PM gets new armoured cars worth B39m

PM gets new armoured cars worth B39m

Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha's two armoured Mercedes-Benz S600 Guard sedans, worth a hefty 19.5 million baht each, are ready to hit the road.

One of two armoured Mercedes-Benz S600 Guard worth 19.5 million baht delivered to Gen Prayut’s security team yesterday. Thanarak Khunton

They were among four new luxury armoured cars, costing 78 million baht, procured by the Secretariat of the Prime Minister. The sedans were delivered to the prime minister's security team yesterday afternoon -- one with licence plate 4 Kor Dor 29 the other 4 Kor Tor 29. The vehicles will serve as Gen Prayut's cars -- one for daily use and the other put on standby.

Another two S600 Guard sedans are reserved for high-profile foreign visitors, a government source said.

Gen Prayut often travels in his personal armoured black Mercedes-Benz sedan, though his position earns him an armoured van.

The van is occasionally used by the premier, who also heads the National Council for Peace and Order, which staged a coup against the Yingluck Shinawatra administration in 2014. 

Delivery of the new armoured cars came after tighter security measures were implemented at Government House earlier this month.

Deputy Prime Minister Prawit Wongsuwon, who oversees security affairs, ordered the restructuring of security at Government House to ensure it meets international standards.

It is not the first time the government has bought Mercedes-Benz armoured vehicles for its top leaders. During the administration of former prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra in the early 2000s, the government bought three armoured Mercedes-Benz sedans.

They were reportedly priced at 21 million baht each. Thaksin was in power from 2001 to 2006 before being toppled by a coup led by then army chief Gen Sonthi Boonyaratglin.

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