The Cadillac

story is in many ways the story of modern America itself, certainly of the American car industry.

From the stately classics of the 1930s with their 12- and 16-cylinder engines, though the Elvis-age extravaganzas of the 1950s, to the luxury marvels of the 1960s, Cadillac represented a particular American brio and symbolized what the resourceful individual could accomplish.

But Cadillac seemed to lose some luster in the 1970s as Americans, sensibilities transformed by the turbulent 1960s, started to view premium-brand foreign cars as the new benchmarks of sophistication and prestige.