Sneak a peek inside the Beast
THE world’s most public man is driven in the world’s most secret car. It’s so secret that at trade-in time it will be crushed beyond recognition.
US President Barack Obama, who is in Australia to celebrate the 60th anniversary of the ANZUS alliance, will be cocooned in ‘‘ Limo One’’ as his personal transport.
But ‘‘ Limo One’’— or ‘‘ Cadillac One’’ or ‘‘ The Beast’’, as it has been dubbed — isn’t one car and it isn’t even on the Cadillac model list. In fact, it’s the only Cadillac that doesn’t have a model name, though Cadillac refers to it in-house as ‘‘ Stage Coach’’.
Built in 2009, it is one of the 25 limousines of the Obama Administration. And even Limo One is believed to be one of three identical vehicles— some foreign visits by the President may require the use of all the ‘‘ clones’’.
As Cadillac spokesman David Caldwell says: ‘‘ One of the specifications of the car is that I can’t talk about the specifications.’’
Limo One is believed to be based on a General Motors 4WD chassis. The 6m long car looks similar to production Cadillacs but in detail is a montage of body panels, headlights and tail-lights.
These components, borrowed from other Cadillac cars, provide the skin over a six-tonne, grenade-proof armoured personnel carrier.