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Elvis Presley truly did embody the 1950s American Dream: not only was he the most iconic star of his time, dominating the radio and silver screen alike, but he also owned a sweeping classic car collection back when a cool car was the biggest status symbol a person could have. The Elvis Presley pink Cadillac soon became a famous legacy.
Elvis, like so many men of his generation, dreamed of buying a Cadillac. Before he became one of the greatest rock musicians in history, Elvis worked at the Crown Electric Company in Memphis, Tennessee, and whiled away the hours daydreaming about owning a sleek, stylish Cadillac of his own.
This daydream quickly became a reality, and Elvis eventually owned more Cadillacs than any one person could ever hope to use—over 200, according to some estimates. Now, many of these classic vehicles are on display at car museums.
Elvis always believed in himself, and had a feeling that his dreams would come true. He’s been quoted as saying, “When I was driving a truck, every time a big shiny car would drive by, it would start me sort of daydreaming. I always felt that someday, somehow, something would happen to change everything for me and I’d daydream what I would be.”
What you need to know about the Elvis Presley pink Cadillac Fleetwood
According to Hot Cars, Elvis realized his dream of buying a Cadillac in March of 1955. His first Cadillac was a pink 1954 model—though this one wasn’t his famous pink Cadillac.
Unfortunately, the car had a faulty brake lining and in June 1955, Elvis got into a car accident, spelling out the end of his first Cadillac. He only owned the beloved car for three months before he had to part with it.
In an interview, Elvis lamented the end of his first pink Cadillac. “I parked it outside my hotel the day I got it and stayed up all night just looking at it,” said Elvis. “The next day, it caught fire and burned up on the road.” While this statement is a bit of an exaggeration, it illuminates the extent of his heartbreak.
It should be no surprise that one month later, on July 5, 1955, Elvis bought another car of the same color and make: a pink Cadillac Fleetwood Series 60. In fact, this car, which would become Elvis’ iconic pink Cadillac, was not originally pink, but blue.
Elvis solicited help from a neighbor, who painted the car a shade of pink that would come to be known as “Elvis Rose.” Elvis went on to give the car to his mother, Gladys, despite her not having a driver’s license.
This second pink Cadillac also was involved in a serious accident, though this time, it wasn’t destroyed. Instead, it got an updated look, with a white roof replacing its older black roof.
Where is the Elvis Presley pink Cadillac now?
Elvis fans can take a road trip to visit the King of Rock and Roll’s iconic pink Cadillac at the Graceland Museum, located in Memphis, Tennessee.
In 2006, Bonnie and Stewart Krentzman built a replica of the classic car, and the identical model went on to participate in various fundraisers and events for breast cancer awareness and research.
A third pink Cadillac, a 1957 DeVille, took up residence at Graceland’s Presley Motors Automobile. This car remained in pristine condition until it was auctioned off in 2019.
The other cars in Elvis’ collection
While the Elvis Presley pink Cadillac was the most famous item in his car collection, he had a wide assortment of classic cars. GQ magazine documents some of the most notable in his collection.
The first car Elvis ever bought for himself was a 1941 Lincoln, purchased before his career took off. Before the Lincoln, Elvis drove a 1952 Lincoln Zephyr, a gift from his father. Of course, soon enough Elvis would have the cash to buy as many new cars as he wanted.
Some of the other classic cars in Elvis’ collection included the 1956 Cadillac Eldorado, a victory purchase from right after his single “Heartbreak Hotel” reached number one on the Billboard charts. He had it painted a vibrant shade of purple.
Elvis also bought a 1956 Messerschmitt KR200, a car designed after the German company Messerschmitt was banned from producing aircraft vehicles post-WW2. The airplane manufacturer began producing cars instead, and Elvis ended up being the owner of one of these strangely successful makes.
Another classic car in Elvis’ collection is the 1957 BMW 507—now a valuable cult classic, with only 254 ever produced. He rode his BMW 507 during his stint in the military but loved it so much he brought it home with him.
Over the years, Elvis owned many other classic cars, including a 1960 Lincoln Continental Mark 5, a 1962 Ford Thunderbird, a 1963 Rolls-Royce Phantom 5, a 1970 Mercedes-Benz 600, and many more.