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What If the Next Presidential Limo Was a Tesla?

timothy posted about 7 months ago | from the anything-that'll-turn-into-a-pumpkin-please dept.

Government 330

cartechboy writes "The presidential limo is known as "The Beast," and it's getting to be about that time where it's replaced. Currently The Beast is a General Motors creation with a Cadillac badge, but what if the next presidential limo was a Tesla? Stick with me here. The Beast is a massive vehicle, which means there would be plenty of room in the structure to have a long battery pack a la Model S. Plus, it could use the upcoming Model X's all-wheel-drive system. Tesla's air suspension would keep it from encountering high-centering issues. There could even be a charging port on both the front and back so a battery truck could hook up while driving, like in-flight refueling. Obviously the battery pack would need to have extra protection so it wouldn't have any issues with road debris, but that's a minor issue. Tesla is an American company, and that's a requirement for The Beast. So is it that far fetched to think the next presidential limo could be a Tesla?"

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Don't they have to fly that thing around? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46477545)

Wouldn't it weigh, well... quite a bit?

Re:Don't they have to fly that thing around? (3, Insightful)

brainboyz (114458) | about 7 months ago | (#46477669)

You mean more than it already does loaded with armor?

Re:Don't they have to fly that thing around? (4, Insightful)

Cimexus (1355033) | about 7 months ago | (#46477719)

It already weighs a LOT due to all the thick armor plating. In fact some places have issues with allowing it because it exceeds the design tolerances for the pavement. The added weight of battery packs wouldn't really be that significant, especially if they can save weight on the engine or other parts.

Re:Don't they have to fly that thing around? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46477865)

20,000 pounds and 8mpg! [leftlanenews.com] . No way are you going to move that amount of weight around for any range on electric.

Personally I think he should be in a regular vehicle though, America needs to kick the fossil-fuel habit and drive smaller more efficient cars, and its 'leader' should give up the narcissism and lead by example.(no one human being is _that_ important)

Re:Don't they have to fly that thing around? (4, Funny)

viperidaenz (2515578) | about 7 months ago | (#46477941)

I know, right!
They should remove the armour plating from all the tanks too. People aren't that important.

Re:Don't they have to fly that thing around? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46478043)

Well, people are going to get shot in tanks regardless.

The presidential limousine could be made of paper machete as long as everybody believes it's a 20,000 pound piece of impenetrable steel.

Seriously, it's probably mostly dead weight. All you need to repel are small arms fire. If some organization was well prepared enough to place road side bombs, place shoulder fired rockets, etc, on American soil in major urban centers, then the strength of the limousine is the least of your problems.

Re:Don't they have to fly that thing around? (3, Insightful)

Jarik C-Bol (894741) | about 7 months ago | (#46477983)

It weighs that much and gets that bad of milage because its as close to being an Abrams tank as you can get while still looking like a limo. I don't think the president has much of a say in the vehicles they use to transport him, and "The Beast" exists mostly because of Kennedy and various other attempts on American presidents. Besides, there are far more effective ways for the president to "Lead" us into a greener future. (Maybe cutting back on those vacations that are half a planet worth of jet fuel away for one.)

Re:Don't they have to fly that thing around? (1)

Jeremiah Cornelius (137) | about 7 months ago | (#46478055)

Think BIG!

What if the next presidential limo was 3000 mics of LSD, Donald Sutherland reading "The Cat In the Hat" and a disco ball?

Re:Don't they have to fly that thing around? (1)

mrchaotica (681592) | about 7 months ago | (#46478085)

Besides, there are far more effective ways for the president to "Lead" us into a greener future. (Maybe cutting back on those vacations that are half a planet worth of jet fuel away for one.)

More like "vacations that are a full plane load worth of secret service agents and other assorted aides away" -- if the Prez flew commercial it wouldn't be such a big deal.

Probably still (5, Funny)

the_skywise (189793) | about 7 months ago | (#46477557)

be required to buy it through a dealer though...

Re:Probably still (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46477657)

Can someone explain why that is the way it is?

Re:Probably still (2)

mcl630 (1839996) | about 7 months ago | (#46477703)

Dealers have a lot of political clout.

Re:Probably still (2)

bobbied (2522392) | about 7 months ago | (#46477795)

And money to keep their political clout.

Re: Probably still (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46477841)

Anti trust laws

Sure. (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46477933)

The movers and shakers believe in the religion of scarcity. They will quote "The Tragedy of the Commons" at the drop of a hat. They want clean food, air and water to be things you have to buy, not things you can get for free, because they honestly believe that anything that isn't bought is inimical to the American Way of Life. They aren't exactly hiding this attitude much; they openly say that "greens" are unAmerican, that environmentalists are bad people, and that conservation and environmentalism are evil forces. Drill baby drill!

Car dealer lobbyists are a convenient excuse, but the real reason is that these people believe in pollution, they want more pollution, and they see creating more pollution as a sacred patriotic cause.

Didja notice all that stuff about "the government shouldn't pick winners or losers" goes right out the window the minute we're talking about pollution or environmentalism? The peons want clean water, the rulers want to sell Evian to them.

Re:Sure. (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46478047)

Your mom pays for the water you don't shower with hippie.

Re:Probably still (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46477973)

From my understanding -
Basically the government made car manufacturing/selling a sort of mini-regulated industry to prevent monopolistic control and gain some political clout. Overtime everything just got entrenched. The dealers issue with Tesla isn't the car itself or even the competition per se (I'm sure some dealers would love to sell the car) but that the dealers have been forced to work under a regulatory framework that Tesla doesn't have to abide by and that gives Tesla an unfair advantage (spread the pain evenly, my friend).

Kind of like local mom and pop shops complaining about internet stores like Amazon.

Re:Probably still (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46477857)

You don't buy these things from a dealer... but Tesla's probably not bidding on government contracts any time soon.

Well then it likely... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46477559)

...would get banned from New Jersey.

Re:Well then it likely... (1)

PrimeWaveZ (513534) | about 7 months ago | (#46477629)

...would get banned from New Jersey.

It'll get "stuck" trying to get out of NYC.

So what if the "presidential whatever" is whatever (4, Insightful)

Lumpio- (986581) | about 7 months ago | (#46477571)

Does it make any practical difference? Is there any point to this post?

Re:So what if the "presidential whatever" is whate (2)

the_skywise (189793) | about 7 months ago | (#46477593)

Heh... you mean like a History channel special?

What if the next Presidential Limo was... a space alien?!

Re:So what if the "presidential whatever" is whate (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46477611)

But what if the president was a space alien? Then we'd have an alien in an alien!
I don't even know what is right anymore.

Re:So what if the "presidential whatever" is whate (1)

nadszyszkownik (2543098) | about 7 months ago | (#46477829)

Yo dawg! I heard you like aliens...

Re:So what if the "presidential whatever" is whate (4, Insightful)

whisper_jeff (680366) | about 7 months ago | (#46477859)

You obviously never collected comics. Geeks who did are fond of "what if?..." special issues because the exploration of the possibility of something weird is fun.

You remember what fun was like, right?

Don't worry - I'll get off your lawn now.

Re:So what if the "presidential whatever" is whate (1)

Etherwalk (681268) | about 7 months ago | (#46478077)

Does it make any practical difference? Is there any point to this post?

Yes. Practically the poster and various commentators enjoy the hypothetical. In addition, if there were actually a chance of this happening, it would make a practical difference in the security status of the president of the United States.

Unicorns ruling the universe... (1, Insightful)

dstyle5 (702493) | about 7 months ago | (#46478111)

I hope my just submitted "what if" about unicorns ruling the universe will make the front page as well. Given what they are posting these days I think I have a 50/50 chance of making it.

Armor is too heavy (0)

spiritplumber (1944222) | about 7 months ago | (#46477587)

Tesla's drive system is not quite up there yet. But I wouldn't be surprised if the next one was a hybrid, just to show hybridness off.

Re:Armor is too heavy (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46477715)

Exactly. No one knows the specs of the Presidential Limo; that's all classified, but the power train in that thing has got to outstrip anything Tesla is capable of yet, because all of the equipment and armor plating and the requirement for the number of staff the president always has with him, I think Tesla's a few years away from matching that.

Tesla's a great car, but their key hurdle to really make a difference is pure horsepower. Once you can replace an 18 wheeler's diesel engine with an electric drive system, then you've changed the world and made a real impact on emissions. Personal cars are a good start, but freight hauling is the real deal when it comes to replacing oil for transporation energy.

Re:Armor is too heavy (3, Informative)

profplump (309017) | about 7 months ago | (#46477785)

There are plenty of high-power electric drive systems. Trains and busses have been using them for decades. Walmart recently demoed a turbine-powered hybrid 18 wheeler with 100% electric drive power. The reason Tesla doesn't have an 800 HP electric drive is not that they don't exist, it's that they're big and expensive, just like 800 HP hydrocarbon engines.

Re:Armor is too heavy (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46477831)

s/horsepower/torque, which electric engines are good at.

Re:Armor is too heavy (1)

mrchaotica (681592) | about 7 months ago | (#46478117)

Once you can replace an 18 wheeler's diesel engine with an electric drive system, then you've changed the world and made a real impact on emissions.

Why bother? Just run the diesel engine you already have on biodiesel.

Re:Armor is too heavy (1)

lucm (889690) | about 7 months ago | (#46477791)

If they do so, there will be an interesting question: do they have to pay the $1.43-a-mile EV tax when they drive on roads in other countries? Or maybe "not polluting" is worth a fine only in America?

Re:Armor is too heavy (1)

bobbied (2522392) | about 7 months ago | (#46477889)

Tesla's drive system is not quite up there yet. But I wouldn't be surprised if the next one was a hybrid, just to show hybridness off.

Perhaps, but if it goes much past just having the Hybrid insignia glued to the side, I'd be surprised. The presidential Limo is about two things. First, to protect the president from all manor of threats while going down the road (Which means armor, speed and agility). Second, maintain the illusion of being "normal" in appearance. Gas mileage or being "green" would have to be an illusion at best and unless the hybrid configuration added to the armor, speed or agility you can forget it.

Tesla by it self not enough (4, Funny)

zlives (2009072) | about 7 months ago | (#46477591)

and what if it was paid for by using bitcoin...
now i think this post has all the magic words to make it a successful slashertisment.

Re:Tesla by it self not enough (4, Funny)

oodaloop (1229816) | about 7 months ago | (#46477705)

And Edward Snowden was the driver.

Re:Tesla by it self not enough (1)

zlives (2009072) | about 7 months ago | (#46477731)

quit making my post uber good... o'wait NSA

Re:Tesla by it self not enough (1)

riverat1 (1048260) | about 7 months ago | (#46477817)

and what if it was paid for by using bitcoin...

Created out of thin air by the Federal Reserve.

Not EMP resistant (1)

EngineeringStudent (3003337) | about 7 months ago | (#46477601)

If there was WWIII then el gran fromage would be powerless and unprotected where he was the moment it hit.
If there was the right, wrong time of solar storm, then el heffe might be getting an unintended suntan while waiting for combustion engine vehicles.

There might be a security issue.

And he doesn't own stock in Tesla, so he isn't going to be buying one.

Re:Not EMP resistant (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46477737)

It would have to be a very simple IC engine. Most new ones are very dependent on some pretty sophisticated electronics to improve performance, control emissions, manage braking systems, etc..

Re:Not EMP resistant (3, Insightful)

Onuma (947856) | about 7 months ago | (#46477761)

I'm fairly certain the current Beast is not HEMP protected. It's solidly constructed, but it doesn't have copper knife-edge seals and a complete faraday cage around all of its electrical and electronic components.

Besides; if there are EMPs anywhere in the area of the principal, there's already a major breakdown of security and things are likely out of their control. Their escort vehicles, mobile phones, radios and other electronics are all useless by that point, not even counting the other unknown factors which would subsequently arise.

Re:Not EMP resistant (4, Funny)

riverat1 (1048260) | about 7 months ago | (#46477851)

Yeah, hemp doesn't make very good armor.

Re:Not EMP resistant (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46478109)

You're just spewing propaganda. Before WWII hemp was used to create bullet-proof clothing. Little known fact--President Theodore Roosevelt was actually shot point blank in Cuba, but survived because his suit was made of hemp. (His horse was also shot, but the bullet hit the hemp bridle, only knocking out a tooth. This is the origin of the phrase, "never look Theodore's horse in the mouth". But the horse smoked hemp for several years and the tooth grew back.)

But the government didn't like the idea of citizens walking around nearly impervious to government force. This is one of many reasons Director Hoover helped push through anti-marijuana legislation.

Hemp is also 30x more efficient than natural gas at producing electrical power. And--fact!--the reason cancer deaths have been going up is because, before WWII, marijuana was the most prescribed cancer medication.

You SHEEPLE need to open your eyes!

No (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46477603)

A Tesla will not be the presidential vehicle, that would be too much of an endorsement for Tesla at the expense of GM. In addition new vehicle may have electrical backups, but I very much doubt that it would be the only form of power. In the event of an attack on the president it would be far more dangerous to have a cable attached to an additional vehicle than to simply grab a gascan and dump it, possibly while inside the vehicle.

Fanboi much? (4, Insightful)

msobkow (48369) | about 7 months ago | (#46477613)

Everyone wants to provide the presidential vehicles. Does Tesla provide as many jobs as GM?

The votes those employees provide are probably the most important factor when deciding who gets to provide the presidential ride.

Re:Fanboi much? (-1, Troll)

bloodhawk (813939) | about 7 months ago | (#46477667)

No, but at least if it was a tesla it would save the terrorists a lot of effort in attacking it, I am sure something of that wait and size built by tesla would explode all by itself every couple of hundred yards.

Re:Fanboi much? (1)

lucm (889690) | about 7 months ago | (#46477913)

Everyone wants to provide the presidential vehicles. Does Tesla provide as many jobs as GM?

The votes those employees provide are probably the most important factor when deciding who gets to provide the presidential ride.

How many members of the electoral college actually work in car factories? And for that matter, how many GM plants are located in states that are likely to switch side because they lose this symbolic business?

After the healthcare.gov fiasco, the Obama administration should learn from their mistake, stop pouring money in legacy businesses and embrace the brave new world. This means Tesla: a technology that does not require to bomb arab countries to keep oil prices low and that does not open the door to polluting the beautiful gulf of Mexico.

The important question is (2, Insightful)

RevWaldo (1186281) | about 7 months ago | (#46477615)

Would you depend on this vehicle if your life was at stake. Tesla can certainly bring it, but the internal combustion engine has over a century of demonstrated reliability.

.

Re:The important question is (1)

mojo-raisin (223411) | about 7 months ago | (#46477721)

Yeah. Electric motors have no track record.

{sarc}

Re:The important question is (1)

Garble Snarky (715674) | about 7 months ago | (#46477813)

What you mean to say is, GM has a very long track record, while Tesla does not.

Re:The important question is (3, Funny)

ericloewe (2129490) | about 7 months ago | (#46477853)

GM sure does have a track record, and that's exactly why I'd trust Tesla any day.

Re: The important question is (1)

Scowler (667000) | about 7 months ago | (#46477783)

Reliable? I've had two regular cars in the last decade that died simply because they over-heated in normal urban driving, leading to engine block failures. And that's no weird anecdote, as that is still a common cause of auto EOL in general.

Check your history. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46477801)

Electric motors and cars are older than gasoline engines and cars. [edisontechcenter.org]

More development dollars have gone into gas cars for several reasons.

1) oil was cheap and plentiful.
2) the same group of people owned the oil companies, car companies, and rubber plantations.
3) these people believe pollution is a social good, because they don't want air and water to be cost-free.

Re:The important question is (2)

tlhIngan (30335) | about 7 months ago | (#46477915)

Would you depend on this vehicle if your life was at stake. Tesla can certainly bring it, but the internal combustion engine has over a century of demonstrated reliability.

As do electric motors. I mean, the first cars were electric (or steam!) - the ICE didn't come about until much later.

The big problem with Tesla is the dealers. The reason Tesla sells directly is because no dealer wants to sell a Tesla. It's just like Nissan and the Leaf. Dealerships don't make much money on car sales - sometimes as little as a couple of hundred bucks profit. The real profit's in the dealer service because despite the number of independent garages, there's still a large number of people who bring their cars back for servicing to the dealer. (It doesn't help that the dealer often incentivizes it by offering loaners, pickup/dropoff services, free car washes and other value-adds).

An EV like a Tesla or a Leaf requires practically no servicing. They recommend a yearly look-over and inspection just to make sure things are on the up-and-up, but you can skip those.

That's why dealers are fighting against Tesla - not because of direct sales, but because EVs are bad for their business. They just cost less to maintain, have less to go wrong and are just simpler on the inside.

It's like computing going from vacuum tubes to transistors.

Lack of range (2)

Lluc (703772) | about 7 months ago | (#46477617)

The lack of range would be a huge security hazard. It will have poor range to begin with when you consider the lack of aerodynamics and weight of the armor. You can't beat the energy storage capacity of petroleum.

Re:Lack of range (1)

mojo-raisin (223411) | about 7 months ago | (#46477739)

Yeah. I see the POTUS driving over 300 miles in a limo every week.

{sarc}

Marine One is for anything outside of a city. Jeez. Are we even half-awake here commenters?

Re:Lack of range (1)

Garble Snarky (715674) | about 7 months ago | (#46477833)

You are overlooking the fact that presidential vehicles are extremely over-designed.

You pegged it in one. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46477855)

You can't beat the energy storage capacity of petroleum.

This is the only insurmountable obstacle at this time. I could build pretty easily a heavier, safer limo using pure electric technology, but I can't build a battery with the refuel speed or energy density of gasoline. It just can't be done at this time.

Armor (4, Insightful)

sugar and acid (88555) | about 7 months ago | (#46477631)

The Presidents limo is in a heavily disguised armour. It weighs multiple tonnes.

An electric design just can't make the range or extended get away speed required with the protection needed.

Of course the one true maker of presidential limousines is ford....

Re:Armor (1)

mojo-raisin (223411) | about 7 months ago | (#46477755)

The battery is actually double platted with metal that is quite protective.

There is no car with a better safety score than the Model S. The Model X could be far superior with minor modes compared to any Caddy.

Re:Armor (1)

drama (32059) | about 7 months ago | (#46477803)

I don't believe the comment refers to the safety of the battery as obviously it'd have to be equally protected as the rest of the vehicle to protect the president.

"The Beast" is HEAVY. It has to be able to drive quite a distance to affect an escape. As much as I'd love a Tesla for The Beast as a nod away from fossil fuels, it likely wouldn't be able to handle the sheer power required to meet the demands of being called "The Beast". It wouldn't be practical not to use a combustion engine.

Re:Armor (1)

Twinbee (767046) | about 7 months ago | (#46477961)

Sheer power? I think you'll find the Model S is superior to an ICE in this respect. Batteries have come of age, and the acceleration, especially at low speeds, crushes all or nearly all ICE vehicles.

Re:Armor (1)

gsnedders (928327) | about 7 months ago | (#46477825)

The constant, massive, torque from idle would surely be massively useful for a vehicle weighing multiple tons and needing quick acceleration?

Regenerative might be the winner (1)

Overzeetop (214511) | about 7 months ago | (#46477979)

I was going to post that the range would be teh suck, and disqualify a tesla, but a stretch version with 2-3x the batteries, and high-performance regenerative breaking might actually make it a better choice. Yes, it takes a shitload of energy to get the 10 ton vehicle moving, but this is mostly an in town car - lots of stop and go. You get a percentage of that kinetic energy back every time you brake. Even with an enhanced fuel tank of 30+ gallons, the Caddy probably doesn't have even a 200 mile range in town (best guess is that it gets 8mpg in the best scenario, on Diesel). An electric vehicle would be more limited by aerodynamics and heat losses, so it might actually be range-competitive except at highway cruising speeds.

Now, there still may be a scenario (extended evacuation distance) which the batteries just couldn't handle, but for normal to moderately-extreme conditions a battery pack car very well could out-perform the ICE version.

Re:Armor (1)

T.E.D. (34228) | about 7 months ago | (#46478079)

I dunno...

For one thing, a bog standard Tesla already has pretty good protection [teslamotors.com] . The NTSA actually had to make up new tests to find any kind of limits to the thing. For example, when they tried doing standard crashes into poles, it kept breaking their poles. They flat out could not get the thing to roll over. You'd think with that as a standard to start from, they could achieve some pretty great things if given the extra custom design latitude and budget a POTUS limo vendor is typically given.

For another, with the extra space under a stretch limo, as the article points out they ought to be able to pack enough extra battery to make up for the extra weight.

For another, electric cars already have much more power at lower revs than gasoline cars. I'd think that would be a pretty attractive feature for people worried about someone trying to block off their vehicle in an ambush.

Unlikely (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46477633)

For the Presidential Limo, concerns such as proven technology, speed of fuelling, and total range would be considered tantamount.

The Presidential Limo is not only chosen for actual use, but for a wide array of unlikely scenarios involving the safety of the President.

"The Beast" is armored, weighs about 7 tons, (4, Insightful)

Kevoco (64263) | about 7 months ago | (#46477649)

and is built on a GM truck frame.
I have a hard time imagining this level of protection working for an electric vehicle.

What If Slashdot Went One Day Without 10 Positive (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46477689)

What If Slashdot Went One Day Without 10 Positive Tesla "Articles"? It's so painfully obvious that they are paying for your "articles". It has made me hate this fucking "Tesla" company, whatever it is (I think they make cars? Never heard of them outside this site), to the point where I never want to have anything to do with them ever again.

Re:What If Slashdot Went One Day Without 10 Positi (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46477751)

Obvious troll is obvious.

is it that far fetched to think... Tesla? (1)

flaming error (1041742) | about 7 months ago | (#46477695)

Yeah, I think Teslas are designed to be light and aerodynamic. "The Beast" is neither.

Re:is it that far fetched to think... Tesla? (1)

cbhacking (979169) | about 7 months ago | (#46478069)

They aren't actually very light. Between the battery cells and the armor plate protecting them, the Model S weighs over two tons (4647 lb, or 2108 kilo). That said, the Beast weighs a few times as much, due to being armored on all sides (instead of just the underneath). With that said, they do save weight elsewhere when possible (aluminum for the body except the structural/safety parts, for example).

You *could* make an electric Beast, but it would have relatively short range hauling that much armor around.

Getting stuck (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46477707)

It didn't high center, it was a Bollard that popped up. Watch the video again, it can be seen. If it high centered it wouldn't have stopped so suddenly. Seems like someone has a lot of explaining to do if that's all it takes to stop the damn thing in it's tracks.

What if we put the petrol tank underneath the Pres (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46477727)

What could possibly go wrong?

Tesla is the Apple Computer of cars: championed by a loud, overpaid minority of circle-jerkers.

What if (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46477753)

It was a monster truck?
Makes far more sense than a Tesla. I mean, being so far off the ground makes it harder to IED. Everyone knows Teslas burst into flames when you look at the battery pack crossly.

Why is this under YRO and not idle, where garbage belongs?

beta IN CNAME idle.slashdot.org. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46477945)

because see subject

The Ultimate Electric Car (3, Interesting)

Kevin Fishburne (1296859) | about 7 months ago | (#46477767)

How small can they make nuclear reactors these days? Tesla could make the President's new "Beast" something like the Tumbler from the new Batman movies, with an extra 1000 HP thrown in for good measure.

A real alternative (1)

prefec2 (875483) | about 7 months ago | (#46477769)

Just imaging the President on a presidential bike. True, nowadays he would most likely be shot by some idiot for stupid reasons or by a terrorist loaded with a lot of hate. However, future might be just so if we could learn to tolerate each other. I know, this is not going to happen soon ;-)

Should work fine (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46477793)

Washington DC has stable and abundant electricity from one of the oldest, dirtiest coal power stations in the US, so a Tesla should work great there.

Yay coal powered cars.

what if it ran on biodiesel (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46477827)

Instead of electric car fantasies, what if it ran on biodiesel?
1) Biodiesel is more environmentally responsible than electric
2) It wouldn't just be a marketing stunt, but would provide real value
3) Maybe it would signal we could get back to actually solving our energy issues rather than pretending they're ok just because people on the coasts can't see the smokestacks

Charging solutions (5, Insightful)

Cimexus (1355033) | about 7 months ago | (#46477843)

While I have no doubt that you could build a fully electric vehicle that would meet the specs required for the President's limo, I think the biggest hurdle will be charging it. The Beast is one of the only vehicles in the world that drives in countries all over the world without being registered, or modified in accordance with the local market. I've seen the Beast myself here in Canberra, Australia a couple of times. It is kind of a novelty seeing a left-hand drive vehicle with US license plates cruising around on the 'wrong' side of the road in Australia. :)

But I digress. Countries all use different shaped plugs, different voltages etc. and the charging infrastructure in some places the president might visit is not always reliable. Yes you can ensure that US embassies and the presidential plane/other vehicles have the right systems in place. But you never know what might happen ... one day they might be stuck somewhere with insufficient range and no charging options. Gasoline OTOH, you can find almost anywhere, and can carry a spare supply of it quite easily compared to lugging around some kind of backup battery. I think for that reason it'll be a while before you see a vehicle built for this purpose be fully electric. Maybe a hybrid would work. But I think all-electric vehicles need to become more widespread globally and another decade or two of track record behind them before they would fit the bill for this need.

And what if there were an EMP? (2)

ducomputergeek (595742) | about 7 months ago | (#46477861)

Would the electric car still work? Could you easily find a place to charge up in that event? A car for the president has some different considerations than me in Suburbia who works from home 3 days a week and doesn't drive much. (For the record I'm a Chevy Volt owner)

EMP would kill ICE cars as well (1)

rsborg (111459) | about 7 months ago | (#46477907)

Would the electric car still work? Could you easily find a place to charge up in that event? A car for the president has some different considerations than me in Suburbia who works from home 3 days a week and doesn't drive much. (For the record I'm a Chevy Volt owner)

I drove 5-ton dump trucks in the military, most of systems were redundant including air-pressure brakes and the like. Your Honda, unless it's 30+ years old, will not survive the EMP either.

It is not a car (2)

houghi (78078) | about 7 months ago | (#46477873)

It is a tank made look like a car. It reminds of of this hammer I bought where all I changed was the head and the handle.

slashvertisement (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46477881)

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Blowjob! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46477897)

Wouldn't happen (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46477901)

The possibility of the battery packs exploding or catching fire from a jarring impact would most likely derail the project.

It's GM? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46477905)

I guess they had to go with GM since they ended up owning a chunk. I thought they were Lincolns. Maybe they were before this one. Having ridden in Caddies and Lincolns, I must say the Lincoln has a solid feel the GM product just can't match. It's like the Earth is unstable and then when you step into the Lincoln you're on solid ground. A teensy tiny little part of me feels sorry the prez has to ride around in a crap GM car.

Re:It's GM? (1)

compro01 (777531) | about 7 months ago | (#46478139)

The Presidential limo has been a (completely custom) Cadillac since Clinton took office. Bush 1 was the last president who used a Lincoln, which was originally Reagan's, who used 3 different cars (2 Lincolns and a Cadillac).

Educated guess (1)

cyberzephyr (705742) | about 7 months ago | (#46477911)

I feel the reason that the car will not be electric is that most Military vehicles can run on just about any fossil fuel available in case of emergencies or low fuel.

Tesla (1)

sharknado (3217097) | about 7 months ago | (#46477949)

I wonder if Elon Musk would donate a Tesla as the presidential car. One the one hand, it could be great advertising. On the other hand, the thing might catch fire on the highway.

What about... (1)

JockTroll (996521) | about 7 months ago | (#46477963)

... The next pigfucker just gets to ride on a bus, just like everybody else, and learns to stand up for a couple of hours with the vehicle moving, all the while smelling in the sweat and the farts of the other passengers? What about it, hunh?

Can't kill him with bullets? (1)

dohzer (867770) | about 7 months ago | (#46477977)

Can't kill him with bullets? Kill him with fire instead!

Good As US Economy (1)

iinventstuff (1888700) | about 7 months ago | (#46477997)

The Presidential limo is "too big to fail" and would need continual infusions [of power] just to keep going...

I think it would be a bad idea for Tesla (2)

Voyager529 (1363959) | about 7 months ago | (#46478007)

Now what DOES work well for Tesla is the blank check they'll get for making it. However, it will end up having a whole lot of redesign involved. Even if you tripled the battery pack's size, is it a linear gain for a vehicle that's somewhere around triple the weight of their existing models? Methinks not. The "in-flight refueling" truck situation has its own can of worms - you'd need a mobile charging unit capable of giving it enough juice to justify the trip in just a few minutes...I'm pretty sure that despite thirty years of work regarding power generation, we're still stuck with bolts of lightning and plutonium from Libyan nationalists to generate 1.21 gigawatts...neither of which are exactly 'portable', and all of THEM will have to be powered with something, so either you're simply offshoring the oil combustion, or "it's turtles all the way down".

Meanwhile, you'd need not just one of these things, but a dozen - remember that Tesla would have to build the decoy units, too...which means you'd also need a dozen refueling trucks. If you ditch all of that, then you'll have a fairly short range you'll be able to go, which will defeat most of the purpose of getting the limo replaced.

And after all of that...exactly what does that net Tesla? Are they looking to make alternatives to the Ford F150 or similar (justifying the work done on making a Tesla engine that can move that kind of weight)? Would it be a foot-in-door to get military contracts (justifying the R&D on an armored Tesla)? Could the charge-en-route tech be adapted for AAA tow trucks? ...Or would Uncle Sam simply pay for all the R&D because the tech needed for this project to work is so vastly different than Tesla's existing designs that monetizing them independently of the limo contract will prove impractical?

American made? (5, Interesting)

PPH (736903) | about 7 months ago | (#46478021)

Buy a Mercedes off the Alabama production line.

Oh, you meant corporate citizenship? F*ck the workers. Buy a GM from a Mexican line.

What If the Next Presidential Limo Was a Yugo? (1)

NikeHerc (694644) | about 7 months ago | (#46478039)

It would be more fitting, cheaper, and in line with the common man.

Also Airplanes (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46478053)

Why don't those windows open?

The flip side.. Can GM build it? (2)

Pontiac (135778) | about 7 months ago | (#46478071)

The 2009 Limo was built on the Medium duty Kodiac truck chassis.
GM shut down the Medium truck division in 2009.

What would they build it on?

At 7 tons it's more than even the 3500 series truck is rated for.

Let me stand next to your Tesla (1)

kajong0007 (3558601) | about 7 months ago | (#46478115)

I can't wait for the headline "Presidential Tesla catches fire while stopped on the highway"

Whatever happened to the fires?

Ideal case for an electric vehicle... (1)

tsprig (167046) | about 7 months ago | (#46478143)

I love all the uneducated comments about "it can't work because ... electricity."

There are very large/heavy/fast electric vehicles already. With a vehicle this large and one-off, you could do some pretty cool stuff:

    two (or more?) redundant electric motors for front vs rear drive
    inductive charging (just park next to a transformer somewhere ... haha)
    regenerative breaking for increased range in urban areas
    extreme high efficiency solar cells for maintaining charge/powering internal devices
    gas/diesel backup power plant

Also, with advances in materials, it's possible that armor isn't nearly as heavy for *better* protection.

The real limiting factor will be finding all of the components made exclusively in the US.

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