Me and My Car: Nic Watt

By Donna McIntyre

Nic Watt is executive chef at Masu Japanese Robata Restaurant and Bar, Federal St Dining Precinct. He tells Driven about his Porsche

Nic Watt and son Luca wash his Porsche 911 Targa every week. Picture / Ted Baghurst
Nic Watt and son Luca wash his Porsche 911 Targa every week. Picture / Ted Baghurst

What do you drive?

I drive a Porsche 911 Targa 4, 2007. It has midnight blue exterior and ocean blue full leather interior. I imported it from the UK last year when I returned home. The Porsche 911 is an iconic and timeless car. The first production was in 1963 and they have not strayed from those original designs. The Targa has a full glass roof that "reclines" back, which makes the model unique. Porsches are hand-built cars with a superb driving history.

What is the main consideration when buying a car?

I am a family man and, yes, my car is a family car - it has two back seats the kids love. The rear-mounted engine warms their backs and the sweet roar calms them and puts them to sleep on long drives.

Your first car?

My first car was a Mark 2 Cortina, a real gem for $800.

Your dream car ...

If someone threw me the keys to any car, it would have to be a Bugatti Veyron. This is one incredible car.

Favourite car colour?

I like strong masculine colours in sports cars, hence my choice of midnight blue.

Who taught you to drive?

I don't know if I can say this ... we used to take my mum's car out at night. So a bit self-taught, really. I got my licence at 15 and was away driving since then. I have always loved long open road driving.

Manual or automatic?

It has to be manual. You should feel the car and the gears while you are driving.

How often do you clean your car?

Religiously every week. It's one of my joys, plus my boy, Luca, helps, which we love.

Most memorable road trip?

I drove from London to Germany in a convoy of five 911s. We went through France and Belgium to get to Nurburgring, a famous German race track, and spent two days racing and generally having a blast. The autobahns are like driving on an airport runway. Amazing!

What do you listen to in your car?

Always the radio in the morning. Happy, crazy radio DJs are a good way to start the day. Then usually CDs, depending on the way the day has gone.

What's a great day trip out of Auckland?

You can't beat a day trip to Matakana. It's a great little road trip to some fabulous foodie spots.

Does what people drive influence how you perceive them?

No, because I rode a beaten little 50cc scooter for 10 years in London. It looked like a right old donkey, but got me everywhere I needed to go. It was a sad day when I sold her.

Would you rather drive in Auckland or take public transport?

I am not a fan of public transport so I always prefer to be behind the wheel and in control of my journey.

Who else is allowed to drive your car?

It's really only me and my beautiful wife, Kelly, although she finds it all a bit too much, like driving a race car. She is more of a cruisy driver.

Push-bikes and cars ... is there space for them both on our roads?

Both. Push-bikes have a place and we must give them space. I am an avid and regular cyclist and I once rode a stage of the Tour de France. Make way for our two-wheeled pedal friends, please.

As told to Donna McIntyre

- NZ Herald

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