By: ROB GUEST on June 15, 2002
Original Article: HERALD SUN (MELBOURNE)

I LOVE cars. At the last count, I have owned 85 since I began driving in New Zealand at the age of 15. That works out to about two different cars a year.

But I would have to go a long way to beat my latest, a 2001 Saleen Mustang Speedster.

I bought the Mustang, fully imported from the US, on impulse one afternoon while driving around North Sydney.

I just traded in the BMW on the spot, because I loved the Mustang the minute I saw it.

I have owned Jaguars, Porsches, BMWs, a Lotus Esprit and Mercedes but one thing is certain: my passion has cost me a lot of money.

Probably the worst deal I have made was when I bought a black Lotus Esprit Turbo S4. It had been first prize in a raffle. It was worth $215,000 on the road, so I said I would buy it if the highest offer was less than $130,000.

I was doing Phantom of the Opera at the time and my mobile phone rang during the interval to say I had been successful.

I had to sell my Mercedes 500SL Convertible to pay for it and the Lotus proved to be a very unwise investment.

I later sold it for $115,000 with only 3000km on the clock. It was a great car to drive. It would go from nought to 100km/h in 4.2 seconds, but to reach the handbrake I had to rest my head on the windscreen.

My mum has seen at first hand my impulsive nature. I was out with her one day in my black Jaguar XJ6.

I saw a Triumph Stag on a stand at a car dealership. I pulled over, worked out the difference in the changeover, had the stereo moved into the Stag and half an hour later we were off again, in the new car.

The problem is, you never make money on cars. Luxury cars are just that… you never make money on them.

But I just love cars and I always will.