Scottish Popemobile for sale
27 July 2006

Do you want God on your side as you nip down the shops? Then this Popemobile could be just the ticket - and it's up for sale in September.

Used by Pope John Paul II on his visit to Scotland in 1982, this Range Rover-truck hybrid has a surprisingly high 11,000 miles on the clock and is fully armour-plated. It weighs 24 tons, though, so might not make an economical runabout.

But it is able to crawl smoothly at low speeds, thanks to its bespoke gearbox, as well as accelerating quickly up to 40mph plus for a moderately rapid getaway.

It was developed by Scottish manufacturer Albion, which started trading in 1899 before being swallowed up by British Leyland in 1968. The Albion Museum in Biggar is closing, and the Popemobile is one of several vehicles that will go under the hammer in Dumfries on September 12 as a result.

Estimates say the Papal cruiser should fetch around £15,000 to £20,000, but its connection to John Paul II might push the price higher.

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