Road Proven! Harold Chapman’s 1957 Cadillac Eldorado Biarritz
You could argue that Harold and Tracy Chapman had an unfair advantage in the Goodguys 2021 BASF America’s Most Beautiful competition. They started with an incredible example of ’50s styling – the rare 1957 Cadillac Eldorado Biarritz – and had the backing of the build team at their highly regarded shop, Customs and Hot Rods of Andice.
This ’57 is Harold’s answer to Tracy’s beautiful ’49 Cadillac convertible built by CHRA several years ago. Bought as a “finished” car that seemed very clean, rusty floors were soon revealed, leading the CHRA team to build fresh floors to accommodate a new Roadster Shop chassis with RideTech air springs. EVOD machined one-off 20-inch wheels that mimic Cadillac Sabre wheels, which get rolling courtesy of a 427c.i. Texas Speed LS3 dressed to look like a vintage Cad V8, including dual throttle body EFI with a custom batwing air cleaner. A Bowler-built 4L80E handles shifting chores.
Though the body is mostly stock, the CHRA team tucked the bumpers and built custom engine bay panels before applying the deep, rich PPG black paint. Inside, the original seats got new foam and fresh Wipelli leather by JJ’s Interior, while Restomod Air and Dakota Digital instruments provided updates.
The Cadillac had already logged 9,000 miles before arriving in Pleasanton, and then traveled on the 2021 Goodguys Hall of Fame Road Tour in September. For the Chapmans, soaking up those road miles might be the best award of all.
Photos by Marc Gewertz & John Drummond
Driving Photo by Damon Lee