN PLAS V-16 CARS:
The Chassis 702297 and 702298 were shipped together on July 9, 1930, to Captain F.W. Hartman and Major E. Howard of Lendrum & Hartman, the long-standing Cadillac-LaSalle sales outlet in London's fashionable Albermarle street, at numbers 26B and C; Captain Hartman was CEO and he entered many of his personal Cadillacs in concours d'Elégance, at home and abroad, where he won many premier awards. His request for the RHD Chassis was accepted as he made out a case that European buyers prefer European styles and body makers. The first sale was to the order of Queen Wilhelmina of the Netherlands and Vanden Plas (pronounced Fondun plos) of Belgium was an obvious choice and these two Right Hand Drive chassis were
sent to M/s them. Vanden Plas, Brussels, Belgium (which notable carrosserie had time on their hands with Bentley, their main bread winner, going out of business recently). They created two quite unique bodies for the V-16, one a staid landaulet being too late a design for 1930 and the other a very futuristic sports sedan with dickey, meant for continental touring with latest torch
bearing design trends.
1. 702297 with Landaulet limousine body made in Brussels by Vanden Plas to the design requirements of Queen Wilhelmina of Netherlands (1890-1948), with chassis supplied by M/s Lendrum & Hartman, London. It was not delivered to the Queen as the palace advised her that austerity measures in times of the economic depression which had engulfed Europe also, dictated that she not be seen indulging. The car was picked up by the Guinness family no doubt with efforts of Captain Hartman who was welcome in high society of London. It was on display in Louwman museum in the Netherlands and has history available. Interior appointments and extensive woodwork is similar to #702298 Sports Sedan erected at the same time.
2. 702298 is presently in Pakistan. It has been taken out of dry storage in the Sadiq Garh Palace motor garages in 2012, after about 60 years. It carried Palace registration BWP 133. Photo circa 2004, when the garages were opened by order of the Government of Pakistan for auction of movable assets between the heirs. Note the head lamps which went missing soon after this photo was taken. At Sadiq Garh Palace, in a hall which once housed the Palace museum, in Feb 2005.
3. This car was made in Brussels by Vanden Plas Belgium to the specifications of Captain Hartman of Lendrum & Hartman, Albemarle Street, London, the purveyor of Cadillac cars in UK and Europe. This car was for showing the V-16 off on the European circuit for a clientele that needed a fast elegant car for continental touring which could be chauffeur driven for a night at the tables at Monaco or self-driven to the south of France.