Since 1964, Playboy's given a car to every Playmate of the Year. This year, the magazine gave Hope Dworaczyk a BMW S1000RR motorcycle. This exclusive retrospective shows how her bike stacks up against the rest of the Playmate garage.
The tradition of Playboy giving its Playmate of the Year (PMOY) a car to go with the title's customary monetary prize of $100,000 started in 1964. That year, PMOY Donna Michelle won herself a 1964.5 Ford Mustang convertible. It was painted in a shade known as Playmate Pink, and the gift coincided with the launch of the original 'Stang.
Over the years, the cars have ranged from tame vehicles like 2007 PMOY Sara Jean Underwood's Mini Cooper S Convertible to powerful roadsters like 1965 PMOY Jo Collins' Sunbeam Tiger, and serious muscle cars like 1969 PMOY Connie Kreski's Shelby GT500 Fastback — the latter equipped with a 428 Cobra Jet V-8.
1996 PMOY Stacy Sanches has the only 4x4 — a Jeep Wrangler — and at least one unfortunate playmate received a kit car as her prize. Porsche is the most patronized marque, with a whopping eight cars. There are four Jaguars on the list, three Corvettes, and three Shelbys.
Do the girls have any choice in the matter? We know from an interview with 2005 PMOY Tiffany Fallon that she was asked what car she wanted, or at least given options:
When I became Playmate of the Year, Playboy asked me what kind of car I wanted, and I jumped at the chance to get into a Corvette, which I still have. It's a really hot car, and I've only been stopped twice for speeding.
We bet she got out of those tickets.
Where do the cars come from? They're often donated as part of a marketing campaign — as with the original Ford Mustang — and, on other occasions, are purchased by Playboy. Though the playmate doesn't always get to pick the car she's won, she's usually allowed to choose its color. (Playmate Pink stopped being offered as an option after 1975 PMOY Marilyn Lange's Porsche 911S.)
Jalopnik's independent study of PMOY cars yielded a list more complete than the one Playboy itself keeps on file, mostly because the magazine doesn't have a complete record. Playboy was nevertheless invaluable in helping discover a few PMOY cars that we were unable to find or verify. Neither Jalopnik or Playboy was able to find cars for two playmates (1991 and 1994), and it's entirely possible they didn't receive cars at all. (One got a boat!)
That said, we've compiled this — the best gallery ever built of the cars of Playboy's Playmates of the Year.
To see the above gallery on a single page, click here.
If you'd like to read more about Hope Dworaczyk, Playboy's 2010 Playmate of the Year, the magazine's June issue hits newsstands and Playboy.com on Friday, May 14th and includes a first ever 3-D centerfold. More photos of Hope are here.
(Special thanks to Steve Mazeika and Playboy for providing assistance in verifying and completing the PMOY list. All photos copyright Playboy Enterprises unless otherwise noted.)