In response to the challenges, the GM stylists cleared their easels and for 1959, they came up with some of the most distinctive cars ever produced by the company. One of the more striking innovations was a bold, blade-like roofline for the four-door hardtops that soon became known as the flat top.
While the flat top era proper at GM lasted only two model years, Cadillac soldiered on for one more year with a variation on the theme (below). The Four Window Sedan style for the SIxty-Two and De Ville models in ’61 used a modified Flying Wing with less rear overhang and a more prominent rear glass. But sales were poor as the more conventional six-window four-door outsold the flat top by more than a five-to-one margin, and the body style was killed off permanently for 1962. Automotive fashion was evolving once again, toward more formal limousine-style roof treatments.