Every time some stupid show goes off the air, talking heads always refer to it as the end of an era when it isn’t at all - you’ll be able to binge watch the same episodes on Netflix until your eyes bleed or until you realize that your taste in sitcoms is severely lacking. However, when the subject is exotic sports cars, there really is no better time than now to buy your first Ferrari because holy nertz are they getting expensive.
If I approached you a year ago and said that $50,000 would buy you a well-sorted Ferrari, you’d likely parrot back a bunch of nonsense about the cost of engine-out procedures and getting a better performance deal on a Mustang GT. Well, as it turns out, if you bought a car a year ago - even with sending your car to Mario’s Ferrari Emporium to get serviced at dollars on the dollar - you’d still be ahead when it comes to valuation over most anything with four wheels and a brake pedal.
Since speculation is useless without example, let’s take the last truly iconic and beautiful Ferrari, in my opinion - The F355. In late 2014, when I had a few more hair follicles and most of my dignity, I wrote about how a sorted F355 could be purchased for what amounted to used SUV money, or less than $40,000.
Fast forward to the age of feeling the Bern and YouTube Red, and the price of a similar F355 has increased more than $20,000. Although the manual cars are more desirable and have scaled the wall a bit faster than the disastrous F1 examples, this market appreciation is happening across the board. Currently, it’s near impossible to find an F355 - regardless of condition and pedigree - for 2014's prices.
To put a finer point on it, even if you factored in the near-$8000 for an engine out procedure that should be completed every five years, you’d still be heavily in the black if you had to sell your car and recoup your investment. You’d essentially be paid handsomely to drive a Ferrari, and I can’t imagine a more fitting description of heaven, or hell if you’re a claustrophobic communist with a bad back.
The great thing about this is, almost any hand-built Ferrari in good shape and worth its prancing horse badge will suffice. Ferrari 308s, 348s, 360s, and F430s are all appreciating at an alarming pace, with manual transmissions getting rightfully snagged up by the well-to-do nouveau-riche.
They’re still slightly out of reach for the average 9-to-5 gearhead with the cheapest examples still being more than $50,000, but I’m confident that with a few key Craigslist postings, John or Jane Everyman could have your very own appreciating Italian masterpiece at the cost of eating ramen noodles for a little while and sleeping outside.
Unlike infomercials, I’m not lying to the general public when I say that this is a limited time offer. The best time to buy a Ferrari was five years ago. The next best time is now. Get on it and make some money.