In 1977 GM significantly down-sized their full sized cars. The De Ville and Fleetwood Brougham rode on the same 121.5" wheelbase and were powered by the 425 cubic inch (7.0L) V8. This engine was basically a de bored version of the 472/500 (7.9 L/8.2 L) V8 of previous years. Compared with the 1976 Fleetwood Sixty Special Brougham, the Fleetwood Brougham had a wheelbase 11.5" shorter and weighed nearly 900 lb (400 kg) less.
|1974 Cadillac Fleetwood 60 Special Brougham||1977 Cadillac Fleetwood Brougham|
|Wheelbase||133.0 in (3,378 mm)||121.5 in (3,086 mm)|
|Overall Length||233.7 in (5,936 mm)||221.2 in (5,618 mm)|
|Width||79.8 in (2,027 mm)||75.3 in (1,913 mm)|
|Height||55.3 in (1,405 mm)||57.2 in (1,453 mm)|
|Front Headroom||39.3 in (998 mm)||39.0 in (991 mm)|
|Front Legroom||41.9 in (1,064 mm)||42.0 in (1,067 mm)|
|Front Hip Room||57.8 in (1,468 mm)||55.0 in (1,397 mm)|
|Front Shoulder Room||62.1 in (1,577 mm)||59.4 in (1,509 mm)|
|Rear Headroom||38.3 in (973 mm)||38.1 in (968 mm)|
|Rear Legroom–ins.||44.6 in (1,133 mm)||41.2 in (1,046 mm)|
|Rear Hip Room||58.0 in (1,473 mm)||55.7 in (1,415 mm)|
|Rear Shoulder Room||64.0 in (1,626 mm)||59.4 in (1,509 mm)|
|Luggage Capacity||15.9 cu ft (450 L)||19.5 cu ft (552 L)|
The Fleetwood Brougham was considered the top of the line Cadillac but was virtually identical to the lesser Sedan de Ville. Other than the name, the only exterior differences between a Fleetwood Brougham and Sedan de Ville were the hubcaps and the hood ornament, (the Fleetwood Brougham had a wreath and crest, the Sedan de Ville had just a crest), and the extension of the vinyl roof through the "b-pillar" giving a more formal look. The interior of the Fleetwood was more plush and offered more features as standard.
In 1980 the De Ville and Fleetwood Brougham were given a new body style with a squarer look and more formal roof line. The basic dashboard design was retained. Also new for 1980 was a two-door Fleetwood Brougham, which was based upon the Coupe de Ville but featured an exclusive formal landau vinyl roof.
The 425 cu in (7.0 L) engine, a reduced bore 472, was further debored for 1980-1981 to 368 cubic inches or 6.0 liters. For 1981, the 368 was provided with a modulated displacement system designed by Eaton Corporation, controlled by a digital computer, which locked off intake and exhaust valves to two or four of the eight cylinders, thus running effectively as a V6 or V4 under light load conditions where in third gear, and over 35 mph (56 km/h). This engine was called the "V8-6-4", and its electronics and sensors proved troublesome and, except for limousines, this engine was dropped after 1981. The engine's controls and sensors were a stretch for the computer power of the era.
Both the 425 and 368 are small-bore versions of the durable 472 (which was introduced in late 1967 for the '68 model year). The larger 500 had the 472's bore but a longer stroke. This engine family was the last Cadillac cast-iron engine, and the last 'big-block'.
All subsequent engines were from Buick (the short-lived 252 cu in / 4.1 liter V6), Oldsmobile (the 350 diesel and 307 gasoline V8), and of course Cadillac itself, with its troublesome "HT-4100" small block V8, an alloy unit with cast iron cylinder liners.
In 1985 Cadillac introduced a brand new, front-wheel drive platform. Cadillac put the De Ville and introduced the Cadillac Fleetwood on this platform. This car featured two "firsts"; It had the first transverse mounted V8 ever (the HT4100) and it was the first car to have a high mounted stop-lamp that was mandated for the 1986 model year.
The rear wheel drive 1985 Cadillac Fleetwood Brougham continued on nearly unchanged from the 1984 model. 1985 was the final model year for the Fleetwood Brougham coupe. In 1986 the HT-4100 V8 was replaced with an Oldsmobile sourced 307 cubic inch (5.0 L) V8.
In 1987 the Fleetwood Brougham was renamed Cadillac Brougham, and in 1990 was given its first noticeable facelift since 1980. It featured composite headlights, wrap around front bumper, rocker panel cladding and clear/white tail lamps. It was available with a Chevrolet sourced 350 cubic inch (5.7 L) L05 V8. The last Brougham rolled off the production line in Arlington, Texas in August 1992.
|1981–1982||252 cu in (4.1 L) Buick V6||125 hp (93 kW)||205 lb·ft (278 N·m)|
|1982–1985||250 cu in (4.1 L) HT-4100 V8||135 hp (101 kW)||190 lb·ft (260 N·m)|
|1986||307 cu in (5.0 L) Oldsmobile 307 V8||140 hp (100 kW)||245 lb·ft (332 N·m)|
|1980–1985||350 cu in (5.7 L) LF9 Diesel V8||105 hp (78 kW)||205 lb·ft (278 N·m)|
|1980–1981||368 cu in (6.0 L) L62 V8-6-4 V8||145 hp (108 kW)||270 lb·ft (370 N·m)|
|1977–1979||425 cu in (7.0 L) L33 V8||180 hp (130 kW)||320 lb·ft (430 N·m)|
|1977–1979||425 cu in (7.0 L) L35 V8||195 hp (145 kW)||320 lb·ft (430 N·m)|