Last week, the Riviera Project went over 55,000 words. With that number written and the 154 pages currently created, I can estimate that completion will come when I get to at least 61,200 words and 170 pages—and likely considerably more. It has taken almost two years to get to this point and over three months to generate the last 5,000 words.
What we still don’t have is a working title—Riviera Project is just a placeholder. I want the title to include some reference to my central thesis; that the Riviera would often differentiate from its competition with exterior design—with varying degrees of critical and financial success. But nothing has yet come to mind that I like.
I have made significant progress recently on several fronts. The chapter on the sixth-generation cars now includes a section on the ground-breaking Delco-GM/Bose Music System, which first debuted in 1983 in the Riviera, the Cadillac Eldorado, the Cadillac Seville, and the Oldsmobile Toronado.
Work with the colors and the options continues to add notable context to the chapters themselves. In particular. I’ve done an extensive analysis of the prevalence of various colors in the seventh generation (1986-1993) and the eighth generation (1995-1999) Rivieras, since there doesn’t seem to be any actual data available.
Some statistics while we’re at it; the two most lengthy chapters remain the ones on the sixth generation (1979-1985) and the seventh generation cars, which were the Riviera generations longest in production at seven and eight model years, respectively.
Unsurprisingly, by far the most pages per year are for the first generation. However, that count is generated when I include both the chapter on the Riviera’s initial development and the one on the actual three model years from 1963 to 1965. Otherwise, the short (only two years) fifth-generation (1977-1978) leads, driven by its origin story, its notably lengthy options lists, and 1978’s 75th Anniversary Package—the first of several special edition Rivieras. The chapters on each of the eight generations currently make up 85% of the book.