Cadillac - La Salle II Roadster
In 1955, Harley Earl’s Art and Color Section created two Cadillac LaSalle II dream cars for display in the 1955 GM Motorama shows. One was a small four-door hardtop sedan. The other was a two-seat convertible roadster. Compact V6 experimental aluminum engines powered both. Both LaSalles had 1940’s style vertical grille openings, Dagmar bumper guards and the LaS insignia as used in the marques' early years.
The hardtop sedan had rear-hinged back doors with seating for six despite a compact 108-inch wheelbase. Overall length was just 180-inches, height a mere 50-inches. The lowness was partly achieved with 13-inch tires. Other features included unit construction, a big compound-curve windshield, concave body side ellipses and semi-exposed rear wheels.
The other LaSalle II, the two-seat roadster convertible, had a fiberglass body with concave body side panels behind the front wheel openings. It was extremely short with a chopped-off rear end with fully opened rear fenders. Chassis side rails housed the exhaust pipes, which exited just ahead of the back wheels.
Both LaSalle II’s were strictly for show and never intended for showrooms. Sent to the crusher, both the four-door hardtop and roadster were instead hidden in the back corner of a salvage yard and were acquired ca. 1990 by a Chicago area nightclub owner, Joe Bortz, who has made a significant investment in restoring GM Motorama cars.