The Norman Transcript


April 6, 2013

Bart Conner’s Coupe de Ville racks up style points



“If he had the garage space, Bart would have 30 more cars,” Ziert said.

Conner has owned everything from a 1984 VW Rabbit to a Porsche 930. He still has a Ferrari purchased new from Big Red Sports and Imports in Norman back in the late 1980s when the dealership was a licensed franchisee for the legendary Italian brand.

“I’m not a car expert, but I love cool cars,” Conner said. “I saw this 1958 Cadillac Coupe de Ville in California and had to have it.”

He was immediately attracted to the audacious body style with enormous body sheet metal tail fins. They were a design detail that has become a symbol of the era’s popular culture. It’s a car so long that it barely fits in Conner’s garage.

“The designers of those 1950s cars came from the aviation industry and that’s why some of those components look the way they do,” Conner said. “And the Vegas turquoise color just pops out at you.”

The busy executive has a standard-issue late model Chevrolet Tahoe as a daily driver but the Coupe de Ville goes to his craving for something different and stylish to drive. And he does drive it.

Observing the stunning Cadillac on NW 36th Street and following it to Conner’s residential driveway is how this article came about. He was transporting his young son and pet aquatic turtle home from gymnastics meet one Sunday afternoon.

“I take it out mainly when the weather’s nice,” Conner said. “It’s not terribly practical for daily use but I get it out a couple of times a month.”

When he does, there are a lot of thumbs-up from other motorists. People want to know what year it is.

“Older generation people will tell me how they used to have one and never should have gotten rid of it,” Conner said. “I’m inspired by some of the progressive technology that car had for its time. There’s a foot peg on the floor next to the dimmer switch for advancing to the next pre-set radio station. That’s pretty cool for 1958.”

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