Bob Newhart headliner at gala for Boca Raton Concours d'Elegance

Bob Newhart is taking the wheel at the seventh annual Boca Raton Concours d’ Elegance gala. The three-day event starting Feb. 22 fulfills the need for speed, with a collector car and memorabilia auction, seminar, art show and dedication for the 50th anniversary of Lamborghini. Last year, the car-lover magnet was hosted by Dana Carvey and raised more than $1 million for the Boys & Girls Club of Broward County.

We spoke to the beloved actor-comedian, 83, who entertained home audiences over two decades in two long-running sitcoms, The Bob Newhart Show and Newhart, playing a put-upon psychologist and innkeeper, respectively.

“Jay Leno did the gala two years back and told me I’d love it, that it’s great fun. I don’t love cars, but I’ve had them, you know,” says Newhart.

He’s excited about getting to subtropical South Florida but not flying.

“I love getting there but not getting there, if you know what I mean. The travel is the hard part.”

Newhart doesn’t watch any of today’s sitcoms.

“Most of the shows have that canned laugh track that sort of trails off. The minute I hear it I turn to some other show. It’s not how I grew up. [I Love] Lucy, All in the Family, Mary Tyler Moore, us. We all did it in front of a live audience, and there was a certain danger to it. You were asking them, ‘Do you think this is funny?’ It was like learning a new play every week, and I think the result was better writing and better performing.”

Madeleine Marr coves celebrities. Follow her at