Driving doesn't get much more comfortable than the Cadillac Deville- the big stately sofa-sedan that's been providing relaxing trips to drivers since it came out back in 1949.
Over its life, Deville never lost sight its goal: providing a cavernous and comfortable interior mounted on top of a nearly stretch-limo wheelbase by means of a marshmallow suspension.
In the mid eighties, the engineers got confused and the drive wheels found their way up front, where they remain today. This isn't a handling or performance car by most regards, though owners report that the big sedans handle better than most may think.
They fly like the wind too- motivated by a 4.6 liter Northstar V8 engine that's renowned for smoothness and velvety sound effects. Expect horsepower in the high two-hundreds- depending on the model. A four-speed automatic was standard.
Fuel consumption is less impressive than the performance- but if you want to move a 5000-plus pound leviathan around with authority, it's the price to be paid.
The engine was a massive achievement for an American automaker in its day- and is known to be reliable and easy to maintain. Be sure that the previous owner stuck to the recommended maintenance, and be sure to do the same if you adopt a used model.
This is a chain-driven four-cam, 32-valve engine- and if the timing chain breaks, you can count on needing a new powerplant. There's no fixing most of the complex internals either- and Cadillac simply recommends replacement if anything major fails inside. Keep your oil changed, maintenance on schedule, and engine running in tip-top shape to avoid an expensive repair.
In addition to its marvel of an engine, Deville introduced some high-tech features in more recent years that were intended to give it an edge against ever-increasing international pressures. A night-vision system proved an interesting idea, though it was quickly killed off by poor sales.