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High-Tech Coachbuilder Helps Operators Diversify Their Business

Posted on August 1, 2000 by LCT Staff - Also by this author

Kevlar is one of those materials that usually brings to mind bulletproof vests, offshore raceboats and commercial aircraft—rarely limousines. Leave it to LCW though, to come up with a novel way to make this advanced composite material increase the passenger capacity of the company’s six-door, 100-inch limousine. As most operators already know, stretches in this size range are typically limited to at most seven or eight passengers, due to the maximum weight restriction of 7,100 pounds. One of the great things about Kevlar, though, aside from stopping small-arms fire on a police vest, is its low weight. In this case, by making the floor and ceiling panels out of a composite of foam core and Kevlar, LCW saves about 300 pounds, enough to add seating for two more passengers.

In addition to having increased passenger capacity, the design also makes the vehicle more versatile, allowing it to be used in more than one market. “During the day, our six-door can be used to handle funeral work, with room for eight family members in the rear and a seat for the clergyman next to the driver,” notes Boyar. “Then the operator can turn around and use the car for a booking a night on the town.” Boyar points out that the traditional funeral car just doesn’t have the configuration for special-occasion work, both in the seating layout and lack of amenities—they’re one dimensional. Conversely, a typical four-door stretch is difficult for elderly passengers in a funeral party to use.

LCW’s six-door, though, is a dual-use vehicle that bridges the gap between the two types of service, with both the seating and accessibility needed. Also, wooden tambour doors close off the bar area for a more sedate interior during daylight service, and then open for evening service.

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