Best of the Best 2013: Speciality Vehicles: Executive Transport: Becker Armored Cadillac Escalade ESV
by Paul Meyers
Becker Automotive Design’s version of the Cadillac Escalade ESV luxury SUV offers riders incomparable comfort and enables them to remain as productive as they would be at their office, thanks to the cabin’s fine materials and high-tech equipment. Now the vehicle also can keep them secure, because the Oxnard, Calif., company has added an armored version of the ESV to its executive-transport lineup. The armored ESV actually begins as a Chevrolet Suburban, because the Chevy’s chassis is better suited than the Caddy’s for bearing the added weight of Becker’s ballistic-protection components. Becker swaps out the headlights, fenders, grilles, and badging, so it is virtually impossible to recognize the vehicle as a Suburban and not an ESV.
After stripping the interior to its core and before adding its leather and wood trim, mobile-office technology, and 32-inch video screens, Becker lines the vehicle with steel that is hard enough to stop either handgun or assault-rifle bullets—depending on the level of protection the owner selects. Prices for an armored ESV range from $250,000 to $350,000.