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cars / planes / horses




Janssen gets his 1st car for $400 as a 16-year old High School Junior. It may have been a 34 Ford.

David puts in $175, mother Berniece $25, and $200 is borrowed from his Grandparents. This may be the car that a schoolmate recalled having such bad brakes that they'd have to stop it with their feet.

7/20/1948 Berniece buys Janssen another car, possibly a Dodge. Assumption is 1st car was too problematic.
1950-51 After High School, Janssen would sometimes drive his mother's station wagon, a Chevy? Also would sometimes take "the truck."
2/7/1954 Gets a 1951 Mercury 4-door while a contract player at Universal. Tony Curtis used to kid him about the kind of car he drove on the studio lot.

Janssen buys a new 1955 Thunderbird hardtop. It was the first production year for these and the first show-off car he drove. He traded in the Mercury and paid for $4430.14 at Hollywood Motors for the upgrade.

Serial number P5FH256429   Licence plate BCM ???
Payments of $115.59/mo for 30 months.

In the late 50's while not working and waiting to see if RICHARD DIAMIOND would be picked up, he couldn't keep up the car payments.

"I'd park it at my friends' houses so they couldn't find it and take it away. Then after the show was picked up, I resumed my payments."

A Sarasota Florida-based couple acquired the car in 1971 for $2800. It had already been repainted Fiesta Red, a 1956 color, by the previous owner and the upholstery had been changed to red and white. The new owners painted it a correct 1955 color but unfortunately not the original Black. It is now Torch Red. The original hardtop has been lost somewhere along the way. Now up to the strict AACA (Antique Automobile Club of America) standards, the car has won prizes for its pristine show condition.

The car changed hands in late 2007. Sold to a Tampa man who attempted to sell it on March 8, 2008 in Amelia Island, FL via RM auctions , he rejected the high bid of $37,400 and the classic car remains looking for a buyer.

late 1959 On his business manager's end of year assets and liabilities ledger, it is listed that Janssen has both a 55 and a 56 T-bird, one presumably for the use of wife Ellie.

Buys a Cadillac white-top convertible. Factory color is believed to be Palomino.

He trades in the 55 T-Bird for which he got $1800, and pays $7505.81 at Hillcrest Motor Company .
Payments of $175/mo.

Serial number 60F037458.   Licence plate TDL 438     (add photo from slides)

This car was offered for rent in Los Angeles and advertised as Janssen's old Cadillac by National Car Rentals California Classics division in 1988.

late 1960 On his business manager's end of year assets and liabilities ledger, it is listed that Janssen still has a 56 T-bird, the Cadillac, and a 1961 T-Bird.
late 1961

Leases 2 Lincoln Continentals for himself and wife Ellie from Executive Car Leasing.
A 1962 Hardtop (with serial number 2Y82H419266 and a monthly payment of $152.41)
And another other 1962 hardtop in black (serial number 2Y82H412818 and a $166.59 payment monthly).

1962 Leases a Corvair Monza Coupe for stepdaughter Kathy Graham.

Gets a Thunderbird Landau in chantilly beige with a black top.
This may be an employee's car .


Owns a 1964 Cadillac Fleetwood El Dorado convertible, style 6367, one of 1870 made.

Licence OMX 354.


Leases a 1965 Rolls Royce Silver Cloud in a bronze/beige color from Executive Car Leasing. Wife Ellie will often be behind the wheel as David favors his other cars.

Leases for $381.16 a month.

Serial number LSJR 311.

License plate RSB 033.

Ellie retains this car for her use after the marital separation of August 1968 and is awarded the car when their divorce is finalized in April 1970.

The car was resold in August 07 and is now located in Danville, KY.

The current owner has relisted it for sale (Spring 09) for $45,000 or best offer.


David had a light gray Jaguar XKE.

It was his prefered self-drive mode of transportation to the FUGITIVE set until he got his Lamborghini in 1966.

Late 10/1965

David receives a location dressing room/party bus from Quinn Martin Productions during the 3rd season of THE FUGITIVE. It was a rare 1965 Streamline Travel Lodge. They were produced in very small quantities, maybe as few as 80 during the production years between 1964 and 1967. Nicknamed "The Silver Bullet," he has this motor home the rest of his career.

The story is that Janssen arrived on location in Tustin, California during the filming of the episode NOT WITH A WHIMPER and was presented with the gift. It came with a bonus accessory.


Presumed lost, the archive was fortunate to acquire the vehicle in August 2008. Its restoration will be a goal of this website. The story of its history is here.


late summer 1966

lamborghiniBuys a metallic silver 4-seat Lamborghini costing $14,000 in August or September.

Purchased from Bob Estes and Otto Zipper's car dealership in Beverly Hills.

It was a rare 400 GT interim model which he owned until about 1969. Janssen acquired one of 23 made. His had a steel, not the rarer aluminum body. The interior was black.

Serial number 04810511
Licence plate TQP 477

Though he reputedly didn't love the car, he did on at least one occasion have fun with the speed. One night when it was really new, he and his FUGITIVE driver/pal, Buddy White, took it for a spin on Hillcrest, the road up to Janssen's Trousdale house getting it quite close to its top speed of 148.

Fantasy Junction. an upscale auto broker located in Emeryville, CA, found a buyer for the car in the Spring of 2004. A bank owner from Springfield, MO paid about $75,000 for it and is contemplating a careful restoration.


Supposedly buys Ellie a Jaguar for an anniversary gift. She can't get used to the shifting and they don't keep it.

Ellie has a White Mercury Station Wagon provided by Ford thru Quinn Martin's FUGITIVE deal with the car company. At a later point in time Ellie may have driven a yellow Buick convertible from some deal perk negotiated by Janssen's agent Abby Greshler.

early 1968

Gets another Rolls Royce, a 1969 Silver Shadow convertible at a cost of $38,000.

Factory beige, Janssen may have had Hollywood Car legend George Barris repaint it gold for him.

Licence plate YND 085

early 1970's Dani has a late 60's model black Lincoln MARK IV which she has much of her marriage to Janssen.
1979 Janssen buys Dani a green Rolls Royce Corniche.
late 1979

Buys a 1979 Porsche 928.
Vin 289201750

Has this car a very short time before he dies and it is appraised at $32,800. May have been bought from the estate by the actress and friend Stephanie Zimbalist.


Orders a 1966 Piper Aztec turbo PA-23-250 plane
serial# 27-3404
tail ID N790LA

Secures a loan from Continental Bank on 9/16/66 for the purchase committing himself to $750 in monthly payments for approximately 5 years.

This plane was valued at $90,519.20 at the end of 1968.


In late 1966, Janssen partnered with actor-friend Jackie Cooper, who owned a Twin Comanche and perhaps Robert Wagner and/or Lawrence Harvey in a business venture called the LA AIR-TAXI SERVICE. Run out of the Santa Monica Airport by associate Hal Connors, the idea was to take the planes these actors owned, provide pilots, and offer them for hire for trips. Catering to entertainment business types who wanted to get away to Palm Springs or Vegas, this company survived for a few years. Their slogan was "Jet Service To Anywhere." Janssen never got his own pilot's license, though he may have taken a lesson at some point.

5/20/1969 Intends to trade his Piper Turbo for a Lear Jet 24A, but never goes through with it. Would have had to surrender the plane and paid $500,000 more for the jet. Pending deal with Allen Paulson of California Airmotive Corporation was most likely abandoned due to the financial difficulties he encountered during his divorce proceedings.


Though not really a mode of transportation in Janssen's world, the following is provided nonetheless:

In the early 70's, Janssen owned a racehorse named COUNTESS HILL and enjoyed going to the track, often to Del Mar.

Good friend Pete Wilson got Janssen into the game. He was a lifer in the horse business as a trainer, and jockey/bloodstock agent. Pete brokered a deal with trainer Jay Robbins for Janssen to invest in COUNTESS HILL which Robbins had recently acquired. The horse, a philly, had sustained an injury to her right hind foot, and Jay was getting her back to form after a period of inactivity. Janssen's investment was probably under $2500.

COUNTESS HILL, with Janssen's DJE Enterprises sharing ownership with trainer Jay Robbins, ran at Del Mar on August 11, 1971. World-renowned jockey Willie Shoemaker rode the 4-year old in a claiming race and a price of $4000. She was not claimed. The following week she ran again and her claiming price was raised to $6500. Again, with Shoemaker jockeying, COUNTESS HILL placed first. This time, she was claimed by a new owner, W.R. Johnson. Thus ended Janssen's brief foray into horse ownership.

COUNTESS HILL garnered $11,240 in earnings in 12 races in 1971. This was more than twice as much as Janssen made his first full year as an actor 20 years earlier.




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