2019 Detroit Autorama Ridler Award: Steve Barton’s 59 Cadillac

2019 Ridler Award Winner CADMAD - Powered By NRE

Tim Bernsau - Author | Chuck Vranas - Author | HotRod.com

We have a winner! The Don Ridler Memorial Award at the 2018 Meguiar's Detroit Autorama Presented by O'Reilly Auto Parts is the biggest automotive prize of the weekend. Many would say it's the biggest automotive award of the year. This year, the prize has been bestowed up the 1959 Cadillac Eldorado Brougham, owned by the late Steve Barton and built by Jordan Quintal II and the team of builders at Super Rides By Jordan in Escondido, California

There's a saying at Super Rides By Jordan, "If you can dream it, we can build it!" This is especially true of the Cadillac custom called "Cadmad," the dream of Steve Barton from Las Vegas, Nevada. Sixteen years in the making, the custom accomplishes something GM didn't attempt until a few years ago—a wagon, and we like this one better.

The raw material for the luxury hauler is a 1959 Eldorado Brougham. The limited edition Brougham was something a a factory custom from Cadillac, hand-built in Italy by Pinin Farina. We're told this in Number 85 of the 99 Broughams built in 1959.

In transforming this one into a wagon, the Super Rides By Jordan team made a few dimensional modifications. The length was reduced 18 1/2 inches; the body was sectioned 2 1/2 inches; rear doors removed; front doors stretched 6 inches. The body was narrowed 4 inches to match the pancaked Nomad roof.

The custom engine is a Nelson Racing Engine 632 fed by 88mm Mirror Image turbochargers, capable of more than 1,00 horsepower. The elaborate frame is constructed of 1 5/8-inch round tubing. The wagon rolls on modified 18-inch Evod wheels designed to look like stock Brougham wheels. The attention-getting paint is a color called Fawntana Rose, similar to stock Cadillac, with pearl replacing the metallic. The Ron Mangus interior includes Classic Instruments gauges in a custom dash.

Steve Barton passed away before this car was completed; his brother Craig is showing the Cadmad in his honor. Parked in a primo spot in Cobo Center, this car has been creating a buzz since Thursday set-up day. Today it earned the ultimate title of the Ridler Award.

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