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550 Major Service - COMPARISONS

Discussion in '456/550/575' started by Doody, Dec 28, 2003.

  1. Doody

    Doody F1 Veteran

    Nov 16, 2001
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    Mr. Doody
    as some of you know, i've been collecting paperwork on 550 majors for comparative purposes. thus far i have received actual paperwork from Ferrari of San Francisco, Algar, and Midwest Auto Group. i'm very interested in seeing others. if you have had a major done on your 550, and are willing to share, please email or PM me. even if you see your dealer represented, i'm still quite interested to compare majors done at the same dealer, so don't be bashful! as you can see, i'm not releasing any specifics about whose cars are involved - just the numbers.

    the FNA number is what i've been told a major costs "by the book". as you can see in the comparisons, there's not a ton of consistency between the dealers. some guys undoubtedly get as close to "by the book" as they can, even if it's not really necessary; and some guys only do what they feel, presumably in their ultra-knoweldgeable perspective, is necessary. the $/hr labor number under the FNA listing is just an average of the actual numbers.

    if anyone sees any errors or consolidations to be made here, please let me know and i'll update the sheet. as i get new data, i'll post the updated table to this thread.

    hope folks find this useful! it's educational at a minimum, so it has some redeeming value ;).

    doody!
     
  2. tbakowsky

    tbakowsky F1 World Champ
    Professional Ferrari Technician Consultant

    Sep 18, 2002
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    Tom
    This is a perfect example of what I've been thinking about Ferrari service pricing. There seems to be no set price structure. Most dealers seem to charge pretty much what ever they want. 40hrs to do a service on this car is way over kill. I'll bet you could do it in your drive way in a day. The prices for parts are all over the map.

    Why can they get away with this? If you take your car to a dealer say a g.m product..you can be pretyy much garenteed that the cost of the parts will be the same no matter what dealer you go to. labour may vary slightly but not by much. It appears by these numbers Ferrari soaks it's customers.
     
  3. yasir

    yasir Formula Junior

    Nov 5, 2003
    339
    Doody,
    Do you really think $1000-$1500 price difference be significant to a person who buys $200,000+ car,i don't think so.Anyway yes it's not fair for dealers to do the markup but they still do.
    Later, Yasir
     
  4. nerd

    nerd F1 Rookie

    Oct 12, 2003
    2,506
    Southwest Airlines
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    RSK
    Based upon my 3 random visits to Ferrari of Scottsdale during the week my 550 was getting its major service, a mechanic was working full time on my car, and on one occasion had another mechanic helping him reinstall the intake manifold. Additionally, some of the parts replaced during a major service are the result of the many inspections. If you want to be a shade tree mechanic on your Ferrari, that's great, but the dealership parts department is 25 minutes from my house, I don't have the service manuals, and doubt that I have all of the tools. Working on my racecars was great fun, but I'll leave my 550 to the dealer or another mechanic I trust.

    Roy
     
  5. Doody

    Doody F1 Veteran

    Nov 16, 2001
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    i'm not making any value judgement on the data i'm collecting. i'm just collecting it. it is my nature to do stupid things like this :).

    if you care to make value judgements on the data, that is your prerogative, for sure. go crazy!

    personally, i find the specifics of what is and isn't getting done at various dealerships (though obviously the data does not explain "why") quite interesting.

    doody.
     
  6. EVartanian

    EVartanian Formula 3

    Mar 19, 2002
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    Eric
    Doody, very awsome of you to research and post this info. I do find it quite interesting.

    -Eric
     
  7. yasir

    yasir Formula Junior

    Nov 5, 2003
    339
    Doody,
    Take no offense as i didn't get your intial post & reading your second one clarified why you posted that data,my fault.
    Later,Yasir
     
  8. dwood1969

    dwood1969 Karting

    Nov 1, 2003
    67
    Charlotte, NC
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    David Wood
    Doody,

    This is some interesting reading. I am quite amazed at the variance between the 3 - not so much from the perspective of the cost but rather from the difference in what is obviously done for the "major" service. You would have thought that there would be more consistency in what constitutes a major service. Or maybe I am not reading your spreadsheet correctly???
     
  9. jeffdavison

    jeffdavison Formula 3
    Silver Subscribed

    Jul 29, 2002
    2,247
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    Jeffrey Davison
    It would be interesting to see a like comarison but with thr F355.
    Probably a like disparity as well.

    Jeff Davison
     
  10. TestShoot

    TestShoot F1 World Champ

    Sep 1, 2003
    10,248
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    King Koopa
    The FoSF is about 800 less than the same service I did at FoBH for roughly the same. I just pretty much came in for the low down, and looked at what needed to be done and slapped the check down. no questions asked, maybe that is what they expect, and therefore get to charge that much more Dealer/FNA vs Algar, then again dealer support...

    I like to do as much work on my cars as possible. I just rebuild a full Volvo block including pistons on friday. So next time around it is a trip to the parts bay and with the money saved, chip into the des/jordan ferrari fund.

    hey wait, that's it...

    I'll do loads of work for you guys and charge you the same as the lowest competitor and the difference will go to the ferrari fund. my rate is 1 fatburger/hr if it involves more than 20hours, i need to get a small tiffany gift for the g/f.
     
  11. Doody

    Doody F1 Veteran

    Nov 16, 2001
    6,099
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    Mr. Doody
    here's an update with another one added. i think i may have been remiss in my initial post of this data - clearly there's some more commentary necessary.

    my understanding, though i've never seen it with my own eyes, is that there IS a standard FSpa of what is involved in a 550 major. it's not arbitrary. the numbers i have listed under "FNA" are supposedly from that "official dictum". note that i am not suggesting that the list of specific parts is the complete list that corresponds to the FNA list, as i do not have a breakdown of said dictum. REGARDLESS, the dealers and mechanics know that the FNA/FSpa standards are sometimes, let's say, "aggressive". nobody but nobody seems to believe that 550 timing blets should be changed out every 3 years if you're doing 2,000 miles per year - yet that is waht FSpa is saying now (if you want to get on the new-fangled pre-owned warranty program). so the mechanics presumably use their common sense and experience to save the customers money -vs- what Ferrari is dictating as the, i guess, "worst case scenario".

    so don't rush to read into this data that "dealer X does a crappy job" or "dealer Y does a great job". that would likely (IMO) result in erroneous conclusions.

    also, a word on pricing is in order. like 99.9999% of the expensive products and services on planet Earth, everything we're discussing here is negotiable. there's a more-than-healthy mark-up on parts. there's real room to wiggle on labor. some shops will do discounts for FCA or FOC members - 15% right off the top for flashing a card! doing your service off-season when these guys are sometimes way under-utilized can get you deals on the labor rates. for all you know, the difference between $M and $N shown here is simply the difference between one owner's negotiating skills -vs- the other owner's negotiating skills.

    all that to say: this is just data. you probably do not have enough context to draw a ton of specific conclusions from it, so don't tear your hamstring jumping to conclusions ;). for sure, without doubt, for the love of pete, do not use this data to bad-mouth dealer X or shop Y. you simply do not know the context of the given transactions.

    here's an update with a fourth data point. i should have a fifth in a day or two. note that i've rounded the numbers for a variety of reasons and collapsed some of the random crapola into an "OTHER" category for sake of simplicity. should be easier to follow (yeah, right).

    doody.
     
  12. allanlambo

    allanlambo F1 Rookie

    Jun 9, 2002
    4,363
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    Allan
    Ouch! Expensive. My Diablo hasnt needed any of that done.
     
  13. Bart

    Bart Formula 3

    Nov 1, 2003
    1,486
    Orange County, Calif
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    Bart
    I paid $6,500 at 36,000 miles to make my little thing kept going. To me it was worth it. This was only for the engine. My clutch is still good and the trany is normal: second is a bear when cold and third never likes to go into gear.

    I just found out I need tires and an alignment. Gee, my other cars get 50,000+ mileage. The 550 has but 16,000 miles on them. What can I expect for tires, which can go 200+ mph? Maybe I should go for retreads?

    Only drive a V-12
     
  14. redcar1

    redcar1 Formula Junior

    Nov 3, 2003
    624
    austin, tx
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    Mark
    This is very good information. Thanks Doody. I'll send a 6th set of data from Ferrari of San Antonio, which, I'm sorry to say, will skew the average upward. My total was over $6k, but not quite as high as FNA. The labor hours seem to be the big variable, and I think mine was about 40.

    The good news was that, with San Antonio's assistance, FNA replaced the recalled magnesium wheels on my Euro car at no charge! I was so pleasantly surprised that I didn't ***** about the hours on the maintenance.

    I'll try to fax or email my numbers to Doody.

    Mark McKenzie
     
  15. AEHaas

    AEHaas Formula 3

    May 9, 2003
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    Ali E. Haas
    What I find interesting is that they are using Agip oil. This supposedly voids the warrantee.

    That said, Agip is what they used before the Shell stuff.

    I spoke to Adam Rowley, the tech rep at FNA about using Redline in the transsexual to help with the second gear issue. He had no particular objection other than to say they have not tested it.

    I also told him I am using 0W-20 Mobil 1 in my 575. He thought that was good considering my temperatures and pressures. He seemed to agree that most oils are in fact too thick for the application of most drivers. But again he said they have not specifically tested Mobil 1.

    Overall Andy was very accommodating and friendly, gave good free advise and told me to call again any time if I had more questions.

    ali
     
  16. Texas Forever

    Texas Forever Three Time F1 World Champ
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    Apr 28, 2003
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    Texas!
     
  17. AEHaas

    AEHaas Formula 3

    May 9, 2003
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    Dale,

    The second gear issue has been discussed ad nauseam. I would conclude the Redline 75W-90 NS, specifically, the NS, is the best that we can do for our second gears. The whole thing has to do with the racing spec transmission that Ferrari has. It is big, stiff and that is just the way it is if you want that sort of performance available for the track.

    If you do a search you will find that there are several concerns. For example, avoid Mobil 1 gear lubricant. Mobil and Ferrari both tell you to avoid it's use in any Ferrari tranmission/transaxle.

    Your car is best off with the Redline as above in the transaxle.

    For oil, my choice is the 0W-20 Mobil 1. I have written many articles on this but most people just do not believe the facts. Many think that the thicker the oil the better and nothing can be further from the truth.

    ali
     
  18. Texas Forever

    Texas Forever Three Time F1 World Champ
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    Apr 28, 2003
    38,914
    Texas!


    Ali, you are probably right. I was actually poking fun at your trans-sexual slip of the fingers...

    I haven't had any problem with 2nd gear. But, then again, I only use 2nd when downshifting, slowly. When upshifting, I always run 1st up to maybe 4500 rpm and then shift into 3rd. I haven't looked at the ratios, but 1st to 2nd is a bit abrupt to me. 1st to 3rd is a hot knife through warm butter.

    Dale
     
  19. Mitch Alsup

    Mitch Alsup F1 Veteran

    Nov 4, 2003
    6,333
    Ali:

    I was purusing the F355 challenge car conversion manual last week. The recommended track oil---drum roll---10W30 !!! Maybe this has something to do with having twice as much radiator area devoted to oil cooling as the street car, and no trannsmission heat load into the water cooling system. but for whatever reason 10W30 for F355 challenge cars !
     
  20. AEHaas

    AEHaas Formula 3

    May 9, 2003
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    Ali E. Haas
    When I went from 30 wt oil to 20 wt my pressure went from 80 PSI at 2,000 RPM to 70 PSI at 2,000 RPM. This is still too high for my engine temperature, way too high. The 575 manual wants around 75 PSI at 6,000 RPM. The current high pressure is causing undue wear and power loss in my engine. I am contemplating going to 10 wt. oil.

    The biggest problem is that all oils I have seen below 20 wt are only racing oils and not suitable for daily street use. This however will change soon.

    aehaas

    Dale - maybe you are right. There may be a gender identity issue with my car.
     
  21. JaguarXJ6

    JaguarXJ6 F1 Veteran

    Feb 12, 2003
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    Sunny
    Ali, you have to be kidding me, right? 0w20?! And your in Florida? Maybe I'm just ignorant, but that doesn't seem right to me at all. If the stress I put my car through sends Mobil 1 15w40 out of its viscosity range after 3,500-4,000 miles I hate to see what your high stress close tolerance throughbred is doing under high RPM/high load conditions....

    Sunny
     
  22. Doody

    Doody F1 Veteran

    Nov 16, 2001
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    another county heard from :)

    you'll notice this new one is a bit odd. it's simply listed as "FNA1". this was work done at a well-respected, authorized FNA dealer. the owner requested i not disclose more than that for a variety of rational reasons, so we'll leave it at that.

    this car was being serviced and gone-over in preparation for one of the newfangled FNA pre-owned warranties. the parts number is high because it's likely the first one we've seen where they actually did it "by the book". you'll notice some services skipped spark plugs; some skipped tensioners, etc. this service didn't skip on much of anything - if anything - hence the higher costs. fyi - this is the sort of thing you have to deal with if you want that warranty, so keep that in mind!

    doody.
     
  23. AEHaas

    AEHaas Formula 3

    May 9, 2003
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    Ali E. Haas
    Doody,

    The gearbox and engine lubricants should be changed at the same time yet several dealers did not do this service. The brake fluid should be changed yearly at a minimum, again why not at these services. This is why I do it myself. Another thing that you will notice is that an oil change by these guys requires 12 qts yet if you open the pipelines and drain the oil cooler it will require another 3 to 4 qts. A daily driven car should never leak oil and seals should never leak and yet they are always replaced. Was it always needed?

    Sunny,

    Synthetic oils generally do not ever decrease in viscosity. Over time they will actually increase. Mineral oils do decrease initially over time because the viscosity improvers, an additive absent in synthetics, become depleted. Over longer intervals even mineral oils with thicken to well over their initial ratings. This is where the most engine wear occurs in mineral oils applications. The reason to change oil is to replenish the additives, not because of viscosity worries.

    Also, the ambient temperature has little to do with operating engine temperatures. If it is 60 or 90 F outside the bearing temperature will still be 300 to 400 F. The cooler the starting temperature however, the greater the engine wear. There is almost no wear at operating engine temperatures when all other factors are appropriate.

    ali

    PS Do not get me started on oil again. The other guys cannot take it any longer!
     
  24. Doody

    Doody F1 Veteran

    Nov 16, 2001
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    ali:

    i would not draw general conclusions like that from this data.

    those items may have been done but not recorded, or maybe done and not listed properly so they ended up in "other", or maybe they'd been done a few months before the car went in for the major, or maybe the owners did those things themslves. who knows. there's not enough context here to draw such conclusions, and i really really do not want this to be an excuse for or exercise in beating up on mechanics and/or shops.

    it's just data for general educational purposes. "knowledge for the sake of knowledge", if you will.

    maybe you guys can start another thread for the oil weight debate?

    doody.
     
  25. JaguarXJ6

    JaguarXJ6 F1 Veteran

    Feb 12, 2003
    5,335
    Denver, CO
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    Sunny
    Doody, thanks for collecting in the info. I find it very fascinating and its this thread I'll come back to if I ever get a 550 of my own some day :)
     

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