- Photography by Mr Jon Gorrigan
- Styling by Mr Dan May, Style Director, MR PORTER
- Words by Mr Chris Elvidge, Senior Copywriter, MR PORTER
Chiswick House, an 18th-century villa hidden away in an otherwise unremarkable corner of West London, must surely list as one of the city's most beautiful buildings. In the low afternoon light of a bitterly cold winter's day, it creates a timeless backdrop to a rather more modern sight: a line-up of three of this year's most exciting, most desirable new cars.
Lying on the sweeping gravel driveway are the sleek silver and gun-metal grey forms of the fourth-generation Range Rover, the remodelled Aston Martin DB9 and the Jaguar F-Type, all of them new for 2013. Standing alongside them, dressed suitably for the sub-zero conditions in a Schott G1 shearling bomber jacket, is racing enthusiast Mr David Green.
As a former fashion model, Mr Green is certainly a man at home in front of the camera - and behind it, too, in his current job as owner of production company Giant Film & TV - but his real passion is motorsport.
"It's intoxicating - the adrenalin, the sound, everything about it," says the 40-year-old, describing the experience of driving a racing car. "You could take anybody who thinks they can drive fast on the road, and they would not believe the difference. It's an incomparable feeling."
And it's a feeling that Mr Green has had plenty of time to get used to lately. He has always wanted to race - "for as long as I can remember" - but admits that his ambitions have had to take a back seat over the years; as he points out, there's only a handful of people in the world earning a full-time living from motor sport. More recently, however, he has been able to indulge his passion, and with some success.
"I've recently finished the MSA British Endurance Championship, a seven-race series of three-hour-plus events. It was a long, hard season," he says, one that was made all the harder by the striving ambitions of his team's car maker, Lotus. "Its goal at the beginning of the season was for a British team in a British car to win a British championship - and we did it." On the back of this all-British victory, and surrounded by a bevy of British marques, does the Newcastle-born driver ever consider himself something of a motoring patriot?
"Not particularly, if I'm honest!" he replies. "Britain can be very proud of its motor sport heritage - it is the number one place in the world for it. But when it comes to design, I'm more of an Italian kind of man. Like many kids of the 1970s, I can probably trace my interest in cars back to that poster of a Lamborghini Countach on my bedroom wall."
"And my all-time favourite car? It would have to be a Bugatti Type 57 Atlantic." High standards indeed - often cited as one the most beautiful cars ever made, only two examples of this 1938 work of automotive art remain; one of them is in the private collection of Mr Ralph Lauren.
Read on to find out how our three cars stand up to Mr Green's exacting eye.