Jim and Mike Ring, cofounders of the world renowned custom car builder Ringbrothers, unveiled a 1948 Cadillac fastback coupe called “Madam V” in the Flowmaster booth at the 2016 SEMA Show on November 1, 2016. “Madam V,” commissioned by car dealership mogul Wes Rydell, perfectly melds early and late model Cadillacs to create a one-of-a-kind Cadillac with the benefits of a modern car with the style and panache of a vintage Cadillac.
The project utilized four cars in total to create one master piece including two 1948 fastback coupes, a used 2015 Cadillac ATS-V and a brand new 2016 Cadillac ATS-V, all provided by Mr. Rydell. The Rings began by completely tearing the late model cars down to the uni-body and lengthening the 2016 chassis by 14 inches to accommodate the longer ’48 body. The 2016 ATS-V is a complicated modern vehicle with many interconnected systems that do not respond well to meddling, so Mike and Jim Ring made it a point to not disturb the ATS-V’s fuel systems and only lengthened the wiring with GM approved connectors to simplify the car’s transition and preserve the functionality of the modern amenities.
One of the design goals for “Madam V” was to make it look like something Cadillac would have built, so Mike and Jim incorporated and blended design cues from the old car and the new one in such a way that they would appear to be factory. For example, the hood, which took more than 600 hours alone to handcraft out of carbon fiber, carries over the ATS-V’s signature hood vent and the centerline crease of the 2016 car’s hood. The Rings even went so far as to make the radiator shrouding in aluminum and then coat it to look like it had been made from plastic.
“Madam V” is powered by the Cadillac 3.6L DOHC V6 Twin Turbo engine, outputting 464hp and kept running smooth by Royal Purple engine and transmission oil. The motor is also kept at the perfect temperature with help from Prestone coolant. Although the Madam retains most of the ATS-V exhaust, custom stainless steel Flowmaster tail pipes give the car a true performance exhaust note.
The Madam also retains many of the technology features from the ’16 ATS-V including the info and media control with full color display, rear vision camera, Push-to-Start, rain-sensing wipers and even OnStar auto crash response.
In addition to the ingenious engineering that went into fusing the 1948 coupe and the 2016 ATS-V, Ringbrothers also added a number of custom touches to the build. “Madam V” features custom rear view and side view mirrors as well a roof mounted 360-degree camera from Gentex that integrates into the satellite radio antenna. The ’48 rolls on a set of P204 HRE forged wheels sized at 19×8 in the front and 20×11.5 in the rear wrapped in Michelin Pilot Super Sport tires sized 245/45/19 up front and 325/30/20 out back.
To finish the car and highlight the enormous amount of body work, the exterior of “Madam V” was coated in a rich, custom BASF Glasurit color named “Vivi White.”
“Typically when we build a classic car, we’re getting rid of as many stock components as possible to make way for modern or custom enhancements,” co-founder of Ringbrothers Mike Ring said. “This was kind of the opposite – we’re keeping as much of the ATS-V as we can because GM designed it so well.” “Mike and I are really pleased with how this came out,” added Jim Ring, co-founder of Ringbrothers. “It was a really unique challenge and represented a totally different way of working for us.”