After all the traditional considerations — the proper dress to the guest list to the perfect tiara — a pending princess has to get to her wedding on time. For Kate Middleton, that means more tradition — a 1977 Rolls-Royce Phantom.
Middleton will arrive at Westminster Abbey with her father in the Queen’s most famous car. It’s one of the only 374 manufactured.
According to report in USA Today, the 34-year-old Rolls Royce was given to the Queen in 1978 as a gift for the 25th anniversary of her reign the British auto industry, a collective called the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders.
The Rolls Royce Phantom VI is equipped with a 6.7-liter, 200-horsepower engine, the same as in the Silver Shadow II, the most popular Rolls Royce in history.
The Queen’s stable of vehicles also include three additional Rolls-Royces, three Daimlers and several specialty Volkswagen models called ‘people carriers.’
The Queen’s 1977 Roll’s Royce, Facts & Figures:
* It was restored after rioters doused it with white paint and smashed its windows last December while Prince Charles and wife Camilla were in it.
* The transmission is a General Motors 3-speed Turbo Hydramatic 400, and the limo has drum brakes.
* Built in London, the Rolls-Royce has an extra-high roof, is painted Royal claret and black and has fittings over the windshield that hold the Queen’s silver Coat of Arms and when she’s a passenger.
Article Last Updated: May 15, 2014.
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A sports, travel and business journalist for more than 45 years, James has written the new car review column The Weekly Driver since 2004.
In addition to this site, James writes a Sunday automotive column for The San Jose Mercury and East Bay Times in Walnut Creek, Calif., and a monthly auto review column for Gulfshore Business, a magazine in Southwest Florida.
An author and contributor to many newspapers, magazines and online publications, James has co-hosted The Weekly Driver Podcast since 2017.