Old Ford limousine was once ex-Prime Minister Jim Bolger's ride
This 23-year-old limousine once bore the coveted CR1 number plates reserved for vehicles transporting New Zealand's prime minister.
From January 1994 to May 1995 the 1994 Ford DC LTD was the official chauffeured limousine for then Prime Minister Jim Bolger.
Now for sale on Trade Me for $15,000, the limo was sold to former Pakuranga National MP, Pat Hunt, in 1995 having travelled 52,000 kilometres. Hunt kept it until 2013 when it was bought by Auckland bus driver James Puletaha who has invested plenty of time and money keeping the car as original as possible.
Puletaha used to work for a Ford dealer in Auckland and had seen the vehicle a number of times because of his job so was keen to buy it when it came up for sale.
"I've put a lot of money into it over the years. I bought it at time I had a lot more money."
Puletaha is keen for the car's original condition to be maintained and is hopeful discussions with Auckland's Museum and Transport and Technology (Motat) will come to something.
"I would love it to go to a place like that."
Although the asking price is $15,000, Puletaha believes the car is worth much more than that even without its prime ministerial history and that is backed up by a specialist classic car company valuation he had done that put its at around $25,000.
"It is a rare car. There's not many of these Fords around."
Maintenance of the car in the past few years has included a repaint in the original Sandstone Metallic. The bodywork is not perfect, but there is no sign of rust, it has been garaged since new and is in good condition for its age, according Puletaha.
A number of parts have been replaced including tyres, windscreen, radiator, battery, ignition coil, fuel filter, drive belt and mud flaps to name a few.
He reveals the only "mechanical issue" is a slight slip in the transmission from time to time and says the 5-litre V8 engine runs smoothly.
The velour upholstery is described as "very tidy" while the interior includes (non-working) Tait RT faceplate and Motorola car phone for look and there is an aerial whip on the boot lid. Flag mounts on the fenders, flags and poles will be included, but they are not original with those being kept by the Department of Internal Affairs at the time it was sold on.
Puletaha also has some "colourful" stories about the car's past in its time as the PM's limousine, but says he can't verify their authenticity. He will be willing to share them with the new owner.
But what is authentic are original sales papers, manual and warranty cards that come with the sale.
The Trade Me sale can be viewed here.