The McLaren F1 LM Revealed

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As a car enthusiast there is always one question that is asked in conversion—what is your favorite car? I have been asked this question countless times by so many people and my answer has never changed. Of course, the Lamborghini Murcielago, Enzo Ferrari and Maserati MC12 come to mind, but one super-car stands tall above the rest—the 1995 McLaren F1 LM.

Lamborghini Murcielago LP-640 Roadster.

Maserati MC12

Enzo Ferrari

Produced by the legendary racing company McLaren, the F1 LM is an extremely limited-edition version of the already insane F1 and F1 GTR. The F1 LM has modifications from the track only F1 GTR to make it street-legal.

McLaren F1 LM

It all started in 1992 when Gordon Murray designed and produced the original McLaren F1 that would be allowed on public roads. McLaren had already more than proven itself on the track, but could it compete with Ferrari and Lamborghini which were already having great success producing street cars? Well, the answer was yes. It did more than compete; it absolutely tore up any competition. From 1992 to 1998 only 106 F1 cars rolled off the assembly line in Woking, Surrey, England; only five F1 LM’s were produced. Before we even get to the performance specs, the production number instantly adds huge value to the car.

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The more “common” McLaren F1 boasts incredibly impressive design, power and handling. BMW and the M Sport division built Murray a custom 6.1L V12 engine called the BMW S70/8. Producing 627 horsepower and 480 lb-ft of torque the F1 will reach 60 mph in a blistering 3.2 seconds, 100 mph in just 6.3 seconds and will top out at 248 mph. As one can imagine, these are unheard of numbers in the nineties, and the vehicle quickly became the worlds fastest street-legal car and held the title until 2005. The naturally aspirated engine sits in Carbon Fiber body panels surrounded by gold foil for heat insulation. A reported 16 grams of gold was used in each McLaren. The limited F1 LM uses the same engine as the track-only F1 GTR; a naturally aspirated V12 producing 680 horsepower and 520 lb-ft of torque. The F1 LM will scream to 60 mph in 2.9 seconds, 100 mph in 5.9 seconds and has a max speed of 243 mph. The top speed is lower on the the LM due to added aerodynamic drag.

Notice the gold plating.

Notice the gold plating.

Pop-open the enormous gull-wing doors and you’ll be quite surprised when you notice where the drivers seat is. Murray designed the cars to have the drivers seat in the middle of the car; this gives the driver a more complete F1 racing experience. It not only positions the driver in the same spot as if in a real F1 car, but it allows for much better views of the road in front. Sitting just behind and to the side of the drivers seat are two passenger seats. Yes, this astonishing super-car has room for three passengers. To make things even more intense, it’s recommended both the driver and passengers wear headphones to allow communication to the other passengers during a ride. This is due to the monstrous noise the engine makes. To save weight, little to no insulation was used to keep out the V12’s roar.

Doors up.

Doors up.

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All five McLaren F1 LM’s produced were painted Papaya Orange to honor Bruce McLaren and the color of his race car. There is in fact a sixth version of the LM called the XP1 LM (also painted in Papaya Orange) that is owned by McLaren and remains in the factory. The car was original promised to Lewis Hamilton, McLaren’s F1 team driver if he won two world championships. Hamilton left the company in 2013 to join Mercedes-Benz after winning one world championship. Rumors have it that the car today is valued at over $4,000,000.

This super-car came far from stripped down; Murray wanted to give drivers comfort as well as performance. Each vehicle came with a specially designed lightweight 10 disc Kenwood sound system that was specifically made to tailor to the buyers music preferences. The cars do not have a radio however because Murray said that he himself barely ever listened to it. The cars also surprisingly come with air conditioning, window defrosters, electric windows and remote control locking. Inside the cabin the lucky owner will find button releases for outside panel access, a storage compartment,and courtesy lights. Also included is a gold plated tool kit, high performance headlights and reverse/fog lights.

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Upon purchasing the record-setting vehicle each buyer received a custom edition Tag Heuer Chronometer wristwatch. Each car was specifically produced to the buyers’ needs and wants. McLaren flew out all the buyers to have the seats custom fit to the their body types. The seats are also non-adjustable because they too are specifically set for the driver’s ideal driving position. This of course makes finding a used F1 that much more difficult if you plan to drive it (which I hope you would).

The value of the McLaren F1 and F1 LM have skyrocketed above its original price tag of just under $1,000,000. In 2008 a McLaren F1 was sold for about $4,000,000 and in 2012 at the Pebble Beach Concourse d’Elegance chassis number 066 was sold for a record breaking $8,400,700. Although it is difficult to find an owner willing to give up one of these masterpieces, many have been offered for sale fetching from $4,000,000 all the way to $10,000,000 and above for the F1 LM. McLaren will not release the names of the owners to the public but it is known that famous designer Ralph Lauren has a collection of the cars in his personal garage. There is no doubt that the price of these cars will continue to grow in the future.

The McLaren F1 LM (middle) surrounded by the F1 (Silver) and F1 GT LongTail (Black)

The McLaren F1 LM (middle) surrounded by the F1 (Silver) and F1 GT LongTail (Black)

The McLaren F1 LM (Papaya Orange) and the F1 GT LongTail (Burgundy)

Today, it is extremely rare to see one of these monsters on public streets. I have only seen three in person and yet this has been my favorite car since I was young. My first sighting came over ten years ago at the New York International Auto Show when Mercedes-Benz had a black F1 on display. A few years a later I spotted the insanely rare F1 LM in its beautiful Papaya Orange crossing over the George Washington Bridge here in New York/New Jersey. My latest sighting came on the Long Island Expressway here in New York as a white F1 flew by just a few years ago. Unfortunately, all three sightings came and went so fast that I was unable to snap a picture. All pictures shown throughout the article have come from CarZach fans who have generously sent them over to CarZachdotCom@Gmail.com. I encourage you to send in any sightings you have!

Contrary to popular thought that McLaren would never put out a “newer” F1, they did. The McLaren P1 debuted in 2012 and was limited to just 375 units. All units were sold out by November 2013 at a price of $1,350,000. In my opinion, the F1 and F1 LM will never be replaced. No matter how advanced technology gets a super-car will never be produced so pure and beautiful as the F1. I would love to hear your opinions on whether or not the P1 can truly be considered an F1 replacement. Feel free to comment on the article, tweet us, Instagram us or send us a direct email to CarZachdotCom@Gmail.com.

The all- new McLaren P1

The all- new McLaren P1

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Fast, Fun and Affordable

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Fast, fun and affordable. Three words that have endless meaning in the car world. When my father decided to buy a new car a few years ago, I of course jumped all over the situation and found him all kinds of cars. He wanted something that was fast, fun, and of course affordable. Another requirement was a sunroof and manual transmission. In the end, the search came down to two vehicles- the Honda Civic Coupe SI or the Volkswagen GTI.

The decision was simple once we visited the Volkswagen dealership. It was instant love. The SI was out of the picture and my dad was now a proud new owner of a 2012 Volkswagen GTI.

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Purchased for about $27,000 the GTI came with a sunroof, 6-speed manual transmission, touch-screen radio, bluetooth connectivity, 18 inch alloy rims with low-profile tires and unique plaid seats. Under the hood sits a turbo-charged Audi engine that produces about 211hp (although its only marked at 200hp). The duel chrome tipped mufflers let off a soft growl as soon as the ignition is turned on. The GTI is offered in a 4-door but this model is the 2-door, which in my opinion has a meaner look. On the grille of the vehicle is the iconic red stripe with the GTI badge proudly displayed between the stripes. The GTI  badge is also shown on the trunk of the car. The VW logo stands out both in the front and rear of the vehicle, which I think it is perfectly placed. Look through those unique 18 inch alloy rims and your eye catches sexy red brake calipers.

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Open up the doors and the first thing you’ll notice are the plaid cloth seats. This is a feature that has been passed down from each generation of the GTI. For the people who aren’t into plaid, black leather is also available. Personally, I think the seats are beautiful and help give the car a distinct look. The bucket seats are very comfortable and very sporty looking. All the stitching is red which adds to the true sports car feel. The 6-speed manual transmission is simple black leather that leads up to a steel-colored shifter knob. The touch-screen radio is the same you get in any Audi. The steering wheel, which is flat bottomed is absolutely stunning. Black leather, and outlined in red stitching it is truly sexy. In fact, it is the same steering wheel that has been used in Lamborghini Gallardo’s. The backseat has plenty of room for passengers and also has the plaid seats. The added optional Bose stereo sounds pristine!

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Clutch down and turn the key. The GTI comes growling to life. A few revs even sound pretty nice. First gear is extremely powerful making for an almost immediate shift into second gear. The car weighs just over a ton so acceleration is excellent. Anyone in the car is thrown back against the seat has the FWD quickly gains traction and launches the car. The engine gets louder and louder making for a pretty good exhaust note. The driver can conquer all 6-speeds pretty quickly.

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On winding roads the GTI really shines. With sport tuned suspension the vehicle easily handles turns at speeds of 40mph+ and remains completely flat. The low profile tires are glued to the asphalt and anyone inside the car is not roughly tossed around. The cornering in this vehicle feels as if you were driving in a Porsche. No turn is too hard to handle for the GTI. My dad often loves to take out the car on winding roads and put the suspension to the test- and it never fails.

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On an open road in upstate New York, my dad and I decided to open up the GTI. Starting in 6th gear at about 65mph we floored it. With absolutely no turbo-lag the car rocketed forward and seamlessly reached about 115mph before we braked. The speedometer goes up to 180mph which is pretty impressive. The digital speedometer kept skipping numbers as the car reached higher speeds. The vehicle handled with such ease and if this had been an open-track, the GTI would have easily topped the 115mph mark. This car is completely stock, but there are many offered upgrades, some which give the vehicle 500+ horsepower!

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Today the GTI has about 10,000 miles on it. It has been driven from Long Island to Tennessee with great ease. It has handled the snow of New York, and even a crazy ice storm in Arkansas. The vehicle is reliable and has never had an issues and VW offers great maintenance deals. The GTI is the perfect car for someone looking to add some fun to their daily driver. With a price tag starting at just $25,000 the GTI is extremely affordable for all power and superb handling it gives. Credited car magazines such as MotorTrend have said that the GTI is much better value than the more expensive R version. I would highly recommend the GTI to anyone. It has quickly become one of my favorite cars to drive and be a passenger in.IMG_3700

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Feel free to share your thoughts and opinions with us!

 

 

 

A “Speciale” Ferrari 458

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The Ferrari 458 Italia has quickly become a very popular super-car to own! A 2013 Ferrari 458 Italia will cost $233,509 and carries a 4.5L V8 engine that powers out 570hp. But hey, it’s a Ferrari, so of course engineers went to the drawing board and made something a bit more extreme. The result is the 2014 Ferrari 458 Italia Speciale!

The beautiful 458 Speciale with some original 458's in the background!

The beautiful 458 Speciale!

The new exotic cranks out a huge 597hp and is a full 200lbs lighter than the regular 458. For $298,000 the Speciale will launch to 60mph in a swift 2.8 seconds and will max out at a mere 202mph. Of course with all this power comes poor gas mileage, the vehicle gets just 13mph city and 17mpg highway. The exhaust note is louder and the car even shifts faster than the base 458.

The heart of the beast!

The heart of the beast!

Styling wise the car features a unique air intake right above the Ferrari badge on the hood of the car. Also, above the headlights, the exotic has numerous small air intakes, adding a good flair to the vehicle. The most notable added touch is the white and blue stripe that runs down the center of the car. I find that this gives the vehicle a more sexy, sleek and fast look.The exhaust pipes have gone from three down to two and are now spread farther apart.

Notice the different tailpipes.

Notice the different tailpipes.

The interior of the car is just as beautiful as the exterior. To help shave off some weight, pure racing seats were inserted into the car which really gives the driver and passenger a true race car feel. To hold the the riders in place, the car is equipped with a 4-point harness seatbelt. The interior is stripped out of most common amenities giving it more of a super-car feel. I had the rare opportunity to sit inside the exclusive vehicle. The bucket seats, known to be uncomfortable in other cars, were shockingly not too bad. Of course I would not recommend very long drives, but for short drives the riders won’t be sore when they get out.

Beautiful bucket seats and a true race car interior.

Beautiful bucket seats and a true race car interior.

DSCN3788The dashboard was clean and just screamed “drive me”. The steering wheel was a piece of art, with numerous options like start engine and race mode. The paddle shifters sat tucked in behind the steering wheel allowing the driver good maneuverability. Sitting out in front, the yellow tachometer clearly shows the insane rev’s of the car. Two beautifully crafted electronic screens sit on either side of the tachometer that display all of sorts of information, like speed, to the driver. Most of the interior is made from carbon-fiber, offering not only sexy styling but weight reduction.

"Drive me".

“Drive me”.

In summary, Ferrari has done it again. They have continued the legacy of the Challenge Stradale and Scuderia series vehicles with this Speciale edition 458!

A big thank you goes out to Ferrari-Maserati Long Island, a division of Experience Auto Group. Located in Plainview, New York, they give customers a superb buying experience and offer the most beautiful cars on the market. They host great events and are always supportive of my passion for exotic vehicles. Be sure to stop by to check out their cars, and follow them on Twitter @FerMasLI!

Follow carzach on Twitter @CarZachdotCom and now follow along on Instagram @CarZachdotCom! Feel free to share your thoughts and opinions! Check out all the photos of the exotic in the gallery below!

Motivation Monday: Lambo Line-Up

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Another Monday but this one is filled with three beautiful Lamborghini Gallardo’s! Personally, I would love to take the yellow beast out for a spin. The weather is slowly warming up here in New York and the exotics are slowly creeping their way out of garages. Stay tuned this week for a great article on a very “speciale” Ferrari!

Thank you to Experience Auto Group Ferrari-Maserati Long Island for allowing me to photograph some great cars! Be sure to  follow them on Twitter @FerMasLI. Follow @CarZachdotCom on Twitter for the latest updates!

Motivation Monday: Made in America

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IMG_0197It’s Motivation Monday yet again. Check out this beautiful Dodge Viper. Absolutely love the color, and of course the exhaust note! Although Vipers are known too not handle to well, they sure do look stunning! A proud, true supercar made right here in the USA!

Stay tuned for a new article coming soon! Be sure to follow along on Twitter @CarZachdotCom! Feel free to share your thoughts!

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T-Rex: A Different Kind of Monster!

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A new kind of monster is tearing up the streets all over the world. It hails from Quebec, Canada but offers almost nothing to shield the driver and passenger from the cold. The car is a T-Rex from the company Compagna.

Compagna started in 1988 with a few people and a big vision. in 1995 the first ever street-legal T-Rex was unleashed into the wild. The monster has one of the most unique designs ever- three wheels, two seats and no doors. The model pictured above is a T-Rex 14R. The 16S is the the newest and most up-to-date model offered by the Canadian company.

Notice the small windshield and wide front stance.

Notice the small windshield and wide front stance.

Starting at $57,999 it is one expensive, unique and fast vehicle. In fact, T-Rex is considered to be a motorcycle. Therefore, drivers must have motorcycle license to drive it. Compagna offers eight different color options and they ship each vehicle to the customer.

T-Rex sits just four inches off the ground, making driving not only a thrilling experience but also a bit scary. The vehicle is only 48 inches tall, so no I would certainly not recommend it to tall people. T-Rex features a 6-speed sequential manual transmission that is controlled by hand, like a motorcycle. The  engine comes from BMW and packs 160HP. Now that may not seem like a lot (my Volvo has more) but for a car that weighs just 1,040lbs it is insanely fast and will reach 60mph in just 4 seconds. A driver will max out at 120mph, which being so close to the ground is pretty damn scary.

Cargo carriers on the side.

Cargo carriers on the side.

T-Rex seats two and has a few different areas where cargo can be stored. The windshield is low and only offers partial protection to the driver and passenger. Meanwhile, there are no other windows, and the side of the vehicle is completely open.To fight theft, the steering wheel is completely removable. Compagna also offers a touch screen navigation system and an incredible sound system.

No steering wheel, touch screen navigation and of course towels over the seats to protect it from the rain.

No steering wheel, touch screen navigation and of course towels over the seats to protect it from the rain.

Many would recognize this unique vehicle from MTV’s hit TV show Rob Dyrdek’s Fantasy Factory, where he often plays around in his own white T-Rex. Personally, I have seen a few on the roads of Long Island, even on the highway. Compagna does take safety seriously and T-Rex is equipped with a roll cage, specialized crash zones and of course seat belts.

In my opinion, if I had some extra cash sitting around to spend on a fun toy I would certainly buy one. I have never been a big motorcycle fan, but this is a one-of-a-kind beautiful machine that keeps pace with super-cars. I don’t think I would be all that excited to take this puppy out on the highway, but it certainly would be amazing to tear up some streets and open parking lots. The vehicle has gotten nothing but rave reviews from owners and even the guys on Top Gear BBC. The car is said to handle amazingly but the riders should be prepared for intense G-force around corners.

T-Rex is one of the most distinct vehicles on the market right now. Many people who see them, probably don’t know what it is they’re looking at. It’s far from your average car, motorcycle and even go-kart. Keep your eyes peeled for this monster shredding the roads in the nice weather!

One fat rear-wheel!

One fat rear-wheel!

Would you pay $60,000 for this toy? Would you even want to get into one? Let me know what you think! Be sure to follow Carzach on Twitter @CarZachdotCom

Review: From Sweden To The Roads of New York!

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Well here it is everybody- my daily driver! It is a 2004 Volvo S60 2.4. Now as an exotic car enthusiast this obviously is nothing to boast about. The car carries a basic 2.4 liter engine that produces 168hp. The car was purchased right off the showroom floor ten years ago and is the most basic model for the S60. Yes, I know nothing too exciting and certainly nothing to be compared with the exotics in previous posts.

Volvo, a Swedish company has always been known more for their innovative safety rather than design and performance. The company was started in 1927 and produced just a few hundred vehicles a year. Since then the company has grown and now produces many vehicle models. Volvo also builds 18-wheelers, construction vehicles, luxury busses and even sail boats. Today, Volvo sits in the entry-level luxury vehicle category although strong, and successful efforts are being made to compete with Mercedes, BMW and Audi.

My car features affluent leather seating that helps make trips of all durations pleasant. The driver seat has great electronic memory, and at a push of a button will adjust both the seats and mirrors to the drivers pre-set position. I find this very useful when I return to the driver seat after another family member has been driving. Also, the stock radio has been replaced by a simple JVC unit. This was done about a year ago, as the original tape deck in the car stopped working and would no longer accept an MP3 connection.

The installed JVC unit.

The installed JVC unit.

The car has about 138,000 miles on it, but upkeep hasn’t been too stressful. There have a been a few costly repairs, the most recent was for about $1,000 and will most definitely be the vehicles last major fix. I do find that lightbulbs seem to constantly die out; but they are a quick, cheap, do-it-yourself fix. Of course, like any 10-year old vehicle there are the average dings and dents but the car was never in any serious accidents. The S60 was purchased for just over $28,000 in 2004. Kelly Blue Book has valued the car at about $1,200 for a trade-in.

The car drives pretty well, especially in the snow. My favorite feature of the car is the “W” mode the vehicle is equipped with. What this button does is slow down the acceleration of the car making sure that the front tires (FWD) do not spin to fast on ice. I find that driving in the snow is often easy. The car does slide around on occasion but traction control swiftly corrects any issues. The car does not have any sort of rear-window wiper, which sometimes makes visibility difficult under certain conditions. I am very surprised of how well it handles the bad weather. I very rarely find myself stuck or sliding, I always feel that I am in complete control.

Notice the "W" in the top left corner. A great feature.

Notice the “W” in the top left corner. A great feature.

In dry conditions the car handles like any luxury vehicle should. The ride is pretty tranquil and outside noises are well silenced. On hot summer days, the AC works fast, cooling off the often scorching hot black leather seats. The sunroof and moonroof allow for great airflow and do not cause any unnecessary noises. In the winter, the two-level heated seats for the driver and passenger offer great warmth as does the powerful heating system. I’ve noticed that the car does have a heavy steering wheel compared to other vehicles I have driven. The car will do 0-60 MPH in a sluggish 7 seconds but I find that once the car is up to speed (about 40MPH) it swiftly responds when more power is needed. The engine even gives a nice growl as it accelerates up to speed.

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The back seats are just as opulent as the front. Leg-room is not to great, depending on the seating position up front. Although the car seats three in the back I find that it’s better off with only two people. The trunk is absolutely massive and can fit multiple suitcases, camping gear or even an inflatable kayak with ease! The headlights offer unique “mini” wipers that help keep them clean anytime windshield wiper fluid is being used.

In summary, this 2004 Volvo S60 has stood the test of time and miles. The car continues to start perfectly, and rarely has any concerning issues. The car gets decent gas milage about 18 City and 21 Highway. I would most definitely recommend a Volvo for anyone wanting a well-priced luxury vehicle. If you’re in the market for a first car, or luxurious used vehicle, I would again recommend a Volvo at any milage. The new Volvo’s are a bit more pricey at $32,000 but are very delightful and even powerful. I definitely see where Volvo is competing with top luxury brands. They offer great vehicles for often less money than other competitors! Stop by any Volvo dealer and check out their new line up; you won’t be disappointed!

Look for the wipers on the headlights.

Look for the wipers on the headlights.

A snowy drive made simple.

A snowy drive made simple.

Motivation Monday Round 2!

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Now that is one “HOTLAMBO”! It’s a new week with new opportunities. Let this stunning Lamborghini Gallardo motivate you to work hard this week and achieve your dreams! I snapped this photo while attending a local car show on a hot summer  Long Island day. Stay tuned for a new article this week, I have some more great cars coming up!

Lambo Love On Valentines Day

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Do you want this classic Lambo to be your Valentine?

Exotic Car Sales Rev Up

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It may be shocking to hear, but yes it is true! Exotic car sales are revving up. The economy may be struggling to fire on all cylinders but it seems as though the “1%” are doing just fine. It’s not just the United States that is seeing this market grow. According to CNN.com, the global sales of exotic vehicles are on the rise (Valdes-Dapena, 2014). Partly, these heightened sales are due to the fact that China’s wealthy are just now getting much easier access to these beautiful machines.

With 2013 over and done with, Lamborghini says that they sold a whopping 2,121 vehicles globally last year. According to CNN, this is the third straight year Lamborghini has had a sales increase! The Italian company currently sells only two different vehicles, one – the 700hp, $400,000, Aventador and the other, a more modest 562hp, $225,000, Lamborghini Gallardo. CEO, Stephan Winkelmann mentions that the United States continues to be the number one buyer of these high-priced cars (Valdes-Dapena, 2014). Personally, I would not be shocked to see the sale numbers increase yet again at the end of 2014 due to the release of the replacement Gallardo and a rumored SUV is in the making!

Need an exotic vehicle that can carry more then two people? And do it in opulent style? Well it seems the wealthy are in need of that. Rolls Royce, the fancy and sophisticated sister of BMW is also recording high sales. The very highly regarded brand sold 3,630 voluptuous vehicles this past year (Valdes-Dapena, 2014). This marks the fourth year in a row that the company recorded record sales numbers. Look for the new two-door Wraith, which seems to be the hottest car on the market for the wealthy who want to arrive in style.

The other luxury company to roll out of England is Bentley. They too recorded sales of more than 10,000 cars last year alone. Wolfgang Schreiber, the CEO of the company says that most sales come from China and that he expects them to continue to drive up sales in the coming years.

Yet again, it’s another company from England that is setting records. Aston Martin, has seemed to capture a huge audience of James Bond wannabe’s. The company sold 4,200 cars in 2013 (Valdes-Dapena, 2014). The British super car maker hasn’t seen numbers like that in nearly six years! 

Heading back to Italy, Maserati sold 15,400 cars last year (Valdes-Dapena, 2014). Compared to every other exotic company listed here, Maserati offers the most “affordable” cars. The company even lessened its exclusivity and has released the Ghibli which will set back the buyer at least $66,000. This is the new entry-level vehicle and is meant to rival BMW and Mercedes. If you don’t want to be driving around in car that’s less than $100,000 please don’t worry as you can still buy an MC Stradale for $155,000!

If you’re curious as to why Ferrari didn’t make the list it’s because they’re actually cutting down on production. No, they’re not short on money. They just think that even if you have a few hundred thousand dollars to drop on a car, you should still have to search hard to buy a Ferrari.

With an inconstant global economy right now, who knows whether or not exotic car sales will continue to rev up in the coming years. I  certainly would not predict that any of these companies will mass produce their vehicles. They will always hold their place in society as rare, exclusive, and of course exotic!

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Reference:

Valdes-Padena, P. Exotic Car Sales Surge to Record High-Except Ferrari. CNN.com