It seems as though everyone wants to ride in a limo at least once. Whether it’s a prom, a wedding or just a wild night out with friends Americans spend over 4 billion dollars annually with more than 5,000 chauffeured car rental companies to choose from. With statistics as sky-high as those it’s getting harder and harder each year to stand out from the crowd with something new and different. Why should you have to settle for the same standard limousine when with just a little bit of looking you can hire yourself a custom limo that is guaranteed to make heads turn and jaws drop?
It seems like only yesterday when the first modified Hummer Limousines started appearing in Las Vegas and Los Angeles. Sparked by the craze for the modified military vehicles started by Hollywood icon Arnold Schwartzenegger, the Humvee H2 became instant fodder for car designers imaginations. Hummers seemed to be a natural choice for Limo builders as their sturdy frames and over-sized engines made them particularly suited to the heavy-duty requirements of a service vehicle capable of seating 12 or more riders comfortably. The Hollywood panache associated with Arnie and his ilk gave the Hummer limo an instantaneous status symbol.
What started as a bachelor party novelty soon became a staple of limousine rental companies around the globe. But as the unique becomes the familiar something new must step forward to fill the hunger consumers had now developed for out of the ordinary limousines. Fortunately, the breaking of tradition that the Hummer Limo had ushered in was only the tip of the custom limo iceberg.
These days limos come in a multitude of shapes and sizes, having been constructed from a wide variety of previously ‘un-stretched’ vehicles. One of the most commonly limousine- modified cars of late are the Ford 650 and the GMC 5500, two more heavy-duty vehicles intended for use by industry and private owners with excessive horsepower requirements which suited the needs of limousine designers perfectly. The GMC 5500 has a striking profile, reminiscent of a tractor trailer truck reduced to a more-friendly big-pickup size. When you pull up in one of these bad boys with 20 of your closest compatriots in the rear you make an unmistakable statement of power and masculinity.
Though the ‘big truck’ look carries an air of manly toughness, it might not be the thing to impress you date, or bride-to-be. Maybe a sports car-conversion is more to your liking. Quite expensive, though no longer as rare as they once were a stretch-modified Corvette, Ferrari, or even Lamborghini will undoubtedly be the talk of the driveway as well as the highway. They may not be as fast as their un-extended predecessors, but nevertheless they will give some bystanders whiplash with their head-turning design.
Need more speed than a stretch Ferrari or Lamborghini can offer? In Los Angeles, custom car designer Jay Ohrberg has a passion for creating the most extreme limousine designs. His Jet Limo has an airplane jet engine reminiscent of the infamous Batmobile – assuring riders that they won’t ever be late to the big event.
If you’re feeling a little retro you can hire one of the many Volkswagen Bug Limousines being made by the more inventive car modifiers today. You may have to duck to get into the rounded love-bug stretched beetles, but you’ll find the interior spacious and some models able to accommodate 10 or more riders.
A new innovation in modified vehicles has come forward to suit the needs of hard-core party people. Aboard the Party Bus New Jersey merrymakers can give up all worries of missing even a moment of drinking while being ferried from one venue to the next. A modified commuter shuttle bus, the Party Bus has a full sound and light system, and a stocked bar with optional bartender. It puts a whole new spin on the concept of ‘designated driver’.
However you choose to stand out from the rest of the red carpet crowd you can be confident there is a limousine design to suit your fancy!