Cadillac Eldorado Biarritz 1959






scale 1:18

Model number: 36813


Review of the model:

The 1959 Cadillac Eldorado Biarritz was the peak of the 1950´ extravaganza in chrome and fins, from that point the following cars were more down toned in the designs, so much that one of the leading automobile designers; Harley Earl said they were “pulled Chickens”.

Therefore many people will think of 59´ Cadillac as the real American car of all time. And if you will collect the car in scale 1:18 there are Precision models/Greenlight and autoArt, that make 1959 Cadillac’s in De Ville and hearses, ambulances and limousines. But the only maker of the top of line; The Cadillac Eldorado Biarritz is the budget priced model car from Maisto. In some respect a rather crude model, as some of the parts is a bit out of proportions, here I think the headlights is the most prominent parts. Furthermore the model has an issue about the missing pikes of the upper trim line of the rear fins. It gives the model a look like a safety toy for kids under 8 years!
Other parts such as on the hood, the Cadillac emblem is just made of a sticker – not what a serious collector desire, but on the other hand one of the better interiors in this price range. Just look on the steering wheel and instrument panel and feel the soft “leather” seats. One of the worst features this model car has is the poor paint work in a non realistic color (pink) – I know you could chose a pink poly color back in 1959, but not this Barbie pink.

If we open the trunk and hood you will not use superlatives, but the motor itself is rather detailed. The model car from Maisto is not one of the better ones and compared to the Maisto 1965 Chevrolet Corvette in the same price range, it shows it age in parts and molds. This model car is in need of a retooling. And if Maisto did so it will be a seller from day one.

This Cadillac Eldorado Biarritz is maybe already a seller, as you can pick one up easily on the use model car marked. I did that, as I already know this model have potential for to becoming a better model car if someone is willing to invest some hours of labor and care.
This is my second Maisto 59 Cadillac and I have the whole plan for the restoration process to do the job.

Firstly the exciting job of pick the right color scheme for the car:
I’m not a Hot-Rod guy and I will say it is a crime to Hot Rod the design icons of the 1950´. Therefore the model must be as original in the appearance as it rolled out of the factory and only colors that were available back then will be considered. Luckily we can find the 1959 paint chips from GM and get the color as near as possible. The Persian Sand Poly is one of my favorite for the car and to novices it is a light brown with a pinkish metallic. This color was sold out and my second choice was Wood Rose metallic a light gold metallic with a hint of rose color. I used real acrylic automotive spray can-paint from Motip. The interior was Humbrol Enamel paint 50 % gold metallic and 50 % silver metallic. That gave a fine contrast but at the same time a color that matched the exterior color. The modern metallic acrylic paint today is not as gloss as 20 years ago, but some extra coat of gloss varnish helped a lot.

The interior of this Maisto model came without carpet in this price segment. But the light brown/beige color in hobby felt was chosen – easy to glue an over sized carpet on when the model car is dissembled in many parts. After the glue is dried you can cut the carpet to the right size. The same for the trunk and spare wheel as the interior parts in the trunk is very toy like. After the carpet was glued down and cut to right size the result was much better.

The most obvious part that has to be altered is the lack of fins tip – this may have been to spare small children of some injuries, but this car is not a toy and should not be presented to any child under 14 years old! Anyhow the wrong tips of the fins were cut off and a new pair was made by Ewergreen Plastic rods. It took some time with a sander and knife to adjust the plastic to the right size and angles. CA-glued to the body and a coat of Liquid Chrome from the Molotow pen ended the job to a much better degree.

This model has a hood emblem just as a sticker and this is a bit of shame. I glued the Cadillac shield on a piece of styrene plastic card to give it some height. Hereafter I cut around the shield and painted the edges with the chrome pen. The big chevron under the shield was made of plastic too. On the real Cadillac, two small chrome wings sit on front of the fender and to overlap the hood. They were made of households aluminum foil and glued with white glue.

Lastly the engine room was only lightly painted and the many parts of the model assembled. A week later the car get a buff with a soft cotton cloth to give the finishing gloss just as it rolled out back then in 1959.

A rather cheap model car, that with some investment in paint, parts and fun labor time, give a result that sometimes excel the ordinary process of just un-box a new model. I will recommend this fun job to all who had some model making skills from their childhood.

I will now give this model 3 out of 6 stars  ******

Below here are pictures of the model, historical description, old brochures, technical data and some movie clips of the real car. So please enjoy!





Hoax Cadillac brochure front page with 1959 Vouge fashion model Lucinda Hollingsworth.

  A true American icon of 1950'  
  Top of the line Cadillac  
A lovely color for this car
Note the new fin tips made of Evergreen plastic
Maisto had made some fine rear lights
A vast trunk now with hobby felt carpet
Ready for a ride?
An stylish interior too
With new carpet here too
"leather seats" in matching colors 50/50 % gold and silver
Some paintwork in the engine bay too
A Land yacht on the road
Fine realistic grain in the metallic paint
Shines as the real thing
You need a big garage for this car
A cheap model that looks good
Realistic plastic windows
Note the new hood emblem
And small chrome wings on the front fender and hood lid
If you are a shy person don't buy this car!
Space age design
If you like fins they don't come bigger
The model car have springs suspension
Soft rubber tires
I hope they will do a hardtop some day
Well made steering wheel and instrument panel
Close up of the interior




The Cadillac Eldorado is a personal luxury car that was manufactured and marketed by Cadillac from 1953 to 2002 over ten generations. Competitors and similar vehicles included the Lincoln Mark series, Buick Riviera, Oldsmobile Toronado and Chrysler's Imperial Coupe.

The Eldorado was at or near the top of the Cadillac line during early model years. The original 1953 Eldorado convertible and the Eldorado Brougham models of 1957–1960 were the most expensive models that Cadillac offered those years, and the Eldorado was never less than second in price after the Cadillac Series 75 until 1966

The 1959 Cadillac is remembered for its huge sharp tailfins with dual bullet tail lights, two distinctive rooflines and roof pillar configurations, new jewel-like grille patterns and matching deck lid beauty panels. In 1959 the Series 62 became the Series 6200. De Ville’s and 2-door Eldorado’s were moved from the Series 62 to their own series, the Series 6300 and Series 6400 respectively, though they all, including the 4-door Eldorado Brougham (which was moved from the Series 70 to Series 6900), shared the same 130 in (3,302 mm) wheelbase. New mechanical items were a "scientifically engineered" drainage system and new shock absorbers. All Eldorado’s were characterized by a three-deck, jeweled, rear grille insert, but other trim and equipment features varied. The Seville and Biarritz models had the Eldorado name spelled out behind the front wheel opening and featured broad, full-length body sill highlights that curved over the rear fender profile and back along the upper beltline region. Engine output was an even 345 hp (257 kW) from the 390 cu in (6.4 L) engine. Standard equipment included power brakes, power steering, automatic transmission, back-up lamps, windshield wipers, two-speed wipers, wheel discs, outside rearview mirror, vanity mirror, oil filter, power windows, six way power seats, heater, fog lamps, remote control deck lid, radio and antenna with rear speaker, power vent windows, air suspension, electric door locks and license frames. The Eldorado Brougham also came with Air conditioning, automatic headlight dimmer, and cruise control standard over the Seville and Biarritz trim lines

Are tailfins on the rise again? Surely not on production cars, which haven’t featured the jet-age influences since the 1960s, but certainly so in the auction arena, and an example of the tail finniest of 1950s cars – the 1959 Cadillac Eldorado Biarritz – made that point by selling for $255,750, including buyer’s fee.

At 42 inches tall, the 1959 Cadillac’s tailfins towered over the competition’s and marked the pinnacle of tailfin design, generating as much derision as celebration for their representation of American excess. Perhaps no other manufacturer dared go taller afterward, with a variety of reverse fins, multiple fins, and backward fins following instead. They seemed even more exaggerated on the Eldorado Biarritz, Cadillac’s flashiest and most expensive convertible for 1959 – and with 1,320 built, its rarest as well.

Number built: 1,320 Price new: $7,401


Technical specification:

1959 Cadillac Eldorado Biarritz



Detroit, Michigan, U.S.


Chuck Jordan

Body and chassis

Body style

2-door hardtop
2-door convertible
4-door hardtop


FR layout




Cadillac Sixty Special
Cadillac De Ville
Cadillac Series 62
Buick Electra
Oldsmobile 98



Engine: OHV V-8, iron block and cylinder heads
Displacement: 390 cubic inches
Bore x stroke: 4.00 x 3.875 inches
Compression ratio: 10.5:1
Horsepower at : 345 Hp. at 4,800 Rpm.
Torque at RPM: 435 at 3,400
Fuel Delivery: Three Rochester two-barrel carburetors
Weight: 5,060 pounds
Pounds per horsepower: 14.66
1/4-mile performance: 15.56 seconds


4-speed Hydra-Matic



130.0 in (3,302 mm)


225.0 in (5,715 mm)


1959 2-door: 80.2 in (2,037 mm)
4-door: 80.2 in (2,037 mm)


coupé: 54.1 in (1,374 mm)
convertible: 54.4 in (1,382 mm)
4-door: 56.2 in (1,427 mm)

Curb weight

Weight: 5,060 pounds

5,100–5,300 lb (2,300–2,400 kg)



Old brochures of the Cadillac 1959















Video of the real car from Youtube





If you have any question or comment your are free to contact me at:



Dealers are welcome to get their models reviewed too.






Aeronautic Jan. 2020


© 2004-2024 Aeronautic pictures. This website, the content, the design and the pictures and are intended for public non commercial use, and may be redistributed, freely printed, or electronically reproduced in its complete and unaltered form provided distribution is for private use only. Partial and other distribution means require the permission of Aeronautic Pictures. All rights reserved.