Great Rivalries: Lincoln vs Cadillac

August 24, 2009
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Born of the same father. One of the founding members of the Cadillac Automobile Company in 1902, Henry Leland served as board member and engine supplier (with his own independent company, Leland & Faulconer). He soon became Cadillac's president and general manager.
Leland's dedication to precision manufacturing earned Cadillac the Dewar Trophy in 1908. But in 1917, Leland left Cadillac, then part of General Motors, after GM president Billy Durant refused to allow Cadillac to build Liberty aircraft engines for World War I. Leland immediately founded the Lincoln Motor Company to build the Libertys, switching to car production after the war. But Lincoln ended up in bankruptcy in 1922. The company was purchased in receivership by Henry Ford. As Ford managers took control, Leland was forced out. Lincoln eventually rose to become Cadillac's chief rival in the American luxury car arena.


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