Shop around for a car and you'll see endless buying and leasing incentives . . . for those fortunate enough to qualify for a loan in the current credit markets. Car dealerships are offering tremendous promotions because, simply, they need to sell cars and move inventory. Is the rare and exotic supercar market struggling as well?
Believe it or not, those ultra-expensive vehicles are selling. Research shows car enthusiasts who have the capital are willing to spend it on exotic cars. Rare car owners listing their vehicles have been well rewarded. Some dealers, private sellers, and auctions are posting record sales numbers. Let's look at the McLaren F1. A limited number of these hand-built supercars were put on the market back in the early 1990s. The F1 is powered by a BMW custom-built, 6.1-liter, naturally aspirated V12 behemoth. The engine pumps out 627 horsepower, launching the car from 0-60 miles per hour in just 3.2 seconds with a top speed of 243 mph -- not bad for a car built almost two decades ago.
Check out the recent sale of one particular McLaren F1. Listed as number 065, it was the show car at the McLaren Park Lane display room in the UK. The classic is in mint condition and its past owner reported only 484 kilometers (300 miles) tacked on its odometer at the time of purchase. The amazing thing about this vehicle, other than its performance and original price tag, set around $1 million, is the demand the car has even after 20 years. Brace yourself for the selling price: this rare show-condition car went just last week at the RMs Automobiles of London Auction for $3.68 million.
This is not an isolated incident. Other exotic cars purchased in 2008 have sold for more than double this price -- and one we found went for seven-fold.
Ever see the movie Ferris Bueller's Day Off? If you have, you no doubt remember shedding some tears when one of the stars of the movie, a red mint-condition 1961 Ferrari 250 GT SWB California Spyder, was destroyed completely by teenage shenanigans. You may have cried twice as much if you new that in May 2008 a similar car would sell for a staggering $10.9 million. The lucky new owner of a black 250GT California Spyder was purchased by celebrity DJ Chris Evans at the RM auction in Monterey..
The car initially wasn't projected to rake in record numbers, but a bidding war resulted and the vehicle was purchased for double the expected price. It is propelled by a 2,953cc V12 engine pumping out 280 horsepower, which may not seem like a lot of ponies compared to some of the modern supercars, but by '60s standards it was significant. Many enthusiasts have been dreaming about this automobile, which could account for its hefty price tag – simple supply and demand.
Ferrari, a legendary company with a long history in the racing world, is now in the books for something other than racing. The firm has the honor of knowing a Ferrari 250 GTO owns the record for the most expensive car ever sold. In September of this year an Englishman, who remains anonymous, purchased one of only 39 Ferrari 250 GTOs built for an astonishing $28.5 million. This extremely rare racer dominated the World Sports Car championship during its days in action from 1962-1964. So what does spending almost $30 million on a car get you? To a car enthusiast, everything: a piece of racing and automotive history, as well as exceptional design, craftsmanship, and engineering. All paired, of course, with bragging rights.
These dramatic sales show that exotic and rare supercars still are being swooped up by the super-rich, who aren't as reliant on smooth credit markets to pay for their pricey toys. In other words, if you are looking to sell one of these rare vehicles, the market is open and ready – name your price.
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