DETROIT -- Nicola Bulgari, an avid car collector and vice chairman of the Bulgari luxury goods firm, prefers not to dwell on the sheer number of automobiles in his car collection.
“Is it important?” Bulgari asked. “Is it the number or the quality that matters? It’s the quality.”
Bulgari buys each car for a reason, not just to expand his collection. So when he heard Cadillac was ending production of the DTS luxury sedan, Bulgari knew he wanted the last one off the line.
Introduced for the 2006 model year, the DTS is a significant automobile, primarily because of the Northstar V-8 engine under its hood, Bulgari said. The last DTS, made this week at General Motors’ Detroit-Hamtramck Assembly Plant, is now headed for Bulgari’s collection.
“I like the DTS because it’s a great sedan,” Bulgari said. “It’s the last of an era. I thought it would be wonderful to own the last Northstar in a DTS. It’s one of the best engines ever designed – reliable and a performer.”
For decades, the DTS and its predecessor, the DeVille, have anchored Cadillac's spot in the large luxury car market. Last year, the DTS outsold all other large luxury cars in the United States, topping the Mercedes-Benz S-Class, BMW 7-Series, Lexus LS430 and Lincoln Town Car. A version of the DTS also served as the U.S. president's limousine until 2009, when it was replaced by a new Cadillac presidential limousine.
The last DTS will join an illustrious line of automobiles in Bulgari's collection, which he houses at facilities in Rome and Allentown, Pa. The grandson of a silversmith who opened a jewelry shop in Rome in 1884, Nicola Bulgari has helped the company grow into a global network of 293 stores selling high-end jewelry, watches, leather goods, perfumes and fashion accessories.
Remember when car companies marked momentous occasions with big signs? Apparently, Cadillac felt the last DTS only warranted a Post-It declaring "last one."
General Motors employees surround the last Cadillac DTS sedan, a beautiful black 2011 model, at the end of the Detroit-Hamtramck Assembly Plant.
Nicola Bulgari stands next to a 1949 Cadillac Series 62 convertible, of the many Cadillacs in his collection.