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From 'The Beast' to 'Queen Elizabeth', 10 US presidential cars

2016-11-11 14:00

DRIVING THE BEAST: During his tenure as US president, Barack Obama was chauffeured in this Cadillac limousine dubber 'The Beast'. It will be interesting to view the modifications made to newly-elected US president Donald Trump's official cars. Image: AFP / Alex Wong

Charlen Raymond

Cape Town - Donald Trump has been elected the new president of the United States of America.

Outgoing president, Barack Obama, will vacate the White House in the coming months and also his presidential car, dubbed 'The Beast'.

'The Beast' has been Obama's official state vehicle since 2009.

Armoured limo

'The Beast' featured bits and pieces from the Cadillac vault. Though it appears as a standard limousine, under the skin it's completely modified. Inside, in the case of Obama being attacked, the vehicle can be completely sealed in case of a chemical attack. The vehicle could lock-up like a bank vault in the case of terrorists attempting to break in.

Trump however will receive his new  presidential car in 2017. Details of the upcoming model are understandably limited as it is a matter of US national security.

10 US Presidential Cadillacs:

Cadillac is no stranger to supplying America's presidential candidates with vehicles. Here's a list of 10 cars automaker has supplied to US Heads of State:

1. President Woodrow Wilson was driven in a 1916 Series 53 Cadillac through the streets of Boston during a World War I victory parade in 1919.

2. A lavish 1928 Cadillac Series 341 town car was used by Calvin Coolidge. 

3. Following the attack on Pearl Harbor, President Franklin D. Roosevelt used a heavily armored 1928 Cadillac Town Sedan that was rumoured to be owned by gangster Al Capone.

4. In 1938, two Cadillac convertibles, dubbed the "Queen Mary" and "Queen Elizabeth," were delivered to the US government. The vehicles were 6.5m long, weighed 3474kg each and were equipped with a small arsenal, two-way radios and heavy-duty generators. The two "Queens" served Presidents Franklin D. Roosevelt, Harry S. Truman and Dwight D. Eisenhower. 

5. President Eisenhower, a car enthusiast, rode in one of the first Cadillac Eldorado models  produced during his 1953 inaugural parade.

Gallery: 2014 Cadillac Escalade limo conversion


6. In 1956, the Queen Mary II and Queen Elizabeth II convertibles replaced the original series, to serve President Eisenhower, and continuing to serve Presidents John F. Kennedy and Lyndon B. Johnson. Both vehicles were retired in 1968. 

7. The Ronald W. Reagan administration took delivery of a 1983 Cadillac Fleetwood limousine and a Cadillac Fleetwood Brougham. For security reasons, Presidential vehicles are no longer used outside of official duties.

Image: Cadillac World

8. The Cadillac that debuted for service during the William J. Clinton administration in 1993 marked a new era. Up to this point, Presidential vehicles typically were production cars modified by limousine companies. The 1993 Presidential Brougham was designed, developed and built by Cadillac in a secure process that continues today, with presidential vehicles built in private to exhaustive specifications.

9. A 1983 Cadillac Fleetwood limousine resides at the Ronald W. Reagan Presidential Library and Museum in Simi Valley, California, while the 1993 Cadillac Fleetwood Brougham is at the Clinton Presidential Center in Little Rock, Arkansas.

10. Obama’s Cadillac Presidential Limousine debuted in front of a massive worldwide audience during President Obama’s inaugural parade on January 20, 2009. The limo incorporates signature design and technical elements from Cadillac production cars, but is exclusively built for its mission. The car’s specifications are known only to the small team that designed it.

A photo posted by Ashlee Bland (@a_bland) on

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