We’ve all done some pretty crazy things for love, but buying a one-of-two Cadillac with a coach-built Italian body as a gift for the object of our desire probably isn’t one of them. But that’s what Middle Eastern royal and international playboy Aly Khan did to impress his then wife, actress Rita Hayworth, as their marriage began to fall apart in the early 1950s. It’s all covered in this latest video from our friends at Petrolicious.
Despite the gesture, they divorced a short time later and Hayworth ended up with this absolutely gorgeous 1953 Cadillac Ghia. Built using Cadillac Series 62 Coupe Deville underpinnings, the Ghia featured a custom body and interior fabricated by Italian coachbuilder Carrozzeria Ghia of Turin, Italy. The entire car is immaculate inside and out. We’re especially digging the four custom-fitted suitcases behind the seats. The General Motors parts, including the 5.4-liter OHV V-8, would make servicing the car much easier in the States.
The car changed hands a few times among collectors since being owned by Hayworth, and was eventually purchased by Robert E. Peterson, founder of the Peterson Automotive Museum, where it’s still on display today. Interestingly, no one seems to know its original color. Early photos show it in appliance white, but the museum painted it a dark burgundy to better show off its incredible lines.
It’s fitting that this ultra-rare Caddy Ghia still lives in The City of Angels. It’s the perfect backdrop for a car with this type of old Hollywood history and provenance.