We already know that Cadillac vehicles offer a slew of safety features to protect their driver and passengers. But there’s one particular model that stands head and shoulders above the rest when it comes to occupant protection: The Cadillac One. AKA, the Presidential Limousine. AKA, “The Beast”.
Even though it features styling cues from the late DTS along with giant Cadillac badges, ” the One isn’t really a Cadillac” you might say. And you’d be correct.
According to an agent, “The car may say Cadillac, but very little in that car is Cadillac.” It is built by GM in Detroit, by some secret R&D division, we assume. Heck, “even the Cadillac emblems on the hood and trunk are supersized. The car is really a truck that looks like a limo. And it drives like one, too.”
Once upon a time, the Presidential Limousine was merely a Lincoln straight off a dealer’s lot with some reinforcement modifications here and there. In 2014, Former President George W. Bush was the first to receive the Cadillac One, a vehicle built with one purpose in mind: getting the Commander-in-Chief to his destination safely. Why did Mr. Bush become the first?
Apparently, the preceding limos were known to be unreliable thanks to excessive weight added by all of the extra security and protection features. According to a veteran agent, “the brakes would last about two trips. The cars were just too heavy, and they were a terror to drive, and even harder to stop.” On that note, the “Beast” averages 3.7 MPG, and doesn’t drink diesel, as many had thought before.
And there isn’t just a lonely One. There’s twelve of them, each costing over a million dollars. There’s always a well-trained special mechanic (ahem, federal agent) on board who brings many tools and forms of diagnostic equipment. But what exactly does The One feature that makes it cost a hefty seven figures? Autoweek lists a few reasons:
- The fuel tank has armor plating, and it’s encased in a special foam to protect it from opening in case of a collision or small-arms fire. To go along with it, there’s a special fire-suppression system.
- In the boot, you’ll find extra weapons, a separate oxygen supply under the president’s seat, emergency medical equipment, and bottles of the president’s blood type in case the ambulance for the motorcade is under attack.
- The armor plating (on five of the twelve) is so thick and hefty that the president virtually cannot open the doors from the inside. The plating is made of a combination of steel, aluminum, titanium, ceramic material, and removable fiberglass sheets.
- The interior is sealed, and there’s an encrypted satellite phone along with an interactive video system to allow the President to video conference with officials in the Situation Room, various embassies, or the Pentagon.
- It has several unique locking mechanisms (and probably differentials).
- It rides on special Kevlar-reinforced Goodyear run-flat tires that will most likely not improve the limo’s track time.
Want to become a driver? You’ll first have to become a Secret Service agent, which is nearly impossible, and then endure a weeklong defensive-driving course on a dedicated track at the Secret Service academy in Beltsville, Maryland. You would cover “The Transporter” style evasive maneuvers, and Stig-like racing techniques, on top of being a surgeon with practically any firearm. We wish good luck to all who apply.