Martin in New Plymouth assesses the Keeper fleet and starts looking for a barn to begin his own collection.

MAZDA MX-5: “When they first appeared, I struggled with the cuteness of the design. I’d also become accustomed to bigger cars. For me, the NA-series is now as appealing as it’s ever been but not quite as appealing as the latest MX-5.”

BMW M325i: “I sometimes wonder how a compressed, squarish, three-box design could get under my skin like the E30 did. Enjoyed every sighting when they were common on our roads. An M325i or M3 is an absolute treat.”

MERCEDES 230SL: “Just gorgeous. Love the understated design infinitely more than that of any current convertible. I’d be happiest with an honest daily-driver rather than a concours queen, and preferably with a manual shift to make most of rasping exhaust note.”

MERCEDES 300E-24 SPORTLINE: “Such rewarding cars to own. Mercedes absolutely nailed it with the W124 range. It was the backbone of a formidable 1980s line-up that’s still impressive today. Attention to detail and overall quality left the opposition in its wake, and classy Sportline treatment works well with old-school character.”

NISSAN 350Z: “Another rewarding car to own, and very rewarding to drive too, with welcome simplicity. Track spec desirable but still very much a road car. Really good examples now stand apart from the unloved, lower-spec imports. A shame Nissan didn’t try quite as hard with follow-up 370Z.”

PORSCHE 911 GT3 RS: “Driving one is a pipe dream but I imagine it can be a scintillating experience on the right road, and especially on the track. This is as big as I’d want my dream 911 to be. Love the hardcore nature and naturally aspirated engine; don’t mind the fact that it’s not air-cooled.”

FERRARI 308 GTB: “Another of those cars that gets prettier as each year passes and the contrast with the latest supercars becomes starker. Few would believe how tough they are mechanically. The first Ferrari I drove and one of my most memorable drives, even though it was brief.”

BMW 745i: “A big advance on what went before and a wonderful car in which to soak up big distances. A shame the looks were never going to have the same legs. Too complex for its own good, perhaps, like many high-end cars from earlier this century.”

FORD MUSTANG GT: “Just what the target audience was after. Hard to argue with the looks and V8 character, and facelifted V8 GT seems particularly compelling. Quite a common sight on the road and you know they’re here to stay.”

AUDI RS6: “Another hot Audi for which Kiwi demand comfortably exceeded supply, and a winter drive would quickly demonstrate why. Fairly discrete looks and sensible tuning no doubt give it real ability to surprise.”

It’s your turn to rate our fleet:




John in Invercargill finds more hits than misses in our growing fleet of Keepers, and a couple of firm favourites.



On Kiwi roads, the GT4 succeeds in being fast enough and expressive enough to make every drive an event.

BMW M325i (2)

Comparisons with the E30 M3, the world’s best touring car, were inevitable but not all that meaningful.


GT4’s superb manual gearbox has always been a talking point, but not always for the right reasons...


The junior Ferrari commands plenty of attention on the road. It also demands concentration behind the wheel.