■ By Richard Perry / Contributed
Greetings from the Hemet Car Guy,
Some time ago, after President Trump was elected and first took office, I wrote about his hand-me-down Presidential Limo, called “The Beast.”
The Beast was actually very old. I guess our Government and the Secret Service thought an upgrade was in order.
The most recent presidential limousine fleet debuted on Barack Obama’s 2009 Inauguration Day. Since then, many have been expecting the newest fleet that will transport Trump around, which his predecessor described as “a Caddy, basically on a tank frame.”
Last fall, the newest presidential limousine was photographed and seen on public roads near General Motors Michigan proving grounds.
“We’ve completed our task and we’ve handed over the vehicle to the customer,” Cadillac President Johann de Nysschen told Fox News. A spokeswoman for the U.S. Secret Service added that “the program to build and deploy the next generation of Presidential limousines is on track and on schedule — both in terms of vendor production and internal Secret Service post production requirements. The public can expect to see the new vehicles put into operational use late summer of this year.”
Details on the newest vehicle are kept secret for obvious reasons, but the existing model is protected against ballistic, explosive and chemical weapons attacks. The newest is camouflage and styled like the Cadillac’s flagship CT6 sedan.
Although like its predecessor, it’s designed to look like a sedan, it’s understood to be built on a sturdy truck frame that can support its armored bodywork. One feature differing from the CT6 is Cadillac’s semi-autonomous Super Cruise system. The car cannot be driven handsfree and must instead always be driven by a highly skilled agent. This designated driver is someone who has been trained in defensive and evasive types of driving.
According to Fox News, every presidential limousine built since 1993 has been by Cadillac. The company didn’t face any known competition for this contract. Its American luxury counterparts, Lincoln and Chrysler, each told Fox News that they declined to submit bids this time around, but de Nysschen considers his company’s role helping to chauffer the world’s most powerful man around the world an important association for the brand.
VIP Autos, attempted to contact the White House in hopes to get the trade-in, but they declined.
Richard Perry is the Hemet Car Guy and owner of VIP Autos in Hemet. For more information, visit www.hemetcarguy.info.