Home / Car Advice / Exotic Car Ownership is cheaper than you thought!

 

Owning An Exotic Car Can Be Just As Affordable As Any Other Car

Ferrari-458-Spider-5

 

Image: Luxury Rental Europe

When we think of “exotic” we often immediately think of the cost of purchasing one. And it is what separates some exotics from the rest of the crowd. There are things that have to be considered other than just the most expensive exotics and even when purchasing an exotic car there is much more to ownership than just the purchase price. In fact the cost of operating any car has built in financial considerations.

Common costs associated with any vehicle are similar and that’s why it’s possible to calculate the actual cost of owning any vehicle. When you begin looking at all the factors you start to see a clearer picture of how, when compared to the cost of ownership of any car, owning an exotic vehicle isn’t that different than owning just about any other vehicle. From routine maintenance to actual repairs you can control it to a high degree.

Value tracking company Edmunds finally put this knowledge to their own formula which is used by many people. However, long before they put it into a universal format exotic car buyers and collectors were already calculating hidden costs, everyday costs, and cost of purchase. What this allows us all to see is what it costs to own say a Lexus GS compared to a BMW M5. As a car enthusiast you already calculated the purchase price in your head to be about double for the M5, but what about all those other things?

 
  • Jose Carlos Gadea

    What? A ford Focus DOESNT use the same tyres as a Ferrari Italia, like the one on the first page. Those are exotic size, and cost double or triple. And with all that power and lateral G capability, you’ll wear them faster, too. And each work hour on a Ferrari authorized dealers is like 200 bucks. You can put regular oil… but even “non premium” will be expensive for that engine, if you want to keep the warrany.

    • http://unlimitedrevs.com Alex Filsinger

      We never said that a focus will cost the same to maintain… We simply said it costs less than you think to maintain the exotic. As far as oil, lets use the 458 you reference from the first page. It uses regular mobile one synthetic oil. A case is roughly $45.00. Nothing exotic and expensive there. Next up is tires. Ok wide tires cost more, however they are not anything exotic. Michelin pilot supersports, which are used on exotics, sports sedans, and even many entry level luxury cars really don’t cost all that much. Sure, they are not 60$ a tire like an economy tire, but they are far from crazy. Hourly labor rate at the dealer is $185 at my local dealership. This is roughly in line with any other luxury car you might buy. For example, tons of people buy an entry level BMW 3 series, then pay the maintenance cost happily so they can say they drive a BMW. The exotic costs roughly the same to maintain. As far as wearing out tires because of “power” and “lateral G capability”, that is a load of crap. Sure, if you launch the car off every light, like you should, and corner at the limits, the tries will not last long. However, most exotic car owner drive the car rather gingerly. If you were to drive your aforementioned Focus the same way, its tire wear would be awful as well. We never said that an exotic car is going to be a bargain to own and maintain, all we are saying is that it costs less than you think it will.

      • efrustrated

        Pearls to swine, they wouldn’t believe you even if they tried it. I’ve spent decades trying to explain to Ford Fiesta owners and their ilk that Audi/BMW/Mercs etc are (or certainly were in the past) built better, using better materials.
        Yes, if they need repair, it is more expensive, but they’re not built to the lowest price in the first place, so develop far fewer faults over a lifetime.
        Each to their own…keep buying those Kia and chevrolet abominations, guys, it means my mid range sports cars cost less.

      • Mr Creosote

        Looks expensive to me….for Ferrari Service

        • http://unlimitedrevs.com Alex Filsinger

          Note these ferraris are all made in the 90’s…. Modern Ferrrari’s are far cheaper. For example, the major service on a 355 was so expensive because the engine had to be removed from the vehicle to perform it, while the ferrari 360 did not require that. You would find that if you looked at the maintenance costs for a BMW, Audi, or Mercedes that people will readily buy and pay to maintain, you would find it to be very similar. Especially if you look at an M or AMG model. Additionally, you quoted dealer prices. You can service the cars for far less money at a good independent. The service will be the same, but without the markup of the ferrari dealership.

          • Mr Creosote

            Same argument goes for any car. Pep boys is cheaper than the Ford Dealer too.
            That doesn’t mean that the cost of servicing the cars is remotely close to similar.
            Buy brake pads for example. And no – – the Mercedes pads do not last longer than the ones on a Cadillac.

          • http://unlimitedrevs.com Alex Filsinger

            Did you read the article, and did you read what I said? I don’t think you did. All we are saying, is that it costs less than many people think to own and maintain these cars. Many of my close friends own Lamborghinis, Ferraris and Porsches, and they all say the maintenance is no worse than on their Mercedes-AMGs. I have an AMG and brake pads cost me about $400 for a set of track spec racing pads. Lower performance street spec are $200. Sure, this is more than for a golf, but the cars brakes are twice the size. At the end of the day, parts are going to be more expensive, but they are not nearly as bad as many people think. Many people have the illusion that Exotic sports cars cost 10s of thousands per year to maintain, when in reality its more like 1-2000. Less than you would think, and far closer to attainable if you work hard. This guy spent under 1k in a year on his 360 when you spread the cost of unusual maintenance items like replacing the battery over the 3-4 years or more that it will last. http://jalopnik.com/heres-what-it-cost-me-to-own-a-ferrari-for-a-year-1669923931

          • Mr Creosote

            I suspect they also drive their Lambo less than 5K miles/year. what is the cost if you wanted to drive your Lambo year round as a daily driver in Albany on the salted roads?
            Sure it is possible to not drive it and spend next to nothing on it to have a trailerqueen/showcar that you can stand around like King of the Hill and say ‘Yup’

            If you actually used it as transportation, it woudl feel like someone took the NYFD ‘Jaws of life’ to your wallet.

          • http://unlimitedrevs.com Alex Filsinger

            My friends daily drive their cars putting about 10k per year on them, and I assure you they are spending less than that. Your numbers are again dealer prices. Im not going to keep going back and forth with you. We live in Southern California, so luckily we don’t have to contend with the winter, instead we have the salt from the ocean which is worse. You clearly don’t understand the point we are making.

          • Mr Creosote

            If you didn’t want me to use the numbers from YOUR LINK from Jalopnik as proof why did you point me there to begin with?

            YOUR REFERENCE stated his Cost of Ownership was 1100 per MONTH. (See copy/paste below- – he spent 4629.81 for the 12 months)

            NOT 1000 per year.
            Perhaps you inserted the wrong link? Or worse:

            Maybe you just like to throw out “proof” and hope nobody would actually look at it.
            His experience (at 17K miles it needed 2300 for tires). So your 10K per year driver will need tires and brakes every other year.

            —————-insert copy past from your Jalopnic deMuro articls——-
            But that doesn’t mean it was cheap: in the last twelve months, I spent a total of $4,629.81 on repairs and maintenance.

            Here’s how it breaks down: immediately after driving the car home from Florida in January, I replaced the tires and did an oil change at 17,941 miles for $2,333.75. The car then went seven months and 3,238 miles without issue. At that point, it was due for another oil change, and the dealer recommended changing the front brake pads and rotors — for a total cost of $1,754.45. My final dealer visit came 36 days and 707 miles later in early November, when I patched the tire and replaced the battery for $541.61.

          • http://unlimitedrevs.com Alex Filsinger

            Did you read the proof I posted. He says in the article that if you remove all the major items that came up that you wouldn’t normally have such as tires you come to $835 for the year, which of you do the math is $70 a month. The tires will last 10-15k miles. But let’s say you do a set of tires in that year too. That brings you to $3835. Which is still only $320 a month. This is not ridiculous especially when you consider its a car that was 150k new. I’m done with this debate.

          • Mr Creosote

            Done because you lost….
            You cannot take an article that says cost was 1100 a month… then decide ‘but if you deduct all the money I paid’ GAWRSH it was cheaper!! EVEN MORE if I just ignore the 8500 in depreciation it is even lower.

            That is like saying “I did energy saving lightbulbs one better….. instead of replacing incandescent with LED” I sat in the dark and REALLY saved money. pffffft

  • Jack Black

    They fail to mention the costs of things like transmissions failing. I’ll bet a Ferrari transmission for a cheap Ferrari is 20 grand. I priced some brake pads for a Ferrari once they cost between 3 hundred to eight hundred dollars for a set. Despite the costs, I hope to own a Ferrari or Porsche turbo one day. I had a Porsche once but it never ran. LOL

    • http://unlimitedrevs.com Alex Filsinger

      Transmission replacement on the ferrari is probably not a pleasant number, however it would be covered under warranty, as ferrari has a 7 year warranty on new and Certified pre owned vehicles. Porsches actually cost no more than a mercedes AMG or BMW M to maintain.

      • Jay Ford

        And give us some examples of “costing no more than . . . . “

        • http://unlimitedrevs.com Alex Filsinger

          for example, an Oil change on a Ferrari 458 done at a good independent won’t cost more than $300, which is exactly the same as a Mercedes AMG or BMW M… At the end of the day they are just cars….. They are not nearly as expensive as people make them out to be to maintain.

          • Randy Pancetalk

            these cars require belt and valve services that normal cars don’t need. These are often in the five figures. A year.

          • http://unlimitedrevs.com Alex Filsinger

            As with your above comment, this is outdated information. Please provide a source if you believe otherwise.

    • Randy Pancetalk

      way low on the tranny costs. For instance, an Aston Martin Vanquish transmission is $60,000.

  • Efried

    Capital cost dominate with exotic sports cars with regards to total cost of ownership

  • Jay Ford

    Talk about spin city! Mr. Filsinger lives in a fantasy world. Just plain upkeep and maintenance for an “exotic” or performance automobile in this day and age would send most folks to debtors prison!

    • http://unlimitedrevs.com Alex Filsinger

      I don’t know where you get your information from. They don’t cost any more than a High performance Mercedes or BMW to maintain. Additionally, if you can afford to buy the car, then you can afford to spend some money to service the car. Many of my friends have exotics, some even have multiple, and none of them complain about outrageous service bills. They all say that the costs are in line with an AMG or M car. Sure its more than your normal little economy car, but its far from unreasonable.

  • Randy Pancetalk

    This article is pure fantasy. Many exotics require yearly engine-out service. $15k-30k.

    Full brake job on exotics with ceramic discs is like $20k.

    • http://unlimitedrevs.com Alex Filsinger

      This is outdated information. Current exotics do not require engine out services. That is a thing of the past. Yes ceramic disks are expensive, however they last 4x as long as standard steel brakes, so at worst its a wash. The likelihood of you actually putting that many miles on your exotic are relatively slim.