Report: Presidential Limo Breaks Down in Israel

Stop us if you’ve heard about this before: a driver accidentally puts diesel in his gasoline-powered car and, a couple of miles down the road, can’t drive any further. It’s happened many times before, although the most recent tale of fuel-pump switching involves a very special car—President Barack Obama’s limousine.

Mr. Obama touched down in Israel today, but not before a special limousine was rushed to the country from Jordan. This comes after Secret Service personnel reportedly couldn’t start the primary transporter. Israel’s Channel 2 news reports that the limousine’s handlers supposedly put diesel in “The Beast,” and that the car runs on gasoline.

It’s a common story, especially considering that the color of fuel pumps abroad is frequently opposite the colors in the U.S.: many American retailers use green pumps for diesel and black pumps for gasoline, while many European/international stations reverse that. But it does seem a little suspect: previous reports about the President’s armored limousine said that it uses GM’s Topkick platform and a diesel engine; furthermore, diesel nozzles are usually too big for gas-engine filler necks. Then again, it’s likely that Mr. Obama’s Cadillac doesn’t have a standard gas tank and filler.

Whatever happened, whether it was Secret Service officers putting gas into a diesel engine or diesel into a gas one, it’s a bit of an embarrassment for the delegation on Mr. Obama’s first trip to Israel as President. Then again, the President’s image seemed to recover quickly after the same limousine bottomed-out while exiting a parking lot in Ireland in spring 2011.

Source: Channel 2 via Times of Israel