Approaching its fifth anniversary, the Newport Car Museum is the largest automotive museum in New England. It celebrates seven decades of modern industrial car design represented in more than 85 vehicles.
It’s all the vision of owners Gunther and Maggie Buerman. The couple, who live in Highland Beach, Florida, and Newport, R.I., opened the museum in 2017. It’s located about 20 miles north of Newport in Portsmouth.
Gunther Buerman, originally from Mannheim, Germany, moved as a young boy with his family to New York. His interest in automobiles began when he practiced wax paper transfer etchings of car advertisements from National Geographic Magazine. He was willed a 1966 Ford Mustang convertible in the mid-1980s from an uncle and his passion for cars hasn’t waned.
A former chairman of Harris Beach, LLC, a major New York law firm and current chairman of American Rock Salt Co. in Retsof, N.Y., Buerman is my guest on Episode #226 of The Weekly Driver Podcast.
Co-host Bruce Aldrich and I interview the car collector and avid sailor about his nearly lifelong interest in cars and his decision to start a museum.
“It was a wonderful, wonderful car that I admire for a long time,” recalls Buerman. “But my love of cars started before then. I especially remember drawing over some of those cars from Studebaker and Packard dealerships of that time and important Mercedes.
“I was so enamored by the Gullwing that was pictured in the middle of National Geographic and doing my own rendition of it. In fourth grade when they had vocation day and asked, ‘What do you want to be when you grow up?’ Everyone wanted to be doctors, lawyers and Indian Chiefs; I wanted to be president of General Motors.”
The Newport Car Museum is far more than its iconic cars from Ford and Shelby to Fin Cars and Muscle Cars. The varied collection is a also museum for complemented mid-20th Center Modern furnishings by renowned international designers and automotive artworks by Los Angeles-based artist David Lloyd Glover.
Please join us for an entertaining episode with Gunther Buerman. His passion for automobiles is readily apparent.
For more information, visit: The Newport Car Museum
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Hosted by James Raia and Bruce Aldrich, The Weekly Driver Podcast dives deep into the highways and byways of the automotive world. Each week, we put you in the driver’s seat, exploring unique, unusual, and often untold stories from across the industry’s spectrum.
Article Last Updated: August 6, 2023.
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A sports, travel and business journalist for more than 45 years, James has written the new car review column The Weekly Driver since 2004.
In addition to this site, James writes a Sunday automotive column for The San Jose Mercury and East Bay Times in Walnut Creek, Calif., and a monthly auto review column for Gulfshore Business, a magazine in Southwest Florida.
An author and contributor to many newspapers, magazines and online publications, James has co-hosted The Weekly Driver Podcast since 2017.