Fun Facts About The Classic Party-Ready Limo
Today, limo rentals and car services are synonymous with huge, important nights out: prom, weddings, galas. They're associated with important people, too. The President of the United States' main car is a heavy-duty, specially designed Lincoln limousine called the Cadillac One. The UK's Queen Elizabeth is chauffeured around in a dashing black limousine as well. Movie stars have been riding in limos to glittering premiere shows since the 1940s. But where did the limo tradition come from? Why is it called a limousine? Here are some fun facts to tickle your fancy.
- The first limos in 1902 had open-air chauffeur seats with only a simple hood for cover -- brr!
- That driver's hood gave limousines their name. "Limousine" comes from the French region Limousin where the shepherding people wore distinct hooded cloaks.
- Stretch limos were invented in Arkansas in 1928.
- Stretch limos were originally called "big band buses" because initially, their main use was to transport instruments and members of 'big bands' who were popular in the 20s and 30s.
- The first cars designed with air conditioning were limos in 1940. The add-on built-in air conditioning was very expensive and impractical. It took up about half the trunk space!
- "Chauffeur" comes from the French word for "stoker". Early limos, like all early cars, were mainly steam-powered. They required the engine to be stoked by the driver, so the driver was called the "chauffeur".
- A "chauffeuse" is a female chauffeur.
- Limo drivers average around 150 trips a week.
- In 2015, there were about 8,305 U.S. limo drivers.
- According to the Guinness Book of World Records, the longest limousine ever built was a 100 feet long, white, and manufactured in 1997 in California by Hollywood car-builder Jay Ohrberg. He named it the American Dream. It was meant for advertising, but the over-the-top luxe car quickly became popular and was featured in some movies and TV.
- In German, "limousine" simply refers to a sedan-type car.
- The doors on the U.S. President's limo are said to be as heavy as that of a Boeing 757 aircraft partly because of its thick bulletproof plating. The president's got to have that secure executive ground transportation.
Was that more information than you ever needed to know about limousine services and car services? Who doesn't enjoy a fun fact here or there? Now on your next big night out you can impress your friends with some limo knowledge while sitting in a limo.