The US presidential race has whittled down to two presumptive nominees from the two major political parties, but what we truly have our eyes on is the mean ride the winner will get to sit in: The Cadillac One, which is the official state car of the President of the United States.
Better known as “The Beast” — and rightly so — the huge, highly-modified limousine is perhaps better labeled a tank. And if that’s not reassuring enough, the POTUS’ motorcade is usually accompanied by 45 other armed vehicles, including an identical decoy and an ambulance. Like the new Mercedes-Maybach S600 Pullman Guard, the Cadillac One is chock-full of bulletproof and bomb-proof technologies, albeit on a much different level.
Here are seven things you probably didn’t know about the Cadillac One:
1. There are 12 identical Cadillac Ones in rotation. When not in use, they’re parked in the basement of the Secret Service’s headquarters and are under 24-hour surveillance.
2. The run-flat tires are Kevlar-enforced, puncture- and shred-resistant. Even if they do get punctured, the steel rims will keep the car moving at speed.
3. The doors are as heavy as a Boeing 757 cabin door, thanks to its eight-inch thick armour plating.
4. Each Cadillac One costs US$1.5 million to manufacture.
5. Its fuel tank is foam-sealed, so it won’t explode even with a direct hit.
6. Oxygen supply, firefighting equipment are stored safely in the boot. It is said that bottles of the POTUS’ blood are also kept there, in the event an emergency transfusion is required.
7. The driver’s window is the only one that opens — and only by three inches, mind you.