1996 Cadillac Fleetwood Reviews

1996 Cadillac Fleetwood Brougham 5.7 V8 from North America

Model year1996
Year of manufacture1996
First year of ownership2009
Most recent year of ownership2010
Engine and transmission 5.7 V8 Automatic
Performance marks 10 / 10
Reliability marks 10 / 10
Comfort marks 10 / 10
Dealer Service marks 9 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 10 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
9.8 / 10
Distance when acquired39000 miles
Most recent distance48000 miles
Previous carPlymouth Breeze

Summary:

A true gem that was my grandmother's pride and joy

Faults:

Recently had all the fluids replaced.

Been problem free otherwise.

General Comments:

When my 1996 Plymouth Breeze was totaled in a car accident back in 2009, I needed another vehicle. My 82 year old grandmother was about to be put in a nursing home. She had asked me if I wanted the car, and I gladly said yes. What a gift!!

I remembered when my grandmother had bought the car. It is all midnight blue. It still has the original spare tire in the trunk. Speaking of the trunk, it is huge!! You can easily fill it with a bunch of grocery bags, or some luggage.

As for the interior, it is huge as well. Plenty of room for 6 people. The interior of this car is true Cadillac luxury, 90's style. It was never smoked in, and still is to this very day.

As far as the ride is concerned, it rides beautifully! And that 260 horsepower sure comes through when you are on the interstates. Plenty of passing power. Parking it requires a big parking space and patience.

There are no dents or rust on this car, simply because the car has and always will be garage kept.

Recently, I went to see my grandmother at the nursing home, and when she saw the car, she cried happily that the car still looked as perfect as it did when she had it. I took my grandmother for a ride in it, and she told me to pamper it, and I do that.

I also have a 2008 SRX, and only use it when I have to. It gets loads of compliments. I love it, and will keep it. It is truly a gem!!

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 16th September, 2010

1996 Cadillac Fleetwood Brougham 5.7L LT1 from North America

Model year1996
Year of manufacture1996
First year of ownership2006
Most recent year of ownership2009
Engine and transmission 5.7L LT1 Automatic
Performance marks 8 / 10
Reliability marks 9 / 10
Comfort marks 8 / 10
Dealer Service marks 2 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 4 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
6.2 / 10
Distance when acquired63000 miles
Most recent distance100112 miles
Previous carCadillac DeVille

Summary:

Great car; would recommend to anyone

Faults:

It needed a tuneup after 88k miles, and at 94k miles after an accident where someone side swiped my fender. Some how the interior lights won't work, and my heated seat for the driver's side won't heat up.

General Comments:

I love this car; it is roomy and comfortable.

Overall it's a very reliable car.

It's fast when it needs to be; the LT1 engine is quick and nimble when passing on the highway.

The gas mileage for such a big car isn't too bad. I probably get close to 22 miles on the highway.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 24th December, 2009

1996 Cadillac Fleetwood 5.7 V8 from North America

Model year1996
Year of manufacture1996
First year of ownership2006
Most recent year of ownership2009
Engine and transmission 5.7 V8 Automatic
Performance marks 6 / 10
Reliability marks 4 / 10
Comfort marks 10 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 5 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
6.3 / 10
Distance when acquired80000 miles
Most recent distance110000 miles
Previous carVolvo 940

Summary:

Big, comfortable, and flashy - what a Cadillac is supposed to be

Faults:

Car purchased with backup light housings broken, needing immediate replacement. One rear window has been stuck in the closed position the entire time I've had the car.

Struck a deer at 85,000 miles, requiring extensive front body work and new radiator, but hardly the car's fault. Repairs cost insurance company more than I paid for the car.

Rear brake lines replaced at 90,000 miles due to corrosion. Other rear window regulator failed at around 94,000 miles, leaving glass in down position ($800 to fix).

Transmission rebuilt at 99,000 miles. Rusty exhaust brackets replaced at the same time. ($1800 total). Rebuilt transmission needed new solenoids and computer work a few thousand miles later, covered under warranty.

Did the factory recommended 100,000 mile tune up, including new plugs and wires.

Turn signal relay failed at 102,000 miles, $300 repair.

New water pump, distributor, and shocks at 107,000 miles. ($1200).

General Comments:

This had been used as a tow vehicle by a previous owner, though the hitch is no longer on the car. I suspect many of the problems I've encountered may be related to that hard use and deferred maintenance.

The fact that I was able to purchase the car for $3100 below blue book value was probably another clue that it was going to need some work in the near future.

I think I've finally caught up on most of the major faults, there's really not much left to break that hasn't been fixed already. Some of what's happened can be excused as normal on a 13-year old car with well over 100k miles, but much of it is probably the result of abuse by prior owners.

I do love this car, and plan to keep it for as long as I can. The comfort and space simply can't be equaled by anything on the market today, and the LT1 V8 is one of the best engines GM has ever made. The exterior is pure classic Cadillac, with lots of chrome, fender skirts, and even tiny tailfins around the tailights.

This is one of only 12,000 '96 Fleetwoods built, with a little over 100,000 of this type made over 4 years. There's not many on the road, and despite the mechanical issues, this car is in perfect cosmetic shape, which has fooled at least a few into thinking it was a much newer car.

Even with the age and miles, this car will still do 0-60 in under 9 seconds when pushed, and can carry 6 people and tons of their luggage in comfort. Fuel economy has been less than quoted, averaging around 13-14mpg in mixed driving, with low 20s on the highway, but I didn't buy this car for the mileage.

They just don't make 'em like this anymore, which means I have no choice but to keep this one on the road forever.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 13th September, 2009

13th Sep 2009, 19:16

Sorry, but the 1996 Fleetwood was an old car from the day it came from the showroom. It was really an obsolete tub compared to the Northstar engined Cadillacs that were available then.

2nd Oct 2009, 12:09

As a Fleetwood owner, the car was old but reliable technology. Northstar engines have had more than their share of issues. Ask my father about his DeVille...

3rd Oct 2009, 15:00

Not only was the Northstar an excessively complex ticking time bomb, it was placed in a front-wheel drive car! By definition worse than the rear wheel drive Fleetwood.

Besides, engines like the Northstar, for all their expensive complexity of overhead valves, etc., only provide more horsepower, not more torque.. Torque is the key to enjoyable motoring, and cast-iron pushrod engines were simply the best motoring technology.

28th Feb 2012, 20:42

To me, the "high-tech" of the Northstar is a liability, not an asset. Do you know how many hours are allotted in the "flat-rate book" for changing the starter? It's all of six or seven: just to change a starter - buried in the center of the engine.

I'll accept a 'lesser' engine in some people's minds for much less maintenance costs.

Average review marks: 8.1 / 10, based on 7 reviews