That is the question now making the rounds after Jay Leno bid a final farewell to hosting the NBC’s Tonight Show.
After 22 years at the very pinnacle of TV fame, the 63-year-old gave a tearful and emotional goodbye, making way for former SNL star, Jimmy Fallon.
Leno may have waved his final goodbye to the NBC institution, but with his online venture, Jay Leno’s Garage and his passion for motor vehicles, just what is next for the much-loved TV personality?
Some say he should elbow his way onto the American Top Gear, but I think his personality is way too big and suited to his own venture. Leno said he is going to focus on comedy clubs and his 190+ car collection, but I’m not so sure.
The TV veteran is a workaholic and it’s almost impossible to imagine the comedian/actor/writer just appearing at clubs and, along with his three on-staff mechanics, tinkering or hot-rodding his cars. I like to think he could do something a little more exciting with his formidable collection and bank account.
Produce a series featuring all of the historically significant pieces he has in his collection…
I haven’t watched all of Jay Leno’s Garage but I’ve seen enough episodes to know he has a load of special cars within his collection. Although some of these are featured, it would great to see a TV series with an important and significant car showcased each week.
Some of these could include:
1955 Buick Roadmaster
Jay purchased this Buick in 1972 for just $350. It’s a part of him as he used it to take his wife on their first date, and he also says it’s still his favourite car to drive – that could be something to do with the fact he dropping a 620-bhp ZZ572 engine into it.
1917 Fiat Botafogo Special
Named after one of Argentina’s most successful racehorses, this Fiat features a massive 21.7-L six-cylinder aero engine. It’s special as it’s the first of its kind and also the fastest vehicles of its time.
2010 Jaguar CX75
This is the big cat we all hoped Jaguar would build. Jaguar touted the C-X75 as being a “brand statement”. Because of many restrictions and the improbable chance to make any profit, the plug was finally pulled on the concept becoming reality. That being said, there were a couple of these made, and Leno has one of them tucked up in his garage.
This is a very special piece of kit. It’s a KERS hybrid supercar that could hit 100-mph in under six seconds. It could also run on pure electric for around 30 miles.
And just look at it…
1913 Mercer Raceabout
The Mercer Raceabout holds some significance as many consider it to be America’s first proper sports car. The Mercer Model 35 was available as the 35J (the Raceabout) and the 35K (the Runabout), at the time, and its coachwork and impressive technology make it an extremely desirable car today.
1967 Lamborghini Miura P400S
Everyone knows this car’s bigger brother, the Countach, but this was the one considered to be the first real supercar. Leno is lucky enough to own two: A 1967 Miura, and the 1969 Miura P400S (the faster model). Not only are these considered as the first supercars, Lamborghini only produced 140 P400S models. Apart from Leno, Frank Sinatra is said to have owned a P400S. The V12-powered Italian sounds beautiful, looks sleek, and is fast, especially for the era in which it was produced.
1955 Mercedes-Benz 300SL Gullwing Coupe
When he wasn’t in college, Leno worked for Mercedes-Benz, changing the lubricants in used cars and preparing the new ones for purchase. It’s only right that he should have the most iconic Mercedes ever made in his collection. Those gullwing doors still make an impression today, and along with the Miura, he considers this as one of the first supercars.
1937 Bugatti Type 57 SC Atlantic
I left the best for last. It’s fairly obvious why a collector would want to get their hands on this one, and along with being considered as the most beautiful cars ever made, only four were built.
The Atlantic came from the 1935 Type 57 Competition Coupe “Aerolithe,” – the Greek word for “meteor”. “Atlantic” was named after a friend who passed away while trying to cross that ocean.
With a bottomless pit of money and a 190+ collection of classics, what do you think the TV legend should do next?