AMBULANCES part I international and special about Dutch Ambulances

 Star of life 2


VW Crafter Strobel ZZS JCKA modern van-based Volkswagen Crafterambulance in the Czech Republic

An ambulance is a vehicle for transportation, from or between places of treatment, and in some instances will also provide out of hospital medical care to the patient. The word is often associated with road going emergency ambulances which form part of an emergency medical service, administering emergency care to those with acute medical problems.

The term ambulance does, however, extend to a wider range of vehicles other than those with flashing warning lights and sirens. The term also includes a large number of non-urgent ambulances which are for transport of patients without an urgent acute condition (see below: Functional types) and a wide range of urgent and non-urgent vehicles including trucks, vans, bicycles, motorbikes, station wagons, buses, helicoptersfixed-wing aircraft, boats, and even hospital ships (see below: Vehicle types).

The term ambulance comes from the Latin word “ambulare” as meaning “to walk or move about” which is a reference to early medical care where patients were moved by lifting or wheeling. The word originally meant a moving hospital, which follows an army in its movements. Ambulances (Ambulancias in Spanish) were first used for emergency transport in 1487 by the Spanish forces during the siege of Málaga by the Catholic Monarchs against the Emirate of Granada. During the American Civil War vehicles for conveying the wounded off the field of battle were called ambulance wagons. Field hospitals were still called ambulances during the Franco-Prussian War of 1870 and in the Serbo-Turkish war of 1876 even though the wagons were first referred to as ambulances about 1854 during the Crimean War.

There are other types of ambulance, with the most common being the patient transport ambulance (sometimes called an ambulette). These vehicles are not usually (although there are exceptions) equipped with life-support equipment, and are usually crewed by staff with fewer qualifications than the crew of emergency ambulances. Their purpose is simply to transport patients to, from or between places of treatment. In most countries, these are not equipped with flashing lights or sirens. In some jurisdictions there is a modified form of the ambulance used, that only carries one member of ambulance crew to the scene to provide care, but is not used to transport the patient. Such vehicles are called fly-cars. In these cases a patient who requires transportation to hospital will require a patient-carrying ambulance to attend in addition to the first responder.


1948 Cadillac Miller Meteor front passenger quarter DFVAC

Early car-based ambulances, like this 1948 Cadillac Meteor, were sometimes also used as hearses.

1949 FDNY ambulanceU.S. ambulance in 1949

The history of the ambulance begins in ancient times, with the use of carts to transport incurable patients by force. Ambulances were first used for emergency transport in 1487 by the Spanish, and civilian variants were put into operation during the 1830s. Advances in technology throughout the 19th and 20th centuries led to the modern self-powered ambulances.

Functional types

Ambulances can be grouped into types depending on whether or not they transport patients, and under what conditions. In some cases, ambulances may fulfil more than one function (such as combining emergency ambulance care with patient transport

Emergency ambulance – The most common type of ambulance, which provide care to patients with an acute illness or injury. These can be road-going vans, boats, helicopters, fixed-wing aircraft (known as air ambulances) or even converted vehicles such as golf carts.

Patient transport ambulance – A vehicle, which has the job of transporting patients to, from or between places of medical treatment, such as hospital or dialysiscenter, for non-urgent care. These can be vans, buses or other vehicles.

Response unit – Also known as a fly-car or a [Quick Response Vehicle], which is a vehicle which is used to reach an acutely ill patient quickly, and provide on scene care, but lacks the capacity to transport the patient from the scene. Response units may be backed up by an emergency ambulance which can transport the patient, or may deal with the problem on scene, with no requirement for a transport ambulance. These can be a wide variety of vehicles, from standard cars, to modified vans, motorcycles, pedal cyclesquad bikes or horses. These units can function as a vehicle for officers or supervisors (similar to a fire chief’s vehicle, but for ambulance services). Fire & Rescue services in North America often staff EMTs or Paramedics to their apparatuses to provide medical care without the need to wait for an ambulance.

Charity ambulance – A special type of patient transport ambulance is provided by a charity for the purpose of taking sick children or adults on trips or vacations away from hospitals, hospices or care homes where they are in long term care. Examples include the United Kingdom’s ‘Jumbulance’ project. These are usually based on a bus.

Bariatric ambulance – A special type of patient transport ambulance designed for extremely obese patients equipped with the appropriate tools to move and manage these patients.

Vehicle types

In the US, there are four types of ambulances. There are Type I, Type II, Type III and Type IV. Type I is based upon a heavy truck chassis and is used primarily for Advanced Life Support and rescue work. Type II is a van based ambulance with little modifications except for a raised roof. Its use is for basic life support and transfer of patients. The Type III is a van chassis but with a custom made rear compartment and has the same use as Type I ambulances. Type IV’s are nomenclature for smaller ad hoc patient transfer using smaller utility vehicles where passenger vehicles and trucks would have difficulty in traversing, such as large industrial complexes, commercial venues, and special events with large crowds. These do not, generally, fall under Federal Regulations.

Ambulances can be based on many types of vehicle, although emergency and disaster conditions may lead to other vehicles serving as makeshift ambulances:

Medic 291A Modern American Ambulance built on the Chassis of a Ford F-450 truck

Van or pickup truck – A typical ambulance is based on either the chassis of a van (vanbulance) or pickup truck. This chassis is then modified to the designs and specifications of the purchaser.

Car/SUV – Used either as a fly-car for rapid response or for patients who can sit, these are standard car models adapted to the requirements of the service using them. Some cars are capable of taking a stretcher with a recumbent patient, but this often requires the removal of the front passenger seat, or the use of a particularly long car. This was often the case with early ambulances, which were converted (or even serving) hearses, as these were some of the few vehicles able to accept a human body in a supine position.

Motorcycle – In developed areas, these are used for rapid response in an emergency as they can travel through heavy traffic much faster than a car or van. Trailers or sidecars can make these patient transporting units. See also motorcycle ambulance.

HSE NAS Emergency Ambulance at a scene in DublinMercedes-Benz Sprinter ambulance of the HSE National ambulance service in Ireland. This type of ambulance is typically used in England, Wales, Ireland and Northern Ireland.

Bicycle – Used for response, but usually in pedestrian-only areas where large vehicles find access difficult. Like the motorcycle ambulance, a bicycle may be connected to a trailer for patient transport, most often in the developing world. See also cycle responder.

All-terrain vehicle (ATV) – for example quad bikes; these are used for response off-road, especially at events. ATVs can be modified to carry a stretcher, and are used for tasks such as mountain rescue in inaccessible areas.

Golf cart or Neighborhood Electric Vehicle – Used for rapid response at events or on campuses. These function similarly to ATVs, with less rough terrain capability, but with less noise.

Helicopter – Usually used for emergency care, either in places inaccessible by road, or in areas where speed is of the essence, as they are able to travel significantly faster than a road ambulance. Helicopter and fixed-wing ambulances are discussed in greater detail at air ambulance.

Fixed-wing aircraft – These can be used for either acute emergency care in remote areas (such as in Australia, with the ‘Flying Doctors‘), for patient transport over long distances (e.g. a re-patriation following an illness or injury in a foreign country), or transportation between distant hospitals. Helicopter and fixed-wing ambulances are discussed in greater detail at air ambulance.

Boat – Boats can be used to serve as ambulances, especially in island areas or in areas with a large number of canals, such as the Venetianwater ambulances. Some lifeboats or lifeguard vessels may fit the description of an ambulance as they are used to transport a casualty.

Ship – Ships can be used as hospital ships, mostly operated by national military services, although some ships are operated by charities. They can meet the definition of ambulances as they provide transport to the sick and wounded (along with treatment). They are often sent to disaster or war zones to provide care for the casualties of these events.

Bus – In some cases, buses can be used for multiple casualty transport, either for the purposes of taking patients on journeys, in the context of major incidents, or to deal with specific problems such as drunken patients in town centres.Ambulance busses are discussed at greater length in their own article.

Trailer – In some instances a trailer, which can be towed behind a self-propelled vehicle can be used. This permits flexibility in areas with minimal access to vehicles, such as on small islands.

Horse and cart – Especially in developing world areas, more traditional methods of transport include transport such as horse and cart, used in much the same way as motorcycle or bicycle stretcher units to transport to a local clinic.

Hospital train – Early hospital trains functioned to carry large numbers of wounded soldiers. Similar to other ambulance types, as Western medicine developed, hospital trains gained the ability to provide treatment. In some rural locations, hospital trains now function as mobile hospitals, traveling by rail from one location to the next, then parking on a siding to provide hospital services to the local population. Hospital trains also find use in disaster response

Fire Engine – Fire services (especially in North America) often train Firefighters in emergency medicine and most apparatuses carry at least basic medical supplies. By design, apparatuses cannot transport patients.

Vehicle type gallery

Design and construction

Ambulance design must take into account local conditions and infrastructure. Maintained roads are necessary for road going ambulances to arrive on scene and then transport the patient to a hospital, though in rugged areas four-wheel drive or all-terrain vehicles can be used. Fuel must be available and service facilities are necessary to maintain the vehicle.

Car-based ambulance in Sweden

Truck-based ambulance in Columbus, Ohio using a pre-built box system

Methods of summoning (e.g. telephone) and dispatching ambulances usually rely on electronic equipment, which itself often relies on an intact power grid. Similarly, modern ambulances are equipped with two-way radios or cellular telephones to enable them to contact hospitals, either to notify the appropriate hospital of the ambulance’s pending arrival, or, in cases where physicians do not form part of the ambulance’s crew, to confer with a physician for medical oversight.

Ambulances often have two manufacturers. The first is frequently a manufacturer of light trucks or full-size vans (or previously, cars) such as Mercedes-BenzNissanToyota, or Ford. The second manufacturer (known as second stage manufacturer) purchases the vehicle (which is sometimes purchased incomplete, having no body or interior behind the driver’s seat) and turns it into an ambulance by adding bodywork, emergency vehicle equipment, and interior fittings. This is done by one of two methods – either coachbuilding, where the modifications are started from scratch and built on to the vehicle, or using a modular system, where a pre-built ‘box’ is put on to the empty chassis of the ambulance, and then finished off.

Modern ambulances are typically powered by internal combustion engines, which can be powered by any conventional fuel, including diesel, gasoline or liquefied petroleum gas, depending on the preference of the operator and the availability of different options. Colder regions often use gasoline-powered engines, as diesels can be difficult to start when they are cold. Warmer regions may favor diesel engines, as they are thought to be more efficient and more durable. Diesel power is sometimes chosen due to safety concerns, after a series of fires involving gasoline-powered ambulances during the 1980s. These fires were ultimately attributed in part to gasoline’s higher volatility in comparison to diesel fuel. The type of engine may be determined by the manufacturer: in the past two decades, Ford would only sell vehicles for ambulance conversion if they are diesel-powered. Beginning in 2010, Ford will sell its ambulance chassis with a gasoline engine in order to meet emissions requirements.


Many regions have prescribed standards which ambulances should, or must, meet in order to be used for their role. These standards may have different levels which reflect the type of patient which the ambulance is expected to transport (for instance specifying a different standard for routine patient transport than high dependency), or may base standards on the size of vehicle.

For instance, in Europe, the European Committee for Standardization publishes the standard CEN 1789, which specifies minimum compliance levels across the build of ambulance, including crash resistance, equipment levels, and exterior marking. In the United States, standards for ambulance design have existed since 1976, where the standard is published by the General Services Administration and known as KKK-1822-A. This standard has been revised several times, and is currently in version ‘F’ change #10, known as KKK-A-1822F, although not all states have adopted this version. The National Fire Protection Association has also published a design standard, NFPA 1917, which some administrations are considering switching to if KKK-A-1822F is withdrawn. The Commission on Accreditation of Ambulance Services (CAAS) has published its Ground Vehicle Standard for Ambulances effective July 2016. This standard is similar to the KKK-A-1822F and NFPA 1917-2016 specifications.

The move towards standardisation is now reaching countries without a history of prescriptive codes, such as India, which approved its first national standard for ambulance construction in 2013.


File:Crash Testing an Ambulance.webm
 A video on ambulance crash testing

Ambulances, like other emergency vehicles, are required to operate in all weather conditions, including those during which civilian drivers often elect to stay off the road. Also, the ambulance crew’s responsibilities to their patient often preclude their use of safety devices such as seat belts. Research has shown that ambulances are more likely to be involved in motor vehicle collisions resulting in injury or death than either fire trucks or police cars. Unrestrained occupants, particularly those riding in the patient-care compartment, are particularly vulnerable. When compared to civilian vehicles of similar size, one study found that on a per-accident basis, ambulance collisions tend to involve more people, and result in more injuries. An 11-year retrospective study concluded in 2001 found that although most fatal ambulance crashes occurred during emergency runs, they typically occurred on improved, straight, dry roads, during clear weather. Furthermore, paramedics are also at risk in ambulances while helping patients, as 27 paramedics died during ambulance trips in the US between 1991 and 2006.


Interior of a mobile intensive care unit (MICU) ambulance from Graz, Austria

Four stages of deployment on an inboard ambulance tail lift

In addition to the equipment directly used for the treatment of patients, ambulances may be fitted with a range of additional equipment which is used in order to facilitate patient care. This could include:

Two-way radio – One of the most important pieces of equipment in modern emergency medical services as it allows for the issuing of jobs to the ambulance, and can allow the crew to pass information back to control or to the hospital (for example a priority ASHICE message to alert the hospital of the impending arrival of a critical patient.) More recently many services worldwide have moved from traditional analog UHF/VHF sets, which can be monitored externally, to more secure digital systems, such as those working on a GSM system, such as TETRA.

Mobile data terminal – Some ambulances are fitted with Mobile data terminals (or MDTs), which are connected wirelessly to a central computer, usually at the control center. These terminals can function instead of or alongside the two-way radio and can be used to pass details of jobs to the crew, and can log the time the crew was mobile to a patient, arrived, and left scene, or fulfill any other computer based function.

Evidence gathering CCTV – Some ambulances are now being fitted with video cameras used to record activity either inside or outside the vehicle. They may also be fitted with sound recording facilities. This can be used as a form of protection from violence against ambulance crews, or in some cases (dependent on local laws) to prove or disprove cases where a member of crew stands accused of malpractice.

Tail lift or ramp – Ambulances can be fitted with a tail lift or ramp in order to facilitate loading a patient without having to undertake any lifting. This is especially important where the patient is obese or specialty care transports that require large, bulky equipment such as a neonatal incubator or hospital beds. There may also be equipment linked to this such as winches which are designed to pull heavy patients into the vehicle.

Trauma lighting – In addition to normal working lighting, ambulances can be fitted with special lighting (often blue or red) which is used when the patient becomes photosensitive.

Air conditioning – Ambulances are often fitted with a separate air conditioning system to serve the working area from that which serves the cab. This helps to maintain an appropriate temperature for any patients being treated, but may also feature additional features such as filtering against airborne pathogens.

Data Recorders – These are often placed in ambulances to record such information as speed, braking power and time, activation of active emergency warnings such as lights and sirens, as well as seat belt usage. These are often used in coordination with GPS units.

Intermediate technology

In parts of the world which lack a high level of infrastructure, ambulances are designed to meet local conditions, being built using intermediate technology. Ambulances can also be trailers, which are pulled by bicycles, motorcycles, tractors, or animals. Animal-powered ambulances can be particularly useful in regions that are subject to flooding. Motorcycles fitted with sidecars (or motorcycle ambulances) are also used, though they are subject to some of the same limitations as more traditional over-the-road ambulances. The level of care provided by these ambulances varies between merely providing transport to a medical clinic to providing on-scene and continuing care during transport.

The design of intermediate technology ambulances must take into account not only the operation and maintenance of the ambulance, but its construction as well. The robustness of the design becomes more important, as does the nature of the skills required to properly operate the vehicle. Cost-effectiveness can be a high priority.

Appearance and markings

An ambulance on an oncoming lane in Moscow

Emergency ambulances are highly likely to be involved in hazardous situations, including incidents such as a road traffic collision, as these emergencies create people who are likely to be in need of treatment. They are required to gain access to patients as quickly as possible, and in many countries, are given dispensation from obeying certain traffic laws. For instance, they may be able to treat a red traffic light or stop sign as a yield sign (‘give way’), or be permitted to break the speed limit. Generally, the priority of the response to the call will be assigned by the dispatcher, but the priority of the return will be decided by the ambulance crew based on the severity of the patient’s illness or injury. Patients in significant danger to life and limb (as determined by triage) require urgent treatment by advanced medical personnel, and because of this need, emergency ambulances are often fitted with passive and active visual and/or audible warnings to alert road users.

Passive visual warnings

North West Ambulance Serviceambulance displays reversed wording and the Star of Life, with flashing blue grille lights and wig-waggingheadlamps

The passive visual warnings are usually part of the design of the vehicle, and involve the use of high contrast patterns. Older ambulances (and those in developing countries) are more likely to have their pattern painted on, whereas modern ambulances generally carry retro-reflective designs, which reflects light from car headlights or torches. Popular patterns include ‘checker board’ (alternate coloured squares, sometimes called ‘Battenburg‘, named after a type of cake), chevrons (arrowheads – often pointed towards the front of the vehicle if on the side, or pointing vertically upwards on the rear) or stripes along the side (these were the first type of retro-reflective device introduced, as the original reflective material, invented by 3M, only came in tape form). In addition to retro-reflective markings, some services now have the vehicles painted in a bright (sometimes fluorescent) yellow or orange for maximum visual impact, though classic white or red are also common. Fire Department-operated Ambulances are often painted similarly to their apparatuses for ease of identification and the fact that bright red is a very striking color appropriate for this type of vehicle.

Another passive marking form is the word ambulance (or local language variant) spelled out in reverse on the front of the vehicle. This enables drivers of other vehicles to more easily identify an approaching ambulance in their rear view mirrors. Ambulances may display the name of their owner or operator, and an emergency telephone number for the ambulance service.

Ambulances may also carry an emblem (either as part of the passive warning markings or not), such as a Red Cross, Red Crescent or Red Crystal (collective known as the Protective Symbols). These are symbols laid down by the Geneva Convention, and all countries signatory to it agree to restrict their use to either (1) Military Ambulances or (2) the national Red Cross or Red Crescent society. Use by any other person, organization or agency is in breach of international law. The protective symbols are designed to indicate to all people (especially combatants in the case of war) that the vehicle is neutral and is not to be fired upon, hence giving protection to the medics and their casualties, although this has not always been adhered to. In Israel, Magen David Adom, the Red Cross member organization use a red Star of David, but this does not have recognition beyond Israeli borders, where they must use the Red Crystal.

The Star of Life represents emergency medical services.

The Star of Life is widely used, and was originally designed and governed by the U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, because the Red Cross symbol is legally protected by both National and international law. It indicates that the vehicle’s operators can render their given level of care represented on the six pointed star.

Ambulance services that have historical origins such as the Order of St John, the Order of Malta Ambulance Corps and Malteser International often use the Maltese cross to identify their ambulances. This is especially important in countries such as Australia, where St. John Ambulance operate one state and one territory ambulance service, and all of Australia’s other ambulance services use variations on a red Maltese cross.

Fire service operated ambulances may display the Cross of St. Florian (often incorrectly called a Maltese cross) as this cross is frequently used as a fire department logo (St. Florian being the patron saint of firefighters).

Active visual warnings

An ambulance in Denmark with roof-integrated LED lights, plus side-view mirror, grill and front fend-off lights, and fog lamps wig-wags

The active visual warnings are usually in the form of flashing lights. These flash in order to attract the attention of other road users as the ambulance approaches, or to provide warning to motorists approaching a stopped ambulance in a dangerous position on the road. Common colours for ambulance warning beacons are blue, red, amber, and white (clear). However the colours may vary by country and sometimes by operator.

There are several technologies in use to achieve the flashing effect. These include flashing a light bulb or LED, flashing or rotating halogen, and strobe lights, which are usually brighter than incandescent lights. Each of these can be programmed to flash singly or in groups, and can be programmed to flash in patterns (such as a left -> right pattern for use when the ambulance is parked on the left hand side of the road, indicating to other road users that they should move to the right (away from the ambulance)). Incandescent and LED lights may also be programmed to burn steadily, without flashing, which is required in some provinces.

Emergency lights may simply be mounted directly on the body, or may be housed in special fittings, such as in a lightbar or in special flush-mount designs (as seen on the Danish ambulance to the right), or may be hidden in a host light (such as a headlamp) by drilling a hole in the host light’s reflector and inserting the emergency light. These hidden lights may not be apparent until they are activated. Additionally, some of the standard lights fitted to an ambulance (e.g. headlamps, tail lamps) may be programmed to flash. Flashing headlights (typically the high beams, flashed alternately) are known as a wig-wag.

In order to increase safety, it is best practice to have 360° coverage with the active warnings, improving the chance of the vehicle being seen from all sides. In some countries, such as the United States, this may be mandatory. The roof, front grille, sides of the body, and front fenders are common places to mount emergency lights. A certain balance must be made when deciding on the number and location of lights: too few and the ambulance may not be noticed easily, too many and it becomes a massive distraction for other road users more than it is already, increasing the risk of local accidents.

See also Emergency vehicle equipment.

Audible warnings


A Whelen(R) siren with wailyelpand phaser tones is a common sound in many cities

In addition to visual warnings, ambulances can be fitted with audible warnings, sometimes known as sirens, which can alert people and vehicles to the presence of an ambulance before they can be seen. The first audible warnings were mechanical bells, mounted to either the front or roof of the ambulance. Most modern ambulances are now fitted with electronic sirens, producing a range of different noises which ambulance operators can use to attract more attention to themselves, particularly when proceeding through an intersection or in heavy traffic.

The speakers for modern sirens can be integral to the lightbar, or they may be hidden in or flush to the grill to reduce noise inside the ambulance that may interfere with patient care and radio communications. Ambulances can additionally be fitted with airhorn audible warnings to augment the effectiveness of the siren system, or may be fitted with extremely loud two-tone airhorns as their primary siren.

A recent development is the use of the RDS system of car radios. The ambulance is fitted with a short range FM transmitter, set to RDS code 31, which interrupts the radio of all cars within range, in the manner of a traffic broadcast, but in such a way that the user of the receiving radio is unable to opt out of the message (as with traffic broadcasts). This feature is built into every RDS radio for use in national emergency broadcast systems, but short range units on emergency vehicles can prove an effective means of alerting traffic to their presence. It is, however, unlikely that this system could replace audible warnings, as it is unable to alert pedestrians, those not using a compatible radio or even have it turned off.

Service providers

An ambulance from St John Ambulance WA in Perth

A volunteer ambulance crew in Modena, Italy

A city fire service ambulance from the Tokyo Fire Department.

Non-acute patient transport ambulance from New Zealand.

Some countries closely regulate the industry (and may require anyone working on an ambulance to be qualified to a set level), whereas others allow quite wide differences between types of operator.

Government Ambulance Service – Operating separately from (although alongside) the fire and police service of the area, these ambulances are funded by local or national government. In some countries, these only tend to be found in big cities, whereas in countries such as the United Kingdom almost all emergency ambulances are part of a nationwide system under the National Health Service. In Canada ambulance services are normally operated by local municipalities or provincial health agencies as a separate entity from fire or police services.

Fire or Police Linked Service – In countries such as the United States, Japan, Hong Kong and France ambulances can be operated by the local fire or police service, more commonly the fire service due to overlapping calls. This is particularly common in rural areas, where maintaining a separate service is not necessarily cost effective, or by service preference such as in Los Angeles where the Los Angeles Fire Department prefers to handle all parts of emergency medicine in-house. In some cases this can lead to an illness or injury being attended by a vehicle other than an ambulance, such as a fire truck, and firefighters must maintain higher standards of medical capability.

Volunteer Ambulance Service – Charities or non-profit companies operate ambulances, both in an emergency and patient transport function. This may be along similar lines to volunteer fire companies, providing the main service for an area, and either community or privately owned. They may be linked to a voluntary fire department, with volunteers providing both services. There are charities who focus on providing ambulances for the community, or for cover at private events (sports etc.). The Red Cross provides this service across the world on a volunteer basis. (and in others as a Private Ambulance Service), as do other organisations such as St John Ambulance and the Order of Malta Ambulance Corps. These volunteer ambulances may be seen providing support to the full-time ambulance crews during times of emergency. In some cases the volunteer charity may employ paid members of staff alongside volunteers to operate a full-time ambulance service, such in some parts of Australia and in Ireland and New Zealand.

Private Ambulance Service – Normal commercial companies with paid employees, but often on contract to the local or national government. Private companies may provide only the patient transport elements of ambulance care (i.e. nonurgent or ambulatory transport), but in some places, they are contracted to provide emergency care, or to form a ‘second tier’ response. In many areas private services cover all emergency transport functions and government agencies do not provide this service. Companies such as FalckAcadian Ambulance, and American Medical Response are some of the larger companies that provide such services. These organisations may also provide services known as ‘Stand-by’ cover at industrial sites or at special events. From April 2011 all private ambulance services in the UK must be Care Quality Commission (CQC) registered. Private services in Canada operate non-emergency patient transfers or for private functions only.

Combined Emergency Service – these are full service emergency service agencies, which may be found in places such as airports or large colleges and universities. Their key feature is that all personnel are trained not only in ambulance (EMT) care, but as a firefighter and a peace officer (police function). They may be found in smaller towns and cities, where size or budget does not warrant separate services. This multi-functionality allows to make the most of limited resource or budget, but having a single team respond to any emergency.

Hospital Based Service – Hospitals may provide their own ambulance service as a service to the community, or where ambulance care is unreliable or chargeable. Their use would be dependent on using the services of the providing hospital.

Charity Ambulance – This special type of ambulance is provided by a charity for the purpose of taking sick children or adults on trips or vacations away from hospitals, hospices or care homes where they are in long term care. Examples include the UK’s ‘Jumbulance’ project.

Company Ambulance – Many large factories and other industrial centres, such as chemical plantsoil refineriesbreweries and distilleries, have ambulance services provided by employers as a means of protecting their interests and the welfare of their staff. These are often used as first response vehicles in the event of a fire or explosion.


The cost of an ambulance ride may be paid for from several sources, and this will depend on the type of service being provided, by whom, and possibly who to.

Government funded service – The full or the majority of the cost of transport by ambulance is borne by the local, regional, or national government (through their normal taxation).

Privately funded service – Transport by ambulance is paid for by the patient themselves, or through their insurance company. This may be at the point of care (i.e. payment or guarantee must be made before treatment or transport), although this may be an issue with critically injured patients, unable to provide such details, or via a system of billing later on.

Charity funded service – Transport by ambulance may be provided free of charge to patients by a charity, although donations may be sought for services received.

Hospital funded service – Hospitals may provide the ambulance transport free of charge, on the condition that patients use the hospital’s services (which they may have to pay for).


Various ambulance crews help to load a patient into an air ambulance in Pretoria

There are differing levels of qualification that the ambulance crew may hold, from holding no formal qualification to having a fully qualified doctor on board. Most ambulance services require at least two crew members to be on every ambulance (one to drive, and one to attend the patient), although response cars may have a sole crew member, possibly backed up by another double-crewed ambulance. It may be the case that only the attendant need be qualified, and the driver might have no medical training. In some locations, an advanced life support ambulance may be crewed by one paramedic and one EMT-Basic.

Common ambulance crew qualifications are:

  1. First responder – A person who arrives first at the scene of an incident, and whose job is to provide early critical care such as cardiopulmonary resuscitation(CPR) or using an automated external defibrillator (AED). First responders may be dispatched by the ambulance service, may be passers-by, or may be dispatched to the scene from other agencies, such as the police or fire departments.
  2. Ambulance Driver – Some services employ staff with no medical qualification (or just a first aid certificate) whose job is to simply drive the patients from place to place. In some emergency ambulance contexts this term is a pejorative toward qualified providers implying that they perform no function but driving, although it may be acceptable for patient transport or community operations. In some areas, these drivers would survey and study the local network of routes for better performance of service, as some road routes may be blocked, and the driver must know another route to the patient or to the hospital. The driver would gather the local weather and traffic status reports before and in-between emergencies. They may also have training in using the radio and knowing where medical supplies are stored in the ambulance.
  3. Ambulance Care Assistant – Have varying levels of training across the world, but these staff are usually only required to perform patient transport duties (which can include stretcher or wheelchaircases), rather than acute care. Dependent on provider, they may be trained in first aid or extended skills such as use of an AED, oxygen therapy and other lifesaving or palliative skills. They may provide emergency cover when other units are not available, or when accompanied by a fully qualified technician or paramedic.
  4. Emergency Care Assistant/Emergency Care Support Workers – Also known as ECA/ECSW are members of a frontline ambulance that drive the vehicles under both emergency and non-emergency conditions to incidents. Their role is to assist the clinician that they are working with, either a Technician or Paramedic, in their duties, whether that be drawing up drugs, setting up fluids (but not attaching), doing basic observations or performing 12 lead ECG assessments.
  5. Emergency medical technician – Also known as Ambulance Technician. Technicians are usually able to perform a wide range of emergency care skills, such as defibrillation, spinal immobilization, bleeding control, splinting of suspected fractures, assisting the patient with certain medications, and oxygen therapy. Some countries split this term into levels (such as in the US, where there is EMT-Basic and EMT-Intermediate).
  6. Registered nurse (RN) – Nurses can be involved in ambulance work dependent on the jurisdiction, and as with doctors, this is mostly as air-medical rescuers often in conjunction with a technician or paramedic. They may bring different skills to the care of the patient, especially those who may be critically ill or injured in locations that do not enjoy close proximity to a high level of definitive care such as trauma, cardiac, or stroke centers.
  7. Paramedic – This is a high level of medical training and usually involves key skills not permissible for technicians, such as cannulation (and with it the ability to administer a range of drugs such as morphine), tracheal intubation and other skills such as performing a cricothyrotomy. Dependent on jurisdiction, the title “paramedic” can be a protected title, and use of it without the relevant qualification may result in criminal prosecution.
  8. Emergency Care Practitioner – This position, sometimes called ‘Super Paramedic’ in the media, is designed to bridge the link between ambulance care and the care of a general practitioner. ECPs are already qualified paramedics who have undergone further training, and are trained to prescribe medicines for longer term care, such as antibiotics, as well as being trained in a range of additional diagnostic techniques.
  9. Doctor – Doctors are present on some ambulances – most notably air ambulances – will employ physicians to attend on the ambulances, bringing a full range of additional skills such as use of prescription medicines.

Military use

An URO VAMTAC ambulance of the Spanish Army emblazoned with the Red Cross

1917 Red Cross ambulance

Military ambulances have historically included vehicles based on civilian designs and at times also included armored, but unarmed, vehicles ambulances based upon armoured personnel carriers (APCs). In the Second World War vehicles such as the Hanomag Sd Kfz 251 halftrack were pressed into service as ad hoc ambulances, and in more recent times purpose built AFVs such as the U.S. M1133 Medical Evacuation Vehicle serve the exclusive purpose of armored medical vehicles. Civilian based designs may be painted in appropriate colours, depending on the operational requirements (i.e. camouflage for field use, white for United Nations peacekeeping, etc.). For example, the British Royal Army Medical Corps has a fleet of white ambulances, based on production trucks. Military helicopters have also served both as ad hoc and purpose-built air ambulances, since they are extremely useful for MEDEVAC. In terms of equipment, military ambulances are barebones, often being nothing more than a box on wheels with racks to place manual stretchers, though for the operational conditions and level of care involved this is usually sufficient.

Since laws of war demand ambulances be marked with one of the Emblems of the Red Cross not to mount offensive weapons, military ambulances are often unarmed. It is a generally accepted practice in most countries to classify the personnel attached to military vehicles marked as ambulances as non-combatants; however, this application does not always exempt medical personnel from catching enemy fire—accidental or deliberate. As a result, medics and other medical personnel attached to military ambulances are usually put through basic military training, on the assumption that they may have to use a weapon. The laws of war do allow non-combatant military personnel to carry individual weapons for protecting themselves and casualties. However, not all militaries exercise this right to their personnel.

USNS Mercy, a U.S. Navy hospital ship

Recently, the Israeli Defense Forces has modified a number of its Merkava main battle tanks with ambulance features in order to allow rescue operations to take place under heavy fire in urban warfare. The modifications were made following a failed rescue attempt in which Palestinian gunmen killed two soldiers who were providing aid for a Palestinian woman in Rafah. Since M-113 armored personnel carriers and regular up-armored ambulances are not sufficiently protected against anti-tankweapons and improvised explosive devices, it was decided to use the heavily armored Merkava tank. Its rear door enables the evacuation of critically wounded soldiers. Israel did not remove the Merkava’s weaponry, claiming that weapons were more effective protection than emblems since Palestinian militants would disregard any symbols of protection and fire at ambulances anyway. For use as ground ambulances and treatment & evacuation vehicles, the United States military currently employs the M113, the M577, the M1133Stryker Medical Evacuation Vehicle (MEV), and the RG-33 Heavily Armored Ground Ambulance (HAGA) as treatment and evacuation vehicles, with contracts to incorporate the newly designed M2A0 Armored Medical Evacuation Vehicle (AMEV), a variant of the M2 Bradley Fighting Vehicle (formerly known as the ATTV).

Some navies operate ocean-going hospital ships to lend medical assistance in high casualty situations like wars or natural disasters. These hospital ships fulfill the criteria of an ambulance (transporting the sick or injured), although the capabilities of a hospital ship are more on par with a Mobile Army Surgical Hospital. In line with the laws of war, these ships can display a prominent Red Cross or Red Crescent to confer protection under the appropriate Geneva convention. However, this designation has not always protected hospital ships from enemy fire.

Reuse of retired ambulances

Retired ambulances may find reuse in less-demanding emergency services, such as this logistics unit, such as this Ford E-Series ambulance.

When an ambulance is retired, it may be donated or sold to another EMS provider. Alternately, it may be adapted into a storage and transport vehicle for crime scene identification equipment, a command post at community events, or support vehicle, such as a logistics unit. Others are refurbished and resold, or may just have their emergency equipment removed to be sold to private businesses or individuals, who then can use them as small recreational vehicles.

Toronto‘s City Council has begun a “Caravan of Hope” project to provide retired Toronto ambulances a second life by donating them to the people of El Salvador. Since the Province of Ontario requires that ambulances be retired after just four and a half years in service in Ontario, the City of Toronto decommissions and auctions 28 ambulances each year.

Ambulances in the Netherlands:

1905 Belgische Germain 24 H.P

1905-30 Mobil Ambulance Dinas Kesehatan Gemeente Batavia

1909 De Spyker ambulances voor het Roode Kruis

1909 SPIJKER Ambulance amsterdam redcross lehmann trompenburg

1909 spyker ambulance van het rode kruis rode kruisziekenhuis den haag

1909 spyker rodekruis

1909 ziekenauto is een Fiat

1909 ziekenauto red cross

1909 fiat kroeskop meppel

1912 Spijker 16pk, de ziekenauto in die tijd in Rheden

1912-14 Adler betreft met zeer waarschijnlijk een carroserie v d N.V. Fabriek voor luxe rijtuigen en automobielen vh gebroeders H & F Kimman De nieuwe Haarlemsche ziekenauto zijingang

1912-14 Adler betreft met zeer waarschijnlijk een carroserie v d N.V. Fabriek voor luxe rijtuigen en automobielen vh gebroeders H & F Kimman De nieuwe Haarlemsche ziekenauto zijingang

1912-1913 Fiat of Opel Ambulance Groningen-bakker-emmamij-1913-2

1914 Spyker

1915 Leeuwarder ziekenauto (spyker)

1916 ford-t-ambulances-st-vincents-web

1917 Ford Model T Army ambulance

1918 FIAT de eerste ziekenauto van Kroeskop in Meppel

1918 Ford T Ambulance

1920 Dodge Brothers model 30 Ambulance Zuid Holland Wateringen H-31364

1920 Dodge Brothers model 30 Ambulance Zuid Holland Wateringen H-31364

1920 Dodge Brothers model 30 Ambulance Zuid Holland Wateringen H-31364

1920 Dodge Brothers Ziekenauto

1920 Oudkerkhof Utrecht. De ziekenauto van de GGD rukt uit (HUA)

1920 Spyker and Maybach

1920-25 Gemeentelijke Geneeskundige Dienst bij een drenkeling langs het Merwedekanaal te Utrecht

1926 Ziekenauto Vlaardingen

1927 Gemeentelijke Gezonheidsdienst Ziekenauto te Batavia

1927 ziekenauto gebaseerd op een T Ford vracht auto chassis

1928 chevrolet-ambulance-700

1928 Dodge brothers ziekenauto NL

1928 Morris Commercial T Type Tonner

1928 Studebaker type D5521 carr Jan Karsijns NL

1929 Cadillac serie 353 Kijlstra Drachten NL

1929 Eerste ziekenauto Hilversum 3 nov 1929

1930 Burgemeester Troost Waddinxveen met ziekenauto in 1930 met chauffeur v.Gelder NL

1930 Cadillac Ambulance v Leersum NL

1931 Cadillac B21473 de Vrij Leeuwarden Serie 341B NL

1934 Ambulance Adler Standard 8 B-20341 NL

1934 Lincoln type KB B-21473 W de Vrij Leeuwarden NL

1936 Cadillac series Rust Groningen de Vrij Leeuwarden NL

1936 Chevrolet Matane 1940, première ambulance Leon Sihors NL

1937 Hudson ambulance NL

1938 Het Sint Jozefziekenhuis beschikt over een Vauxhall ambulance NL

1938 Mercedes-Benz L1500E NL ?

1939 Packard Ziekenauto op Storkterrein Hengelo NL



NIOD01_AE0218, 13-03-2002, 15:52, 8C, 4799×3362 (1508+3887), 100%, niod poster fo, 1/60 s, R57.0, G17.4, B17.9

1940 Ziekenauto Bedrijfsongeval Demka fabrieken te Zuilen NL

1941 1e-ambulance-peugeot-d4b-carr-visser NL

1942 Austin K2HZ77982 Visser de Vries Assen NL

1942 chevrolet-ambulance de Vries Assen NL

1943 Amerikaanse Dodge WC54 Ambulance 2nd WW NL

1944 Cadillac multifunctionele zieken, doden, brandweer en taxiauto Ommen NL

1945 Austin K2 NL

1945 Chevrolet ziekenauto GG&GD Amsterdam NL collectie Jan Korte

1947 Cadillac Fleetwood kent Compaan Poepe Assen Holten Reinders Roden NL

1947 Ziekenauto uit Sneek Chauffeur was T.J Vallinga. met Packard uit 1947

1948 Ford ambulance-ziekenauto, die bemand werd door de verpleger-chauffeur Bolks NL

1948 Ford ? Ziekenauto Drachten NL

1949 Chevrolet GK2100 TG3225 De Boer Co Assen De Vries Assen NL

1949 gezondheidsdienst. G.G.D. boot in het water en de ziekenauto op de kant. Het was een repetitie in 1949

1950 Packard 1950 Buick en Buick De Vrij Zuiderplein Lw NL

1950 Packard de luxe supereight ambulance NL

1950 Packard de luxe supereight ambulance carr. de Vrij Leeuwarden NL

1950 van links naar rechts de Packard DeLuxe Super Eight uit 1950, de Buick Roadmaster uit 1955 en de Buick Super Series 50-70

1953 Mercedes-Benz ambulance NT-72-51 NL

1955 Buick Ambulance by de Vrij Leeuwarden SG-08-01  NL

1955 Ford Type 79B Country Sedan SP8342 Compaan Poepe Assen De Vries Assen NL

1956 Buick Roadmaster de Vrij Leeuwarden NL

1958 Buick Limited Series 700 met kenteken ZD-57-31 NL

1958 Cadillac Ambulance de Vrij Leeuwarden NL

1959 Verschillende Ambulances NL

Cadillac Ambulance

1960 Cadillac type BT6246 DT2956 Smit Joure de Vrij Leeuwarden NL

1964 Chevrolet Ziekenauto van de GG en GD Voorburg

1964 Ford Transit FK1000 UN5697 carr St Pancras KW1

1965 Mercedes-Benz 190 Ambulance NL

1965 Mercedes Benz LP 1213 truck from the steered front axle series, medium-duty class1965 Peugeot 403 Pickup D4B Bus Ambulance Brochure

1965 Peugeot D4B Ambulance gemeente Texel

1966 Ford Transit 8999 BV Ambulance carrosserie de Vries Assen NL

1966 Mercedes Benz Ambulance NL

1967 Citroën ID 19 Ambulance NL

1967 Mercedes 230 Ambulance

1967 Opel Admiraal ziekenauto Geleen opel kapitein NL

1967-68 Mercedes Benz 230 amb 84-91-FM

Miesen, 1968

1968-mercedes-benz-limousine ambulance-114-115 car. Miesen NL

1967 peugeot-j7-ambulance-verkoop-brochure

1967-76 Mercedes-Benz W114-115 84-83-UL Visser Leeuwarden NL

1969 Citroën hy-ambulance NL

1968 Mercedes-Benz ambulance Visser, Leeuwarden ZS-97-16

1969 20-93-JM MERCEDES-BENZ W114 230 BINZ Ambulance NL

1969 Peugeot-J7-Ambulance NL

1971 Merc Benz 220

1970 Bedford Ambulance HY-91-JT NL

1971 Mercedes W114 Ambulance NL

1971 Mercedes-Benz W122 5735RR Visser de Vries Assen NL

1971 peugeot-j7-ambulance-carrosserie-visser-standplaats-schiphol NL 1972 Mercedes W114 230 Visser Ambulance NL

1974 M38A1-NEKAF-Nederlandse-Kaiser-Frazer-Fabrieken-Rotterdam-Ambulance-Royal-Dutch-Army-1974-Jan-W.-Michielsenweb

1975 Dodge B200 56GF46 Visser de Vries Assen NL

1975 Dodge van 08GK53 Akkermans de Vries Assen TT NL.

 1975 Mercedes-Benz W122 8970HJ Binz De Vries Assen NL

1975 Mercedes-Benz Ambulance Wagenpark Eindhovense GG

1977 Dodge B200 64RE70 Wayne De Vries Assen

1977 Volvo 245 53RT52 De Vries Assen TT Assen NL

1978 Chevrolet Chevy Van 27UP55 WHC De Vries Assen

1978 Peugeot 504 Ambulance NL

1979 GMC Van FF71RZ WHC De Vries Assen NL

1979 Mercedes Benz W123 250 automatic Binz Ambulance NL

1979 Peugeot 504 Ambulance NL

1980 Mercedes-Benz 240D NL

1981 Volvo 245 HD18GP De Vries Assen ANWB Alarmcentrale NL

1984 Mercedes-Benz Bremer LK93FP WHC De Vries Assen NL

1985 PEUGEOT 505 GR Ambulance NL

1986 Opel Senator Miesen Ambulance D

1987 Peugeot J9 ambulance Leiden en omstreken RP-44-XJ NL

1988 Chevrolet Vanguard met zwaailichten aan NL

1989 Mercedes-Benz W124 XY-96-JS Binz carr NL

1994 German Army ambulance version of Mercedes Benz G250 ook gebruikt in Nederlands leger.

1996 Volvo 960 NVJH33 RAV NL

2001 Nederlandse Volvo S80 ambulance met Nilson carrosserie NL 2013 Mercedes-Benz Ambulance 08116 uit veiligheidsregio Gelderland Zuid NL

See also

Air ambulance

Ambulance bus

Ambulance station

Bariatric ambulance

CEN 1789

Combination car

Cutaway van chassis

Emergency Medical Dispatcher

Emergency medical services


Motorcycle ambulance

Rail ambulance


References and notes

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  4. Jump up^ Civil War Ambulance Wagons
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LINCOLN Motor Company 1917 – Present

Lincoln Motor Company

The Lincoln Motor Company
Type Division
Founded Dearborn, Michigan, U.S.
(August 1917):4
Headquarters Dearborn, Michigan, U.S.
Area served
Key people Jim Farley (President until Sept 1 2014)
Kumar Galhotra (President from Sept. 1 2014)
Products Luxury vehicles, Limousines
Parent Ford Motor Company (1922-present)

The Lincoln Motor Company (also known simply as Lincoln) is a division of the Ford Motor Company that sells luxury vehicles under the Lincoln brand. While currently sold primarily in North America and the Middle East, Ford will also be bringing the Lincoln brand to China by the end of 2014. Founded in 1917 by Henry M. Leland, Lincoln has been a subsidiary of Ford since 1922.

1922 Lincoln L series Touring Sedan

1922 Lincoln L series Touring Sedan

The current Lincoln model range in North America consists of two sedans (MKS and MKZ), three crossover utility vehicles (MKC, MKT and MKX), and two sport utility vehicles (Navigator/Navigator L). Lincoln also sells two vehicles specifically for limousine/livery use, both based on the MKT. In Mexico, Lincoln sells the Lincoln Mark LT pickup truck which is based on the Ford F-150. Athough since the introduction of the 2015 Ford F-150, no Lincoln variant has been announced.


1917-1940: Lincoln Motor Company

1926 Lincoln L-series town car

1926 Lincoln L-series town car
1937 Lincoln K-series Touring

Lincoln K-series Touring 1937

Henry Leland, a former manager of the Cadillac division of General Motors, and his son, Wilfred Leland, formed The Lincoln Motor Company in August 1917. Leland named the new company after Abraham Lincoln, his hero and for whom he cast a vote in 1864. Lincoln’s first source of revenue came from assembling Liberty aircraft engines, using cylinders supplied by Ford Motor Company, to fulfill World War I government contracts.:4:163–164

npcc.30643     1915       National Photo Company

1923 Lincoln L-series Brunn coupe

After the war, the Lincoln factories were retooled to manufacture luxury automobiles. Ford Motor Company purchased the Lincoln Motor Company in 1922, but Lincoln continued to operate as a somewhat separate company from Ford through early 1940.

Purchase by Ford

The company encountered severe financial troubles during the early 1920s, coupled with body styling that wasn’t comparable to other luxury makers. After having produced only 150 Lincoln L-series cars in 1922, Lincoln Motor Company was forced into bankruptcy and sold for US$8,000,000 to the Ford Motor Company on February 4, 1922; some of the proceeds of the sale went to pay off its creditors.

1923 lincoln sieberg

1923 lincoln sieberg

The purchase of Lincoln was a personal triumph for Henry Ford, who had been forced out of his second company (after Detroit Automobile Company) by a group of investors led by Leland.:52–57 Leland’s company, renamed Cadillac in 1902 and purchased by rival General Motors in 1909, was Lincoln’s chief competitor. Henry Ford had previously produced luxury vehicles under the Ford nameplate, called the Ford Model B in 1904, the Ford Model F in 1905, and the Ford Model K in 1906 but they weren’t accepted by the automotive buying market. When Ford acquired Lincoln, it quickly became one of America’s top selling luxury brands alongside Cadillac, Pierce-Arrow, Marmon, Peerless, Duesenberg, and Packard. Ford made no immediate change, either in the chassis or the V8 L-head engine which was rated 36.4 SAE and produced 90 bhp (67 kW; 91 PS) at 2,800 rpm. An unusual feature of this power unit was the 60 degree separation of the cylinder blocks that helped to cut down on synchronous vibration found with similar engines with 90 degree separation produced at the time. After the Ford takeover, bodywork changes and reduced prices increased sales to 5,512 vehicles from March to December 1922.

1924 Lincoln Limousine

1924 Lincoln Limousine

At the direction of Henry’s son Edsel, in 1923 several body styles were introduced, that included two- and three-window, four-door sedans and a phaeton that accommodated four passengers. They also offered a two-passenger roadster and a seven-passenger touring sedan and limousine, which was sold for $5,200. A sedan, limo, cabriolet and town car were also offered by coachbuilders Fleetwood, Derham and Dietrich, and a second cabriolet was offered by coachbuilder Brunn. Lincoln contracted with dozens of coachbuilders during the 1920s and early 30s to create multiple custom built vehicles, to include American, Anderson, Babcock, Holbrook, Judkins, Lang, LeBaron, Locke, Murray, Towson, and Willoughby in the 1920s. Murphy, Rollston, and Waterhouse were added in the 1930s.

1925 Lincoln L Brunn 1925

1925 Lincoln L Brunn

Vehicles built by these coachbuilders went for as much as $7,200, and despite the limited market appeal, Lincoln sales rose about 45 percent to produce 7,875 cars and the company was operating at a profit by the end of 1923.

1925 Lincoln-Ford

1925 Lincoln-Ford

In 1924 large touring sedans began to be used by police departments around the country. They were known as Police Flyers, which were equipped with four-wheel brakes, two years before they were introduced on private sale vehicles. These specially equipped vehicles, with bulletproof windshields measuring 7/8 of an inch thick and spot lights mounted on the ends of the windshield, also came with an automatic windshield wiper for the driver and a hand-operated wiper for the front passenger. Police whistles were coupled to the exhaust system and gun racks were also fitted to these vehicles.

1926 Lincoln L-series town car

1926 Lincoln L-series town car

Optional equipment was not necessarily an issue with Lincolns sold during the 1920s, however, customers who wanted special items were accommodated. A nickel-plated radiator shell could be installed for $25, varnished natural wood wheels were $15, or Rudge-Whitworth center-lock wire wheels for another $100. Disteel steel disc wheels were also available for $60. Lincoln chose not to make yearly model changes, used as a marketing tool of the time, designed to lure new customers. Lincoln customers of the time were known to purchase more than one Lincoln with different bodywork, so changing the vehicle yearly was not done to accommodate their customer base.:52–57


1939 Lincoln-Zephyr 4-door

1939 Lincoln-Zephyr 4-door

In 1932, Lincoln introduced the V12-powered KB platform alongside the V8 powered KA platform with an all new streamlined appearance. In 1933, Eugene T. “Bob” Gregorie, at the styling studio created by Edsel Ford, began designing the smaller Lincoln-Zephyr,:130 which led to the first Continental, a bespoke one-off specially created for Edsel Ford, Henry’s son.

1927 Lincoln Model L Judkins Coaching Brougham

1927 Lincoln Model L Judkins Coaching Brougham

The smaller Lincoln-Zephyr was introduced for the 1936 model year as a marque of its own,:155 with a 267 cu in (4.4 L) V12. The Lincoln-Zephyr was so successful in its first year as to increase Lincoln sales nearly ninefold.:1196–1197 It remained a separate marque until the end of the 1940 model year and then became a model under Lincoln,:206 when the large Lincoln Twelve was discontinued. In the 1941 model year, all Lincolns were based on the Zephyr chassis, and when production resumed after the War the Zephyr rocked name was not continued.

1940-1945: Lincoln Division

On April 30, 1940, the operation of Lincoln changed as the Lincoln Motor Company became the Lincoln Division of Ford Motor Company.:199 Once an autonomous entity, Lincoln was now brought closer under Ford control, in part to modernize the division to better compete with the equivalent competition from Chrysler (Imperial) and General Motors (Cadillac).

Lincoln Continental

1942 Lincoln Continental coupe

1942 Lincoln Continental coupe

In 1940, the Lincoln Continental commenced production as a personal luxury car quite literally due to the popularity of the personal car of Edsel Ford. Dissatisfied with the boxy designs produced by his father, Edsel wanted a European-style car to drive around on vacations in Florida. In 1938, he commissioned Ford Chief Stylist E.T. Gregorie to design a body for a 1939 Lincoln-Zephyr V12 Convertible Coupe. Most of the bodywork involved sectioning the body 4 inches (102 mm) and the deletion of the running boards,and an external-mounted spare tire on the trunklid. The styling of the rear tire mount proved popular; it would become a styling feature of the Lincoln Mark series and those who work on custom cars call a similar mount a “Continental kit“.

1941 12-Cylinder Lincoln Zephyr

1941 12-Cylinder Lincoln Zephyr

The car was put in production for the 1940 model year as a model under Lincoln-Zephyr.[8]:198 In June 1940 the Club Coupe was added and from 1941-48 it was a model under Lincoln marque. When production ceased in 1948 a total of 5322 had been built.

1945-1960: Lincoln-Mercury Division

In 1945, Ford Motor Company merged the Mercury and Lincoln divisions together, forming the combined Lincoln-Mercury division. For the revival of civilian production in 1946, Lincoln introduced a two-model lineup: Continental and the Zephyr-based range. Based on the former Zephyr, the standard Lincoln range only wore the Lincoln nameplate.

1946 Lincoln Continental

1946 Lincoln Continental

In 1949, both the H-Series Lincoln and the Continental were discontinued. In their place were a new generation of cars. Magnifying the relationship between Lincoln and Mercury was the new EL-Series, as its styling shared much with that of the Mercury Eight. More significantly, the 1949 Lincoln and Cosmopolitan were the first Lincolns since 1932 without a V12 engine; as Lincoln could not develop a new V12 in time, a V8 was borrowed from the Ford F-8 medium-duty truck. In 1952, Lincoln developed its own Overhead valve V8 engine, the Y-block.

Continental Division (1956-1957)

1956 Continental Mark II

 1956 Continental Mark II

For 1956, Lincoln revisited the original concept of the 1940-1940 Continental. Organized under a separate sub-marque (the Continental Division), the Continental Mark II was a two-door hardtop coupe. Instead of an actual spare tire mounted on the trunklid, the trunklid was styled with a tire-shaped hump. Unlike many cars of the era, the Mark II wore conservative styling; relatively little chrome trim was used on the body and tailfins were notably absent.

1957 LINCOLN Typhoon a

1957 LINCOLN Typhoon

Positioned above the Lincoln marque, the Continental Division and the Mark II were the flagship of Ford Motor Company. At a base price of $10,000 (nearly $86,000 in 2013 dollars), comparable to a Rolls-Royce Silver Cloud. Until the introduction of the 1957 Cadillac Eldorado Brougham, it was the most expensive American-produced car. As a result of its largely hand-built construction, every Mark II was sold at a loss of over $1,000. Production of the Mark II ran from June 1955 to May 1957.

1960 Lincoln Mark V

1960 Lincoln Mark V

In a cost-cutting move, the Continental Division was discontinued as a separate entity and merged into Lincoln in July 1956.:281 The hand-built Mark II was replaced by the Continental Mark III. While still badged and advertised as a Continental, the use of the standard Lincoln body allowed for a $4,000 reduction in price. The final Continental-badged car would be the 1960 Mark V.:414, 582–583

Unibody Era (1958-1960)

1960 Lincoln Continental Mark V Landau Sedan

1960 Lincoln Continental Mark V Landau Sedan

For the 1958 model year, a number of changes were made to Lincoln. Along with the integration of Edsel to form the Mercury-Edsel-Lincoln (M-E-L) division, production of all Lincoln and Continental vehicles was shifted to an all-new assembly plant in Wixom, Michigan. Showcasing the new assembly plant was a redesigned product lineup. The new V-8 430 cu. in. Ford MEL engine was used in all Lincolns.

In a radical change from 1957 Lincolns, the chassis was of unibody construction. Sharing a body with the Continental marque, the 1958-1960 Lincolns would become some of the largest production vehicles ever built; they are the longest Lincolns produced without 5-mph bumpers. They are the longest-wheelbase cars ever produced by Ford Motor Company.

In 1959, the Town Car name made its first appearance. A formal-roof sedan, it was available only in black.

1961-1969: Continental Era

1961 Lincoln Continental Convertible

1961 Lincoln Continental Convertible

For the 1961 model year, Lincoln made a major change in its model lineup as it pared its model lineup from three cars (Capri, Premiere, Continental Mark V) to a single car; Continental as a marque disappeared. Dubbed the Lincoln Continental, the 1961 Lincolns were distinctive for several reasons: their (relatively) conservative styling, their radically smaller size (15 inches shorter than the 1960 Lincolns), and their use of rear suicide doors. Available as a sedan and convertible, the Continental would become the last American 4-door production convertible.

During the 1960s, the Continental underwent minor year-to-year changes. In 1966, a two-door model joined the sedan and convertible while the latter ended production in 1967. For 1970, the Continental underwent a massive redesign.

Lincoln Mark Series

1969 Continental Mark III

The signature of the Mark Series, the “Continental tire kit” integrated into the trunk lid. Seen here is a 1969 Continental Mark III

In 1968, the division revisited the concept of the personal-luxury car, developing a competitor to the Cadillac Eldorado. While taking on the Mark series nameplate, the Continental Mark III was engineered to be both the halo car in the form of its predecessor for a much wider audience. Based on the four-door version of the Ford Thunderbird, the Mark III revived the Mark II’s spare tire hump while bringing new styling themes into the division. While not the first automaker to use them, Lincoln would popularize the use of hidden headlights behind body-color flaps. A key styling feature introduced by the Mark III was the Rolls-Royce style radiator grille; in various forms, this would be used by Lincoln into the late 1990s.

The Mark Series revival was a success for the division. With the exception of the 1980-1983 Mark VI, the Mark Series would be developed alongside the Ford Thunderbird.

1970-1980: Badge Engineering

During the 1970s, Lincoln made a number of moves in order to remain competitive in the luxury-car marketplace. While many of these changes were necessitated to control costs within Ford, others were in response to federal safety regulations. The fuel crisis of 1973 would also play a role in the engineering of Lincolns later in the decade.

Large Lincolns

1978 Lincoln Continental Town Car

 1978 Lincoln Continental Town Car

For the 1970 model year, the Continental range was given its first complete redesign since 1961. While styling was influenced by both the Mark III and its 1969 predecessor, the new generation marked a major departure from its predecessor in terms of layout. In a return to body-on-frame construction, the 1970 Continental marked the return of front-hinged rear doors. To lower its development costs, while Lincoln would retain its unique body and wheelbase, the chassis and basic underpinnings were now shared with the Ford LTD/Mercury Marquis. The 460 cubic-inch V8 introduced by Lincoln in 1968 became an option in Mercury models in 1972. To distance itself from the Marquis hardtop, the Continental was given a new roofline for 1975. In 1977, a Rolls-Royce style radiator grille was added to the Continental.

1941 Lincoln Continental

1941 Lincoln Continental

The success of the Mark III led Lincoln to follow up with a successor. Again based upon the Ford Thunderbird, the Mark IV was introduced for the 1972 model year. While sharing more in common with the Thunderbird than its predecessor, the Mark IV would distinguish itself by starting a new tradition for the Lincoln division. In tandem with several fashion designers, Lincoln would design several special-edition packages; these featured unique color combinations and interior trim. For 1977, the Mark IV was redesigned and replaced by the Mark V; with the Thunderbird now downsized, the Mark V used a body and chassis unique to Lincoln. In spite of being a longer car in the beginning of the era of downsizing, the Mark V proved to outsell both of its predecessors. As with the Mark IV, the Mark V continued the tradition of special editions, with various designer and commemorative editions.

Small Lincolns


 1978 Lincoln Versailles

Developed as a response to the popularity of the 1975 Cadillac Seville, the division introduced the Versailles for the 1977 model year. Thirty inches shorter and 1500 lbs lighter than the Continental, the Versailles was based on upon the Ford Granada/Mercury Monarch (as the Seville was based on the Chevrolet Nova). With a smaller budget than General Motors, Lincoln stylists could not afford to give the Versailles the all-new body that the Seville received; the major differences between the Granada/Monarch and the Versailles were the Lincoln-style grille along with the Mark V-style spare tire hump on the rear trunklid. While the Versailles survived only midway through the 1980 model year, it would introduce a number of key features into American cars: clearcoat paint and halogen headlights.

1980-1998: Downsizing Hits Lincoln

1984-1987 Lincoln Continental

1990-94 Lincoln Town Car

1990 Lincoln Town Car

1997 Lincoln Mark VIII

1997 Lincoln Mark VIII

After the fuel crises of the mid-1970s and the adoption of CAFE by the U.S. federal government, Lincoln was relatively ill-prepared for the 1980s. After the 1977 downsizing of the General Motors full-size range, the Continental and Mark V were the two largest mass-produced cars in the world. Additionally, the lineup was fast-aging, as the newest Lincoln (the Mark V) was an 8-year old design; the underpinnings of the Versailles dated from 1960.

1960 Lincoln Continental Mark V Landau Sedan

1960 Lincoln Continental Mark V Landau Sedan

In 1979, Ford and Mercury radically redesigned their full-size ranges on an all-new chassis, the first since 1968. Delayed until the 1980 model year, Lincoln joined its counterpart divisions with the first new Continental since 1970. The Mark VI replaced the Mark V; for the first time, the Mark was based upon the full-size chassis. While sharing chassis and powertrain with Mercury and Ford, no body and interior parts were common. After struggling throughout its entire production run to attract buyers, the Versailles was discontinued early in the 1980 model year.

1962 Lincoln Continental 86 Convertible

1962 Lincoln Continental 86 Convertible

In 1981, a major change was made to Lincoln as the Continental name was put on hiatus. Taking its place as the standard Lincoln was the Town Car/Town Coupe, having been a trim package since 1970.

1942 Lincoln Zephyr Club Coupé

1942 Lincoln Zephyr Club Coupé

1982 marked the beginning of major changes to the model lineup. Due to slow sales of full-size two-door sedans, the Town Coupe was discontinued. In a move to better compete with Cadillac and German imports, the Lincoln Continental was added back into the lineup. While not directly intended as a second-generation Versailles, the 1982 Continental was sized comparably to the Cadillac Seville. As it shared the chassis with the Ford Thunderbird/Mercury Cougar, it maintained the use of rear-wheel drive. The 1982 Continental would also serve as the basis for the next Mark, the 1984 Continental Mark VII. Nearly a yard shorter than the Mark V, the Mark VII was benchmarked against European coupes. A far more advanced design than its predecessor, the Mark VII was equipped with 4-wheel air suspension and 4-channel ABS (the first American car to do so); the first Mark since the Mark II with exposed headlights was also the first American-legal car to be sold with composite headlights.

1955 Lincoln Capri Sportsman

1955 Lincoln Capri Sportsman

To transition into the 1990s, Lincoln further distinguished and modernized its model lines. In 1988, the Continental was given a ground-up redesign, becoming the first front-wheel drive Lincoln. Sharing a chassis with the Ford Taurus and Mercury Sable, the 1988 Continental was larger than its predecessor; it was also the first Lincoln since 1949 without a V8 engine available.

1984-1987 Lincoln Continental

1984-1987 Lincoln Continental

Unlike nearly all of its competition, the Lincoln Town Car had remained in production throughout the 1980s relatively unchanged. In 1990, it too saw a major update as it was given an all-new body and interior echoing the Mark VII and the Continental; a positive reception in the marketplace led to its naming of the 1990 Motor Trend Car of the Year. In 1991, the Town Car was fitted with the first overhead-cam 8-cylinder engine in an American car since the Duesenberg Model J.

1989 Continental Signature Series

1989 Continental Signature Series

As a division, Lincoln led Ford Motor Company (and the American luxury segment) with the integration of safety features. Dual airbags became standard in the Continental in 1989 and the Town Car for 1990; ABS was standard on the Continental in 1988 and Town Car in 1992.

1992-94 Lincoln Continental

1992-94 Lincoln Continental

In 1993, the 9 year-old Mark VII was replaced by the Mark VIII. The first Mark branded without the “Continental” nameplate, the Mark VIII again shared an all-new chassis with the Ford Thunderbird and Mercury Cougar; they were the only American-produced rear-wheel drive 4-seat cars with independent rear suspension at the time. While carrying over the basic body profile from the Mark VII, the Mark VIII was radically streamlined, relegating the spare tire hump to vestigial status.

1998-02 Lincoln Town Car

1998-02 Lincoln Town Car

The styling of Mark VIII would carry on into the rest of the Lincoln lineup; it would inspire the much of the design of the 1995 Continental. While the exterior remained nearly unchanged, the radical interior of the Mark VIII would have some influence on the 1995 redesign of the Town Car, as well as other Ford products.

1998 Lincoln Grill Embleme

While positively received, the personal-luxury coupe segment that the Mark VIII competed in was in decline, leading to its discontinuation after the 1998 model year. As of the 2014 model year, it is currently the last of the Mark series.

1998-2012: Premier Automotive Group, End of Lincoln-Mercury

2003-07 Lincoln Town Car

 2003-07 Lincoln Town Car

During the 1990s, Lincoln had fallen behind Japanese, European, and American competitors, primarily due to an aging product lineup. In 1998, the Lincoln-Mercury division underwent a major change as it became part of the operations of Ford Motor Company’s Premier Automotive Group; PAG was a division meant to oversee the collective operation of the global Ford luxury-vehicle brands. This allowed Lincoln to develop models alongside import car companies owned by Ford (Jaguar, Volvo).

2000 Lincoln Navigator, Sport Utility Vehicle Truck (SUV)

2000 Lincoln Navigator, Sport Utility Vehicle Truck (SUV)

For 1998, the Town Car and Continental underwent major styling updates. Coinciding with the integration into PAG, the styling of the Town Car would bear a slight European influence in its design. For 2000, the products of the PAG alliance came to market as Lincoln introduced its smallest car ever, the LS. A mid-size sports sedan sharing a common chassis developed with Jaguar, the LS was unofficially the replacement for the Mark VIII.

In 2002, after 52 years of production, the Continental nameplate was retired. Having grown largely identical in size and styling to the Town Car, the role of the Continental was taken over by the LS. The same year, as Ford re-strategized the role of Premier Automotive Group, the Lincoln-Mercury Division was removed from PAG.

The Way Forward

In 2005, Ford developed The Way Forward restructuring plan. As part of the plan, the Wixom Assembly Plant, the assembly point of all Lincoln cars since 1957 (aside from the Versailles) was slated for closure. Consequently, the LS was discontinued after 2006. Town Car production joined that of the Ford Crown Victoria and Mercury Grand Marquis in St. Thomas, Ontario. In 2011, as part of the closure of that facility, the Town Car was discontinued.

Trucks and SUVs

For 1998, Lincoln introduced its first sport-utility vehicle, the Navigator. A restyled Ford Expedition, the Navigator was the first all-new Lincoln product line since the Versailles. The Navigator met with a positive reception in the market, leading to the introduction of the Cadillac Escalade. In 2003, the Aviator was introduced; based on the Ford Explorer, the Aviator was styled like a scaled-down version of the Navigator. However, its high price would lead to low sales.

In 2002, the Blackwood was introduced; based on the Ford F-150 SuperCrew with Lincoln Navigator front sheetmetal, the Blackwood wore a customized cargo box redesigned as a trunk. As the name suggested, Blackwoods were only painted black from the factory. Slow sales led to its cancellation after only one year in the US market. In 2005, the Mark LT replaced the Blackwood. While still fitted with luxury trim, the Mark LT had two things unavailable on the Blackwood: 4-wheel drive and a proper pickup bed. While more successful than its predecessor, the Mark LT was not included as part of the F-Series redesign for 2009 (in the United States); it continues to be sold in Mexico.


2009 Lincoln MKS

 2009 Lincoln MKS

In 2006, Lincoln introduced an all-new mid-size sport-sedan, reviving the Zephyr nameplate. For 2007, as part of a minor revision, Lincoln changed the name to MKZ. Sharing the nomenclature with a 2004 concept car, MKZ (“emm-kay-zee”) would begin a transition of the Lincoln model lineup. For example, the 2007 MKX crossover SUV had been shown in concept form as a future Lincoln Aviator; however, in production form, it was renamed and based upon the Ford Edge. The 2007 Lincoln MKR concept car debuted what would become a major styling feature of contemporary Lincolns: a split “bow-wave” grille, influenced in part by the original Lincoln Zephyr; it marked the debut of the Ford EcoBoost V6.

In 2009, Lincoln introduced the MKS, largely the replacement for the Town Car. Approximately the same size as the 2002 Continental, the MKS uses the Ford D3 platform derived from Volvo P2 shared with the Ford Taurus. For 2010, the MKT was introduced; it is a full-size crossover SUV sharing a chassis with the Ford Flex. Although the MKT has no direct predecessor, Lincoln developed variants of it specialized for livery and limousine use; these have been badged as Lincoln MKT Town Cars.

2012-present: The Lincoln Motor Company

On December 3, 2012 Ford changed the name of the Lincoln division to The Lincoln Motor Company. To help differentiate Lincoln-branded products from Ford-branded products, Ford established unique design, product development and sales teams for Lincoln. In addition to the name change, the Lincoln Motor Company will introduce several all new vehicles in the years to come. The first of these new vehicles was the second-generation MKZ, which went on sale in early 2013. Ford appointed Jim Farley to lead the Lincoln Motor Co.


Lincoln achieved its two best sales years to date in 1989 (200,315) and 1990 (231,660) thanks largely to the continuing popularity of the redesigned Continental, introduced in December 1987, and success of the redesigned Town Car introduced in October 1989.

Lincoln would go on to beat Cadillac in sales in 1998 and again in 2000 but, like other domestic brands, Lincoln sales declined over the next several years. Ford hopes to increase the brand’s sales to 162,000 vehicles by 2015 with the introduction of seven all-new or significantly redesigned models.

Lincoln vehicles are officially available in BahrainCanadaJordanKuwaitLebanonMexicoOmanQatarSaudi ArabiaSouth Korea, the United Arab Emirates, the United States – and its territories: American Samoa, the American Virgin IslandsGuam, the Northern Mariana Islands, and Puerto Rico – and Yemen. Lincoln competes with other luxury brands, like Acura of Honda, Audi of Volkswagen, Cadillac of General Motors, Infiniti of Nissan, Land Rover of Tata, and Lexus of Toyota.

Brand Image

In 1927, Lincoln attached a greyhound as the hood ornament, then in the 1930s used a coat of arms with a red cross in the center and a knight’s helmet at the top as the official emblem. The introduction of a coat of arms for Lincoln coincided with the introduction of a Ford coat of arms starting in the mid-1950s. The coat of arms appeared on various Lincoln models until the mid-1950s when the coat of arms evolved into the framed, four-pointed star that is currently in use.


Further information: List of Lincoln vehicles

Current Models

In the 2007 model year, Lincoln introduced an alphanumeric nomenclature with most models bearing a three-letter designation starting with “MK”. Today, only the Navigator and the Mexican-market Mark LT names remain while all other models use the new nomenclature. Livery and limousine versions of the MKT use the Town Car name.


Although a luxury division, Lincoln has not been absent from motorsports. Like all American brands of the fifties, Lincoln participated in the Grand National Stock Car series. They would continue into the eighties until the Winston Cup Series dwindled down into a Chevrolet-Pontiac-Ford affair in the nineties.

Lincoln has also powered Le Mans Prototypes, acting as a substitute for Ford, in the American Le Mans Series.

Presidential cars

Lincoln has a long history of providing official state limousines for the U.S. President.

1939 “Sunshine Special”

1939 The Sunshine Special on display at the Henry Ford Museum.

 The “Sunshine Special” on display at the Henry Ford Museum.

The first car specially built for presidential use was the 1939 Lincoln K-Series V12 convertible called the “Sunshine Special“, used by Franklin D. Roosevelt. It remained in use until 1948.

1950 “Bubble Top” Cosmopolitan

A 1950 Lincoln Cosmopolitan called the “Bubble Top” was used by Presidents Harry S. Truman, Dwight D. Eisenhower, John F. Kennedy, and once by Lyndon B. Johnson. It was retired in 1965.

1961 “SS-100-X” Continental

1961+63 Selassie and Kennedy in open Lincoln's

Open-roof (1961-November 1963)
1961 Lincoln model 74A open roof
Permanent roof (1964-1977)
Two of the roof configurations of the SS-100-X

Perhaps the most famous Lincoln Presidential state car was a 1961 Lincoln Continental convertible, custom built by Hess and Eisenhart of Cincinnati, and known as the SS-100-X, designed for use by John F. Kennedy. Designed to be an open-top car to give the President better visibility and a better ability to interact with citizens, it also included a “plexiglas” bubble top to be used in the event of inclement weather. The 1961 vehicle was notorious for its inadequate cooling of the rear of the passenger cabin while the bubble top was in place, particularly in sunshine. In order to prevent excessive heat and discomfort to the passengers, the top was often removed prior to parades. Kennedy notably used it when welcoming Ethiopian King Haile Selassie in several parades in DC and New York. (see image above) It was in the back of this car that Kennedy was assassinated.

Due to security concerns following Kennedy’s assassination, it was temporarily removed from service. While it was once rumored that Kennedy’s successor, Lyndon Johnson, had ordered it destroyed, it instead was retrofitted with armor plating and a fixed, permanent sedan roof. It reentered service and was used by Johnson and his successor, Richard Nixon. It was eventually retired in 1977 and is now on display at the Henry Ford Museum in Dearborn, Michigan. The Johnson Administration also used three 1965 Lincoln Continental Executive limousines: Two limousines for the President and one for Secretary of Defense Robert McNamara, as well as a 1968 “stretch” Lincoln to be used in Washington, D.C., and Austin, Texas. This vehicle is on display at the Lyndon Baines Johnson Library and Museum.

1969 Continental

1969 Lincoln Continental used by Richard Nixon

 1969 Lincoln Continental used by Richard Nixon

A state car based on a 1969 Lincoln was commissioned for Richard Nixon. Constructed by Lehman-Peterson of Chicago, this vehicle also had an added sunroof so that Nixon could stand upright when appearing before parade-goers if desired. This vehicle was equipped with several features, such as retractable hand grips and running boards, options later copied by Hess and Eisenhart. This car is now located at the Nixon Library in Yorba Linda, California.

1972 Continental

The 1969 Continental would be replaced as the front-line state car in 1974 when Ford supplied a 1972 Continental model which was stretched to 22 feet (7 m), outfitted with armor plating and bullet-resistant glass and powered by a 460 cu in (7.5 L) V8 engine. While intended for Nixon, it was instead used by his successor, Gerald Ford, following Nixon’s resignation. It was later used by Jimmy Carter and Ronald Reagan, until it was replaced by a Cadillac Brougham in 1983.

Like the SS-100-X, this state vehicle has lasting notoriety due to its presence at two assassination attempts against Presidents; it was used for a quick getaway by Gerald Ford following Sara Jane Moore‘s assassination attempt against him in 1975, and most notably, at John Hinckley, Jr.‘s assassination attempt against Ronald Reagan in 1981. It was the armor plating on the car that wounded Reagan, as no shot directly hit him; the near-fatal shot that struck him had originally hit the side of the car and ricocheted off the bulletproof armor. Reagan was quickly plunged into the car, which transported him to George Washington University hospital. Today, the car is on display at the Henry Ford Museum alongside the Sunshine Special and SS-100-X.

1989 Town Car

1989 Town Car state vehicle used by George H. W. Bush

 A 1989 Town Car state vehicle used by George H. W. Bush

The last Lincoln (as of 2013) to be used as a Presidential state car was a 1989 Lincoln Town Car commissioned for George H. W. Bush. To compensate for the thick armor plating and bulletproof glass, the height of the roof was raised several inches. To compensate for the added weight, the chassis was fitted with a 460 cu in (7.5 L) EFI V8 coupled to a E4OD 4-speed automatic transmission; the powertrain was sourced from a Ford F-250 three-quarter ton pickup.

Upon its retirement when Bush left office in 1993, the 1989 Town Car became the last Lincoln vehicle to be used in the Presidential fleet. Today it is on display at the George Bush Presidential Library. Subsequent Presidents Bill Clinton and George W. Bush along with current President Barack Obama have used custom-built Cadillac vehicles as their state cars.

1922 Lincoln L series Touring Sedan npcc.30643     1915       National Photo Company 1923 lincoln sieberg 1924 Lincoln Limousine 1925 Lincoln L Brunn 1925 1925 Lincoln-Ford 1926 Lincoln L-series town car 1927 Lincoln Model L Judkins Coaching Brougham 1928 Lincoln 1929 Lincoln Model L 7-Passenger Phaeton 1930 Lincoln Zephyr 1930s Lincoln-Zephyrs 1931 Lincoln K-series LeBaron convertible coupe 1932 Lincoln KB Town Sedan, bodystyle 234A 1932 Lincoln V-12 1935 Lincoln Five Passenger Two Window Sedan 1936 Lincoln-Zephyr V-12 4-Door Sedan 1937 Lincoln K-series Touring 1937 Lincoln K-series towncar 1937 Lincoln zephyr 06011701 1937 Lincoln-Zephyr V-12 Coupé 1938 Lincoln-Zephyr Convertible Coupe 1938 Lincoln-Zephyr V-12 4-Door Sedan 1938 Lincoln-Zephyr V-12 Convertible Coupé 1938 Lincoln-Zephyr V-12 Convertible Sedan 1939 Lincoln Zephyr Continental Cabriolet 1939 Lincoln-Zephyr V-12 4-Door Sedan 1939 Lincoln-Zephyr V-12 Convertible Coupe 1939 The Sunshine Special on display at the Henry Ford Museum. 1940-41 Lincoln Continental 1941 12-Cylinder Lincoln Zephyr 1941 Lincoln Continental V-12 1941 Lincoln Continental 1941 Lincoln Firebrigade 1942 Lincoln Club Coupe 1942 Lincoln Continental convertible front exterior view 1942 Lincoln Continental coupe 1942 Lincoln continental-coupe 1942 Lincoln san 1942 Lincoln Zephyr Club Coupé 1946 Lincoln Continental 1946 Lincoln coupe 1946-49 Lincoln 1947 Lincoln Continental Cabriolet 1947 Lincoln Continental Convertible 1947 Lincoln Continental Coupe 1947 Lincoln Continental 1947 Lincoln V12 Continental 1948 convertible with view of Continental spare tire mount 1948 Lincoln Continental a 1948 Lincoln Continental Cabriolet, Esmeralda, alongside a 1947 Packard Custom Super Clipper 1948 Lincoln Continental coupe 1948 Lincoln Continental V-12 Convertible 1948 Lincoln Continental Woody Station Wagon 1948 Lincoln Continental 1948 Lincoln Coupe a 1948 Lincoln Coupe b 1948 Lincoln V12 Convertible 1948 Lincoln V12 photographed in Montreal, Quebec, Canada at A&W St-Léonard. 1948 Lincoln 1949 Lincoln Cosmopolitan 4-Door Sedan 1949 Lincoln Cosmopolitan convertible rear 1949 Lincoln Cosmopolitan convertible 1949 Lincoln Cosmpolitan Convertible 1949 Lincoln Standard Convertible 1949-50 Lincoln ad

1950 Lincoln Cosmopolitan 1950 Lincoln four-door sedan 1950 lincoln limo 1950 Lincoln Presidential Car - Harry S Truman 1950 Lincoln Weizmann WLM 1950 Lincoln 1951 Lincoln Cosmopolitan convertible 1951 Lincoln cosmopolitan 1951-52 Lincoln ad 1952 Lincoln 1952-59 Lincoln Capri 1953 Lincoln ad 1953 Lincoln Capri Convertible 1953 Lincoln Capri sedan 1953 Lincoln XL 500 1953 LINCOLN XL-500 a 1953 LINCOLN XL-500 back 1953 Lincoln XT 500 SIA-Bubbletop Cars 1954 Lincoln Capri (2) 1954 Lincoln Capri 1955 Lincoln Capri 2 Door Hardtop 1955 Lincoln Capri Hardtop Coupe 1955 Lincoln Capri Sportsman 1955 Lincoln Futura 1955 Lincoln Indianapolis a 1955 Lincoln Indianapolis 1956 Continental Mark II 1956 lincoln bw01 1956 Lincoln Capri coupe rear 1956 Lincoln in Taos Turquoise 1956 Lincoln Premiere (2) 1956 Lincoln Premiere Convertible a 1956 Lincoln Premiere Convertible 1956 Lincoln Premiere coupe 1956 Lincoln Premiere with Jayne Mansfield 1956 Lincoln Premiere 1957 Lincoln Premiere 1957 LINCOLN Typhoon a 1957 LINCOLN Typhoon 1958 Lincoln Continental Mark III Convertible's with 430-400 HP Tri-Power 1958 Lincoln Continental Mark III Landau hardtop sedan 1958 Lincoln 1958 lincoln-classic-cars-la-auto-show 1959 Lincoln Continental Mark IV (2) 1959 Lincoln Continental Mark IV Landau 1959 Lincoln Continental Mark IV Town Car 1959 Lincoln Continental Mark IV IM000132.JPG 1960 Lincoln Continental Mark V convertible 1960 Lincoln Continental Mark V Landau Sedan 1960 Lincoln Mark V 1960 Lincoln Premere Landau 1961 Dodge Flight Wing Concept 1961 Lincoln Continental Convertible 1961 Lincoln model 74A open roof 1961+63 Selassie and Kennedy in open Lincoln's 1961-1965 Lincoln Continental 1962 Lincoln Continental (2) 1962 Lincoln Continental 86 Convertible 1962 Lincoln Continental Prototype 1962 Lincoln Continental 1963 Lincoln Continental white 1963 lincoln-continental-1963 1964 Lincoln Continental 1964 LIncoln 1965 Lincoln Continental Wagon 1965 Lincoln Continental 1966 Lincoln Continental four-door convertible 1968 Lincoln Highway Ad 1969 Continental Mark III 1969 Lincoln Continental Mark III 1969 Lincoln Continental used by Richard Nixon 1970 Lincoln Continental 1972 Lincoln Continental 1973 Lincoln Continental hardtop coupe 1973 lincoln-continental-mark-iv-wallpaper 1974 Lincoln Continental Town Car 1975 Lincoln Continental Town Car 1976 Lincoln Continental Mark V 1977 Lincoln Continental Town Car 1977-80 Lincoln Versailles 1978 Lincoln Continental Town Car OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA 1980 Lincoln Versailles 1981 Lincoln Versailles 1982 Lincoln Continental sedan 1984–87 Lincoln Continental OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

1984-1987 Lincoln Continental 1989 Continental Signature Series 1989 Town Car state vehicle used by George H. W. Bush 1990-94 Lincoln Town Car 1991 Lincoln Cartier edition Town Car Engine 4600cc Modular V8 1991 Lincoln Continental 1992-94 Lincoln Continental 1995 Lincoln Town Car stretch limousine 1997 Lincoln Mark VIII 1998 Lincoln Grill Embleme 1998-02 Lincoln Town Car 2000 Lincoln Navigator, Sport Utility Vehicle Truck (SUV) OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA 2001 Lincoln MK9 Concept 2001 Lincoln Navigator 2002 Lincoln Aviator 2002 Lincoln Blackwood 2002 Lincoln Continental concept car 2002 Lincoln Continental Concept 2003-07 Lincoln Town Car 2004 Lincoln Aviator Concept SUV 2004 Lincoln Mark X Roadster Concept 2007-09 Lincoln MKS 2008-lincoln-mkt-concept 2009 Lincoln MKS 2009 Lincoln MKZ-by-3Dcarbon-lg