The Department of Internal Affairs is set to acquire a fleet of flash new ministerial limousines.

32 of its fleet of 34 VIP vehicles will be replaced with new BMW 730Lds, the DIA announced today.

The vehicles were selected after a "robust tendering process", which evaluated nine vehicles from six manufacturers.

The cars were evaluated for safety, security, reliability, comfort and space, suitability for VIPs and as a mobile office. They also looked at compliance with emission standards, economy and total cost of ownership

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Three were shortlisted and the BMW 730Ld was chosen for having the lowest total cost of ownership. The benefits of the new vehicles also included increased fuel efficiency and lower admissions than the existing fleet, the DIA said.

Ministerial vehicles are used by the Prime Minister and Ministers of the Crown as well as the Leader and Deputy Leader of the Opposition, visiting dignitaries and the Speaker and Deputy Speaker of Parliament.

The current fleet was scheduled to be replaced this year, as its extended warranty had expired.

The new cars will be progressively introduced from December.