Kennedy Presidental Limo

13 May 2015 | Author: | Comments Off on Kennedy Presidental Limo
Lincoln Continental

Who built the car?

Ford Motor Company assembled the car at its Lincoln plant in Wixom, Michigan in January 1961. Hess Eisenhardt of Cincinnati, Ohio was responsible for customizing the car to function as a presidential parade limousine, literally cutting it in half, reinforcing it, extending it 3 ½feet in length, and making numerous other modifications.

Ford Motor Company and Hess Eisenhardt collaborated on engineering and styling. It debuted at the White House in June 1961. The car remained the property of the Ford Motor Company, which leased it to the Secret Service for the nominal price of $500 per year.

What did the car cost to build?

The car, as equipped at the Lincoln plant, would have retailed for $7,347. Custom built, the car cost nearly $200,000, according to Randy Mason (The Saga of the ‘X-100’).

What were some of the car’s special features?

Special features on the 1961 limousine included:

Removable steel and transparent plastic roof panels

Hydraulic rear seat that could be raised 10½ to elevate the president

Massive heating and air conditioning system with auxiliary blowers and 2 control panels

Dark blue broadcloth lap robes with gray plush lining and hand-embroidered presidential seals in special door pockets

Four retractable steps for Secret Service agents

Two steps on rear bumper for additional agents

Flashing red lights, siren

Blue Mouton rug in rear

Indicator lights when door was ajar or steps out

Lincoln Continental

Two flagstaffs, two spotlights

Auxiliary jump seats for extra passengers

Two radio telephones

Interior floodlights

In 1963 the car’s grille was replaced by one from a 1962 model and ‘sombrero’-style wheel covers like those of the 1957 Lincoln Premiere were added. Trunk lid grab handles for Secret Service agents were affixed as well.

What happened to the car after President Kennedy’s assassination?

The X-100 was impounded for evidence in the weeks following the assassination on November 22, 1963. Soon after plans were made to modify the car in Cincinnati, Ohio and then return it to Washington D.C.

What was Project D-2 or the Quick Fix?

Following the assassination of President Kennedy, a committee was formed (originally comprised of thirty people) of six people representing the Secret Service, Army Materials Research Center, Hess Eisenhardt and Pittsburgh Plate Glass Company. The White House approved a plan for a revamp of the X-100 around December 12, 1963. Work was completed May 1, 1964 and extensive testing was performed in Cincinnati, Ohio and Dearborn, Michigan before the car was delivered to the White House in June.

Costs have been estimated to exceed $500,000 and were shared by Ford Motor Company, some Ford suppliers and the federal government.

Lincoln Continental
Lincoln Continental
Lincoln Continental

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