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1965 Lincoln Continental Limo From the LBJ White House Up For Auction on Bring a Trailer

1965 lincoln continental executive limousine by lehmann peterson
1965 Lincoln Limo From the LBJ White House on BaTBring a Trailer
  • Most White House limousines end up in museums, but this is a rare exception.

  • This 1965 Lincoln Continental is one of 500 limousines converted by Lehmann-Peterson in Chicago between 1964 and 1970.

  • The Federal government bought 15, and this one saw duty during the Johnson Administration.

For the last half-century, ex-Presidential limos have been locked up, destroyed, or donated to a museum. But this 1965 Continental, all 21 feet of it, is up for auction right now on Bring a Trailer.

1965 lincoln continental executive limousine by lehmann peterson side
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Unlike the standard-grade Continental that LBJ drove at his Texas ranch, and which also sold on BaT not too long ago, this is one of 500 Executive Limousines that were stretched and strengthened by Lehmann-Peterson in Chicago between 1964 and 1970. The federal government bought 15, and of those, the Lincoln here is likely the only one that's in private hands. The seller, John "Bugsy" Lawlor, has stewarded this timepiece for 22 years and, with a Massachusetts "LBJ" plate, comfortably driven it several thousand miles. There's but 37,000 and change on the clock.

"The car goes down the road like it's carved out of a block of stone," Lawlor says. "It's pretty peppy, too."

1965 lincoln continental executive limousine by lehmann peterson rear
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A "red carpet car" that whisked foreign dignitaries and special guests around Washington, this Lincoln is unarmored, so its 7.0-liter V-8 doesn't shoulder thousands of extra pounds. It is, however, equipped with a booze cabinet with original crystal decanters and a White House phone with button presets above the rotary dial. A few modern conveniences, such as a Sony CD player and Panasonic speakers, added by a previous owner date from the Clinton administration and are tucked out of sight.

a close up of a car steering wheel
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When Lawlor bought the Lincoln in 2002, he thought he had purchased a normal Lehmann-Peterson limo. But the delivery driver showed up with a special box, including a gold keychain and pen from Johnson's 1965 inauguration. "He asked me, 'Where did you get Lyndon Johnson's limousine?' and I said, 'I didn't know I had Lyndon Johnson's limousine.'"

1965 lincoln continental executive limousine by lehmann peterson engine
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Lawlor, who operates a media fleet for most major automakers, was the "Technical, Spiritual, and Menu Advisor" to Car Talk. Let's hope the next caretaker preserves this piece of history and keeps it in the public eye. Remember: All the way with LBJ!

The auction ends on March 24.

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