Celebrities Who Took Their Love of Porsche Full Throttle: The Collectors

Celebrities, they say, are just like us. Only in the aspects that probably don’t matter all that much, like how they bleed too if you cut them, or need food and water for sustenance.
Jay Leno takes a drive in his rebuilt Porsche 356 19 photos
Photo: YouTube / Jay Leno's Garage
Jay Leno shows off his rebuilt Porsche 356Jay Leno in a Porsche 918 SpyderJay Leno's 911 by SingerJay Leno and his 1963 Porsche 356 Carrera 2Jay Leno takes a look at the 1993 Porsche Schuppan 962CR (with just one mile on the clock)Patrick Dempsey often partners with Porsche for charityPatrick Dempsey isn't just collecting Porsches, he also races themPatrick Dempsey isn't just collecting Porsches, he also races themPatrick Dempsey's first car was a Porsche he bought off the streetPatrick Dempsey shows off some of his personal carsJerry Seinfeld sold off a Porsche fleed in 2016 for $22 millionJerry Seinfeld sold off a Porsche fleed in 2016 for $22 millionJerry Seinfeld sold off a Porsche fleed in 2016 for $22 millionJerry Seinfeld sold off a Porsche fleed in 2016 for $22 millionJerry Seinfeld sold off a Porsche fleed in 2016 for $22 millionJerry Seinfeld sold off a Porsche fleed in 2016 for $22 millionEllen DeGeneres and her daily, a Porsche 911 Targa 4SKeanu Reeves loves motorcycles - and Porsches
In everything else, celebrities are not and will never be like us.

It’s hard to resist a Porsche, but these folks we’re going to talk about today love these cars so much they’re investing good money in museum-worthy collections. Should the proverbial number two ever hit the fan, they could always take solace in these impressive, million-dollar collections any car enthusiast would give an arm (and a leg!) to have.

Since September is autoevolution’s Porsche Month, let’s have a look at the celebrities who have made millions off their work and are choosing to spend a good chunk of that money on the rarest and most impressive Porsches around.

Jay Leno

You can’t possibly speak of any marque or of celebrity collectors in general and not make a mention of Jay Leno. The comedian, TV personality and consummate car person has one of the largest private car collections in the world, turning this passion into a second job after his retirement from the entertainment industry.

Today, Leno is a well-respected personality in the field and, as you must know, has his own car-themed show that he hosts out of his garage and restoration shop. His collection is believed to include nearly 300 vehicles, of which more than half are cars. He likes new and fast models, but he has a soft spot for the the odd and the classics – including Porsches.

Jay Leno and his 1963 Porsche 356 Carrera 2
Photo: YouTube / Jay Leno's Garage
Leno owns a rare 959, often referred to as the best Porsche of the ‘80s, and everything between a 918 Spyder to a restored 911 by Singer. Unlike many other collectors out there, Leno loves to actually drive his cars, so he’s often seen out and about Los Angeles in them.

Patrick Dempsey

For ever known to non-car enthusiasts as Dr. McDreamy on Grey’s Anatomy, Patrick Dempsey is one of the best-known Porsche collectors in the world. Legend has it he bought his first Porsche – and his first car – a 1963 Porsche 356 off the street, with his first acting check. From that moment on, he was hooked and he continued spending his acting cash on adding to his ever-growing collection.

But Dempsey isn’t just a collector: he also raced for Porsche at Le Mans (much like Michael Fassbender is doing these days), so he owns both street cars from the marque and race cars. His collection includes a slew 911 models like the Turbo, the Targa and the GT3 RS. He owns other cars as well, and once said his worst car was a Ferrari Daytona.

Patrick Dempsey's first car was a Porsche he bought off the street
Photo: Porsche
Unlike Leno, Dempsey is not exactly upfront with details pertaining to his collection, so, while we do know that he’s a passionate Porsche collector, details are few and in between. Imagine what it would be like to get him and Leno to host their own Porsche-themed show.

Jerry Seinfeld

Seinfeld is another non-surprising feature on this list: together with Leno, he is often referred to as one of the biggest celebrity car collectors around. What sets him apart from Leno, though, is the fact that a big chunk of his collection is dedicated to Porsche.

Unconfirmed figures circulated online along the years note that the collection counts on some 150 cars, of which a third are Porsches. These include the firs and last air-cooled 911s produced, 10 Boxsters each painted a different color, various 911s, a one-of-337 Porsche 959, and a 1955 Porsche 550 Spyder identical to the one in which James Dean died.

Jerry Seinfeld sold off a Porsche fleed in 2016 for \$22 million
Photo: Gooding & Company
In 2016, Seinfeld sold off a lot of Porsches for $22 million – the largest fleet of Porsches ever sold at private auction. He said he no longer had the time and space to love them all as they deserved to be, so he wanted to hand them over to someone else who could.

That lot included the 1973 Porsche 917 Cam-Am Spyder race car, a 1959 Porsche 718 RSK and a 1958 Porsche Type 597 military vehicle. A 1958 Porsche 356 A 1500 GS/GT Carrera Speedster sold on that occasion was later at the center of a lawsuit against the actor, on claims that he knowingly sold a fake. In response, Seinfeld sued the original seller, saying he never checked the car’s authenticity and took the seller at their word.

Notable mentions

This list, though short (and by no means exhaustive), is impressive as is. After all, not everyone can hang out in such select company as Seinfeld and Leno. That said, two other Porsche collectors deserve notable mentions.

Perhaps the most surprising is Ellen DeGeneres. The comedian and TV host might not look like your average Porsche nut, but she’s been loyal to the brand for a very, very long time. She might not be a “collector” in the true sense, but she does love her Porsches, being seen at the wheel of a variety of models, like the 993, 997 Carrera, 4S, GTS, Turbo S and Cayenne.

Ellen DeGeneres and her daily, a Porsche 911 Targa 4S
Photo: Coleman-Rayner /
The other notable mention is Keanu Reeves, who is also one of the most famous motorcycle celebrity collectors in the world. His love affair with Porsche started when he received a Porsche toy from his grandmother, and he now owns several real-life cars. However, his favorite is a custom 911 Carrera 4S that Porsche specifically built for him after his stock version was stolen while he was away filming.
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About the author: Elena Gorgan
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Elena has been writing for a living since 2006 and, as a journalist, she has put her double major in English and Spanish to good use. She covers automotive and mobility topics like cars and bicycles, and she always knows the shows worth watching on Netflix and friends.
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