• ETC
  • Jul 25, 2013
With recent news that the Secret Service has begun soliciting proposals for a new armored limousine, we've been wondering what the next presidential limo might look like. The current machine, nicknamed "The Beast," has a design based on a car that's no longer sold: the Cadillac DTS. If General Motors gets the job again, which wouldn't be a surprise considering the government still owns a chunk of the company, the next limo's shape would likely resemble the new XTS (below, left). But Cadillac hasn't always been the go-to car company for presidential whips.

Lincoln has actually provided far more presidential limousines throughout history than Cadillac. In fact, the first car modified for Commander-in-Chief-carrying duty was a 1939 Lincoln K-Series called "Sunshine Special" used by Franklin D. Roosevelt, and the last Lincoln used by a president was a 1989 Town Car ordered for George H.W. Bush. If President Obama wanted a Lincoln today, it would likely be an amalgam of the MKS sedan and MKT crossover, as illustrated above.

Cadillac XTS-based presidential limousine renderingChrysler 300-based presidential limousine rendering

And what about Chrysler? The only record we could find of a President favoring the Pentastar is Nixon, who reportedly ordered two limos from the company during his administration in the '70s, and then another one, known today as the "K-Car limo," in the '80s after he left office. Obama, however, has a personal – if modest – connection to Chryslers, having owned a 300 himself before he took office. A 300-based Beast (above, right) would certainly earn the U.S. some style points.

Of course, we can only speculate about what the next presidential limo will look like, as what's under the skin is a closely guarded secret by the Secret Service. Like The Beast's rumored underpinnings, the next limo will probably ride atop a heavy-duty truck chassis, which any of our domestic automakers could easily provide.


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 235 Comments
      Andrew L
      • 1 Year Ago
      I kind of hope Lincoln steps up, it would be great timing specially since the company turns 100 in 2017 plus the rebuilding of the brand
        Teleny411
        • 1 Year Ago
        @Andrew L
        It would be great if the revisit old continental themes and not the look of recent products.
      SquareFour
      • 1 Year Ago
      Man, that Lincoln MK...T...I think...rendering actually looks quite good. World's better than the other two. I think it's that rear quarter upkick that does it. If it's just gonna be a heavy duty truck underneath, I say, why not give it to Lincoln/Ford? Might as well go with the one showing a bit of style.
      lacabrera
      • 1 Year Ago
      Do we really need another presidential limo ,and if we do where is the money coming from ?
      S C
      • 1 Year Ago
      Here is a thought, if the chassis is to be "truck based" due to the heavy duty requirements of the vehicle, then base it on the Transit Full Size van for the strength needs, and put an Ecoboost V6 with a two mode hybrid design transmission so that we can highlight our commitment to producing a vehicle that can be both elegant, efficient, and durable.....Call it MKP Presidential sedan, and call it a day. The Cadillac looks ok, but the Chrysler looks horrible.....The Lincoln looks fabulous...
        Judah Richardson
        • 1 Year Ago
        @S C
        Unlikely. A vehicle meant to protect the president will probably have a high displacement, high torque diesel engine and be a rolling tank.
      pheasant601
      • 1 Year Ago
      I'm pretty big Ford fanboy, but the Caddy just fits the part soooo much better than the other two. Not surprising since Caddy is America's best luxury brand. But if not the Caddy, the Lincoln is far far better than the Chrysler. Yuck.
      rmt_1
      • 1 Year Ago
      Whether GM or Ford builds the next presidential limousine (Chrysler said they will not place a bid), don't be surprised if the replacement ends up being much taller and wider than "The Beast". From my understanding of "The Beast", it may be huge on the outside, but only has the interior space of a stretched Chevy Sonic because of the 6 to 8 inches of the armor surrounding the entire passenger compartment; I have doubts that three people could comfortably fit on the bench seat in the back. I wouldn't be surprised if this lack of interior space is the primary reason for the Secret Service to look for replacements of the current cars, since there may not be enough physical room for their agents to fit inside "The Beast" to protect the occupants should there ever be an attack on the motorcade. During the Hinckley assassination attempt on President Reagan, one Secret Service agent shoved Reagan into the limo and laid down on him on the limo's floor to be a human shield and I believe one or two other agents followed them into the limo just before it sped away to provide a last line of defense, in case Hinckley was part of a greater planned attack; the Secret Service may not be able to effectively do this in "The Beast". Who knows, the next-gen presidential limos may have more in common with the Abrams tank or the A-10 attack fighter than any car or truck with the latest in ceramic armor, titanium tub passenger compartment design, or laminated Kevlar construction. However, one thing will be certain, any replacement will be expensive. I've heard that each "Beast" costs $20 million (minimum) and that there are at least 6 of them, but their technology and underlying design is now 15 to 20 years old with R&D time factored in. Therefore, a fleet of $50 million limousines that can allow a President to govern the United States, maintain "command & control" over the military, or wage nuclear war (if necessary) from the back seat while surviving an organized attack by RPGs and mortars with chemical warfare warheads is not unthinkable in this post-911 era.
        rmt_1
        • 1 Year Ago
        @rmt_1
        I forgot to include that rear "suicide" doors are now more likely than not, because of the latest in military vehicle designs based on soldiers' experiences in Afghanistan and Iraq; armored rear doors that opened rearward, when combined with armored front doors that opened forward, gave soldiers far more protection from ambushes, since the doors could be used as shields to provide cover and would allow soldiers to enter or exit the vehicle or to return fire more safely. The same would hold true for a presidential limo.
      methos1999
      • 1 Year Ago
      Wow this post brought out a ton of ignorant racists out of the woodwork - all you tools do know the next presidential limo will be for the next president, who hasn't even be decided yet! So stop equating the presidential limo with President Obama, it's about the office not the man!
      itakeitlikeaman
      • 1 Year Ago
      how about a Toyota or BMW? Fiat? 500LLL?
      jmi2
      • 1 Year Ago
      the 1st presidential 'limo' was a 1909 "White Steamer" ordered by President William Howard Taft! you can see a photo of it at the URL below btw, it was a true 'convertible'! You can see it with & without this hardtop! http://dckaleidoscope.wordpress.com/category/transportation/automobiles/presidential-limousines/
      exride1
      • 1 Year Ago
      The MKT will have more head room, but remember they use a truck frame and the outside is the only thing that whatever they choose it what it would look like.
      Cruising
      • 1 Year Ago
      They don't have time for limos when both VC-25 presidential transports will be replaced in a few years with three aircraft. $325 million was cost of one of those 747s back then.
      amorawej
      • 1 Year Ago
      How about a horse and a buggy ala the Amish.
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