Vladimir Putin's new 'Rolls Royce rip-off' convertible limo is unveiled
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Vladimir Putin's new £120,000 armoured limousine has been unveiled at the country's Victory Day parade rehearsals which saw the convertible roll through Moscow as Russia showcased its military might.
Weighing six tons and powered by a roaring 4.4 lite V-8 engine, this Aurus cabriolet is an upgrade to the previous model used by the Kremlin strongman over the past year.
The body of the Aurus - which gets its name from a blend of aurum, meaning gold, and Russia - has been described by Autoweek magazine as 'unapologetically Rolls Royce'. The limo will go on sale to the public later this year.
Victory Day celebration rehearsals were underway this morning ahead of Thursday's parade which will see thousands of servicemen and women troop through Red Square as Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu salutes the soldiers from the new model Aurus.
The Russian holiday dates back to the Soviet Union's declaration of victory in the Second World War as the Nazis surrendered to the allied forces.
However, the procession will be widely interpreted as further efforts by Putin, whose recent acts of aggression have frayed relationships with the West, to lay bare the nation's military strength.
But eyes will also be trained on the 22ft upgraded armoured limo with many eager to see the vehicle which will drive the Russian Premier in future ceremonies.
This new model reportedly has a 'parade mode' which, when travelling at speeds lower than 12mph, provides a smoother ride, according to the Times.
Some 5,000 models are projected to be manufactured annually by 2021 and it has already peaked the interest of Saudi Arabian politician Khalid al-Falih, who said 'I am ready to buy one of these cars if I can afford it,' during a visit to St Petersburg last week.
Putin's security detail, the Federal Protective Service, will reportedly continue to use Mercedes Benz cars in the Presidential motorcade.
- Daily Mail.