Cadillac Model S Tulip Roadster

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Model S Tulip Roadster





By 1907 it became clear to Henry Leland that Cadillac had to focus on and develop more multi-cylinder cars. Sales had dropped 37 percent in 1907, but the decline was about to be halted thanks to an ambitious Cadillac salesman in London, England by the name of Frederick S. Bennett. Having been importing Cadillac models since 1903, he conceived of the idea of entering the marque in Sir Thomas Dewar’s annual trophy event that was awarded to the manufacturer deemed worthy of the most significant advance in the automobile industry. The complete disassembly and reassembly of three Cadillac single-cylinder cars was overseen by the Royal Automobile Club under strict security. The process consisted of the piling and mixing-up of all the parts of the three cars, plus replacing 89 parts from stock to prove interchangeability. The success of the demonstration and awarding of the Dewar Trophy gave instant worldwide recognition to Cadillac and spawned the slogan, “Standard of the World.”

The Model S and Model T of 1908 were essentially versions of the K/M from previous years with the wheelbase extended to 82 in (2,100 mm). These would prove to be the last single-cylinder Cadillacs, with the line-up unified with the four-cylinder Model Thirty for 1909. The main difference between the S and T was that the latter lacked running boards.

Cadillac built only 2,377 cars in 1908, and far fewer were Model S Roadsters with the stylish “Tulip” body. 

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