Matthew Jones28 April 2011

All rise… for the Rolls-Royce Phantom VI

Not-so-reasonably-priced-car plays minor starring role in royal wedding

All rise… for the Rolls-Royce Phantom VI

We’ve studiously avoided any royal wedding chat on the site this week, if only to provide a lone, blissful haven from dresses and disgraced ambassadors from Malawi. But we suppose it’s worth mentioning the not-so-reasonably-priced car that will also be a star in tomorrow’s nuptials.
 
At least Kate Middleton’s turning up in a proper British vehicle, not one of those Disney-spec Landau carriage things. Nor an Audi, even though the royals are reportedly part of the company’s VIP scheme.

It’s the very same seven-seat 1977 Rolls-Royce Phantom VI that those student protestors repainted last year. And even though it looks like it’s been designed in a Home Counties vicarage, it’s the poshest Rolls in the history of ever.
 
The original Phantom VI had a spell as the world’s most expensive car when it launched in 1968, but this one had an extra pimp-over by RR before the British motor industry handed it over to the Queen for her Silver Jubilee.
 
RR took off the number plates – HM the Q doesn’t need them, nor a licence – added toughened glass, then removed the Spirit of Ecstasy hood ornament and replaced it with a custom-made solid silver model of St George slaying a dragon. Nice.   
 
In terms of power, Rolls-Royce actually refused to publish engine performance when the car was released – terribly gauche, you see – simply describing it as ‘adequate’. But Rolls Royce specialists Frank Dale and Stepson reckon the 6.75-litre V8 makes around 220bhp. Not the most efficient, but perfect for the 10mph waft that is its daily drive.  

Surprisingly, there aren’t any other regal mods inside: just factory leather and a standard Wilton carpet, door wood, electric windows and air-con.
 
Still, the bride will probably have other things to distract her come Friday. Like pondering if another Audi would be a good idea. We can definitely see the future queen looking resplendent in a V10 R8 Spyder.  

Princess Anne had a Reliant Scimitar, you know. 

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