1989 Cadillac Allanté convertible

(talking with a loyal and enthusiastic Allanté owner at the AACA Annual Meeting last week inspired me to write this entry about the last of the 1980s Allantés)

“The only way to travel is Cadillac Style.”

For 1989, the Cadillac Allanté received its first engine upgrade, moving from the 4.1 liter/249 ci HT-4100 V8 to the 4.5 liter/273 ci HT-4500 V8 but remaining connected to the 4T60 4-speed automatic transmission. Power climbed 30 bhp to an even 200 bhp while acceleration improved to about 8.5 seconds to 60 mph with a claimed top speed of 134 mph (probably with the aluminum top on) for Dave Hill’s baby. Mileage declined slightly to 15 city/23 highway by the standards of the day (14/21 by today’s standards. With a 21.9-gallon fuel tank, an Allanté driver could expect a range of 345 to 375 miles with a 10% fuel reserve.

Other changes for 1989 included a new Light Blue Metallic exterior color, new 16 x 7 inch wheels, and a new seat design.

1989 Cadillac Allante
1989 Cadillac Allanté, courtesy of the GM Media Archives

For 1989, the Allanté’s base price remained non-trivial: $57,183 (about $107,000 in 2014 dollars) for the 3,296 buyers. However, just about everything came standard, including ABS, traction control, 16-inch alloy wheels, and the aluminum hard top/cloth convertible top combination. The interior included 10-way leather-covered Recaro bucket seats, electronic climate control, and Symphony Sound System AM/FM stereo with a cassette player. Because it was a Cadillac, you also got air conditioning, power steering, power windows, and power door locks. You could choose either an analog or a digital instrument cluster at no extra charge.

Allantés have a good club following and consistently show up in the Hemmings Motor News classifieds and on eBay Motors. As I write this in February 2014, there’s a Pearl White Allanté with a Burgundy interior with 66,000 miles for sale for $10,000. According to Hagerty’s valuation tools, all the money for a 1989 Allanté in #1 condition is $16,500.

I think the Allanté body style (by Pininfarina, of course) has aged well. It certainly still looks like nothing else on the road—which was definitely one of Cadillac’s goals.

Make mine Pearl White, please.


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