Road Hogs

Prince Harry and Other Royals on Wheels (Photos)

From Prince Harry to Prince William to Queen Victoria, see royals riding in style.

Prince Harry just made news when he rented a Harley-Davidson motorcycle and rode it to Las Vegas. But the British royal family has a long history of tooling about in top-of-the-line vehicles. From Prince William to Queen Victoria, see other royals riding in style.

Nick Stern

Prince Harry

Prince Harry, who has been training in the United States, recently rented a Harley-Davidson and rode it across the Arizona desert to Las Vegas for a night of partying.

The royal seems to have an affinity for motorcycles.

He also owns a Ducati 848 and a Triumph. His father, Prince Charles, once said, “I hate motorbikes. My sons are interested in them. I can’t even get my balance on them.”

Indigo / Getty Images

Prince William

Harry is not the only royal who likes to tool around on a motorcycle--Prince William also enjoys the pastime. 

Will owns a Ducati, which he reportedly rides wearing a tinted helmet in order to be more anonymous.

It seems both William and Harry developed their need for speed early in life: They received a half-scale Aston Martin as a gift in 1988; it currently is on display at the Sandringham Museum.

Prince Charles

The Aston Martin Will and Kate drove from Buckingham Palace on their wedding day actually belongs to William’s father, the Prince of Wales. Queen Elizabeth II gave the car to Charles on his 21st birthday in 1969. True to Charles’s environmental concerns, the car has been converted to run on bioethanol fuel made from British wines.

Tim Graham / Getty Images

Prince Philip

When Queen Elizabeth II took a cab for the first time in 1998, she was chauffeured by her husband, Prince Philip. The Prince purchased the Metrocab for $28,000 in 1993. In 1998, it was converted to run on liquid petroleum gas, along with three other royal vehicles.

Tim Graham / Getty Images

Queen Elizabeth II

Perhaps it results from the time she spent working as a mechanic during World War II, but Queen Elizabeth II seems to know her cars. In 1950, the then Princess Elizabeth had a special Rolls-Royce Phantom IV built; one of only 18 in the world. Despite its age, the car still is used on official occasions—it carried Prince Charles and his wife, Camilla, to Westminster Abbey for Prince William’s wedding. But the queen also is known to have used many other cars, including a Vauxhall Cresta for less formal occasions at Windsor Castle.

Science & Society Picture Librar

Queen Victoria

Before expensive cars became readily available, Queen Victoria used the royal train to get where she needed to go quickly. Victoria took her first royal train journey on June 13, 1842, a trip that lasted only 25 minutes but required a royal saloon and six other train cars. She must have enjoyed herself, because even today the Windsors still make use of a royal train occasionally.

Tugwell

King Edward VII

It was Prince Edward, the future King Edward VII, who purchased the first royal car in 1900. The six-horsepower Daimler could reach speeds of up to 24 mph, and the acceleration was controlled by a novel feature for the time—a pedal instead of a hand crank. His wife, Alexandra, wrote of Edward, “I have the greatest confidence in our driver. I poke him violently in the back at every corner to go gently and whenever a dog, child, or anything comes in our way.”

David Hartley / Rex USA

Princess Diana

At one point, Princess Diana owned two Jaguars—her official sedan, and her personal XJS sports car. Diana caused a controversy in 1992, when she sold her XJS and took possession of a Mercedes-Benz 500SL—becoming the first member of the royal family to drive a non-British car. 

Bonhams Beaulieu

King George VI

King George VI, whose stutter was made famous in The King’s Speech, used to drive his family around in a Lanchester 32-hp straight-8 limousine. The car remained in the service of the royal family well after George VI’s death in 1952.

George V

King George V drove a Crossley six-wheeler that may have been converted from a military vehicle. Crossley cars were considered very royal vehicles at the time: In addition to King George, the prince of Wales, the king of Spain, the king of Siam (now Thailand), and Emperor Hirohito of Japan all owned Crossleys.