As the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee is fast-approaching, the Royal Family are set to ditch their beloved vehicles in favour of something much more regal – horseback and carriages. It’s no secret that the Royals have always had a taste for cars, with Her Majesty herself racking up a collection of incredible models over the years as the only person in the UK legally allowed to drive without a licence. In fact, did you know that our Queen joined the Auxiliary Territorial Service during World War II, aged only 18? She’d probably be able to help us out with our pre-sale car inspections...
To celebrate Her Majesty the Queen as she becomes the only British Monarch to reach 70 years on the throne, we’re taking a look back at the other seats she’s been firmly sat in – her brilliant cars across the decades.
The two-of-a-kind Bentley State Limousine
If there’s one car you might think of when the Queen comes to mind, it’s probably those massive Bentley State Limousines we often see Her Majesty cruising around in. Bentley is actually a Royal Warrant Holder, meaning the company has a long-term arrangement with supplying cars to The Royals.
The State Limousine, one of several Bentleys in the Royal Garage, was a gift from Bentley itself for the Queen’s Golden Jubilee way back in 2002. This model is said to be completely air-tight to protect against potential gas and terror attacks, with armoured bodywork, and tyres that will manage speeds of up to 130mph, despite the car’s tank-like heft. It's a pretty impressive vehicle that was one of a kind until the Queen commissioned a second to be made. The original model is valued at a very affordable £10,000,000. What a steal.
Her Majesty’s beloved Bentley Bentayga
If the exclusivity of the State Limousine made you jealous, the royal Bentley Bentayga will have you green. When the car first launched in 2015, it was said to be the world’s most powerful and luxurious SUV, with the Queen herself bagging the first one off the production line. If you’re making a car and decide the first ever model deserves to find its home with the Queen – you know it’s a pretty spectacular vehicle. She even had an early test drive with a pre-production prototype that she whizzed around the Balmoral estate, and planned to use her Bentayga for hunting trips.
Whilst we can’t offer you a State Limousine or the first-ever Bentley Bentayga, we do have something similarly lovely on our site: a 2017 Bentley Continental. It's got a twin-turbo V8 engine set-up and can easily smash 0-60 in just 4.3 seconds, with a – hold onto your crowns – quoted 192mph top-speed. It might not have armoured bodywork, but it does have parking sensors. We know which option we’d find more useful...
The iconic Royal Land Rover Defender
We know our Queen loves the outdoors, and what better vehicle to get you out and about than the iconic Land Rover Defender? We’ve seen Her Majesty popping behind the wheel of one of these rugged machines many times over the years, as the brand has maintained a royal relationship since the late Queen Mother enjoyed hers in the 1960s.
It’s said that around 30 Land Rover Defenders have moved through the Royal Garages, with the most memorable being the 2002 model that was built especially for the Queen. This model was owned by the Sandringham Estate until its sale, making it a rare example since the Queen is known to usually lease her cars. Incredibly, a Sandringham map and shot gun cartridges were found in the glovebox at the time of the sale, left over from the many hunting parties the car saw during its time with the Queen.
We’ve got an impressive range of new-generation Land Rover Defenders to choose from on our website, but unfortunately none of them come with any royal memorabilia in the glovebox. They’re still an absolute dream to get out on the road with – and that’s what counts, right?
The Queen’s personal choice – a gorgeous Jaguar
With an impressive range of vehicles to choose from, we love that the Queen finds her personal favourite in a handsome, British Jag. It seems that way anyway, as that’s the model she’s often been seen cruising around her estate in. Back in the early 2000s, Her Majesty famously drove a Jaguar Daimler V8 Super LWB that was fitted with a special sliding holder, designed to hold her favourite style of handbag. Plus, the model had a bespoke air conditioning system that directed the breeze to the sides and away from her face, especially for the Queen’s preference.
The Queen returned her Daimler to Jaguar in 2004 and it remains there to this day, having made a public appearance at the 2012 Goodwood Festival of Speed – still looking as gorgeous as it always had.
As well as providing the Queen with her personal car of choice, Jaguar has been busy manufacturing some incredible customer models that cover all bases for handling, style, and luxury. We've got plenty of nice Jags in our digital showroom. But none with a handbag holder, unfortunately.
A roof-down Range Rover LWB Landaulet – especially for Her Majesty
Back in 1953, Land Rover provided their first ever vehicle to the Crown, with three more State Review vehicles coming from the brand after that. One of the most memorable must be the Range Rover LWB Landaulet – a special take on the already pretty opulent vehicle that received a unique, roofless upgrade. Having an open top on the 2015 Landaulet allows the Queen to waive to onlookers, and it’s also fitted with backwards opening doors. All in all, it’s a completely one-of-a-kind Rangie, and even offers a pop of hybrid power from an electric motor.
The closest we can offer you to the Queen’s unique Range Rover is our own collection of slightly less regal, but just as enjoyable, alternatives. There are currently Range Rover Evoque and Sport models on our website, including Evoque Convertibles – so you can feel like a true Royal.