Actual vans, scale models, posters, mugs, you name it...

There’s nothing wrong with falling in love with the car you drive on a daily basis, but what happens when things go a bit too far? Well, you end up like Peter Lee, a man who loves the Ford Transit so much that he has more than 6,000 of them.

No need to panic though, not all of them are the real deal. Most of his Transits are scale model cars and he’s been collecting them for over 40 years. He’s gathered enough to set up a small Transit museum in his home, where the "6,000 to 7,000" model cars (yes, he has lost count!) are displayed next to all sorts of memorabilia items about the iconic vehicle. This includes posters, boxes, mugs, stress balls, and even a cookie jar shaped like a van.

Granted, we’ve seen petrolheads go nuts about a certain marque or model before, but finding someone that’s so pasionate about a van is definitely new. So why is Peter so crazy about the Ford Transit and not a more iconic car such as the Ferrari 250 GTO or Jaguar E-Type? Well, as he explains in the video above, it all began when he purchased his first real Transit and drove it from the United Kingdom to Spain. After spending 13 months in it, he began accumulating the brochures, memorabilia, and die-cast cars of all sizes that decorate the second floor of his house.

Lee also owns a few full-size vans as well, starting with a model from the Transit’s first year on the market, 1965. It looks as if it was purchased from the factory only yesterday and resides next to a 1969 model year van converted into an ambulance. Peter’s third Transit is really special. A 1970s Custom, it features a custom paint job and interior, which houses a bar that includes a Jack Daniels whiskey dispenser. He also owns a 1980s model, as well as a current-generation van he drives on a regular basis.

Although he’s been collecting for over 40 years and barely has any room left in his house, Peter Lee doesn’t plan to stop anytime soon. "Yeah, I am buying a lot more, but I’ve always bought a lot anyway. I’ve never ever curbed myself in any way, shape or form," he says.

Well, as long as he’s also planning to buy a bigger house, purchasing more Transit vans shouldn’t be an issue.

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Why it matters

Collecting model cars can easily go out of control. And I know that because I’m also into it and at some point it was very difficult to stop purchasing new stuff. But I must add that Mr. Lee and I compete on very different levels. I barely made it past 200 and I’m not planning on getting to 1,000 models anytime soon. Still, owning several Corvettes and Chaparrals, I can understand having a soft spot for a certain brand or nameplate. And even though Peter isn’t collecting supercars, he’s hobby is definitely exotic. I mean, how many people do you know that are into vans, let alone a certain nameplate? Lee’s collection is by far the most impressive I’ve seen since I got into in the hobby (some 15 years ago) and it makes me want to buy a Transit model car really bad. So, if you’ll excuse me, I’m off to spend a few bucks on a 1:43-scale Transit. Most likely one of them race-inspired Supervan models.

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