1929 Cadillac La Salle Roadster
Result: PASSED IN
Introduced in 1927, the LaSalle was introduced to the market by General Motors as a 'companion brand' to the top-end GM product, Cadillac. GM president Alfred P. Sloan Jr., disappointed at Packard usurping Cadillac's mantle as the most popular high-end American car, identified a rung on the GM brand ladder that could be filled, as there was a gap of more than $1000 between the highest specification Buick and the cheapest Caddy at the time and right where Packard products were pitched. In consultation with Lawrence P. Fisher, appointed Cadillac president in 1925, Sloan decided their new car would be marketed through Cadillac and would be more elaborately styled than its big brothers. They employed the talents of Harley Earl for the initial design, a man who would go on to retire as GM's director of design three decades later. Inspired by Eurpoe's Hispano-Suiza, Earl set to work, while Cadillac introduced a 303ci, 75bhp V8 for motivation. By 1928 the 303ci was out to 80bhp, and by 1929 LaSalles accounted for over 70% of Cadillacs total sales. By 1940, however, the brand disappeared amidst another GM re-shuffle.