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1951 Cadillac Police Truck - Junkyard Crawl

Police Truck

By Steve Magnante, Photography by Steve Magnante

"Tonight's the night that we got the truck/We're goin' downtown, gonna beat up drunks/Your turn to drive, I'll bring the beer/It's the late, late shift, no one to fear." Ah, the Dead Kennedys, one of punk rock's legendary outfits. And when it comes to this month's Junkyard Crawl subject, the band's 1987 song Police Truck provides a perfect soundtrack.

Police Truck was released 23 years ago (on the Dead Kennedys' album Give Me Convenience or Give Me Death), and it's been almost as many years since Cadillac offered a commercial chassis like the one underpinning this ex-Eloy, Arizona, law enforcement rig (President Obama's one-off super-limo notwithstanding). We bumped into this one at Desert Valley Auto Parts' Casa Grande, Arizona, location (dvap.com) about a year ago. Let's marvel together, shall we?

Groovy Factoids
• The Cadillac Automobile Co. was started in 1902 and named after the Frenchman who founded Fort Pontchartrain (which later became the city of Detroit). General Motors didn't purchase a controlling interest in Cadillac until 1912.
• In 1951, GM divisions Chevy, Pontiac, Oldsmobile, and Buick offered station wagon-bodied passenger car models. But all Cadillac passenger car bodies were strictly of the sedan, coupe, and convertible variety. Other than farmed-out aftermarket ambulance/hearse/professional car conversions, no Cadillac passenger car-based station wagons were built (truck-based Escalade SUVs are excluded here). The arrival of the new CTS Sport Wagon for the '10 model year marks Cadillac's first factory-built regular production station wagon to date. Get yours today.

By Steve Magnante
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