Collection #3 brings us to Sydney for an incredible generational Porsche collection, as well as some very special editions from some separate marques. The owner takes us through each member of his collection and why it holds such a special place in his life.
Hand-built Chassis #1 Grahame McRae Porsche 550 Spyder • Porsche 993 Turbo (GT2 Homage) • Porsche 964 Turbo 3.6L • Porsche 911 Turbo (996) • Porsche GT2 (997) Porsche 911 Turbo (991) • McLaren 600LT Spider • 1000hp Toyota Supra w/nitrous • Nissan Skyline GTR R32 (undergoing work at time of feature)
“Porsche definitely fills out my collection.”
They are just so good at everything, once you get one you are kind of hooked. You then want to get the next one because you know it's going to be there for you like the last, but with small tweaks and improvements here and there. I really wanted to get the GT2 as I had a 991 Turbo but really wanted to have a high horsepower manual box, every car is kind of an example of that… then it got to the point when I looked at the garage one day and there were three black turbocharged 911s and I thought I should really fill this out to the other generations.
But I guess the thing with Porsche is you know that it will work hard and be fast no matter what you throw at it. They're really the workhorse supercar.
The other thing that appeals to me is the way that they look; it's not just that they are beautiful (some of the most beautiful cars in the world in my opinion) but that you can drive it anywhere and not get a second glance, go for a nice dinner, pull up at the supermarket, or go to work and you don't attract any attention.
But the split personality is that it's quicker point to point than any other car. There's absolutely no compromise. Speed is important to me and these things fly! I'm not the most practical guy in the world but these are pretty practical, I have two baby seats in the 991.
The Sports Series in McLaren I think is just lovely. I remember seeing a 570S coupe and just loved the shape. That combined with it being the ultimate nerd mobile just made it perfect for me. Carbon tub, proper DSG, great history, and it is the great-grandson of the allmighty McLaren F1.
I saw the 570S and the dealer insisted that I take it for a drive. I was really hanging out for a Spider version because with the carbon tubs, they lose essentially zero rigidity. One came in in the magic VEGA blue colour and the interior was seriously beautiful. A 320km/h+ car with seat warmers, awesome. The next day I refused to hand the car back to the dealer and we negotiated the settlement whilst I sat out front of my house on the grass
I put 18,000km on the car in eight months of ownership before I traded it on the 600. The 600LT was a compromise, the interior was totally stripped out and it was a bit more lairy with the wing and angles so I was really tossing it up. I needed the car to be delivered, wrapped and ready for the Bullrush Rally. Impressively the dealer made the impossible happen. The LT did its first kilometres on the that rally.
Driving it the night of delivery and it shooting flames I knew that I had made the right decision.
My brother William and I loved and enjoyed and talked endlessly about cars. He was actually my navigator in the Targa Tarmac Rally events. I had never rallied and he had never navigated… but we were both given our licenses and bang off we shot from the first start line and through many more. Those events are some of my most cherished memories. The Nissan R32 GT-R I bought as an immaculate original example. He and I decided together what we wanted the car to be, how we wanted it to be built and then started chipping away at it…
I chose the R32 for three reasons. One, the history. It, of all cars probably has the most infamous history of all. The R32 is the reason why the Australian Touring Car Championship went from all those different lovely BMWs and Jags and Fords to… just Holdens and Fords. Two, I thought that it was a beautiful looking car and I wanted to daily the car (with full rollcage and racing seats) in between rallies. The third reason was that I thought that it would be bloody quick. Basically a RWD car with a very late and gradual 4WD engagement to get you out of trouble was perfect.
The Supra I built in honour and memory of my younger brother William.
I had the car built to look like the white Supra from the final scene of Fast and the Furious 7; wheels, seats, colour everything. It took over four years of trial and error to build the car. It took us buying and selling two and settling on the third immaculate and original RZ Supra.
Not only was the car built to look like it was the F&F 7 car it was also built to go exactly like the movies. It has 1000hp at the crank and a hidden 200hp nitrous system. It's actually all beautifully hand-made and fabricated. It has all the hidden switches, the red “go fast” buttons on the steering wheel
I think the passion for cars is just in most boys. My first work was car related and we named our first son Ayrton. I was just obsessed with cars from as early as I can remember. I had hundreds of Matchbox cars in a little suitcase that went everywhere with me, I had LEGOs and also Knight Rider!
I never really thought of it as collecting. I just buy the cars that I like for their particular ‘thing'. They are not just wonderful machines they also have memories. It's not that I collect I guess, it's just that I don't sell.
Driving for me is the focus. Driving at pace is ultimately relaxing, this sounds ironic but it truly is. I am never more relaxed than I am behind the wheel of a properly sorted car. I really enjoy being out with mates driving and riding. Mates who are capable and safe and quick. I've made some really good friends through the shared interest in cars and driving.
My favourite changes every day. I would always say the 964 because that was my dream car and it drives like a go-kart but also like a GT cruiser, and because I think it's the most beautiful car, certainly one of the most beautiful cars ever made. Then a lot of days I'll say the McLaren because… well because of everything, just look at it. But lately I find myself grabbing the keys to the 997 GT2 more frequently than the others.
All of the cars have something special about them. Bullrush Rally through the Australian countryside alongside 50 supercars and 100 madmen. Riding my Kawasaki Ninja 600 from London through France over the Pyrenees into Spain, at full throttle draining the tank dry every 55-minutes, endless road trips with friends and so many up to Queensland with my wife.
From a historical and noteworthy perspective, the 550 Spyder needs a mention. It's a silver Grahame McRae Porsche 550 Spyder. This is chassis #1 of around 30 that were hand built by McRae himself, which makes it special compared to the remakes. All of the others are in large collections or museums. It uses all Porsche parts including engine and gearbox, weighs 660kg. And yes, we still drive it!
We've had endless wonderful memories with the cars.
Many amazing times and experiences that just wouldn't have been possible, or at least wouldn't have been as rich, if it hasn't if had that car as part of the journey – and the story.