A unique black Ford Escort driven by Britain’s late Princess Diana in the 1980s is due
to be auctioned this weekend at Silverstone racing circuit.
One of 130 lots going up for sale on Saturday, the RS Turbo Series 1 Escort belonged
to Diana between 1985 and 1988. It is thought to be the only example of the model
made in black, according to Silverstone Auctions, which expect it to fetch more than
The RS Turbo Series 1 was usually made in white but the royal family police guard
asked for Diana’s to be painted black “for discretion”, the auctioneers said.
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For the princess to drive the vehicle, which has just under 25,000 miles (around
40,000 km) on the clock, was “a very brave choice,” Arwel Richards, Classic Car
Specialist at Silverstone Auctions, told Reuters.
“All the other members of the royal family would be driving around London in the
back… of an official car… and she’s driving in a car… that you would see on a housing
estate not outside the palace.”
Next week marks 25 years since Diana died, aged 36, when the limousine in which she
was a passenger crashed in a Paris tunnel as it sped away from paparazzi giving chase
Other lots at the auction, taking place in conjunction with the Classic – a three-day
motor racing festival at the Northamptonshire circuit – include a Rolls-Royce
convertible once owned by Bee Gee Maurice Gibb.
The singer, who died in 2003, bought the black 1973 Corniche in 1979. Decked out
with red leather interiors, the vehicle stayed in the family until 2012. It is listed with
a guide price of £100,000-£115,000 (€118,570-€136,360).
Also going under the hammer are a 1973 Rover P5, used to drive former British prime
minister Margaret Thatcher upon her 1979 election to meet with Britain’s Queen
Elizabeth II, with a guide price of £35,000-£45,000 (€41,500-€53,360).
A 1988 Volkswagen T25 Caravelle GL 112 minibus used to transport late British
physicist Stephen Hawking is being offered without a reserve price. -Reuters