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In 1931, Cadillac offered three distinct chassis and drive trains, a V-8, a V-12, and the massive V-16. These featured standard Fisher bodies. Custom coachwork was also available from other firms such as Fleetwood.
The Cadillac for 1931 was longer and lower than previous models. The success of the Cadillac brand persisted throughout the hardship of the 1930s due to their impressive styling, engineering, and their well established network of dealers. The new 1931 Cadillacs introduced new features that included a chrome stone guard radiator screen, single-bar bumper and dual horns. The frame was designed with new side rails and the rear springs were mounted directly under the frame rails. The cooling system included a condenser tank. The cars also introduced hood side panels with five distinctive ventilator doors on each side.
The 1931 Cadillac Model 355-A was available in 13 different models, six by Fisher and seven by Fleetwood. A total of 10,717 Model 355-A cars were built.
The Indianapolis 500 official pace car for 1931 was the Cadillac V-12.