Stephen Ottley


Sunday 17th November, 2019 - 6:00am


John Bowe has literally lost count of every car he’s owned.

The touring car legend loves cars, both road and race, and has indulged his passion over the years with an ever evolving garage.

“I lived most of my motoring dreams,” Bowe tells torquecafe.com. “I feel very fortunate because I’ve owned many, many, many cars over the years because I just love cars.”

His current pride and joy is a 1962 Jaguar E-Type Roadster, a dream car for many, so pinning down his ultimate three-car garage was a challenge for JB, but he took it on anyway.

Daily driver: Range Rover Sport SVR

Bowe says he’s able to get his enjoyment on the racetrack and doesn’t need to drive a sports car every day, he can’t help but pick Range Rover’s sportiest model. The SVR is a magnificent machine, a luxurious SUV with the heart of a Jaguar sports car.

That’s right, the 5.0-litre supercharged V8 that lurks underneath the bonnet of the Range Rover is also found in a Jaguar F-Type. Good for 423kW of power and 700Nm of torque, it’s a snarling beast but it has a hefty thirst for premium unleaded.

“If I had the money and I had the money to put fuel in it I’d have an SVR,” Bowe says. “I just think they’re probably as politically incorrect a car as you can get.”

Something special: Porsche 911 Turbo

Bowe love the cars from Stuttgart. He jokes he has owned 37 Porsches in his life but has “sold every single one of them before they went up in value!”

Undeterred his dream car for the weekend would be the range-topping 911 Turbo, which blends ballistic performance with a comfortable and pratical cabin; unlike the stripped-out, track-spec RS models.

“I’ve owned the odd Ferrari in my time, the odd Lamborghini and while I’ve loved all of them I think Porsche’s are just brilliantly normal,” he says. “You could drive them every day, but you wouldn’t because then it wouldn’t be special.

“While a part of me would love a GT3 RS or a GT2 RS, I think they are just a bit too extreme.”

Track toy: Caterham Seven 485

You’d think for a man who has driven countless racing cars in his career picking something for the racetrack would be difficult, but Bowe didn’t hesitate in picking the modern iteration of the classic Lotus Super 7.

Of course, he didn’t pick just any old kit car, his preference is for the factory-built Caterham and specifically the range-topping Seven 485.

It packs a 177kW 2.0-litre Ford engine, close-ratio six-speed manual gearbox and a limited slip differential all in a car weighing approximately 550kg.

“As a track car there is nothing better than a Caterham,” he explains. “They’re factory built in England, they’re road registerable but they are fantastic fun on a track without wearing themselves out.

“Most supercars you take to a track you end the day needing to pay $3000 for a new set of tyres and $5000 for new brakes. You can do 10 track days a year [in a Caterham] and you don’t have to spend a cracker on them.”

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