The Alsager Italian day
I was at the Alsager Italian Festival at the weekend (NOT the Slasher Festival - as my Car Spotter posts suggested - blame autocorrect!). I've been going for a few years now and it's a great day when the weather is fine. There's Italian music, food, drink and scooters. Personally I'm about as interested in Lambrettas as I am in civil engineering (Check the Yellow Pages, their entry says 'See boring').
Luckily there's also a regular display of Italian Supercars. This year was no exception and I spent some time perusing the vehicles on show:-
As you can see there were some really immaculately kept cars on show there. I'll be honest, I'm not a Ferrari man. I aspire to the brand about as much as I aspire to become a Dental Hygienist, it's not something I'm desperate for, but ultimately I wouldn't lose any sleep if I HAD to...
Ferrari, like being a professional teeth brushing expert - I can take or leave.
The thing is though, when you're standing amidst a selection of these kind of machines, you sense a kind of magic. I don't know if it's because they are expensive, because you know MOST people aspire to them, or simply because we've all been socially conditioned since Magnum PI came out, to want a Ferrari. The thing is, they DO make you want one, even if only fleetingly.
The thing is, no matter how desperate I was for a prancing pony, I couldn't be tempted to a LHD classic that was only really for garaging, and probably not driving. Neither could I be swayed by the idea of faking it with an ancient Japanese Sportscar plastered in plastic and bootleg branding.
But ultimately, COULD I genuinely, honestly drive a Ferrari, as my daily drive if I wanted to?
Looking at the Autotrader and committing myself to nothing older than 10 years old, I found this:-
Now that makes actually quite a lot of sense. It seats 4 so it's good for the family, it's a convertible so it'd be fun in the summer and it has a decent boot. So it's for all intent purposes, a pretty practical car.
But is it?
Let's look at the REAL costs of trying to use this as your daily.
Okay, taking a five year HP contract out isn't for everyone. But, technically I could probably afford to pay £1629.08 a month. Just.
However, I'd feel a bit annoyed that over the five years I'd basically spent about as much interest as I could have bought a new-ish Focus RS for! To take this basic finance deal out on this car is more or less having a 5 year mortgage on a property that will go down in value. If it depreciates £30,000 in 5 years, which is quite conceivable, then add that to the interest and divide it by 5 and you get £12,000 a year. So you're burning £1000 per month, for 5 years, for the privilege of driving that car.
Let's add tax! This is a top bracket car, so it'll be another £555 a year or £46.25 a month.
They can also be pricey to insure. In 2009 Andy Murray paid £100,000 for a Ferrari 430, then he paid another £100,000 to insure it for a year!
Luckily, I've been quoting for car insurance recently. So I got a quote by just changing the reg to another California I saw on Autotrader. The results were quite surprising.
Now I'm ignoring the £1059.52. Black boxes are great for young drivers I'm sure, but there's no point in buying a Ferrari California if you're NEVER going to exceed the speed limit or drive enthusiastically!
Even so, £1143.52 with a £750 excess is NOT as bad as I thought it might be! Let's call it £95.50 a month for the non-telematic box Admiral quote. Now we're up to £1141.75 per month, but we haven't looked at servicing or fuel!
If I stuck to my current 6000 miles a year and I got 20 mpg average (Come on! You buy a Ferrari to have FUN!) then we're talking around a nominal £1800 a year or £150 per month. So now we're up to £1291.75 a month.
Looking at a Ferrari Fixed Price Servicing list:-
I would say it's fair to estimate at LEAST £2400 a year servicing and maintenance on average over the 5 years. That's probably being conservative - bear in mind were talking an ex-warranty 2009 car here. That takes the running total to £1491.75 per month.
Technically I reckon I COULD afford that. It works out at £17,901 a year, over five years that works out at £89,505.
The trouble is, besides the fact I'd find it hard to convince the present Mrs. Stanley to agree to me spending nearly £20,000 a year on owning a Ferrari. (She'd probably prefer to spend that on holidays) I don't know if I cold justify it myself.
I suppose if I had the cash, that'd save £30,000 of interest payments and make it more reasonable, but then I could spend the £75k buying a house and renting it for £450 a month profit instead!
Summing up, I reckon Ferrari ownership probably really IS within the grasp of many people, who perhaps don't realise it is. However I suspect most of the people who COULD afford a Ferrari simply wouldn't be willing to make the financial sacrifice required to do so.
Do you think you could commit to £1500 a month for five years to own a Ferrari? Vote on the poll and tell me in the comments!