samedi 29 octobre 2022

The vehicles of the American Presidents from 1900 to today - English Version


The vehicles of the American Presidents
from 1900 to today

  - English Version -

Translated with (free version)

(Sorry if there are errors in the meaning, word or verb of the expressions). 

Up date: 31/10/2022

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American President Theodore ROOSEVELT

At the beginning of the 20th century, the American Presidents abandoned their carriages preferring to travel in explosion cars, a sign of modernity.


American President Theodore ROOSEVELT in 1902 in the South Lawrence Station.

During their travels across the United States during their term of office, the American Presidents travelled by train. 


Head-on collision between two American locomotives

When the presidential convoy is in motion, one locomotive precedes it by a few minutes and another follows it to protect it from the risk of collision with other passenger or freight trains.


U.S. President Theodore ROOSEVELT during a visit to an American city

Once they arrive, American Presidents travel in the cars of local mayors or governors, driven by their personal drivers. President Theodore ROOSVELT (1901-1909) rode in various models instead of the usual ceremonial carriages.


American President Theodore ROOSEVELT in 1907

Video of American President Theodore ROOSEVELT
during a parade in September 1917


Later, Theodore ROOSEVELT was the first President to ride in a car owned by the American Government, with a driver depending on the "Secret Service", the protection service of the President of the USA. Here is one of the very first cars of the Presidency in Washington in 1909.   


And here is a second one with the emblem of the President of the USA on the rear door.


Later on, the presidential fleet was extended with Pierce ARROW


Here are other vehicles of this fleet in the park of the White House in Washington.


We can see here the American President William TAFT (1909-1913) aboard one of the CADILLAC MODEL G with a hood.


The next president, Woodrow WILSON, (1913-1921) will drive in a PIERCE ARROW


The American President Warren HARDING (1921-1923) was the first one to make his inauguration in a Packard Twin Six, whereas before it was done in a carriage...

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Lincoln Limousine MODEL M

In 1923, American President Calvin COOLIDGE (1923-1929) drove a Lincoln MODEL M.


Herbert HOOVER (1929-1933) preferred a CADILLAC V12, which in these times of crisis may have cost him his next presidency...


Franklin Delano ROOSEVELT in Packard Twelve in 1934

Franklin Delano ROOSEVELT (1933-1945) will drive in various cars.


Franklin Delano ROOSEVELT in a 1934 Packard Twelve during a trip

He will be protected during his travels by agents of the "US Secret Service", creating a protective bubble around the President, because the risk of attack was very present.

Franklin D. ROOSEVELT's trip in 1936

This principle of bubble protection follows the assassination of King Alexander I of Yugoslavia in 1934, which imposed a pro-active security around the Presidential limousine.


Franklin Delano ROOSEVELT in a 1934 Packard Twelve with his family

Indeed, at the beginning of his term in office, in Miami, he will be the victim of an attack while traveling in a convertible vehicle.


Al CAPONE's Cadillac V16

The Secret Service quickly looked for an armored car to protect him. They found it at the State Treasury Department: the Cadillac V16 of a certain Al CAPONE had been confiscated. It would serve Franklin D. ROOSEVELT until 1938.


Visit of King Edward VI of England to Washington in June 1939

President Franklin ROOSEVELT will welcome King Edward VI of England, in June 1939, this one making a 6 weeks visit in the neighboring Canada, shortly before the second world war, on board a Packard Twelve of 1939.

CADILLAC Serie 90 Fleetwood presidential

From 1938 onwards, two CADILLAC Serie 90 Fleetwood convertibles will be put at his disposal.


CADILLAC Serie 90 Fleetwood presidential

These two enormous cars were nicknamed: "Queen Mary" and "Queen Elizabeth".


CADILLAC Serie 90 Fleetwood presidential

These parade cars were also used after the war by the successive Presidents TRUMAN, EISENHOWER, KENNEDY and JOHNSON until 1968.

Here is a video where we can see this Cadillac Serie 90 Fleetwood during a trip in 1943 to Canada during a meeting between the English President CHURCHILL and the President ROOSEVELT..


LINCOLN V12 "SUNSHINE SPECIAL" with President TRUMAN on board

President ROOSEVELT also had a LINCOLN V12 "SUNSHINE SPECIAL" which arrived in 1939.


LINCOLN V12 " SUNSHINE SPECIAL " with President TRUMAN on board

This one was used until 1950.

LINCOLN V12 " SUNSHINE SPECIAL " on the tarmac of an airport

On this picture we can see above the headlights the siren with its light which was flashing red.


President Theodore ROOSEVELT's visit to Birmingham in 1933

Like his predecessors, President Theodore ROOSEVELT traveled across the states by train, in a PULLMAN COMPANY wagon, the "Ferdinand Magellan".


President Theodore ROOSEVELT during a trip in 1943

In 1942, this car was completely redesigned for President ROOSEVELT following his illness, so that he could move on board with his chair. Moreover, an armor was added.


President TRUMAN in Baltimore station at the end of 1948

The candidate Harry TRUMAN (1945-1953) toured the United States in 1948 for 4 months, criss-crossing the American states on this car for his re-election.


President TRUMAN during a speech in an American train station in late 1948

Each time he made speeches in front of a large crowd in the stations.

This car was used until 1958.


President REAGAN in 1984 aboard the Ferdinand MAGELLAN wagon

President Ronald REAGAN (1981-1989) also made a tour in 1984 on board, imitating TRUMAN and made speeches at the back of the train as formerly in crowded stations...


Douglas C118 during a trip of President TRUMAN on 31/08/1947

The evolution of the aviation in the Fifties will however modify the deal. It is Franklin Delano ROOSEVELT who will be the first president to travel by plane during his mandate to go to a conference in Casablanca in Morocco in January 1943.


Boeing 707VC 137 Air Force One

The name Air Force One was adopted following an incident in 1953, when a commercial flight of EASTERN AIR LINES had the same flight number as the presidential plane... The two planes were in the same airspace, resulting in confusion...

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Sikorsky HUS1 Sea Horse having deposited the President EISENHOWER in Athens in December 1959

For the use of a helicopter for presidential transport,, this one goes back to 1957, with President Dwigth EINSENHOWER on board an H-13 SIOUX. Indeed, before, the President used to fly back to the White House from his summer residence at "Rhone Island" by taking a ferry for one hour to join the presidential plane for a 45 minutes flight to Andrews Air Force Base in Washington then a 30 minutes drive...


Arrival of John Fitzgerald Kennedy in the White House gardens in April 1961

Until 1976, the Marine Corps shared its responsibility for helicopter transportation with the US Army. The code for Army helicopters when the President was on board was ARMY ONE. In 1976, the code was changed to MARINE ONE. 

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But let's go back to the cars. President Harry TRUMAN (1945-1953) ordered after the war a dozen LINCOLN Cosmopolitan 1950.



Some of them were equipped with a transparent roof at the rear called  « BUBBLE TOP ».


Queen Elizabeth's visit to the USA in October 1957

It is the coachbuilder HESS & EISENHARDT which was the preparator from 1950 of the American presidential cars until 1992.


Visit of Queen Elizabeth II in October 1957 in the USA

The American President Dwight Eisenhower (1953-1961) used a Lincoln Cosmopolitan 1950 Bubbletop during the visit of Queen Elizabeth II in Washington.


Visit of Queen Elizabeth II in October 1957 in the USA

This principle allowing the crowd to see the Queen as we can also see it here...


Cadillac Parade Car of 1956 in front of the White House

Two 1956 Cadillac Parade Cars were also made available to the President of the USA.


Members of the US Secret Service on the 1956 CADILLAC Parade Car in the streets of New York in 1962 

Later on, these cars were used more by the US Secret Service bodyguards who escorted the US President.

Preparation of the CADILLAC Parade Car for an escort departure

They accompanied the limousine of the President during his trips abroad.


They can be seen here during the inauguration of President John F. KENNEDY in January 1961. He is aboard the LINCOLN COSMOPOLITAN convertible.
Or here during the visit of the Tunisian President BOURKIBA in Washington on May 03, 1961,

or here during the visit of the Sudanese President on November 04, 1961.

Visit of the American President JFK to Berlin on 26/06/1963

It is in the middle of the year 1961 that John Fitzgerald KENNEDY (1961-1963) will move in a LINCOLN Continental 1961 - X100.

Video presenting this 1961 LINCOLN Continentale - X100

Presentation of the X100 with the light metal roof and the Bubbletop

This one had the particularity to have a set of three removable roofs: one in standard fabric, one in metal and one in glass.


Visit of the American President JFK in Dallas on 22/11/1963

On the day of the assassination of JFK on November 22, 1963 in Dallas, Texas, it was decided not to put the "bubbletop" because of a bright sky. Knowing that even if this one had been put, it was not armored...


His successor Lyndon B. JOHNSON (1963-1969) kept it but sent it back to the coachbuilder HESS & EISENHARDT so that it was entirely armored.


President Nixon aboard the X100

He also asked that the navy blue color be changed to black.

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President NIXON (1969-1974) will drive him in a 1969 LINCOLN CONTINENTAL.



Armored, with puncture-proof tires and bullet-proof windows, President NIXON will ask to have an opening roof through which he could greet the crowd.


The American president Gerald FORD with his wife on board the LINCOLN CONTINENTAL 1969

Gerald FORD (1974-1977) will also drive this limousine.

Video presenting this car


The 1969 LINCOLN CONTINENTAL was used for the visit of Pope John Paul II during a tour in different American states in November 1979, here in Boston,


or here in Philadelphia.


During his trip to Chicago the same month, the Pope was in another limousine: the 1972 LINCOLN Continental.


American President Jimmy CARTER greeting the crowd in 1979 on board the 1972 LINCOLN CONTINENTAL

This 1972 LINCOLN CONTINENTAL was used at the end of his mandate by NIXON, then by Gerald FORD and Jimmy CARTER (1977-1981).


The opening of the rear doors was particular.


To note the handle allowing the bodyguards to cling to the limousine when it was driving slowly which was retractable.


Visit of President Jimmy CARTER on 01/04/1979 at the Three Mile Island nuclear power plant

Jimmy CARTER will also travel in CADILLAC FLEETWOOD Seventy Five


Escort during the inauguration of Jimmy CARTER on Pennsylvannia Avenue on 20/01/1977

 It should be noted that a special service of protection of the "SECRET SERVICE" will be developed from 1979 to protect the President of the USA during his movements.

Indeed, before, "MUSCLE CAR", vehicles gathering bodyguards, escorted the American presidential convoys.
  - English Version -


During his inauguration, Ronald REAGAN (1981-1989) also drove a CADILLAC FLEETWOOD Seventy Five.


American President Ronald REAGAN with his wife during his inauguration aboard the 1972 LINCOLN CONTINENTAL

He will also use, the same day, the 1972 LINCOLN CONTINENTAL to greet the crowd. It was in front of this limousine that an assassination attempt was made against him on March 30th 1981 in Washington.

You can find under the link below, the "Presidential Inaugural Plates", plates specially put on the day of the inauguration of the American Presidents. 


During his first travels in the USA, it was the CADILLAC FLEETWOOD Seventy Five. that were requested.


Cadillac FLEETWOOD 1983

In 1983 came the 1983 CADILLAC FLEETWOOD .


Here is President REAGAN speaking in front of Air Force One before leaving in this presidential limousine.


Video during a visit to North Carolina by Ronald REAGAN


This one, like the previous ones, was transported by plane when the President traveled to other American states or abroad.


1989 Lincoln Continental in front of the White House

His successor, President George H.W. BUSH (1989-1993), will drive a 1989 Lincoln Continental that takes the shape of the 1981 Cadillac Fleetwood.


President CLINTON getting off Marine One

President CLINTON (1993-2001) had a 1993 CADILLAC FLEETWOOD BROUGHAM.


CADILLAC De Ville 2001

George W. BUSH (2001-2009) will also have a CADILLAC De Ville 2001. It is also at this date that the two CADILLAC ONE will have the same license plate "800*002" to avoid knowing in which one the American President is in case of a terrorist attack.


Then came the CADILLAC DTS 2006


Replaced during the OBAMA era (2009-2017) by the CADILLAC PRESIDENTIAL LIMOUSINE 2009


Visit of Barack OBAMA to BERLIN in 2013

Visit of Barack OBAMA to LONDON in 2016

In August 2011, are introduced in the fleet of presidential vehicles the "GROUND FORCE ONE". These are two coaches that allowed the American President at the time, Barack OBAMA, to campaign for the presidential election in 2012.

They are equipped with secure communications and other special equipment.
With a unit cost of 1.1 million dollars, the second one was used by the Republican candidate, Barack OBAMA's opponent, Mitt ROMNEY. They are also used during the visits of dignitaries in the USA.


Several CADILLAC ONE during the inauguration of President TRUMP in 2017

There are more than ten CADILLAC ONEs. Thus, depending on the movements of the American President, two limousines are ready to leave when they arrive.


American presidential limousines and their escort cars in a C17

Indeed, two CADILLAC ONE limousines precede the President's arrival by a few days and are transported with their escort vehicles.

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The latest models of CADILLAC ONE Presidential are from 2018 and served during the term of Donald TRUMP (2017-2021).


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Donald TRUMP's visit with the new CADILLAC ONE in 2018 in New York 

Donald TRUMP's 2019 visit to London

President Joe BIDEN, 46 th American president, has of course taken place in this new model during his arrival at the Presidency of the USA...


We can see on this picture, four CADILLAC ONE of this new model "2018" during the inauguration of the American President Joe BIDEN, on January 20th, 2021, in the streets of Washington.


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