In 1915 Cadillac introduced its first V-8 engine. Designed by D. McCall White for the Master of Precision, Henry Leland, it featured fork and blade connecting rods that positioned the cylinders on each bank directly opposite each other, cast iron cylinder blocks and an aluminum crankcase. A breakthrough in design, engineering and manufacturing, the Cadillac V-8 remained in production in its original layout with progressive improvements until 1936 and established the nearly synonymous connection between Cadillac and V-8. Even in its earliest form it made 70 horsepower, giving Cadillac smooth, reliable power to withstand the toughest use and power the most luxurious coachwork. Production in 1915 was an amazing 13,002 units; only a few years later Cadillac would supply over 2,000 as staff cars for the American Expeditionary Force in World War I. One of the first to recognize the Cadillac Model 51's qualities was Henry Record, a famous early cowboy, cattleman and founder of the Open Range Cowboys Association, a picturesque gathering of cowboys who'd ridden the range in the days before fences. It remained in his possession until his death in 1962 and was acquired from his widow the following year by James Renzulli who completed a thorough and complete restoration in the following years. The Touring Car body is finished in Dark Green with Black fenders coachlined in Gold, upholstered in Black leather with matching carpets and top. The wood spoke wheels are finished in body color and mount 36 x 4 1/2 Firestone black wall tires. A nickel plated front bumper (an option), air compressor mounted on the engine and electric Klaxon horn complete its equipment. The restoration has been carefully and sympathetically maintained and its appearance belies its age. Although it shows some use it can barely be characterized as having "patina," a tribute the quality of its workmanship and materials and the care it has received. There are very few 95-year old automobiles around that can boast its combination of history, condition and a single owner from new until the early 60's. When coupled with the quality, performance and historical significance of being one of the first Cadillac V-8s with desirable open coachwork this 1915 Model 51 Cadillac Touring becomes an important addition to any collection and a preferred mount for tours where its 50+mph cruising speed will bring it to the end of a day's run in plenty of time for cocktails, conversation and a leisurely dinner.
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