Elvis Presley gave his mom his pink Cadillac as a gift, 61 years ago today

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In 1955, the king of Rock N’ Roll bought a 1954 Fleetwood Series 60 for his first Cadillac. The thing that set this Cadillac apart from most is that it was pink. Elvis loved the car and gave him and his band, the Blue Moon Boys, the transportation they needed. The car eventually had a failure of a brake lining and was destroyed in a roadside fire in Arkansas in June of 1955.

Though the event was tragic, this did not stop Elvis from being able to call a Cadillac his own. Two days later Elvis went down and bought a 1955 Cadillac Fleetwood Series 60 that was blue with a black roof. Elvis still loved the color pink on the Cadillac and even mentioned the color in the song,”Baby, Let’s Play House.” The song was the first by Elvis to appear on the national charts when it went to number five on the Country Singles Charts in 1955. The song was also a huge inspiration for Led Zeppelin guitarist, Jimmy Page.

Elvis had that 1955 Cadillac repainted pink to match the old Cadillac but left the roof black. After the job was done, Elvis gave the car as a gift to his mother, Gladys, on this day 61 years ago. Gladys never had a driver’s license but still loved to tell people that this was her car. Elvis would still use the car for transportation for his band for over a year.

During that time he used the car for transportation, Presley’s fellow musician, Scotty Moore, crashed the car causing $1,000 in damages. Elvis had just signed a contract so with this money he replaced the upholstery, retouched the body, and painted the roof white.

Elvis would go on to purchase five Cadillacs throughout his life, but none was more famous than that pink Cadillac. That universally famous pink Cadillac, is now on display at Graceland and will stay there permanently. The car was brought to the front of the Graceland entrance in 2006 when George W. Bush and Japan’s Prime Minister, Junichiro Koizumi visited.

Presley’s decision to paint his Cadillac pink inspired many to do the same their car. Ford was the only motor company at the time to offer pink cars. For this reason and the influence Elvis had, many decided to follow the king and paint their own car pink.

The Cadillac has been mentioned various times in movies, songs, and other areas of popular culture. The most famous may be from Bruce Springsteen’s 1984 song “Pink Cadillac” which was inspired from the song,”Baby, Let’s Play House” and the pink Cadillac itself. Springsteen replaced the lyric “You may get religion” with “You may have a pink Cadillac.”

The pink Cadillac may be the most famous single car of all time, and there would have to be large amount of money paid if this car was to ever go on sale.

Watch a short clip about the history of the pink Cadillac below:

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