The popularity of armoured vehicles continues to rise. Engineers have taken a Toyota Land Cruiser and put in armored plating, bullet resistant glass and run-flat tires at a workshop located in an industrial area on the borders of Dubai. As a result of the "Arab spring" revolts and with the wealth gap and the rising of social unrest in several regions of the world, there’s no lack of wealthy individuals and governments who think that they require additional protection.
It was a profitable decade for companies like Canada's INKAS, Britain's Jankel and Germany's Transeco. There still are deals to be made even with the winding down of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.
In fact, newer entrant Ares Security Vehicles claims that its order book is growing. This company started in 2010 but it has mostly industry veterans in its workforce.
Marc Rouelle, a Belgian engineer who is now the CEO of the Dubai-based company, said that this batch of vehicles will go to Iraq. He also divulged that the batch that comes after will be sent to Russia and that the 30 units that will be delivered tomorrow will be sent to Libya.
Industry consultancy IHS Jane said that with spending cuts worldwide, the market for traditional military vehicles has fallen by over 4% annually.
However, the demand for armored sports utility vehicles and limousines (which look exactly the same as regular civilian vehicles but are equipped with small arms fire and grenades) is rising. However, the U.S. president’s vehicle sets the gold standard.
The US media and Secret Service refers to Barack Obama's Cadillac limousine as “the beast." It weighs several tons and has its own defensive weaponry and air supply that would be essential during a chemical attack.