THERE'S nothing like that new car smell, particularly when you add a little dose of Elton John to it.
When Mount Isa resident Trevor Brereton came to Townsville two weeks ago to buy a car, he had his mind set on the new Audi Q7.
When he went to pay for the luxury four-wheel drive, he was told that Sir Elton, in town for his once-off performance at Dairy Farmers Stadium, had been eyeing the same vehicle.
Fortunately for Mr Brereton, Elton only wanted the $90,000 car to ferry him between the stadium and the airport.
Mr Brereton's new car was the only one of its type in the twin cities and the only one the Rocket Man wanted for his Australian tour.
Honeycombes Prestige asked Mr Brereton whether he would mind `lending' his car to the star for the night.
Its price rose a few thousand dollars due to a window tint to ensure Elton's privacy for the 40km return trip.
"I ended up paying nearly double for it, just so I could say I have the car Elton used in Townsville," Mr Brereton said.
The four-wheel drive was driven by Acacia Limousines owner Lillian Doyle.
Ms Doyle confessed to nerves when she got behind the steering wheel, not so much about having a living legend in the passenger seat as the fact that she was driving such a costly car.
She said her passenger, who travelled with his entourage, was a man of few words and didn't want music on the flash in-car stereo.
"He appeared to be a very private man," Ms Doyle said.
"All he said to me was `hello' and `thank you'.
"When we had to go back to the airport, I said `excellent concert, sir', because it was. It really was.
"He said `thank you'."
Mr Brereton said his car dealership was chasing up Elton John's management to determine whether the performer would sign the car's service books for him.
"All the way back to the Isa I was playing Elton's tunes," he said. "The CDs were very hard to find in Townsville that week."