The target customer of these cars, "The Blue Hairs" were people like my father, a World War II veteran born in 1923. Dad had two Cadillac Sedan DeVilles in his 74 years; a blue on black 1972 and black on red 1979 that was very similar looking to this '85 Fleetwood Brougham. Both were horrible automobiles but that mattered little to my "Greatest Generation" father who was blind to everything that a Cadillac, in the 1970s and 1980s at least, wasn't. He saw it for what he believed it to be or was. That Cadillacs were statements that one was successful or that they had "arrived" regardless of whether or not they were great or even decent cars or not. He bristled when I told him that they had become little more than a tarted up Chevrolet. He got his Irish up even more so when I droned on about how bad Cadillac engines had become.
Be that as it may, Cadillac had something for everyone in 1985. On one hand, for starters in 1985 anyway, Cadillac sold re badged DeVilles they called "Fleetwood Broughams" that, in essence at least, were targeted at folks like my father who didn't want their Cadillac to be anything different than it had been for the previous 40 years or so. It was big and ostentatious like all Cadillacs had been. Well, save for the 1975 vintage Seville but that's a story for another day.
On the other hand you had these "new", small, front wheel drive Cadillacs that offered buyers, to quote the brochure, "traditional Cadillac luxury in a sleek, contemporary 'feeling'". That would be appropriate copywriting had The Little Cadillac DeVille been anything approaching handsome like the 1975 Seville but this is what they looked like. This is what Cadillac offered buyers that they believed might be lured into BMW and Mercedes Benz showrooms. Is it any wonder GM went bankrupt in 2008?
Cadillac's two pronged approach worked inasmuch as Cadillac sold just as many DeVilles, Fleetwoods and Fleetwood Broughams in 1985 as they did in 1984. It did not work inasmuch as Cadillac's market share did not grow at all. So if success is not failing, job done.
They don't make 'em, literally, like this anymore and that's a good thing. Figuratively speaking, though, they - meaning Cadillac - do make this car today with their shamefully marked up and mildly disguised XTS which is little more than a Chevrolet Impala meets Buick Lacrosse. I wonder why anyone would pay the extra money for an XTS when for almost half as much money they could drive almost as much car but then again. As I told my father years ago that his beloved Cadillac was nothing more than a chromed up Chevy, some things never change.