Why Are We Still Pretending The President's Limousine Needs To Be A Car?

The next President of the United States is not just going to be taking our country for a ride, but also a shiny new Presidential limousine. Sadly, the current car nicknamed “The Beast,” which you may have noticed looks like a second-gen Cadillac CTS on steroids, will be retired. But the new one is no different, and it doesn’t make sense.

As you can see from that photo up there, “The Beast” is not a car. In fact, it’s really just a weird Cadillac car skin stretched across a General Motors SUV platform, because it probably weighs about a million pounds. How much exactly is unclear due to all of the bulletproof glass and metal work, but it supposedly has a 6.5 liter diesel truck engine, supposedly hits 60 in 15 seconds, and only does 8 miles per gallon.


But the President doesn’t only travel in The Beast for every little trip. Often he’s just in a normal-looking armored SUV, which you can see in the convoy up top. It’s similar to what the Vice President and other important Washington people get around in, so why are we still designing the President’s special limo as a car?

Is it tradition? The Lincoln Continental is the most famous Presidential Limousine. Yeah, because it’s what Kennedy got shot in, but also because no car is a better example of the early ‘60s style. It’s why people love the Continental in general.

So today, when I see that the next Presidential “Beast” or whatever will look like a stretched Cadillac Escalade with an awkward trunk, I want to ask who made that decision and why. Why are we still clinging to the sedan look when, one, it’s very clearly not a normal car at all and, two, an Escalade or some sort of large SUV is probably the perfect representation of what modern Americans consider to be stylish and luxurious and stately.


Plus, wouldn’t it make more sense to increase the cabin space for the most important figure in the world? Is there some secret function to the sedan body-style? Does the angled glass increase its bulletproof effectiveness? The current Beast supposedly fills its “trunk” up with an emergency oxygen supply and a huge, specially-insulated fuel tank. Maybe a boxier look would just be wasted space.

Again, not that it really matters. It’s not exactly helping Cadillac’s sales numbers. It’s just an interesting choice considering stretch SUVs are a thing, and if we want to get all “size-matters,” having our President roll around in a giant Escalade might perfectly represent how big America’s ego is, and just how Hollywood the Presidency has gotten all of a sudden.


Reviews Editor, Jalopnik

Share This Story

Get our newsletter


As Du Volant

Why not a giant ass motorcycle?