Pros: Styling, handling, overall performance
Cons: 4.9 liter V8, frameless windows, rear visibility
When I purchased my 1992 Eldorado Touring Coupe about 5 years ago, it had accumulated only 32,000 miles. The previous owner had taken excellent care of the car, even replacing the 1992 wheels with 1995 Eldorado factory wheels. I call it the "poor" man's cadillac because with the updated wheels, the car looked almost identical to even a 1996 or 1997 Eldorado.
In about 18 months I put another 40,000 essentially trouble free miles on the car. Contrary to some of the other reviews I 've read, I had virtually no trouble with the car. Of the three problems, two are really insignificant. The first was a pinhole leak in small coolant hose in the back of the engine compartment caused by age and an aftermarket alarm installed by the previous owner that failed and prevented the car from starting. The third "problem" is not a problem per se, but a characteristic of the 4.9 liter V8. About every 15,000- 25,000 miles the throttle body of the engine had to be de-carboned. If this service, which cost about $85.00, was not performed, the car would begin to run rough and the engine would run faster than usual in park because of the heat build up in the carbon deposits. Unfortunately, all the Cadillac 4.9 liters have this problem and it was never really solved.
The car was a thrill to drive and be seen in. Despite the fact that it was the last Eldorado without the Northstar, the gearing was such that acceleration was excellent from a dead stop and more than adequate for highway passing. While the ride was firm, although not as much as in the ETC which is the performance model, the handling more than made up for any extra bumps you might feel. Driving the car quite aggressively, I never found a situation that it could not handle with ease.
With all the usual Cadillac bells and whistles, there wasn't much that was even optional, let alone missing from the standard equipment. The overall layout of the interior was well designed, functional and comfortable. The one concession that was necessary for the styling of the car was frameless windows. In spite of the fact that the window and door seals were regularly lubricated, there was still wind noise from windows themselves. Additionally, the windows were often difficult to close on the first try during the winter because the seals would shrink in the cold. Thus, you often had to roll both windows part way down and then roll them back up once you were in the car. The outside mirrors, while powered and heated, were not large enough to fully compensate for the large blind spot created by the long sail panel. This meant that it was almost always necessary to physically look around much more than in other cars before changing lanes. Often, when on the interstate, this meant taking your eyes off the road to focus on the area next to the car - sometimes a dangerous proposition.
Maybe you think I spent too much time being critical, but you should know that whatever aspect of the car I did not complain about (and the list is really quite minor) was either excellent or outstanding. I would say however, that based upon my experience with Cadillacs (I'm 34 and have owned 5) and the other reviews, I would only buy an example with low miles, much more so than with any other car. Once it gets past 75,000 miles, any [now]10 year old car is likely to cause some trouble. Cadillacs, like all other high end brands have lots of equipment and the more there is, there more there is to go wrong. This observation coupled with the fact that the 1992 Eldorado was the first year for the new body, fact which by itself makes difficulties more likely, make low miles an absolute in my opinion. There's certainly nothing about the car that money can't fix, but it could easily cost much more than the car would ever be worth to undertake that process.