When Barack Obama is sworn as America's 44th president, he will be driven in style and safety in a new presidential limo (and a definite upgrade from those seen here from the Reagan era). New presidents usually get a new car to ride in and Obama is no exception. It is a GM Cadillac, though it is no ordinary Caddy. Its 8 inch thick doors, chemical attack-proof interior, and run-flat tires are just some of the upgrades that ordinary Americans normally don't have.
GM has been building presidential limos since 1983, though most were Lincoln Continentals. In 1965, LBJ was the first to have ridden in a bullet-proof car following his inaugural address. According to the Detroit News, "GM introduced its latest version of the presidential limousine in 2005 during Bush's second inauguration, which replaced the 2001 Cadillac DeVille presidential limousine. GM builds the vehicles to "an exacting list" of government specifications."
One thing that has remained constant in the modern era is the color. The presidential limo is black and will likely remain that color in the Obama administration. Frankly, I'd love to see it in a dark blue with a splash of red and white but perhaps there are security concerns to such color schemes. Any one interested in viewing the president's ride up close and personal should check out some of the presidential libraries where many of the limos go to retire.