For a long period of time, this type of transportation was available only to the elite. Today, it’s still the case. Presidents, celebrities, monarchs, business people, and even Pope either possess their own limo with a private chauffeur or regularly hire limousine services. Other people use their services usually for some special occasions.
Over time, the appearance of limousines changed. With the progress of humanity and technology, they’ve been developing as if the manufacturers are racing who would build the most amazing and unbelievable vehicle.
Since the limousine is not a brand of a car, there are many types of vehicles used for this purpose. There are limos of various shapes, sizes and equipped with different amenities. Some designers went crazy with their ideas resulting in some of the most incredible, unique and astounding pieces.
We present to you the evolution of limousine interior designs.
1. The First Limousines
Have you got any idea about what the first limousines looked like? Just remember any movie set in a period from 3 or 4 hundreds years ago. Back then, people used carriages and wagons pulled by horses. Only wealthy people had an interest in possessing a vehicle with a personal chauffeur and travelling around. Therefore, gold plated carriages were not rare.
Such vehicles were built with two compartments, one in the front for the driver and one in the back for the passengers. Compartments were separate, and unlike the frontal one, the back compartment was completely covered so, besides their privacy, the passengers had protection from heat, rain, and snow.
2. The First Motor Vehicles
The second part of the 18th century was fruitful for the transportation industry. Steam-powered vehicles appeared. The 19th century brought some innovations such as hand breaks, multi-speed transmissions, and better steering.
Changes in the limousine interior also happened. The driver’s compartment got its coverage, and the back one had room for three to five passengers. They were either built with only one front-facing seat or with one front-facing and another rear-facing seat so that the passengers can interact with each other during travel.
In 1928, the first stretch limousine was designed and mostly used for the transportation of musicians, their bands and equipment.
3. Modern Limousines
The air conditioning was first built in the limousine back in 1933. Since the 1960s, manufacturers have been building additional features for these vehicles. As presidents started travelling in limousines, bulletproof glasses and armoured plating were added.
In 1974, the first six-door funeral limo was built, a design that is still in use today. The limousine interior underwent some changes too. They come with various features and amenities providing a comfortable, pleasant and entertaining ride.
4. The Best Limousine Interior Designs
a) Mercedes Maybach
Semi-aniline leather, hand-fitted to each seat, makes the diamond-quilted and button-tufted design of the Mercedes Maybach rear cabin look royal. Heating and massaging rear seats are standard. Individual seats with folding tables and calf-rests are also available.
Coming in many colours with matching throw pillows, and with hand-finished wood elements, it looks very exotic and comfortable. Ride in Mercedes Maybach is easy, smooth and safe as its network of radar, camera and navigation technologies act to anticipate what’s ahead and watch all around you.
b) Rolls-Royce Phantom
Rolls-Royce and luxury have always been synonyms. Soft leather, hand-polished woods, and lamb’s wool carpeting exude comfort, richness and grandness. Roll-Royce Phantom EWB (extended wheelbase) allows the front and rear compartments to be both visually and spatially separated.
To have complete privacy from the outside world, rear occupants can activate the Electrochromatic Glass to make the windows opaque. This so-called Privacy Suite acts as an excellent sound insulator too. Rolls-Royce is a company that is loyal to its 1920s ‘golden age’ luxury identity, so the lack of the latest in-car entertainment systems in some models is not surprising.
c) Excalibur Limousine
The Excalibur Limousine is a classic beauty perfect for weddings and similar red carpet services. Its stunning appearance and elegant interior make it rather a museum specimen.
Excalibur Limousine is fully equipped, perfect for business and personal comfort. Inside, you will find the finest luxuries, including plush seats, driver-passenger intercom, TV with video player, stereo CD with multi-disc stacker, twin ice buckets, service bar with cut crystal glasses and decanters, mood-setting lighting, and – the best of all – a power moon roof to look at the sky while reclined in the seat.
d) The Midnight Rider
Weighing 23,000 kilograms, this 21 meters long and 4 meters high vehicle is the world’s heaviest limo. It has three lounges, five big-screen televisions, including a satellite, a bar, and a restroom.
Its interior is designed as a resemblance of a Pullman train car from the 1870s. Wood veneer trim, polished brass, some interesting fabrics, and heavy velvet curtains are a few of the interior features. It can accommodate up to 40 people, leaving enough space for a pole dance.
Fun fact: its horns play Midnight Rider by Allman Brothers.
e) Batman Black Hummer Limo
The giant Bat Wing doors swing open and shoot the well-known Batman symbol into the night sky. Darkened cabin with plush, bat-shaped leather seating is as mysterious as the Caped Crusader himself.
Neon lit Batman symbols pulsing throughout the cabin in a multitude of colours and the smoke machine induces the atmosphere. On the far side of the limo, there are two convenient stainless steel Gotham city minibars. Enjoy your drink while hundreds of Bats swoop across the internal roofs skyline display.
f) Hummer Limos
Hummers are stylish and opulent. Their design makes them suitable both for business and pleasure, but these vehicles are the most perfect for partying. Lots of space, flawless interior and attachment of all possible modern equipment, make Hummers the most fun and thrilling limos.
Full bar stacked with all kinds of drinks, from spring water to soft drinks and champagne, all sorts of nibbles, laser lighting, fibre optic neon and strobe lighting, DVD player and LCD screen, fully integrated sound system and karaoke, LED colour lit dance floor and smoke machine help you to fully enjoy your ride in a fabulous way. With Hummer limos, it’s all fun and games.
g) Corvette Stretch Limo
The Corvette limousine is one of a kind sports car turned into a total work of art. With its length of 7-meters, it is the longest known Corvette. It took eight months to build it.
The Corvette Stretch Limo possesses many of the regular features like other limos, including flat-screen television sets, fireplace, a bar, and a dance floor, along with some serious speed. It can accommodate ten passengers, which is a lot more than some much bigger limos.
h) Lamborghini Aventador Limo
A beautiful black and orange beast with four scissor doors! Thanks to the extended wheelbase, there is enough room for seven to eight people. Three seats in the back are facing forward, another seat sideways and two more seats are facing backwards. The seats are heated and covered in easy wipe-down leather, so spillages can easily be cleaned up.
The interior is custom-fitted like any other high-end limo. There are plasma screens, iPod docks, a surround sound system and a champagne cooler with the finest Natural crystal glasses. This is the most jaw-dropping vehicle ever!
We can agree that limousines are extraordinary vehicles. This list comprises of only some of the most interesting limousine interior designs, though it can be extended to infinity.
Limousines represent a branch of the automotive industry that develops quite fast, possibly because designers are free to express their creativity and innovation to the maximum. We are left to admire their imagination and wonder what the future will bring to the world of limousines.