Alfred P. Sloan was the president of GM for a long time and always had great plans for the company. Under his leadership, GM rose to success and created company policies that are still being used by many automobile companies today. Sloan was the one who started the idea for the “companion brand”. During the 1920s, Sloan saw that each of the GM cars had a huge difference in prices between them and to minimize that gap, he created the companion brand. The Buick, Oakland, and Oldsmobile were each accompanied by the Marquette, Pontiac, and Viking, respectively.
At that time, Cadillac did not have a companion brand. Sloan wanted its companion brand to be a cheaper version of the Cadillac and have the same feeling as a true Cadillac. He wanted the upper-middle class customers to have a taste of the Cadillac experience at a more economical price. The result was the LaSalle brand which built a wide range of coachworks from Fleetwood and Fisher. The beautiful LaSalle coachworks were designed by Harley Earl, a young designer that showed a lot of promise.
LaSalle started production in 1927 and had a great start that lasted for several years. Harley Earl’s new designs for LaSalle were so successful that they started to influence other brands within the GM lineup. The LaSalle cars were powered by the same V8 engines used on the Cadillac. Because the LaSalle cars were smaller and lighter, they had a better weight-to-power ratio compared with the Cadillac. With its sporty coachwork and respectable performance, the LaSalle brand became very successful. Unfortunately, like most car companies of that time, LaSalle was hit by the Great Depression. In 1930, Viking and Marquette closed down but LaSalle was able to endure until 1941. In fact, LaSalle was actually doing great and was selling better than Cadillac but was shut down to give way to Cadillac which was the main competitor against GM’s longtime rival, Packard.
This 1930 LaSalle Model 4060 with a sporty Phaeton coachwork has been restored several years ago and has been thoroughly maintained. It is a great example of the rare and highly desirable Phaeton body built by Fleetwood that comes in a cream finish with brown fenders, coach lines, and chassis. The cream wheels and orange pinstripes add to its charm. It has been well preserved since it was restored. The body is perfectly solid with a glowing finish. It is fitted with a number of accessories including mounted spare tires on each side, chrome side mirrors, twin Trippe lights, radiator stone guard, and the signature goddess figurehead on top of the radiator. All of the chrome are intact and have beautiful shines except for the bumpers that have some signs of wear.
The interior is covered with lovely tan leather looks solid. The rear seat has minimal signs of aging but the front seats have are not so fortunate. The driver’s seat has a bit of wrinkle but is still solid. The solid dash is fitted with original gauges and instruments including the gauges for oil pressure, water temp, fuel level, and speed. It also has a classic Jaeger clock. The tan canvas top also looks great. When the canvas top is not in use, it can be folded over the trunk and secured with leather straps.
It is powered by iconic Cadillac V8 engine that presents in a very solid and clean condition. Everything in the engine bay looks clean and period correct, it has been preserved in its simple and classic look. It runs perfectly well and starts on command. The sporty look topped with reliable power makes this LaSalle a great classic cruiser. It has been recognized by the CCCA as a Full Classic. It is a great example of the martyr brand that sacrificed itself to ensure the survival of the iconic Cadillac name.
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