The 1960s Elvis's Cadillacs
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This vehicle is the ultimate in luxury and opulence. Costing $100,000, it was customised by George Barris with gold plated interior gadgets such as a phone, shoe buffer, refrigerator, entertainment console with a ten record automatic changer RCA record player, swivel TV and tape deck. Forty coats of exterior paint made with pearl, diamond dust and oriental fish scales were used on the outside. Hubcaps, wheel covers, headlight rims and the front grille are gold plated in 24kt gold. Gold lame drapes were used to cover the back windows and to separate the front and back seats. Truly a vehicle fit for a King!
Elvis used it occasionally in the early 60's but towards the end of 1966, Colonel Parker talked RCA into buying it for $24,000 as a promotional tool. The car tour (which included Australia in 1968) was a great success. Bob Hayden has been researching the Australian tour, click here for lots more details and pictures.
In Houston, 40,000 people came to take a look and take home a free `Elvis Presley's Gold Car' postcard. In Atlanta, the car was the guest of honor at a dinner for 250 dignitaries. In the late 70's the car was donated to the Country Music Association Hall of Fame in Nashville. When you press a button, the roof lifts off so you can see inside it.
Prior to the car being moved to the new Country Music Association Hall Of Fame about 2004, the car underwent some restoration. See the collage provided by Stephen Shutts of the restoration process.