The government plans to order a convertible from a domestic carmaker to carry the next Emperor and Empress in a parade next October marking Crown Prince Naruhito’s accession to the throne, government sources said Monday.
Toyota Motor Corp. is one of the most likely candidates to receive the order, the sources said.
A Rolls-Royce convertible purchased for some ¥40 million was used in the previous parade in 1990, when Emperor Akihito ascended the throne. It was also used in the wedding parade for Crown Prince Naruhito and Crown Princess Masako in 1993.
But the British car is now too old to use and in no condition to run on public roads, the sources said. In addition, the parts needed for maintenance are no longer being made, they said.
Ordering a new car from a foreign carmaker is too costly, according to the sources, who added that the use of a carriage was rejected because it might be too dangerous.
The parade next year, the Shukuga Onretsu no Gi, will be held on Oct. 22 after the Sokuirei Seiden no Gi ceremony to proclaim the new Emperor’s accession.