Spike Feresten is a former Seinfeld writer and talk show host, and one of his true passions is automobiles. In his latest project, Car Matchmaker, airing Tuesdays at 9/8c on Esquire Network (Ch. 235), Spike draws upon his decades of experience to pair people with their dream rides.
Let’s start off with the obvious. Can you tell us about Car Matchmaker? I’m not a huge car guy, and I really enjoyed watching the show!
Well, this is a car show for everyone. Personally, my eyes glaze over when someone starts talking about “torque.” Esquire Network’s Car Matchmaker is a really fun comedy and car show where real folks looking to buy a car come to me, I spend some time getting to know them, and then I use my experience and car guy know-how to recommend three cars that would work perfectly in their life. We drive them (sometimes very hard), then they must pick one. You will learn and laugh a lot along the way.
We get to see you drive the Mystery Machine from Scooby-Doo in one of the episodes. However, I’m guessing it’s not the best car you drove this season. Can you tell us about your favorites?
OK, the Mystery Machine was absolutely my favorite. I have never made so many strangers happy in my life. That van is a smile machine. As far as new cars, the Porsche 991 Turbo S and the Jaguar F-type R were my favorite performance cars. My favorite green cars were the Chevy Volt, Nissan Leaf, BMW i3 and the Tesla Model S. Favorite microcar was the Fiat 500 Abarth. A wicked little contraption.
You’ve just been given an unlimited budget to pick out your dream car. What do you pick?
Without question. Early-60’s Ferrari 250 SWB. [It’s a] one-car collection. I want one so much that when I see a 250 at a car show I have to look away. The desire hurts. I just need the $10 million to buy one. Where is DIRECTV’s stock these days? Should I get in?
What’s the worst car that you’ve ever owned?
My dad’s Ford Granada. He was a smoker and it was like driving his ashtray. The cigarette burns in the red velour seats were a nice touch of original patina and it made dating in high school very difficult for me.
What’s the greatest classic TV car of all time? Other than the Monkeemobile, of course.
For me, Jim Rockford’s (of The Rockford Files) 70’s Pontiac Firebird. He got a new model every season on the show until 1978. The show continued, but apparently James Garner did not like the re-styled front end of the 1979. He was a real man.
Car Matchmaker airs Tuesdays at 9/8c on Esquire Network (Ch. 235).