Jeremy Clarkson is one of, if not the, most well-known motoring journalist on the planet. But what sparked his love for sitting behind the wheel and talking to a camera on shows like The Grand Tour and Top Gear? Well, we don’t know. But we do know what his very first car was.
Jeremy Clarkson’s First Car
What car was responsible for Clarkson’s foray into the world of motoring? It was a Ford Cortina, a car that was passed down to him from his parents after they’d owned many over the years.
“Always Ford Cortinas,” Clarkson said. “That’s why I bought a Ford Cortina, I didn’t know there were other cars. I was raised in a Ford Cortina, only ever went anywhere in a Ford Cortina so I thought I better buy a Ford Cortina then.”
His car was a 1969 Ford Cortina 1600E, which was a higher trim version of the car that featured suspension from the Cortina Lotus and the high-tune GT 1600 Kent engine. Inside it was very sporty, with walnut across the dashboard and doors, bucket seats, and a leather and aluminium steering wheel.
It was a very nice car, and very fitting for an aspiring journalist.
“I got it in 1977. I just loved that thing, extra (spotlights) on the front … extra brake lights, fur-lined doors, race seats. I went to town on it,” Clarkson said.
Finding The Car Years Later
Clarkson was later reunited with his Cortina, but he wasn’t happy with how it had been treated by its owner, who had let it rot. He said the following:
“It had been destroyed by this imbecile,” Clarkson said angrily. “It was rusted away. I’ve never wanted to lean across a table more and plant one on him. Do you have any idea how much love and attention I lavished on that thing, and you’ve just let moss grow in it?”
Clarkson’s Favourite Car
While the Cortina sits close to Clarkson’s heart, he has always wanted an Alfa Romeo GTV6. In fact, he’s owned a couple over the years, with it being the “best and worst car” he’s ever owned.
His current GTV6 was the car he bought for the Scotland special of The Grand Tour. It was quite a handful during the episode with it needing substantial work, but after filming he bought it from the show and took it home to his farm where it’s sat since.
Jeremy Clarkson’s Daily Driver
He’s had a few daily drivers over the years, including Volvo XC90s, a VW Golf GTI, and several Range Rovers. But with him writing car reviews for several large outlets, it’s rare for him not to have a press car to drive. So while he loves those cars, he’s constantly in and out of different cars for his journalistic work.