Muscle Cars are nothing new… As soon as there were two cars in the same area, there was a horsepower race.
Back in the 1930s, it wasn’t intermediate cars with big engines, and it wasn’t “pony cars”… It was the luxury market. Power and smoothness were the drivers. The fastest cars on the American road were Lincolns and Cadillacs.
The McNasty Cadillac of the day was the V-16. The Cadillac 452 (Later called the Series 60 and Series 90) displaced 452 cubic inches (Series 90 displaced 431 ci). They developed 185hp… from 7.4L of engine. To compare that, my 4.0HO from my 1992 Wrangler develops 190hp.
But the time was different, and the technology was obviously not as advanced. But they had some serious “pretty”. And the car was actually modular. There were 10 basic body styles offered, plus another 30 options that were provided by the factory. The Cadillac-LaSalle Club estimates that there were 70 variation built by Fleetwood.