Presidential Vehicles Over the Years
With the election right around the corner, we thought you might find this blog entertaining. When it comes to U.S. Presidents, their vehicles have to be safe and reliable and also visually attractive because they need to be as interesting as the men who’ve held the office. Some of the four Presidential cars that we are focusing on in this blog were used during, and after their stints while in the White House.
All of us here at Anderson Behel in Santa Clara, CA are delighted to share these interesting facts with you, and that’s why we are featuring a hand-picked list of Presidential Cars that are some of the most intriguing automobiles for those presidential commutes.
President Barack Obama 2009 Cadillac One, “The Beast”: This beauty is believed to have been built based on a truck chassis made by General Motors lineup and certainly ran on heavy-duty truck tires and high-end wheels. Heavy use of steel, aluminum, titanium and other strong, lightweight materials helps to keep the car from tipping the scales beyond reason, but it is still said to weigh more than 15,000 pounds. It is believed to be diesel-powered and the bodywork, though fully customized, is derived in design from Cadillac’s DeVille limousine. There were 2-3 of these cars in the presidential fleet.
President Ronald Reagan’s 1983 Cadillac Fleetwood Brougham: Two of these were made for the Secret Service, which was built specifically to allow for maximum visibility of the President while maintaining maximum security. Upon retirement, one of the vehicles was returned to General Motors and the other is displayed in the Reagan Presidential Library. This GM-owned car, kept in museum-reserve, was used in the Clint Eastwood film, “In the Line of Fire.”
Presidents Gerald Ford, Jimmy Carter, and Ronald Reagan’s 1970/72 Lincoln Continental: Made famous for its appearance on TV during the assassination attempts of both Ford and Reagan, the 1970 Lincoln Continental was actually a 1972 model with a series of 1970 serial numbers. This Lincoln was also the very first presidential limousine that had roof openings situated tactically so that the President could stand up for the crowds.
President John F. Kennedy 1961 Ford Thunderbird Convertible: Not all Presidents carried that air of coolness that will exist forever, but JFK did. When he was inaugurated, his vehicle of choice was a new Ford Thunderbird, which was known as the coolest convertible on the road at the time. Although Kennedy owned this convertible for some time, his ride in it on inauguration day was likely the last time he was ever in it.
Sources: Autobody News and AAA