Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Stars & their Super Cars:Rowan Atkinson McLaren F1

The comedian star of Black Adder and Mr Bean among many others, Rowan Atkinson is estimated to be worth £60m and has been a car fanatic for many years.
Though his collection of cars is well known he doesn’t like to be considered as a car collector. He occasionally writes about cars and races his Aston Martin V8 Zagato. He escaped unhurt from the car after crashing it into a barrier at an Aston Martin owners’ club event in Yorkshire in 2001.
Rowan Atkinson at the wheel of his McLaren F1Atkinson’s everyday car which he uses for family motoring is a relatively discrete Audi A8. When he wants a slightly more energetic drive however he chooses his McLaren F1, which he bought to celebrate the success of the film “Bean – The Movie.” This is one of the world’s most exclusive cars, and despite being 12 years old is still one of the fastest. Its production car speed record of 240mph has only recently been outdone by the Koenigsegg CCR and now, the Bugatti Veyron. Atkinson was in the McLaren when he crashed the car at 30mph into a woman's Rover Metro while driving along the A6 in 1999. The cost of the repairs to the £600,000 car? Around £100,000… Fortunately, the Bean movie role earned him a cool £11m alone.
He started his car collection in 1981; flush with the first fruits of stardom he bought an Aston Martin V8, his “first really nice car.” Other cars he has owned in the past include the famed Lancia Delta Integrale, Bentley Mulsanne, and more recently the MG X-Power SV. It is also believed that he holds an HGV licence. One car he won’t own is a Porsche.
"I have a problem with Porsches," he once said. "They're wonderful cars, but I know I could never live with one. Somehow, the typical Porsche people - and I wish them no ill - are not, I feel, my kind of people. I don't go around saying that Porsches are a pile of dung, but I do know that psychologically I couldn't handle owning one."
He not only owns and drives nice cars, but also writes about them, in the past for "Car" magazine and more recently for "Evo".