Me and My Car: A cool Camaro
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Justin Lobb, group ceo of investment group Millennium Corporation, has two cars - a ZL1 Camaro and an Audi R8 P
Tell us about your cars …
The Camaro is a Victory Red supercharged 2013 ZL1 automatic designed to cope with the 430kW, and the Audi R8 is a 335kW 2009 metallic black V8 manual. The Camaro weighs 1984kg and the Audi only 1565kg. The cars are second-hand; you cannot buy an American car new as the dealers risk losing their licence from the manufacturer.
I purchased the Camaro from an Indiana dentist who bought the car as an investment. Something changed and he reluctantly sold. The Camaro is left-hand drive and Audi right-hand New Zealand new.
Why two cars?
My cars are my hobby and I like driving them when I am not trying to get somewhere. The reason I have only two is I have no room at home and my wife will not let me buy more.
How is it driving performance cars on NZ roads?
New Zealand roads, outside Auckland and when the roads are clear, are great for performance cars that handle well as they have lots of turns and slow speed corners.
Let’s now focus on the Camaro … who’s allowed to drive it?
My wife can drive it but chooses not to because she doesn't want to deal with grief if she marks it. My 17-year-old daughter Ellen wants to drive it but I am not brave enough to let her.
What do you always have in your Camaro?
A microfibre cloth; you never know when you will need to clean something
What’s your driving style?
I spend most of my driving time in Auckland traffic; patience is required. I like to get the cars on the race track whenever the chance permits and push the cars as far as I dare.
How often do you clean your car?
Cleaning my cars is my gardening, I clean the cars whenever they get dirty. I put on my music and take an hour or more to clean them.
My mother gave me a Ford Consul.
Anything built by the Ring Brothers. They build moving pieces of art.
Manual or automatic?
I like both, a manual car is more involving to drive, but the new automatics and dual-clutch transmission are generally faster. I could not drive a manual car in the traffic every day in Auckland.
Who taught you to drive?
I taught myself, I was lucky to have access to a few vehicles as my grandfather owned a quarry. I got my licence within days of turning 15. I was surprised I passed first time.
Advice to young drivers?
I think the biggest threat to safe driving is the mobile phone. We all want to be connected, but texting and driving is dangerous. Most memorable road trip?
A work colleague and I were in Dallas, Texas the day after 9/11. To get back to Hong Kong we had to drive from Dallas to San Francisco to get a flight. We hired a brand new Cadillac and drove non-stop for 26 hours.
Great day trip out of Auckland?
A trip to Tauranga to spend time with friends who own Mustangs. We sit and talk about car stuff.
Favourite movie car scene?
The scene in Aloha Bobby and Rose where the police stop Bobby in his red Camaro and he does a burnout as he drives off.
If you could go anywhere, with anyone in any car?
I would like to travel through Europe on the autobahn in a rented Porsche, with my wife. I would not be allowed to drive.
Would you rather drive in Auckland or take public transport?
I will take public transport when the autonomous cars arrive when you call for them using your app.
If you could change one road rule?
I would adopt the US law allowing you to turn left on a red light if you had stopped first. It speeds up traffic flow and is no more dangerous than a stop sign-controlled intersection.
And Auckland traffic… your take on it?
The traffic in Auckland is as bad now as many other large cities; the infrastructure investment to support our growing population has not been made and we are suffering with congested roads.
-As told to Donna McIntyre