Rock and Roll icon Tina Turner died yesterday at her home in Switzerland at age 83, but the legacy she leaves behind is bigger than her epic music career. She was an auto enthusiast too, owning and loving cars throughout her life.
Turner famously owned a Jaguar XJ6 and an XK-E, the latter gifted to her by her ex-husband and musical collaborator Ike Turner. The XK-E, pictured below, famously wore a "1 Tina" license plate and became a point of contention during the couple's divorce in 1978.
Oh no. RIP Tina Turner, the charismatic ‘Queen of Rock ‘n’ Roll’, one of the greatest voices of our generation, who has died peacefully today, aged 83.
📷 Tina with her beloved silver 1973 Jaguar E Type / XKE. (Bob Gruen, 1975).#RIPTinaTurner pic.twitter.com/z2dKoK3BFa
— Stars and Cars (@Superstar_Cars) May 24, 2023
"To my relief, the judge ruled in my favor," Turner wrote in her 2018 autobiography, My Love Story. "So I walked out of that courtroom with just my name. Oh, and two Jaguars—cars that had been given to me personally."
Following the divorce, Turner reinvented herself and her career out of necessity. In 1984, her album Private Dancer was released and became a huge commercial success, selling 10 million copies globally. Turner became a regular name on the pop music charts with songs like "What's Love Got to Do With It," "Better Be Good to Me," and "Private Dancer."
With her star on the rise and three new Grammy awards in her trophy case, Turner starred alongside Mel Gibson in the third installment of the post-apocalyptic Mad Max film series, Mad Max beyond Thunderdome. She recorded two new songs for the film, one of which netted her a fourth solo Grammy award. She would ultimately win eight over the course of her career, with one early in her career shared with Ike for their hit song "Proud Mary."
As her musical and film success pushed her star ever higher, Plymouth tapped Turner for a series of television commercials for its lineup of cars, including the Acclaim sedan and the Laser sports coupe, a car that won a 10Best award from Car and Driver in 1989.
While not exactly Jaguars, Turner's love for the cars and her on-camera joie de vivre made for some compelling marketing for Plymouth. In her trademark purr, she's pictured in the rear seat of an Acclaim saying: "Now this car is built for comfort. I wonder what else we have in common."
Turner lived her life out loud and used music to share her personal struggles, making her a relatable rock star unlike any other. Her automotive enthusiasm is something we're glad she shared too, even though she'll be remembered mostly for her contributions to the entertainment industry.
"It may sound silly, but one of my favorite escapes, and a secret pleasure, was driving my Jaguar," she wrote in her autobiography.
It doesn't sound silly to us at all.
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