Traders Rev Up Aston Martins, Maseratis as Supercar Taboo Fades

Discussion in 'Wall St. News' started by ASusilovic, May 25, 2010.

  1. [​IMG]

    By Sara Gay Forden and Doron Levin

    May 25 (Bloomberg) -- Trader Craig Poler couldn’t hold out any longer. Browsing at the Miller Motorcars dealership in Greenwich, Connecticut, he spotted the $130,000 Aston Martin Vantage Coupe he had been dreaming about for months.

    “The second I saw it I knew I was going to buy it,” said Poler, 48, who trades oil and petroleum products. “I’ve wanted one for a long time, since I started seeing them in London when I went on business.”

    Super-luxury cars, whose sales plunged after Lehman Brothers Inc.’s collapse and the ensuing financial crisis, are making a comeback. Fiat SpA’s Maserati and Ferrari brands, Bayerische Motoren Werke AG’s Rolls-Royce and Daimler AG’s Maybach are moving out of the lots again as taboos over conspicuous consumption fade with the recovering economy.

    U.S. sales this year of cars priced at more than $100,000 may jump 42 percent after falling 30 percent in 2009, according to automotive industry researcher IHS Global Insight. U.S. gross domestic product has expanded on average an annualized 3.7 percent a quarter since the middle of last year after the biggest economic slump since the Great Depression.

    Demand for the most expensive car models plummeted in the fall of 2008 after the bankruptcy of Lehman Brothers and the arrest of Bernard Madoff for a $50 billion pyramid scheme, the largest investment fraud in history, set in motion a financial crisis that prompted wealthy consumers to rein in spending.

    ‘Poor Taste’

    “It was poor taste to be flashing greenbacks around,” said Rebecca Lindland, an IHS Global Insight analyst in Lexington, Massachusetts. “You don’t think of this segment as having pent-up demand, but there is. These buyers are people that need to be the first ones on the block to have the latest model.”

    The U.S. is the largest market for the most expensive luxury cars, often referred to as supercars. A rebound in stocks and bonuses has revived demand for such vehicles.

    The U.S. stock market posted its biggest gains last year since the 1930s and bank earnings soared, including record profits at Goldman Sachs Group Inc., leading to bigger bonuses. Average compensation and benefits at Goldman Sachs last year was $498,246 per person compared with $316,928 a year earlier.

    Five-Hour Polish

    Lindland estimates Rolls-Royce will increase U.S. sales almost 20 percent this year on demand for the new Ghost, which is 17 inches shorter and nearly 600 pounds lighter than the Phantom. The “baby” Rolls sports a 12-cylinder, 563-horsepower engine, is hand-polished for five hours before delivery and has leather from bulls raised in barbed-wire-free pastures. Other models in demand are Maserati’s GranCabrio convertible and Aston Martin’s $198,000 Rapide, analysts said.

    “These are very emotional vehicles,” said Jeremy Anwyl, who runs the automotive Web site “The people who were holding back had money, but needed a good reason to buy.”

    Waiting lists for Ferrari Californias and 458s are growing again, said Richard Koppelman from the Miller Motorcars dealership, explaining he’s sold out of the 458 and has a waiting list of 180 people.

    “People who still have jobs are saying that things didn’t get as bad as they could have been,” Koppelman said. “Earnings are good on Wall Street. People are getting tired of doing without and are saying, ‘Why not?’ Demand is definitely strengthening a lot.”

    Order your cars as long as there is "liquidity" in the markets...:D :D :D
  2. ?..... ! ...... sales are "flat" over the past two years. :confused: :cool:
  3. I'd wager that sales are down over two years; dealerships are not able to charge the premium they used to. At this point, everyone still wants a good deal. Spring of 07, few really cared.
  4. S2007S


    As for the $130,000 Aston Martin Vantage Coupe all he has to do is step into a 2007-2009 with less than 10,000 miles for about 85k-100k, save himself tens of thousands of dollars. I'm sure they offer just as good as a warranty as if your buying new and whats the big deal, aren't these cars suppose to go 500,000 miles before its first tune up. You can buy these cars used all day long with no miles on them, people buy them and drive them maybe 12 times a year, I would go used.
  5. 377OHMS


    Times are tough. Some of us have to drive domestic cars these days.

    New Shelby Convertible ordered with different springs, cold air kit, speed limiter delete and tuner was still only about half what that guy paid for that Aston. A similarly equiped shelby hardtop did the Texas Mile at 204.7 mph. How fast does the 130k Aston go?

    To tell you the truth I have several Porsches including one that ran in Lemans in 1970 but they sit because the little Ford is so fun and kinda stealthy (I didn't get the stripes). Just plain white with a black top. Like the little mustang you rented at the Orlando airport to take your family to Disneyworld only with 540 HP and top speed just under 200 (ragtops are always slow).

    But like I said, times are tough.
  6. best bang for buck: CTS-V
  7. 377OHMS



    I found 2 at different dealerships.

    Both dealers started lying about delivery claiming the car was in-transit but I have a connection and was shown that they did not have the car inbound at all. Managed to get my deposit back and went over and ordered a new Shelby from Flat Rock, Michigan.

    Looking at the CTS-Vs I see running around town I know I did the right thing. Those caddys are covered with bling looking trim, just not for me. That chicken wire grill doesn't work for me either. And my 100 year old great uncle drives a CTS...
  8. S2007S


    $70,000 for a cadillac, I dont know about that one, the car isnt even good looking to begin with. The car is quick but the looks and resale value are just horrible.

    Would rather drop that kind of money on an Audi s4, M3, used m5, Nissan GTR or any other car priced in that range, you hardly see any of the CTS-V on the road.
  9. swil


    LP570-4 Superleggera baby!!!:D
  10. I agree in principle but you are overpaying IMO. You need to treat car buying like a car dealer or pawnbroker would. You never *need* to buy a luxury car. Therefore you can take advantage of that fact by being a patient lowball bidder. I car dealer I know explained it to me like this:

    First, go to several dealers on the phone and tell them you want to *sell* a car. Make it the same model/make that you want to buy. Tell them you want a cash offer from them to get an idea, before you bring it in for inspection. They will give lowball bids for your car.

    Remember the highest bid that they offered. That is what the market place is offering private sellers for the car you want to buy. Most private sellers would rather sell to a dealer for 75k cash than a private seller for 75k cash - less hassle, more protection, less chance of being robbed etc. So you just increase your bid a bit over the dealers. Bid 77k or 78k, maybe 80k if it's the colour you like or has good options etc. But remember, most options are worth $0. Only really leather interior is worth anything, and that's not much. One of the nice things about buying used, you can get 10-20k of options for free.

    Now, approach every private seller who has the car you want in the colour you want and the options you want. Give them your lowball "dealer +3k" bid. Most of them will laugh and turn you down - for now. Just keep contacting each seller and bidding low. After 2-3 weeks, approach them again, politely talk to them about the car, then ask if they've sold yet. Remind them you have 78k cash and are ready to go. If they still haven't sold in 4 weeks, which most won't, then you might start to get interest. They will drop their prices and look for a compromise. Refuse it and keep your bid low. Eventually, one seller will accept your bid 90% of the time.

    Use common sense and basic car industry knowledge to your advantage. For example, buy in the middle of winter, especially convertibles. Or buy just after a new model comes out - that always kills old model resale values. If you haven't got a sale within 3 months, then you may be bidding too low. Speak to dealers again, and maybe raise your bid 5% if necessary.

    That's it. This will save you 10-20k each time you buy an expensive sports car. Unless there is some dire NEED for an impractical expensive lump of metal, which there never is, then you can ALWAYS afford to be patient. Most other people, especially sellers, are not patient. Take advantage of this fact, just like a patient investor takes advantage of panic sellers. Only bid low, wait for that desperate seller, and save yourself money. Over a lifetime or luxury cars, this can easily save you hundreds of thousands. Work out a 10% annual return on 250k, and this is how much you will save by just being a bit patient.

    IMO the best time to buy is around 3 years, which is when most warranties run out. Thing is, you can always get an extended warranty and renew it each year. Then, either keep your car until it is run into the ground, or if you replace it, do so just before the next model is to be introduced. Another source of bargains is models which the dealers are no longer selling on their forecourts. This means that the only buyers now are 3rd party dealers (who are real lowballers) or the private market. If you can get used cars in the 30-50k niche, say 5 years old, then often you will be the only private buyer around. Most private buyers won't pay that much, and most 3rd party dealers will rape the sellers on price.

    There are a small handful of cars which are worth buying new. One is limited edition premium brand cars that got fantastic reviews. Examples include things like the McLaren F1, Porsche GT3 etc. Because of the low supply, and high reputation, they are always in demand from car enthusiasts, and when they get older, luxury car collectors start bidding for them. As an example, I once took a test drive in a 3 year old 996 GT3 from an official Porsche dealer. It was for sale for around £65k IIRC. Now, about 5 years later, you still can't find them for under 50k. That's 3k per year depreciation for a car that was like 80k new. 80k to 50k in 8-10 years is glacial depreciation.

    Another example is big name luxury/sports cars once they hit bottom of their depreciation curve. For example, Ferrari 550 Maranellos got down to around £50k 5 years ago. They are still £50k. They will always be at least £50k (for good ones). No one is going to sell a V12 Ferrari for 25k, no matter how old it is. At this point you are paying a certain minimum for the brand name and performance. Even if it's 20 years old, it's still a Ferrari, it's still a V12 with 500bhp and 200mph performance, and it's still a great driver's car.

    Remember the first rule of expensive consumer goods - never, never pay retail.
    #10     May 26, 2010