When we think of movie stars, politicians, investment bankers or just celebrities in general we tend to associate their success with fat wallets and fancy houses. And in most cases that would be a safe bet. Millionaires are often thought of as lavish spenders, splurging on their hearts’ desires. Big houses with empty rooms, private resorts (even islands), clothes, shoes, and arguably the most iconic display of financial success – exotic cars.
If you’ve read an article exploring the driveways and garages of the wealthy before – chances are – you’ve seen your fair share of Ferraris, Bentleys, Lamborghinis and Corvettes. However, as you’re about to learn, not every stinking rich celebrity believes that an imported half-a-million-dollar muscle car is better than your average joe automobile. Believe it or not, many of the more-than-well-to-do celebrities simply choose to drive an inexpensive car. Maybe that’s the secret to being rich, after all the car only helps you move from point A to point B. Below is a list 10 rich celebrities that have realised this fact and stuck with a more humble piece of transportation.
Ingvar Kamprad (Volvo 240)
This list absolutely had to start with the one and only founder of Ikea – Ingvar Kamprad. The successful entrepreneur is worth in the neighbourhood of $30 billion (that’s right, billion), and despite his financial independence (to put it lightly) he chose to drive a Volvo. And not some top of the line V8 mind you. No, the thrifty Kamprad chose to drive a very humble Volvo 240 – a car that probably cost him somewhere between $1,500 – $2,000. If he wanted to, Kamprad could empty out his bank account and buy about 15,000 Bugatti Veyrons (each worth ~$2,000,000), but instead he drives this 4-wheeled-wonder. When he isn’t driving, Kamprad can be found taking the city bus from time to time.
Ron Artest (Hyundai Genesis)
While beating Ingvar Kamprad on frugal cars is impossible for any other celeb, this list must go on. That being said, next we have Ron Artest (legally known as Metta World Peace, but that’s a story for another time), who clearly has some problems, but none of which involve a shortage of cash. Artest is best known for his contribution to the Chicago Bulls and the New York Knicks. It’s estimated that artest is worth somewhere around $20 million, but that doesn’t automatically guarantee a sweet ride. In fact, Artest drives a Hyundai Genesis – a car that he didn’t even purchase. The $35,000 sedan was given to him by comedian George Lopez.
Steve Ballmer (Ford Fusion Hybrid)
Steve Ballmer is the ex-CEO of software giant Microsoft, and currently he owns NBA’s LA Clippers. Ballmer is worth over $21 billion, but that doesn’t really shock anyone considering the man had run a massive tech company, and now owns an NBA team. What does shock, however, is the fact that despite being able to afford literally anything, Ballmer chose a Ford Fusion Hybrid as his primary mode of transportation. Even if Ballmer chose to upgrade everything inside of this car, opting for extras like – higher end trim, top of the line audio equipment and larger rims, the final price would still be under $40,000.
Leonardo DiCaprio (Toyota Prius Hybrid)
Ever since starring in James Cameron’s 1997 blockbuster Titanic, DiCaprio has been on Hollywood’s radar. At this point in time, DiCaprio is easily one of the top ten biggest movie stars around. Considering that Leo starred in dozens of films, it would be reasonable to assume that he has enough money in his chequing to splurge on a hot ride. Well, if you did make that bet, you’d be wrong. The environmentally conscious DiCaprio gets around in a 4-cylinder Toyota Prius Hybrid. Although the Prius starts at $19,600, the star could’ve spent as much as an exorbitant $29,900 on this sweet ride.
Justin Timberlake (Volkswagen Jetta)
If you thought the soccer-mom-car portion of this list ended with DiCaprio’s Prius, think again. Next we have the singer and actor Justin Timberlake and his fourth generation, white Volkswagen Jetta. Although Timberlake appeared in 17 films, released many hits and dated some of the hottest women in show business, he still chooses to drive this $16,000 tin can. Money is definitely not a concern, especially considering the fact that Timberlake’s net worth is quickly approaching $200 million. While, yes, the Jetta is extremely practical and it’s by far not the ugliest car on the road it’s just not something you would expect Timberlake to cruise around in. Which could very well be the reason to why he drives it. The non-flashy Jetta makes it very easy to slip out and run your errands without being noticed by crowding fans.
Clint Eastwood (GMC Typhoon)
The acting legend, director and producer, Clint Eastwood came to fame in the westerns of the ‘60s, ‘70s, and the ‘80s. Throughout his long and extensive career, Eastwood was involved in over 50 movies – a feat not many of Hollywood’s own could claim. Despite his box-office success, and sizable bank account as one of the richest actors in the world, Eastwood’s automobile choices remain questionable. The star is currently cruising around in a 22 year old GMC Typhoon. Granted the SUV is custom built to house a turbocharged 4.3L V6, capable of producing up to 280hp, and being able to achieve a 5.3 second 0-60 time. Not too bad for an affordable $29,500.
Daniel Radcliffe (Fiat Punto)
Daniel Radcliffe is probably best known for his role as Harry Potter in J.K. Rowling’s popular wizard series. But since 2011, Radcliffe has moved on to other roles in film, television and even stage. His early success with the Harry Potter franchise is what enabled Radcliffe to save millions before even turning 18. After his 18th birthday, Radcliffe decided to celebrate the year by treating himself to a brand new and shiny automobile. Although he had a fortune to spend on this staple purchase, Radcliffe didn’t buy a Porsche or an Aston Martin, but instead opted for a rather reasonable $17,800 Fiat Punto. Apparently the reasoning behind this purchase is Radcliffe’s environmentally conscious nature. Aiming to reduce his carbon footprint, the Fiat is actually a decent choice. At 1.8L, and not more than 178hp, it’s safe to say that this car is more environmentally friendly than a Lamborghini.
Mel Gibson (Toyota Cressida)
Lethal Weapon, Mad Max, and Braveheart, are just some of this actor and film maker’s many successful blockbuster hits. Relevant enough, it was actually in the Mad Max series that we witnessed Mel Gibson drive rather beat up (yet powerful) cars across the post-apocalyptic Australia. Mad Max (as well as his other career pursuits) have contributed greatly to his net worth, and at this moment in time it’s safe to say that Gibson could afford to drive any car he desires. That being said, Mel Gibson decided that a car best suited for the A list celebrity that he is – is a sixth generation Toyota Cressida. The exact year or the model is up in the air, but a reasonable guesstimate will place the sweet ride between the years of 1988 and 1992. Which means the total cost for the 3.0L V6 is in a vast range between a couple of hundred bucks and 10k. Judging from several paparazzi photos of the Cressida we’ll go ahead and assume it’s somewhere closer to the bottom of the bracket.
Jennifer Lawrence (Volkswagen Eos)
Jennifer Lawrence’s popularity has been rising steadily over the past couple of years. From The Hunger Games to Silverlinings Playbook, the 24-year-old is currently the buzz of the town that is Hollywood. Her popularity, and media attention has helped her earn over $40 million in just a few years. If the majority of us had access to this amount of money, we would most likely spend it on a number of things, amongst which we would surely see an exotic car. Granted, Jennifer Lawrence isn’t like the majority of us, and her automobile choice reflects that. Although not exactly pocket change, Lawrence spent only $35,000 on her Volkswagen Eos. While she could surely afford a car that’s ten times as expensive, it’s evident that she simply doesn’t have time to care.
Mark Zuckerberg (Acura TSX)
We’re going to finish our list with the one and only Mark Zuckerberg. Zuckerberg is certainly a name you’re familiar with. The wunderkind behind Facebook, and more importantly the youngest billionaire in America by the ripe age of 23. His early and rapid success, as well as his entrepreneurial ventures have ranked him on many “world’s most influential people” lists. Despite all that, what do you think a young man with a $26 billion net worth drives? Perhaps the most expensive car in the world? Wrong. Zuckerberg evidently doesn’t feel the need to spend an exorbitant amount of cash on a splashy car, and instead chose a very modest Acura TSX as his primary means of transport. Granted the car isn’t cheap, but at $30,000 it’s literally pocket change for a man with Zuckerberg’s wealth.