Thursday, 26 March 2015

The Popemobile

The Popemobile most often used by Pope Benedict XVI when travelling abroad was a modified Mercedes-Benz M-Class sport utility vehicle with a special glass-enclosed room, with its own oxygen supply, that has been built into the back of the vehicle. The pope enters through a rear door and ascends several steps. After the pope sits in his chair, made from white leather with gold trim, it is elevated up into the glass room by a hydraulic lift, allowing the pope to be more easily seen. In addition to the driver, there is room for one passenger (usually a security agent) in the front of the vehicle. The glass-enclosed rear of the vehicle also has room for two papal aides who can sit in the area in front of the pope's elevated chair. The vehicle's security features include bulletproof plexiglas windows and roof, able to withstand explosions and reinforced, armoured side panels and undercarriage designed to resist bomb blasts. Although the popemobile is capable of moving at 160 mph, it normally travels at a speed of 6 mph. At 2011 prices, the popemobile cost approximately £345,000

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