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The (new) Cadillac Database©

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Unless otherwise specified all photos and illustrations are from Yann Saunders'
collection of Cadillac photos, advertisements and product catalogs,
reproduced courtesy of the Cadillac Motor Car Division and the Cadillac-LaSalle Club



14factry.jpg (13817 bytes)
This is a print of a rare glass projection slide; it shows the Cadillac engine assembly room in 1914; in the foreground is an interesting view of the so-called ¾-platform rear suspension



The big news for 1914 was Cadillac's winning England's coveted Dewar Trophy for the second time (Cadillac is the only auto maker to ever have achieved this feat twice in a row).  The trophy rewards the most distinguished automotive achievement of the year, demonstrating the advancement of the industry. The Dewar trophy was instituted in 1904 to encourage technical progress. It was sponsored by a wealthy member of the British Parliament, Sir Thomas Dewar. It was awarded annually to the company making the most important advancement in the automotive field.

The first time Cadillac won the Trophy was in 1908 when three 1907 runabout models were totally dismantled, the parts mixed up and three complete cars re-built from the jumbled parts, under the close scrutiny of the jury members; Cadillac had thus demonstrated convincingly the company's stated claim that all component parts of its cars were effectively interchangeable without machining or fitting of any kind.

The factors taken into consideration in the 1913 competition [[that used an open 1914 model (#92,524)]] [[where did I get this info? How could a competition held in 1913 be using a Car built only in 1914??]],  were the certainty and endurance of the electrical devices that ensured self-starting, lighting and ignition, as well as the improved fuel consumption as a result of the new, two-speed rear axle that could be shifted  from high to low, and vice versa, by means of an electric shifting device (no fewer than 520 flawless shifts were performed during the tests).

Unfortunately, Cadillac was taken to court in January 1915 by Walter S. Austin of the  Austin Automobile Company for infringement of the latter's 1913 patent governing a two-speed rear axle device shown in 1913 at the Chicago Auto Show.   Although there were admittedly major differences in the two designs the judge found in favor of the plaintiff, nonetheless, and awarded him substantial damages.   However, by the time the court ruled, Cadillac had already abandoned four cylinder cars and the two-speed rear axle forever.  The new V8 models had been in the showrooms and on the streets already since September 1914.

Cadillac had planned to make 18,000 cars this year.  In fact only 14,003 of them were built.  All but one of the body styles (the torpedo)   were used again in 1914; a new model also made its appearance this year; called the inside drive limousine for five passengers it featured two doors set in the center of the car, giving access between the two rows of seats, in the style of former, individual railway carriages.

The standard finish on all models was Calumet green with a gold stripe,  Standard equipment included the Cadillac top and windshield (open cars), full lamp equipment, gasoline gauge, electric horn, power tire inflator pump, foot rail, robe rail and cocoa mat floor covering (in open car tonneaus), tire irons, a full set of tools including a tire repair kit and a Warner autometer.

There is no easy way to distinguish the 1914 cars from the rest, other than the fact that the side lights are smaller and mounted on stanchions level with the top of the engine hood; fenders on the roadster have a more pronounced curve all round; the landaulet coupe has larger windows all round and the roof no longer projects over the hood; compared to 1913 cars there is no half-window at the rear of the driver's compartment.

I have been unable to locate a nice 1914 product catalog at reasonable cost. The photos used here to illustrate the 1914v model range are original, factory sepia-colored 8x10 inch prints on stiff card.  I was fortunate to obtain a full set of them, many years ago.  In addition, I have a 4-page folder for 1914 where I found the images for the folding steering wheel and the two-speed rear axle. Over the past 45 years of collecting colorful Cadillac and LaSalle advertisements, I have turned up nineteen relating to the 1914 Cadillac cars, all of them in B&W.

Additional information on the 1914 models and the related sales literature may be found  in The (New) Cadillac Database© sections entitled "Descriptions and Specifications of Cadillac Cars 1913-1921" and  "Cadillac and La Salle Sales Literature 1910-1914".  Further recommended reading:

"Standard Catalog of Cadillac, 1903-2000" edited by James T. Lenzke, © 2000, published by Krause Publications, Inc., 700 E. State Street, Iola, WI 54990 [ISBN #0-87341-925-1, Library of Congress #91-61301].

I have shown the cars, below, in ascending order of their cost. Space-permitting, more photos of surviving cars may be added here, later. 


The Model Range for 1914


14rdster.JPG (5774 bytes)
The fastest car in the 1914 model range was this
sporty, open roadster costing $1975




14pass5.JPG (6674 bytes)
The open touring car for five passengers had no occasional
seating; in this configuration, it cost $1975




14phae5p.JPG (6148 bytes)
The racy phaeton, easily distinguishable from the others by its
special, double   belt molding with lighter inset, accommodated
four occupants in grand style; it cost $1975 in 1914




14pass7.JPG (6465 bytes)
The Cadillac open tourer for seven passengers was again a
popular model with large families;  in 1914 it cost $2075




14landcp.JPG (6370 bytes)
The 1914 so-called "landaulet coupe" did not have a folding roof
portion over the rear seat passengers, which was the usual 
characteristic of landaulet styling; this model cost $2500




14limo5p.JPG (6824 bytes)
New for 1914 was this so-called "inside drive limousine" for
five passengers; the doors were set in the center of the car
sides, between the two rows of seats; this model cost $2800




14limo7p.JPG (6344 bytes)
The 1914 limousine for seven passengers remained
the most expensive model in the range; it cost $3250





14trg.JPG (12082 bytes)    14trgsrv.jpg (9634 bytes)

14trg5a.jpg (6626 bytes)    14trg5b.jpg (6436 bytes)

14trg5c.jpg (6098 bytes)    14trg5d.jpg (5988 bytes)
Above three rows: three different surviving 5-pass and 7-pass touring cars

14rdst.jpg (7397 bytes)
A beautiful surviving roadster

14rds.jpg (8705 bytes)    Dr14racr.jpg (8870 bytes)
Two surviving roadsters converted for high speed touring



Mechanical Details


14_v8.jpg (9150 bytes)    14axl2sp.JPG (5389 bytes)
Left: Experimental V8 engine being tested, late in 1914
Right: controversial two-speed rear axle that resulted in a lawsuit for Cadillac

FA14TILT.jpg (9816 bytes)
Those who believe Cadillac's first "tilt'" steering
wheel came out in 1963 ...are wrong!



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© 1996, Yann Saunders and the Cadillac-LaSalle Club, Inc.
[ Background image:  1914 touring car survivor ]