BENTLEY BENTAYGA The styling of the £160,000 4x4 may have caused controversy but that didn’t seem to deter the Queen. “We have reserved the number one car for her,” Bentley CEO Wolfgang Duerheimer reported of the luxury British car, which was launched last year in, er, Germany. The Queen was said to be impressed with its capability after testing it around the Balmoral Estate.
BENTLEY STATE LIMOUSINE It is hard to understand the fuss over the styling of the Bentley Bentayga when you are faced with the Bentley State Limousine. The armoured car was presented to the Queen in 2002, to mark the 50th anniversary of her accession to the throne, the “truly elegant car” featured a “panoramic glasshouse”, presumably so the public could get a good selfie of themselves and the Queen.
DAIMLER SUPER V8 LWB With its bespoke handbag holder, an ashtray given over to housing controls for hidden blue strobe lights and phone fittings to enable direct contact with Downing Street, the Daimler Super V8 could only ever belong to one well known lady driver. For three years, from 2001, this Daimler was the Queen’s personal car, used around Windsor Estate and Buckingham Palace.
JAGUAR X-TYPE ESTATE When in residence at Windsor Castle, in Berkshire, the Monarch enjoys driving herself to church along the Long Walk, which runs through Windsor Great Park. Last year, The Queen was forced to take to the grass when a young family didn't hear her approaching in her Jaguar X-type estate.
LAND ROVER Land Rovers and Range Rovers of all shapes and sizes have been driven by the Queen. But it is the original Land Rover, which later became known as the Defender, which appears to have earned the greatest admiration of Her Majesty. A favourite is said to have been a 2002 Defender 110, featuring TD5 diesel engine, raised suspension and heated seats, and was used extensively for shooting parties.
AUXILIARY TERRITORIAL SERVICE AMBULANCE In 1945, The Queen (then Princess Elizabeth, of course), aged 18, joined the Women's Auxiliary Territorial Service as an honorary second subaltern. She trained as a driver and mechanic, and is pictured here beside a military Ambulance.
ROLLS-ROYCE PHANTOM VI This car was presented to The Queen in 1978 for her Silver Jubilee by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders. It still resides in the Royal household, and was used relatively recently for the wedding of Prince William and Catherine Middleton. It features a 6.75-litre V8 with about 220bhp.
ROVER P5B Two of these Rovers reside at the Heritage Motor Centre in Gaydon, Warwickshire, both owned and once driven by Her Majesty. James May once took one for a test drive, only to be left bitterly disappointed to find there was no tin of boiled sweets in the glovebox: “In my own car, I keep a tin of boiled travel sweets. On the lid is a little crest and the words 'By Appointment to Her Majesty the Queen'. I've always understood this to mean that these are The Sweets the Queen Herself Eats On The Long Haul Up To Balmoral. That, in fact, is why I buy them. But in the centre console of the Queen's car? Nothing.”
VAUXHALL CRESTA ESTATE Proving Her Majesty doesn't require luxury cars all the time, here she is seen driving her Vauxhall Cresta Estate, circa 1980. Vauxhall remains a Royal Warrant Holder. The Queen has also been seen driving an Omega and the current Insignia.
RANGE ROVER Her Majesty may like the ruggedness of a Land Rover but she's also partial to the comfort of a Range Rover. Go anywhere, but do it in style, ma'am.

Her Majesty The Queen at 90: the cars of Queen Elizabeth II

Royal wheels


WHEN IT comes to cars, while The Queen is most often pictured chauffeur-driven to Royal engagements, Her Majesty also likes to get behind the wheel. The Monarch, who turns 90 on Thursday, continues to drive herself when out of the public eye.

Her fondness for the motor car is thought to have been firmly rooted during the Second World War, when the Queen was a driver and mechanic in the Women’s Auxiliary Territorial Service.

The Queen's cars: Princess Elizabeth training in the Auxiliary Territorial Service

To this day, it is believed that the Queen does not hold a driving licence. In a peculiar quirk, she is said to be the only driver in the country who is not required to have one.

More often than not, driving takes place when Her Majesty is at the Royal family’s Windsor residence, or at Balmoral, a 50,000 acre estate near Ballater, in Aberdeenshire, Scotland.

The most recent addition to cars kept in the Queen’s garage is said to be a new Bentley Bentayga, the £160,000 luxury 4×4 that was launched last year.


Browse NEW or USED cars for sale on driving.co.uk


During Her Majesty’s reign of nearly 64 years, cars have come in all shapes and sizes, and not all have been as grand as one may imagine. But the common theme is they’ve all been built in Britain.

Click through the gallery above to view the Queen cars.

 

From The Sunday Times (click to visit thesundaytimes.co.uk):

All the Queen’s ladies The Queen turns 90 on Thursday — as do these remarkable women. They, like HM, represent a generation whose indomitable spirit saw them through Britain’s darkest hour. India Knight salutes them, and they tell their stories