Australia's Least-Seen Car: The Governor-General's Rolls-Royce

Australia's newest Governor-General is General the Honourable Sir Peter John Cosgrove AK MC, sworn in a few minutes ago in a ceremony at Parliament House in Canberra. As part of his initiation, Cosgrove travelled from Parliament to the Governor-General's residence in Yarralumla in an especially rare car.

Image credit: Hawkeye7, Wikipedia

Australia's official state car for the Governor-General is a 1970 Rolls-Royce Phantom VI, and it doesn't get that much time out in the sunshine. Only 374 Phantom VIs were ever built.

It's typically only used for state occasions like the swearing in of a new Governor-General or the opening of Parliament, and it's one of the few cars on the road that's able to get by without a number plate. St Edward's Crown, along with the Governor-General's personal flag of office, are identification enough (along with the fact that there's probably not many Phantom VI state cars in Australia anyway).

The Phantom VI started production in 1968, so Australia actually upgraded to the latest and greatest in 1970 soon after the car's launch. The same chassis and specification remained in production until 1990, with a few small upgrades along the way. Being a 1970 model, the GG's car uses a 6.2-litre V8, pulling along nearly three tons of metal and glass and paint.

Unless something particularly interesting happens in the business of Australia's government or constitutional monarchy over the next couple of years, we won't see this Rolls any time soon. [Wikipedia]