Rahul Sharma

Australian VIP transport

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Australian VIP transport

The Government of Australia has maintained a variety of vehicles for use by the monarch, governor-general, other members of the Royal Family, prime minister, and other ministers for transport to official and ceremonial events in both the states and territories and overseas.

Contents

Aircraft

No. 34 Squadron of the Royal Australian Air Force operates the current VIP fleet of two 737 Boeing Business Jets and three Challenger 604s for use by Australian officials; in particular the Queen of Australia, governor-general, prime minister and other ministers. The aircraft are regularly used for both domestic and international travel.

The two 737 BBJs were acquired on a 13-year lease in 2002 and are fitted with facilities such as conference tables, offices suites, and secure satellite and communication capabilities. The two planes also have a longer range than is standard for 737 BBJs. Both the BBJs and Challengers are based at Defence Establishment Fairbairn in Canberra and are maintained by Qantas Defence Services.

Governor-general

The Governor-General of Australia travels in a Rolls-Royce Phantom VI limousine for ceremonial occasions, such as the State Opening of Parliament. He or she more regularly uses Australian-built luxury cars, such as a Holden Caprice, when on official business. The official cars of the governor-general fly the Flag of the Governor-General of Australia and display St. Edward's Crown instead of number plates. A similar arrangement is used for the governors of the six states. When the Queen is in Australia, the Queen's Personal Australian Flag is flown on the car in which she is travelling. During the Queen's 2011 tour of Australia, the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh were driven in a Range Rover Vogue.

Prime minister

The official state car of the Prime Minister of Australia is a white armoured BMW 7-Series, supported at all times by an armoured BMW X5. Prior to 2013, vehicles in the prime ministerial fleet were white Ford Territory and Holden Caprice models. The prime ministerial vehicle is also escorted by police vehicles from state and federal authorities. The prime minister's car bears the number plate C1 (meaning "Commonwealth 1") and a centrally mounted Australian flag. The prime ministerial car fleet operates as part of COMCAR, a division of the Australian government's Department of Finance.

In 2013, BMW was selected to provide a fleet of 7-Series High Security vehicles as part of a tender to replace the ageing armoured Holden Caprice fleet that formerly transported the Australian prime minister. The off-the-shelf replacements offer greater protection and better value for money. A BAE and GM-Holden Consortium also bid for the contract.

Rail transport

The various government railway operators of Australia have operated a number of royal trains for members of the Royal Family on their numerous tours of the country.

References

Australian VIP transport Wikipedia


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