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Secret Service to unveil new presidential limo. . .

January 6, 2009

obamalimoAs a candidate, Barack Obama promoted hybrid cars. As president, he’ll be handed the keys to one. Sort of.

Shortly after taking the oath of office, Obama will climb into the Mother of All Hybrids — part car, part truck and, from the looks of it, part tank.

In keeping with recent tradition, the Secret Service will place a brand-new presidential limousine into service January 20 to drive the new president on the 2-mile jaunt down Pennsylvania Avenue during the inaugural parade.

Already, spy photos of the limo — with patches of gray primer — have leaked out. And already, the reviews:

“Ugly as sin,” says one car enthusiast on an auto Web site. “Can’t we make a hotter ride for our pres?”

“Sheesh,” says another, “why don’t they just transport the president around in an Abrams tank.”

One news agency, noting its 8-inch-thick doors, says the limo can withstand a “direct hit from an asteroid.” But GM spokeswoman Joanne K. Krell laughed off the comments.

“And it will fix you a latte if you ask,” she jokes

In truth, the new presidential limo is a Cadillac, Krell said, although it is “not a direct extension of any single model.”

“The presidential vehicle is built to precise and special specifications, undergoes extreme testing and development, and also incorporates many of the top aspects of Cadillac’s ‘regular’ cars — such as signature design, hand-cut-and-sewn interiors, etc.,” Krell told CNN.

“Cadillac is honored to serve and renew this great tradition,” she said. “And it is entirely appropriate that an American president has at his service a great American vehicle.”

For much of the country’s history, the Secret Service didn’t even drive the president, evidently oblivious to the dangers of asteroids.

In the post-Lincoln horse-and-buggy era, it was customary for a security detail to closely trail the president, according to a Secret Service history.

With the advent of automobiles, the Secret Service acquired a 1907 H. White Steamer to follow Theodore Roosevelt’s horse-drawn carriage.

White House chauffeurs drove later presidents, until the Secret Service assumed many of the driving responsibilities after Franklin Roosevelt’s death in 1945.

In 1965, Lyndon Johnson was the first president to ride in a bulletproof limo in an inaugural parade, less than two years after his predecessor, John F. Kennedy, was shot and killed while riding in an open car.

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One Comment leave one →
  1. Elite Chicago Limo permalink
    November 14, 2010 4:28 pm

    Nice limo… and interesting blog! Keep up the good work.
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