The idle speed control motor went bad, making the car stall after being started. It took 2-3 tries, then it would stay running. This only occurred at normal engine operating temperature. Cold starting was fine.
Both front door windows fell down into the door.
A/C quit working.
Head gasket blew and destroyed the engine at only 91,000 miles. $3500.
Air compressor for the air shocks quit working.
The water pump kept going bad after the engine was replaced. Went through 4 of them.
The blower motor got stuck on and drained the battery.
The paint peeled off the hood.
Transmission started making strange grinding noises.
Got rid of it after that.
This car doesn't have the build quality of the previous rear wheel drive models that preceded it. While they all had engine seal problems, at least the big older models body and interior would hold up. This car is just bad in all areas, including the paint. The previous owner kept maintenance records in the manual, so I thought I was getting a good one. But that proved not to be true.
This is a difficult and costly car to maintain, so they don't make good project cars.
The performance of the engine is excellent. It can get up to speed quickly.
The interior is nice and roomy, but the dashboard is awkwardly designed. The climate control is located next to the steering column, so you have to reach around or through the steering wheel to get to it. The driver information centers are at the bottom of the dash, by your knees, so you have to look all the way down to see what's going on. Good thing nothing too important comes on at the information centers.
It's a quiet car and the ride is good. But not as good as the rear wheel drive models.
It handles great for a four door luxury sedan.
This is not a bad looking or bad driving car. It's just a poorly made car that will breakdown and fall apart on you. This is unusual for Cadillacs, as I've had them in the past, and they were all durable high quality cars. The only advantage this car has over the big Cadillacs is it handles better and is faster.
I know back then Cadillac was trying to compete with European imports, and they seem to have gotten it right with this car. They made a good handling, good performing, four door car with horrible quality and a short life expectancy. Sounds like a typical European car. Just look at the same era Mercedes, BMW, or Jaguar. They're just as lousy.
If you're looking for a Caddy, steer clear of these models from the model years 1985-1988. They're the worst ones made.