WYD 2019 Panamá, press office•
The Panamanians now have the official Popemobile to be used by Pope Francis during his apostolic visit, for World Youth Day Panama 2019. —
Thanks to the contribution of two businesses: Distribuidora David, who donated the vehicle, and Tri-Star Centroamérica was in charge of its design and the manufacture, Panamanian hands completed the Popemobile’s assembly. It’s an automatic transmission dual-cab Ford Ranger XLT with all the specifications the Vatican requested to ensure the Supreme Pontiff’s security and comfort.
The Popemobile has an escalator, a 360° swivel chair, red carpet, rails for better support and sustainability for the Pope while he is standing, and a window on the back part of the main cab so that Francis can have better communication with the driver.
Ana Victoria Taboada and Edwin Chaverra led the team of young people who worked on the design and the assembly of this vehicle; they emphasized their taking references of other Popemobiles built for papal visits, every detail was redesigned and improved, thus fulfilling the requirements. Designers, mechanical engineers, architects, technicians, and welders were among the other collaborators that worked on the manufacture of the Popemobile.
“This experience has been incredible, and it is a very great honor. The fact that we are young people and are able to do this for WDY, shows that young people are very capable of doing great things,” Ana Victoria said.
For his part, Jorge Batinovich, president of Distribuidora David, said on behalf his 100% Panamanian business and its family, it has been a cause of pride and celebration contributing to the history of our country. He added the Popemobile was accomplished thanks to the Panamanian professionals who fulfilled each of the Vatican’s specifications, and they followed the modification process of the vehicle step by step.
Original: Spanish. 7 January 2019. Translation: Celina M. Garza, San Antonio, TX USA. Edited: Melissa Peña-Janknegt, Elgin, TX USA