Formerly the property of General Sir Bernard Freyberg V.C., Governor General of New Zealand 1946 Daimler DE 27 4,095cc Six-light Limousine Coachwork by Hooper Body no. 9176 Registration no. 448 XUS Chassis no. 50003 Engine no. 11676
£5,904 was a mighty price for any motor car in the immediate post-war years but General Sir Bernard Freyberg had enjoyed a distinguished service career in both World Wars and upon his appointment to the post of Governor General of New Zealand it was essential that he took with him a car befitting his status. Daimler's DE 27 was not the absolute top-of-the-range Daimler but with an overall length approaching 18 feet was certainly the largest in size. Amongst the rich and famous taking delivery of this model around this time was Her Royal Highness Princess Elizabeth who also ordered limousine coachwork by Hooper. Daimler had been the choice of royalty from the very beginning while Hooper had long held the Royal Warrant. The DE 27 featured as standard such luxuries as telescopically adjusted steering, a built-in jacking system and Daimler's fluid flywheel and epicyclic gearbox. Daimler's contemporary advertising described the post-War range as 'infallible in performance impeccable in appearance'.
This car remained as the Vice Regal car in New Zealand until 1954. It later passed into funeral service before rescue for preservation, at which time an eight year body-off restoration was embarked upon, the work being entrusted to Owen Goldsmith of Goldies Garage, near Tauranga. The coachwork is smartly presented in maroon over black livery and furnished with grey leather upholstery to the front and grey cloth to the rear, with grey carpeting throughout. There are fold-down occasional seats in the rear with an electric drop-down division separating the chauffeur from his employers. This Vice Regal car is equipped with Lucas head and spotlights, four motor club badges and a bonnet flagstaff. The car ran smoothly at the time of cataloguing, the pre-selector gearbox and fluid flywheels functioning correctly.
This imposing car comes with a booklet recording the distinguished history of General Freyberg, a photocopy of running manuals, contemporary magazine articles and a Swansea V5C.