Presidential limousines

Here’s an interesting slide show from the NYT on presidential limousines.

Pete provides another look at the new limo.

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8 thoughts on “Presidential limousines

  1. Great slide show. I have a “thing” for presidential limousines – each one has a great story behind it – and have several models of them. One of the Kennedy X-100 parade car (the one he was rinding in on the ill-fated trip to Dallas, one of the same car after it was refitted with a permenant polycarbonate roof and painted black (Kennedy’s car was dark blue) and one model of the 1950 Lincoln Bubbletop also shown in the slideshow. All are 1/24th scale and are available on the internet at sites like this:

    http://www.diecastmuscle.com/1950_Lincoln_Cosmopolitian_Bubble_Top_p/y24058.htm

    I did ruffle the little American and Presidential flags to make them look like they were flapping in the breeze.

  2. Ooops. If you’re interested in looking at the models just go to http://www.diecastmuscle.com and then go to “cars” and then go either to “Lincoln” or “Cadillac” in the navigation box at the left side of the page. Sorry about the mangled link.

  3. Some say that the limo which Jfk was riding in, was destroyed and another was made. But some say that is false so who knows.

  4. The “Kennedy” Limousine – as the link to the National Archives says – is indeed in the Henry Ford Museum, in Dearborn (near Detroit) Michigan. After the events in Dallas on 11/22/63, the car was returned to Hess and Eisenhardt, in Cincinnati, Ohio, (the professional bodyworks company that converted the car from a stock 1961 Lincoln to begin with). They made what is known as the “Quick Fix” on the car. (The incredibly good Yat Ming model they call the “Quick Fix” is in fact NOT the “Quick Fix”… read on…) This essentially envolved cleaning up the car, repairing and replacing whatever need to be replaced in the interior and installing a permenant top on the car – with thick bulletproof glass and side windows – and they painted the car black. This was enough to get the car back into service for LBJ’s use.

    A year or two later – in 1967 I *believe* the car was returned to Hess and Eisenhardt for a complete “off the frame” rebuild. At that point they installed all sorts of armor plating and (I believe) added thicker roof and side glass. This is the car that is now in the Henry Ford Museum. The car is *similar* to the way it appeared in Dallas, but the fixed top is very different and the passenger compartment is somewhat changed (fold-down armrests in the middle of the backseat and also in between the jump seats. (This is the version the Yat Ming people recreated in 1/24th scale – flawlessly). There’s an excellent video at the Ford Museum, shown right next to the car itself, that documents the various stages of the rebuild over the years.

    But overall (and I’ve seen it at the Ford Museum) the car – and in particular the interior of the car is similar enough to JFK’s car – to make it quite moving to see in person. Especially for those of us who are old enough to remember that day in Dallas – and how it marked our generation.

  5. There’s also an exellent program on YouTube – an hour-long program in 5 YouTube segments – on the Kennedy Limousine – here:

    http://www.youtube.com/user/pamina58

    This show follows the story of the car from it’s inception as a stock 1961 Lincoln Continental convertible, through the transformation as a presidential parade car, the assassination in Dallas – through the 1964 “Quick Fix” and the 1967 (I think it was ’67…) major rebuild – and it’s ultimate display at the Henry Ford Museum, in Detroit. Worth checking out.

  6. Hmmm, very interesting, John. Say, did you just hear someone volunteer to write up a page on presidential limousines for the site???

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