WASHINGTON - Pope Francis made his arrival in the nation’s capital to great fanfare and excitement. The red carpet was rolled out as he received a rock star-like welcome from the crowd at Joint Base Andrews. He was even personally greeted by President Barack Obama himself at the base after landing.
But one thing during his arrival that illustrated why he has become known to many as the “The People’s Pope” was the modest ride he hopped into while departing the Air Force base.
Pope Francis climbed into the backseat of a small, black Fiat 500L and rolled down the window as the vehicle was part of a motorcade that took him through the streets of Washington D.C. to the Apostolic Nunciature, the Vatican's diplomatic mission in D.C.
Francis will spend the remainder of Tuesday night there before his first full day of events on Wednesday.
Francis has made a point of using particularly modest cars, part of his emphasis on simplicity, conservatism and rejection of today's consumerist lifestyle. He uses a blue Ford Focus to get around the Vatican, and during his visit to South Korea he used a Kia.
For those wondering, the four-door Fiat 500L is a larger version of the Fiat 500 and has a starting MSRP price of $19,345. It can comfortably fit four people and has five different models.
Information from The Associated Press used in this report.