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President Donald Trump may be close to taking a delivery of a new car: the heavily armored Cadillac sedan known as “The Beast.”
A disguised version of the new model was seen testing on public roads in southeast Michigan, hinting that it may be ready for its official debut.
Different iterations of the new limo have been spotted in road tests since last year, but as of now, Trump is still commuting in the old Beast, the same Cadillac that served President Barack Obama.
It is not known when the new wheels are set to hit the road, but some eagle-eyed car enthusiasts are likely to know it when they see it.
— Car and Driver (@CARandDRIVER) September 19, 2017
The Beast is traditionally designed from the ground up by the US Secret Service, and there are usually multiple copies put in rotation, housed in the basement of Secret Service headquarters, and kept under 24-hour surveillance, AutoWeek previously reported.
Because of heavy armoring throughout, and most likely a host of top-secret protection and counter-assault equipment, these cars are as heavy as a tank and get less than 5 mpg.
The new one is likely to ride on a medium or heavy truck platform produced by General Motors. By some estimates, it will be fitted to the same chassis found on some Chevrolet or GMC haulers – the kinds of vehicles you would typically see as large moving trucks, for example.
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That bulky chassis is heavily fortified to make it bulletproof and bombproof, durable enough for years of rigorous duty, and prepared for any worst-case scenarios.
On the design side, the updated car could be a mashup of at least a couple of models in the GM lineup. The headlights appear to be from the current Cadillac Escalade SUV. In back, the taillights bear some resemblance to either the Cadillac XTS or CT6 luxury sedan.
Its bodywork features a combination of various heavy materials, including steel, aluminum, titanium, and ceramic.
Naturally, details of the security treatment these armored state cars receive are not for public consumption, but here’s what we know about modern US presidential limos, based on what’s now in circulation.
Amanda Macias contributed reporting.
- Getty/Amanda Macias/Business Insider