Buy an armored car?


When you hear the word “armored car,” you might think of giant Gurkhas or MRAP trucks. fast and furious franchise, an over-the-top paramilitary machine designed to withstand 1000 Hollywood bullets in the flames of cinematic glory. Or you can imagine a slab-sided rolling vault going from bank to bank, taking his ATM deposits and unloading paychecks under the watchful eye of armed guards.

These heavy-duty rigs are certainly part of the armored vehicle spectrum, but there’s a complete subset of bulletproof vehicles and trucks that can’t be picked out of traffic, even if they’re idling beside you at a traffic light. Whether hauling tycoons and politicians through treacherous streets or tagging as bug-out vans for prepping families worried about surviving Armageddon, the armored car industry serves an amazingly diverse clientele. We provide services. Over the past few years, fueled by pandemics, an unstable economy, and concerns about the dangers of everyday life in America.

How do you transform the SUV, sedan, or pickup truck you drive every day from civilian to bullet-dodging survivor? Armored Group’s Senior Manager James Jamila examines. Since 1992, TAG has supported the United Nations, the U.S. Government, european military clients Law enforcement agencies, along with thriving businesses in the private sector. Jamila himself has over 10 years of experience building and delivering the toughest automobiles on the planet.

look beyond the badge

An examination of the list of vehicles that regularly haunt the Armored Group’s production plants (distributed in the United States, Canada, Europe, and the Middle East) reveals that the usual vehicles that television and film have made seen as key management tools A suspect is revealed. protection. These include Mercedes-Benz (S-Class and G-Class), Cadillac Escalade, Chevrolet Suburban family of beefy sport utility full-size sedans and his SUV. As Ford Explorer and Expedition.

more surprised? Despite the predominance of seemingly pedestrian models, it has emerged alongside high-end options and bolstered itself into the kind of transport that can survive an unexpected shootout.

“Domestically, GM, Ford and Ram are leading, but on the Japanese side, Toyota, especially Camry and Avalon, tend to be the most popular economy models,” says Jamira. “This sits alongside our Euroluxury flagship and extends to Rolls-Royce and Bentley.”

The majority of TAG’s business is for corporations and government agencies, where less visible means are often desired.

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How to make your car bulletproof

Whether it’s a Volkswagen Passat or a Porsche Cayenne, the obligation to show up at the factory is the same. Equip each vehicle with armor according to a sliding scale of the intensity of the expected threat the owner is likely to face. Armored Group utilizes the European EN 1063 standard classification system which provides 7 layers of ballistic protection.

“For commercial cash-carrying customers, we start with a B4 level armor, which is the bullet protection of a pistol, .44 Magnum or less,” explains Jamila. “The B6 is the standard for passenger vehicles and protects against rifle bullets such as .308 Winchester, NATO 7.62 and AK-47 7.62. Protects against hardened core cartridge versions.”

Each vehicle TAG builds is based on a 360-degree safety cell that armors all vertical and horizontal surfaces, including the floor, roof, firewall, armored fuel tank, engine control unit (ECU), and run-flat tires. A single operable window is part of the standard package, with additional features (another window that can be opened, protection from grenade blasts and other explosive devices) available a la carte.

If the vehicle is to be armored, the TAG must be within the Factory Gross Vehicle Weight Rating (GVWR). This is the maximum safe mass that the platform can carry, including the weight of the vehicle itself. Needless to say, the materials used for bulletproofing are very heavy, most often ballistic steel and glass, and this can affect overall performance and carrying capacity. , even hauling all the excess steel requires careful calculations to ensure that it can handle the passengers and cargo it intends to carry.

Lighter and thicker composites are available, but they are less cost effective and have a shelf life in terms of exposure to extreme heat, cold and moisture. Additionally, TAG considers a V6 engine to be the smallest and a V8 to be ideal. We also offer suspension upgrades for vehicles that need a little help with their factory shocks and springs.

Perhaps most impressively, all of the above is almost completely invisible from the outside. It takes a trained eye to truly discern details that might reveal the fact that the vehicle in question is hardened to withstand high-caliber bullets. I’m trying to do it,” says Jamila. “Unless the client specifically asks for things like push bars, ram bumpers, off-road gear, etc., it’s the OEM unmodified look.”

How much can you expect to pay to protect against worst-case commuting scenarios? TAG sets a $50,000 baseline for customizing pickup trucks to B6-level ballistic resistance. SUVs and vans cost slightly more. A standard sedan will cost $59,000 for the same B6 baseline, while European SUVs ($67,000) and sedans ($69,000) are priced higher. It usually takes four months for the vehicle to be delivered. 2 months in standby and 2 months in production.

Armored Group takes testing seriously.

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A surprisingly diverse customer list

Not surprisingly, a significant portion of the Armored Group’s customers are what we call the ‘cash in transit’ crowd. Transferring money, debt or other valuables For banks and retailers. This was the bread and butter of the industry until around the time of the Second Gulf War when orders began pouring in from both government and private customers.

“We have been supplying the United Nations for 10 years, and we have provided vehicles to the federal counterterrorism and the US Department of State.These are global markets for us,” Jamila elaborates. The company also has strong business with law enforcement agencies in the United States at various levels and is active in protecting executives in developing countries, especially those where large urban centers can be unstable. It is working.

But outside corporate and government spheres, more and more civilians are buying armored vehicles, and their motivations are as diverse as those who order them.

“Over the past three years, we’ve seen a whole new set of aspiring buyers who were either unconsidered or previously hesitant,” he says. “Our clients are very diverse. We have a blue-collar group that falls into the doomsday-preparing type segment, concerned with protecting themselves, their families, and company assets. I have a business owner who has witnessed street violence in a big city and wants to be protected from it.”

Jamila notes the economic disparities that are increasingly pushing wealthy neighborhoods into homeless encampments and the survivalist culture where buyers are looking for blend-in, bug-out vehicles that can bring families to safety during riots and riots. focus on the rise of Collapse of social order. These scenarios, both real and hypothetical, are sending more first-time customers to her TAG’s door.

Open the doors and the previously unassuming SUV reveals its armor.

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The reality of ballistic resistance

Are there any sacrifices when buying a bulletproof vehicle? A keen eye has already spotted the phrase “one functioning window” in the description of what a typical B6 armor level has to offer. prize. Naturally, given what you would expect from a top-of-the-range luxury car like a Rolls-Royce, this might seem like a limitation imposed on a world where the sky traditionally marks all boundaries.

Jamila explains that it’s possible to fully customize most vehicle features if you have the budget. “When it comes to the curvature of the door, the glass, and the locking mechanism, it comes at a cost from an engineering standpoint,” he says. “These are the properties that determine how far the windows can roll down or whether they are operable.” More horsepower and additional suspension tweaks are also available to all customers.

As an aftermarket armor company, TAG is focused on delivering value in ways that factory bulletproof vehicles (which can be designed to incorporate thicker glass and additional steel on the assembly line) don’t. he says. “Automakers such as Mercedes-Benz, BMW and Audi have armor that can be ordered directly from the factory floor through direct partners and internal design. It is very expensive and comes with a full warranty. Think of it like motorsport where factory armor is used as part of marketing – very small amounts but a lot of brand recognition We are building degrees.”

For customers without taxpayer-funded budgets, TAG also offers a strong inventory of previously owned bulletproof models. The service is aimed at customers who may be facing price constraints or who cannot wait four months for delivery. I don’t like.”

It may not look like The Rock’s battle rig, but if you’re pinching pennies for the apocalypse, your dream impregnable bug-out truck might be more affordable than you think.

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