A Holy Auction: Pope Paul VI Lincoln Continental Up For Sale

Pope Benedict XVI

A 1964 Lincoln Continental once used to chauffeur Pope Paul VI will be up for auction at Pebble Beach later this month.

A 1964 Lincoln Continental parade limousine that once provided transportation for Pope Paul VI is set to be auctioned at Pebble Beach on August 19th. Pope Paul VI was the first pope to travel the world, from Asia to Africa and still finding the time in between to attend a Yankees game. He must have given them his blessings, because they have gone on to win more championships than any other professional sports team in the world.

The 1964 Lincoln Continental design was originally intended for the Ford Thunderbird, but was later modified and enlarged for Lincoln. At that point, a coachbuilding company based in Chicago called Lehman-Peterson took over the difficult task of constructing the pope's source of transportation. The conversion process took less than two weeks with the limo being stretched to less than 21 feet and had a retractable roof with a second windscreen, special lighting, extra seating and a PA system. From there, the customized Lincoln Continental made its way to Bogota, Colombia.

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It then went to the 39th International Eucharistic Congress in 1968 and once again was modified extensively. The modifications included a revised power train and an interior reconfiguration. The Continental then made a journey back to Chicago, where it would play host to US astronauts James Lovell, William Anderson, Frank Borman, Michael Collins, Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin for the return parades of Apollo's 8 and 11. Former pope mobiles have fetched a lot of money. A 1999 VW Golf formerly driven and owned by then Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, now Pope Benedict XVI, sold for slightly under $250,000.

The 1964 Lincoln Continental is expected to fetch anywhere from $250,000 to $350,000 at Pebble Beach.