Since I did the last Supercar Market update in January 2023, the world has changed……again. Money is expensive but now not getting any more so on a monthly basis, used car prices continue to contract, car loan delinquencies are rising, Spotify fired the Spare, the UK still has the same Prime Minister although a former one just got chased out of Parliament, the US, for the first time in its history, has an indicted former President, and the Hunter Biden saga almost makes me nostalgic for Roger Clinton. COVID, which just about everyone has forgotten about is still around and was killing a few thousand people a month in the US in Jan-Apr. However, the CDC has fixed that issue by stopping reporting data in May. In addition, who would have thought a couple of years ago that it would be Mark Zuckerberg who would be delivering the final coup de grâce to Twitter. I summarized the situation in January 2023 as follows:
Right now, we have a sport & supercar market that is slowly deflating. Inventories are way up. Interest rates have spiked, and the housing market, which made a lot of buyers feel much richer than they should have, is in decline. The bill from the excess of the last decade has come due. Those models that have exploded in value during the Covid era are the ones most likely at risk of a rapid decent. The Hypercar bubble is history, the latest ones launched are at best holding at MSP. Values on the last great set, the LaFerrari, P1 & 918 have been stable for quite a while now. The older vintage cars are either holding or in gradual decline. Demographic shifts, as the percentage of the population that knows how to drive a manual car continues to decline, will likely accelerate this trend over the coming years. To end on a positive note though, if you have the cash, the next 12-18 months could be a great time to buy.
The Macro Situation
Which brings us too today. We are still a long way from the old normal and I doubt we will ever be reverting back to it. Remote and flexible working are here to stay. The pendulum on ESG has finally begun its long swing back towards the center as the number of companies talking about it in the latest round of quarterly earnings has dropped by half vs. 2021. In fact, Larry Fink at Blackrock refuses to mention it at all. On the economic front, the decade of cheap money is over. Inflation remains stubbornly high despite the Fed taking interest rates from basically 0% in 2021 to over 5% in 2023. The stock market has recovered a bit in 2023 with the DOW up 2% YTD. After hitting parity to the $ back in late 2022, the € has recovered a bit and now sits at €1 = $1.10. The British £ has also recovered a bit vs. the $ in the first half of 2023 and currently sits at $1.28 = £1 but is still well off its pre Brexit levels and unlikely to return to those levels anytime soon. After an extended mud throwing session, the US and China are finally looking to cool the temperatures and get back to a more normal trading relationship. Putin’s mad foray into the Ukraine is looking more and more like it will end very badly for him. In the most recent unexpected turn, his former chef marched his mercenaries half way to Moscow before deciding to bugger off to Belarus. How King George V’s cousin ended up seems to be very much on Putin’s mind these days.
Instead of going through a methodical analysis of different parts of the Supercar market, as there are plenty of better informed people who already do that, I thought it might be more interesting to layout a few things that have caught my attention.
Porsche Carrera GT: Poster Child
If there is a poster car for the COVID supercar market price jump insanity, the Porsche Carrera GT would be a leading contender. For most of its first decade of existence, Carrera GTs were $300k-$450k cars. In 2014, they started climbing and by late 2015 the new range was $600k-$800k. This held until the beginning of 2022 when suddenly Carrera GTs jumped by $1 mil. to $1.8 mil before finally hitting an all-time auction high of $2 mil. in March 2022 for a 182 mile grey car. Since then, it’s been a downward slope with most auction sales closer to the $1 mil. mark than the $2 mil. mark with a couple falling back under $1 mil. including the latest silver 2006 Carrera GT at $930k the Broad Arrow June auction. I had one Porsche expert tell me early in 2023 that he believes they will drop back down to the $800k range by the end of the year. Based on current trends, he is likely spot on.
The Ferrari F12 & 812: Still Depreciation Champs ?
I have been following the Ferrari F12 and 812 market fairly closely for about a year and a half now. Adding a Prancing Horse badged V12 GT to the garage has been high on my list for quite some time, but I am not in a rush and refuse to pay a premium for a car that has traditionally been the depreciation champion of the Ferrari line up. The number of F12s on the market is consistent with 6 months ago but twice the number 12 months ago. Today there are 14 F12s on the US Ferrari preowned website ranging in price from $240k to $300k and 39 on Autotrader starting at $217k. Prices on F12s look like they have dropped by at least $30k in the last year. F12 prices have been pushed down by a combination of increased inventory and drops in values on the 812 Superfast, which replaced the F12 in the Ferrari line up. Further decreases will likely be driven mostly by these two variables. For the 812, inventories are substantially higher with a whopping 36 812s on the US Ferrari preowned website ranging in price from $325k to $435k and 64 on Autotrader. I expect we will see the next big move in F12 values when the first 812 is listed on the US Ferrari preowned website below $300k. The way the market is moving, this may happen before the end of the year.
Aston Martin Vanquish Gen 2 2012-2018: The V12 Bargain Buy?
The 2nd generation 2012-2018 Vanquish was basically an evolution of the DBS. The Vanquish is built off the same basic platform with a few styling cues swiped off the One-77 added. The Gen 2 Vanquish was only sold with an automatic gearbox. Early models came with a 6 speed autobox with later (mid 2014-2018) switching to a much improved 8 speed ZF automatic. A further update with increased horsepower and revised aerodynamics was delivered in 2017 with the cars now being badged Vanquish S. Today you can find higher mileage coupes starting at $80k with Volante’s starting at $105k with late “S” models of both a bit over $200k. The low end of the market has dropped by $20k in the last 6 months but post 2014 Volante’s don’t seem to have moved despite multiple cars sitting on the market for extended periods. The late model Vanquish are still depreciating, and I would expect that they will eventually settle down at a similar price range as the DBS. With 52 listed for sale on Autotrader plus an additional 11 on Aston Martin Preowned USA right now, it is a buyer’s market. In addition, there seems to be a $20-30k spread between similar cars listed on independent dealerships vs. at official Aston Martin dealerships. Pricing on used Ferraris is much tighter.
Bring A Trailer (BAT) & the BMW Z8 Craze
BMW Z8s were a very hot BAT car in 2021 & 2022 but the market seems to have cooled in the last 6 months. During the BAT driven frenzy, average values rose steadily to the point where they were peaking at over $200k for a well-maintained low mileage (under 20k miles) Z8. Blue Z8’s commanded even a large premium with one hitting an insane $445k. In the last six months though, it looks like the market has flattened with cars that have been driven now in the $160k-$180k range and garage queens $40k-$50k more (unless its blue than the sky is the limit. As a benchmark from the same 1999-2004 time frame, a Ferrari 360 Spider is a $65k-130k car these days (with 6 speed manuals being at the top of the price band and F1 paddle shifts at the bottom). A total 2,543 Z8s were sold in North America which is roughly on par with the 2,389 360 Spiders Ferrari sold. Prices ($128k) and performance stats on both the Z8 & 360 were nearly identical when new. This begs the question on why the less exotic BMW Z8 is worth roughly 2x what a Ferrari 360 Spider is today. Some if it may have to do with Z8s being at the top of the modern BMW collectable pyramid while 360s have become the go to choice for a modern starter Ferrari.
Classic Ferraris (the 90’s & 00’s): Steady as She Goes….
This one’s a bit painful to write as we sold our Ferrari F50 back in 2014, but over the last decade, F50s have gone from the ugly unloved stepchild in the Ferrari limited edition line to the most lusted after of the group, and for good reason. An hour’s drive in one provides all the proof needed. F50s have risen from just under $2 mil. in 2019 to topping out at $4.9 mil. and the march up has been very consistent until this time last year. Since then, the market has stalled and the last 3 low mileage F50s have all sold in the $4.6 mil. – $4.9 mil. range. Ferrari Enzos on the other hand have been trading in the $2 – $3 mil. range depending on color and mileage for most of the last decade and it doesn’t look like this is going to change anytime soon despite the occasional sale on a rare color that breaks that band. While the F50 has aged brilliantly, the Enzo and its first generation F1 gearbox has not. Another good positive example of this corollary is the 430 Scuderia. In fact, I would rate the 430 Scuderia as the gem of all the 2000-2010 Ferrari models. The final generation F1 gearbox in the 430 Scuderia is a joy to use and has aged well. Prices on 430 Scuderia’s have risen substantially in the US from around $180k in 2019 and now the similar car will cost you $150k more (strangely they really haven’t changed much in the UK). Like a lot of models that seem to regain popularity after a time in the wilderness though, the number now up for sale has jumped with US Ferrari preowned website now sporting seven (and Autotrader has 15) whereas you would be lucky to find two listed three years ago. Probably the biggest head scratcher though is the huge jump in values in 2020-2022 on the Ferrari F355 GTS. They have gone from $70k to a high sale at $307k for a Euro F355 GTS 6 speed. The F355 GTS was the first Ferrari I owned and of the three F355 variants (Berlinetta, GTS, Spider) I would have put it squarely at the bottom of the pile. Leaky roof panels and the reliability of a coked up supermodel just doesn’t have that much charm. A few years ago, I had the F355 pegged as the perfect starter Ferrari, but with the recent price increase, today it would be the much better built and more reliable 360.
70’s Ferrari Fiberglass
Ever since I owned a Ferrari 308 GTB “Vetroresina” well over a decade and a half ago, I have always been intrigued by them. These are the 1st generation Ferrari 308 GTBs produced in 1975-77 with fiberglass bodies. Just over 800 were produced, making them rarer than either a similar era Ferrari Daytona or a Ferrari 512 BB. In fact, I would put it in a similar category with the Dino 206 which preceded the hugely popular Dino 246 GT. For the better part of the last decade these “glass” 308s have commanded over a 100% premium vs. the far more common steel bodied 308s. In the Covid era, they have traded hands remarkably consistently in the $150k range up until the last year. After sales at $155k in both Feb and March 2022, the next sale was at $135k in May, followed in July with a no sale at $115k, finally in December one sold at $108k. There has been one exception to this where a blue Euro fiberglass 308 GTB went for $280k at RM Sotheby’s Amelia Island auction in March. This glass 308 GTB came with over $200k worth of invoices from recent restoration work. This has to be a unique transaction where the car was both poorly sold and poorly bought from a financial perspective. The seller was likely $70k-$100k underwater and the buyer would be about the same if he had to try to turn around and sell it today. I’ve taken a look at two glass 308 GTBs this year. Discussion on the 1stended when I requested a compression test and the 2nd when I pointed out it was well overdue for a cambelt change, major service, and new tires.
Vintage Ferraris (the 60’s)
If you look at the longer-term trends on a few of the better known of the 60’s Ferrari models, it is a bit of a mixed bag but the direction does seem clear. Ferrari 365 GTB/4 Daytona’s have bucked the trend and do seem to have risen a bit and now settled $500-$550k range. Ferrari 275 GTB’s look to be $1.5 mil. to $2.5 mil depending on length of nose and number of carburetors. The slide in 275 GTB’s has ended and prices do seem to have stabilized over the last 18 months. The Ferrari 250 Lusso is on a similar track to the 275 GTB. Back in 2015 they were $2 mil. cars and now $1.2-$1.5 mil. is where the market sits. One 250 Lusso did bring $2 mil at auction in 2022 but it was a rare perfectly restored car with a very well documented history. The most recent sale at auction was for $1.2 mil. for what would be described as a nice “driver”. Demographic shifts will continue to put pressure on the older cars with the less valuable or well know models taking the hit first. These Vintage Ferraris are less appealing to the younger generation of enthusiasts who did not grow up with them on their bedroom walls. These are also all cars that take real skill to drive and punish mistakes with massive repair bills with a high potential for broken bones. These cars are also all fitted with that “millennial anti theft” device, the manual gearbox. With each passing year, finding both parts and a skilled mechanic who can care for the car are becoming increasing difficult.
Vintage Aston Martins DB4, DB5 & DB6
If you look at the longer-term trends on the main 60’s Aston Martin models, the direction does seem clear. Looking at the last 5-6 examples of the DB4 & DB5 that have gone across the auction block, in almost no cases have the lower reserve been reached. Even for those that are noted as sold. It’s the lower value DB6 coupes are the exception, with several near the high end of the reserve or even exceeding it. Today they are reliably $150k-$200k cars. The higher powered DB6 Vantage still commanding a 50%-100% premium over the base DB6 depending on condition. DB5s look to have now settled in the $450k-$550k range depending on condition and spec. This is down from $700-$850k for a similar car a few years back. Its DB4s have seemed to be a bit more stable over the long run and an average DB4 is a $200k-350k car now, consistent with where it was 6 months ago. Demographic shifts will continue to put pressure on the older cars, so I don’t see these rising in value again anytime soon. Vintage Aston Martins are cars that take real skill to drive well and are a bit of an acquired taste as light and nimble are not words normally used to describe any of them. Condition on all is a huge driver of value as restoration costs on all are eyewatering.
The Hypercar Trinity
Prices on the 2013/2014 Hypercar Trinity, which include the oddly named Ferrari LaFerrari, the McLaren P1, and the Porsche 918 have been very stable through 2022 with not a lot of cars changing hands, at least publicly. LaFerraris now sit squarely in the $2-$4 mil. range depending on spec and mileage with the higher number being achieved by LaFerraris that have sadly never felt a leaf, rock, or pothole under their tires. On the latest two auction sales, the difference of 21k miles resulted in a delta of $1.7 mil. in the selling price of the two LaFas. Both P1s and 918s moved up from an early Covid lows of $900k to $1.5-2 mil. in 2022 and have held steady over the last six months. Where prices go from here will be very interesting to watch. I expect the next generation of Hypercars to be announced by at least two of the three manufacturers in 2024. What this does to values on the last generation will be interesting to see but at least initially I doubt it will have a positive effect. All of these models are falling into the exploding maintenance costs category as their hybrid technology ages. When annual service bills start approaching the cost of a nice used Ferrari 458 or McLaren 650S it will have an impact. These are also not cars you can just park in a warehouse and forget. They need to be constantly on life support (i.e battery chargers) and do much better when used reguarly than if they sit.
As of July 2023, we have a sport & supercar market that after correcting a bit in 2022 has largely held stable. How long this holds is anyone’s guess as inventories on newer models are way up. Interest rates have spiked, and those models that have exploded in value during the Covid era are the ones most likely at risk of a second decent. The Hypercar bubble is history, the latest ones launched are at best holding at MSP. Values on the last great set, the LaFerrari, P1 & 918 have been stable for quite a while now. The older vintage cars are either holding or in gradual decline. Demographic shifts, as the percentage of the population that knows how to drive a manual car continues to decline, will likely continue to put pressure on the vintage market over the coming years. However if you have the cash, its a good time to start looking for your next garage addition.
Thoughts and comments? Please see the comments section below.
The sign up for new blog email notifications is at the bottom of the page.