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Thursday, December 31, 2015

Matchbox Cadillac One Limo "The Beast" vs the Majorette Cadillac Limo "A Beast"




Matchbox joins the few other diecast manufacturers that are replicating the unique Presidential limousine for the current President of the United States.  It comes at a time when two problems exist: the lack of body-on-frame large sedans and the addition of more heavy armor.  The solution GM came up with is the Cadillac One limo, better known as "The Beast."




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The dilemma is that by now the body-on-frame full-size sedans that were once the king of limousine conversions, like the Lincoln Town Car, Cadillac Sedan DeVille, and Ford Crown Victoria, have all gone the way of the dinosaur.  Your best bet is a full-size SUV's, but they to are going to be the next endangered species and they're too big to fit in most areas.  You could stretch an uni-body frame like the Chrysler 300 or the previous Cadillac DTS limo, but now Presidential limos require more stringent, and heavy, armor that the unibody frames cannot handle.  What do you do now?  Well, GM got a good idea: reuse car parts and put them on a truck frame.  The frame is not from a Chevy Silverado, but rather the medium-duty Chevy Kodiak truck (you know the largest box trucks that you can get from U-Haul?), sharing the same 6.6L Duramax turbodiesel V8 that produces well over 500 ft-Ib's of torque through a six-speed automatic to the rear wheels.  Sure the ride would be rough, but I guess the frame also has an air suspension to help cushion the ride.




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Which brings me to another point: the lack of information about this car.  The Secret Service is very tight-lipped on the specs of this car (as show on Jay Leno's Garage when he tried to get more information, heck even look inside, and got nowhere).  So basically no one knows what the weight of the car is, how much power it makes, if it has an air suspension, the thickness of the armor, and what it looks like inside.  That explains why this Matchbox casting lacks an interior; that's fine, but when you got two other diecast manufacturers providing an interior in their 1:43 scale versions of The Beast it makes you wonder if once again Mattel took the cost-cutting route!  To guess the interior the rear seat has a soft pad where the President can take notes and room for five people.  The trunk has grenades and the President's blood type on standby.  The diesel fuel is less flammable than gasoline, hence the diesel engine choice, and from what I guess the dashboard has either the Cadillac DTS or 2006 Chevy Tahoe dashboard layout with a truck steering wheel.




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On the outside it looks like a typical car despite the truck-like runflat tires and wheels (looks normal on this Matchbox casting.  The body shell is the same as the Cadillac DTS done in all-black, and next year all white.  The front-end has detailed headlights, grille, and lower signal lights and foglights borrowed from the 2007 Cadillac Escalade.  The side view at least looks like a limo unlike the Lincoln Limo of the 1980's that looked more like a stretched Lincoln Towncar.  The rear has detailed taillights, sharp third brake light on the trunklid, chrome bumper strip, and reverse lamps near the blue plate that reads "Dream Big"; all of it used from the 2007 Cadillac STS sedan.  Other nice touches is the dual exhausts, American flag on the trunklid, and the detailed chassis with the beefy frame and dual exhausts.  And if you ever seen a picture of the rear door open you can see it is one thick door and really heavy from all that armor.  Personally for me this casting is a disappointment for the lack of an interior and the front and rear ends are part of the plastic base; fine for now in a darker color, but wait until it rears its ugly head in a lighter color!




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For the true limousine experience, and one that truly is a Beast, look no further than this Majorette 1:64 1980's Cadillac Limo based on the Cadillac Sedan DeVille.   Thanks to no package restrictions this car is twice the size of the Matchbox Cadillac One, all decked out in white and metal body on metal base.  The front has orange headlights, nicely detailed, with the front grille details and the plate bumper that reads Club Limo.   The body lines are nicely executed despite some banana bending, chipped paint, crumby base finish on the bumpers, and slightly crooked doors.  The rear has the vertical taillights, boomerang antenna on the trunklid, and a Florida license plate.  Heck, this car looks ready to head down to South Beach in Miami, Florida!




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The front and rear doors open to a plush interior with seats that have that classic Cadillac seat padding details.  The front dashboard has not much in details but does have the correct 2-spoke steering wheel.  The rear has seating for four with a center console featuring a wine cooler and switches to activate several features from the side windows to the front privacy glass behind the front seats, to the moonroof that slides open.  All of this is powered by a 250 CID V8 that produces 135 hp. and 190 Ib-ft of torque through a three-speed automatic to the rear wheels.  Majorette is really big on working suspensions, so you can imagine in a car this long and a suspension this soft how fun a J-turn would be in this car!



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The new Matchbox Cadillac One limo is a nice addition to the lineup, but it lacks the full-detailing that would summon the high bidding prices for this car.  With that in mind I still prefer the ultimate limo of my collection, the Majorette Cadillac Limousine.

1 comment:

  1. It looks like many people here are looking for the original manufacturers specifications. I wanted to tell everyone about VehicleBios.com. It has free access to all specs for almost every auto and truck ever built! Hope this helps some people. Thank you, Rashida, Ten Doves"

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