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1953 Cadillac Wagon Is a Mysterious Field Find, Unexpected Surprise Under the Hood

"Cadillac" and "wagon" are two words we don't see together unless we're talking about the second-generation CTS. But grocery getters wearing the iconic wreath can be traced back to the late 1940s. All thanks to coachbuilding companies and customers who wanted to stand out. This 1953 Cadillac is one of those rare cars that got an extended roof, but it's a bit of mystery as far as its origins and purpose go.
1953 Cadillac station wagon 13 photos
1953 Cadillac station wagon1953 Cadillac station wagon1953 Cadillac station wagon1953 Cadillac station wagon1953 Cadillac station wagon1953 Cadillac station wagon1953 Cadillac station wagon1953 Cadillac station wagon1953 Cadillac station wagon1953 Cadillac station wagon1953 Cadillac station wagon1953 Cadillac station wagon
Wagons based on early 1950s Cadillacs may be rare, but they're not unheard of. At least a couple of coachbuilding companies made conversions around that time, either for civilian use or as hearses and ambulances. But this weathered classic is a bit different than the rest.

This unique hauler stands out due to its rather strange roof, which is raised over the passenger section but goes flat over the cargo area. With the raised portion acting as a storage compartment between the roof and the headliner, the flat rear section doesn't make much sense. Unless the original design also included some sort of roof rack.

The bulbous tailgate also looks strange compared to other Cadillac wagon conversions from the era, but I guess whoever built this grocery getter sacrificed elegance to get more storage room. Speaking of which, there's absolutely no indication as to which coachbuilding company created this wagon. But the fit and finish appear to be legit, so I'm betting on a professional builder like Superior or Meteor.

Anyway, this strange and cool Cadillac spent quite a few years off the road and it's waiting for a new owner on a field in Tennessee. The worn-out paint includes traces of red and green, while the passenger section is missing its original floor panels. Surprisingly enough, the seller claims the vehicle is drivable, but I wouldn't rush to take it for a spin around the block. On the flip side, the body is in excellent condition, with very little rust to worry about.

As for what's under the hood, the original 331-cubic-inch (5.4-liter) V8 is long gone. An unidentified 350-cubic-inch (5.7-liter) V8 of the GM variety lurks under the hood now; possibly a small block from the 1980s judging by its layout and ancillaries.

If you're into rare conversions or classic Cadillac wagons, this behemoth is being auctioned off by eBay seller "highway12parts" as we speak. Bidding has reached $1,255 with four days to go, but the auction still has a "reserve not met" status. However, the seller claims the Caddy comes with a "low reserve price." Is this coach-built and possibly unique wagon worth saving?

Editor's note: This article was not sponsored or supported by a third-party.

 
 
 
 
 

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