No.10 Sultan of Brunei
In the mid-2000s, the Sultan of Brunei Hassanal Bolkiah reportedly had about 5,000 sets of car keys. Even in the wake of the global financial freak-out, we’re betting his enviable car collection hasn’t dwindled to the hundreds. “Only” and “rare” are recurring descriptives of his cars. And while anyone can configure bespoke models from Bentley, Ferrari and others, he’s one of the few for whom they’ll design exclusive body configurations.
No.9 Jay Kay
Once Jamiroquai made it big, singer Jay Kay wasted no time building his collection. And we don’t just mean the oddball hats. His enviable car collection of 25-plus ranges from an Aston Martin DB5 (the model made famous in the early James Bond films) to a Ferrari F40, the latter getting plenty of face time in the band’s videos. More recently, he’s been understandably smitten with his Ferrari Enzo, praising its combination of performance and ease of use.
No.8 Nicolas Cage
At the height of his fetish, before highly publicised money cramps, Nic Cage was assembling an enviable car collection on pace to rival the aforementioned Sultan of Brunei. He even owned a royal ride: the former Shah of Iran’s Lamborghini Miura.
Makes you wonder how well he could relate to his character’s objective in Gone in 60 Seconds. We understand he at least partially rotated inventory, selling some while acquiring others — including a vintage Ferrari that generated an “it goes or I go” ultimatum from then-wife Lisa Marie Presley. Now you understand why that marriage didn’t last.
No.7 Charlie Watts
Perhaps the most chemically pure of the Rolling Stones (no major feat), Charlie Watts is possibly the most eccentric (now that’s saying something). As bandmate Ronnie Wood describes, Watts has a hugely enviable car collection, yet no licence to drive. He has suits tailored to each car’s character, which he wears when he sits in them and listens to the sounds of the engines. So if and when Watts’ lot is offered at auction, you can at least be assured of low-mileage examples with no foul weather exposure.
No.6 Patrick Dempsey
For once, let’s not tag the Grey’s Anatomy star with the handle we all know and loathe. If anything, call Patrick Dempsey McEnviable, because cars have been a passion of his far longer than moistening ladies’ loins. Besides his Porsche 911 GT3 RS daily driver, classics from Ferrari, Jaguar, Mercedes, and Porsche found their way into his enviable car collection. What’s more, he’s actively involved in the Dempsey Racing and Vision Racing teams, becoming a respected driver while grooming new drivers for the future.
No.5 Brian Johnson
To listen to AC/DC, you’d think the band manager, insurance guys — someone — would keep front man Brian Johnson out of the driver’s seat. Don’t get us wrong. We love the guy and the band, but you’d think if he drives the same way he sings, nothing around him would be safe — birds included. In reality, your swimming pool is safe. The biggest risk he takes is riding his 1957 Vespa, just one component of his enviable car collection. Like Patrick Dempsey, Johnson is also a serious and competent racer, though he favors historic racing.
No.4 Jerry Seinfeld
It’s said every Seinfeld episode has a Superman reference in the dialogue or as a visual. More often than not, you’ll see Porsche represented as well, which is how the comedian prefers to fly. Revered as one of the most serious Porschephiles, his collection is likely rivaled only by the factory museum in Stuttgart-Zuffenhausen. In Porsche’s documentary Welcome to the Family, he explains his appreciation of the synergetic form and function found in their vehicles. We’re not sure if the raw footage contained him following that compliment with, “Except for the Cayenne andPanamera.”
No.3 Nick Mason
Ferrari is incredibly selective about who’s allowed the privilege of buying their vehicles, let alone testing them. So when Maranello declined the BBC’s request to use an Enzo on Top Gear, Nick Mason loaned his. The Pink Floyd drummer’s enviable car collection ranges from the Bentley his father raced nearly 60 years ago to another hallowed Ferrari: the 250 GTO. And from what we hear, the multimillion-dollar classic isn’t half bad in the snow. Mason reportedly schlepped his kids to school in the GTO on a winter morning when his daily drivers wouldn’t start.
No.2 Ralph Lauren
Most of us only read highlights of Ralph Lauren’s enviable car collection. A few occasionally see him at the wheel. Two get to peek in his garage. Among the lots for bid in the recent Ralph Lauren Pink Pony Charity Auction: a tour of his stash, led by the man himself. Valued at $150,000, the walk-through wraps up with a ride “in one of these world-class driving machines,” as the auction described. Which may have been a polite euphemism to rule out his $30 million-plus 1936 Bugatti Atlantic.
No.1 Jay Leno
A lot of celebrities happen to have enviable car collections. To enthusiasts, Jay Leno has an enviable car collection and happens to be a celebrity. Thanks to the sheer volume of photos and videos on his website, Leno’s is the most virtually accessible of any private collection. And if you’re in Los Angeles, there’s a good chance you’ll see him commuting in traffic with something from his diverse ranks; he drives as much as he can on a regular basis.