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Advice Needed on "Negative" aspects of owning an exoticar

Discussion in '360/430' started by cmnho, Jul 19, 2009.

  1. cmnho

    cmnho Karting

    Jan 4, 2006
    166
    Singapore
    Full Name:
    CM
    I posted the following in the Asia section of Ferrarichat.com specifically requesting Singaporean Ferrari/Lamborghini owners for advice. So far, I've gotten zero responses. Seems like there's no downside to driving exoticars in Singapore! As that's hard to believe, could I please solicit some advice from everyone else who's ever owned an exoticar. The responses do not have to be Singapore-specific. General answers regarding some of the problems with driving an exoticar would be very helpful. So, here goes:



    I'm thinking of acquiring a used F430 or Gallardo but have no experience of owning an exoticar in Singapore or anywhere else for that matter. I currently alternate between a Porsche C4S and an X5 and would like to know of the experience, in particular, any negative ones, of driving an F-car or a Gallardo. People I speak to who own F-cars tell me of problems of getting into certain car parks because of ground clearance issues ... similarly with humps on certain roads.

    I would be grateful therefore if you could share your experience of the "downside" (if any) of owning and driving around in such a car, e.g. the aforesaid parking and road hump problems, etc and does the Gallardo's lifter do away with most of these problems? What about the F430?

    How about servicing issues (e.g. long waits - whether for parts or for your car's turn to get serviced), getting ding'ed by other cars, etc. Do you have to take particular care not to park in certain areas / car parks? What's your experience with vandalism? My C4S was keyed within the first week of taking delivery of the car in Liat Tower! Thankfully, this has not repeated itself since the incident about 3 years ago. Very upsetting ...

    Would you ever let a valet park your car? This might seem a silly question but sometimes there's just no place to park your car and you're in a dreadful rush ... and the valet is just parking your car in front of the hotel, restaurant, etc ...

    Many many thanks for any help/info that you can offer! Hopefully, there are more helpful F-chatters here!
     
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  3. fc2

    fc2 F1 Veteran
    Owner

    Nov 2, 2006
    5,136
    Silicon Valley Ca.
    Full Name:
    Frank C.
    It seems you've identified many of the challenges inherit in owning an F430 or Gallardo, but they're not all as bad as you may think.

    Speed humps, steep driveway approaches: Definitely an issue in my F430, not at all in my Gallardo. The front-end lift mechanism should be standard on all exotics. It takes the drama away from every entry/exit.

    Parking: Always an issue. Some guys here just park anywhere. I tend to be a little more careful and take the extra time to find a good space. Having said that, I drive my Gallardo to the grocery store last night to get dinner. These cars are just too nice not to drive on every occasion.

    Valet: Never. There are a number of places, around here, where you can simply park your car yourself in front of the restaurant or hotel. If I know I need to go to a place where valet is the only option, I drive one of my other cars.

    Maintenance costs are surprisingly low. Fluids once a year... that's really about it (on the F430 and Gallardo).

    Bottom line... there is a bit more effort and consideration involved in owning an exotic car. We've all driven other expensive cars like 911s, BMWs and Mercedes, but when you're spending a lot more money (and in Singapore, sadly you will) you tend to be a lot more careful.

    Good luck and let us know what you decide to do.

    Frank
     
  4. cmnho

    cmnho Karting

    Jan 4, 2006
    166
    Singapore
    Full Name:
    CM
    Thanks very much for your input, Frank. Appreciate it.

    I know that this question has been asked before in an earlier thread I could only find one response to the query. The query is this - what are the things that I ought to look out for when acquiring a used F430 F1 coupe? There are a few available in Singapore for sale. They are around 2-3 years old, typically with about 5,000 to 10,000 miles on the clock. You are right, they are horribly expensive in Singapore. A 3 year old in very good condition still goes for about USD350,000, give or take a few thousand. So, I need to be extra careful to make sure that my money is not spent on a lemon!

    Strange thing is - my 996 C4S cab is supposed to be a low maintenance car but in the 3 years that I've owned it (I bought it used when it was 2, so now it's 5), I have had major problems in the last 2. Last year, the transmission broke down and I was told by the local agent that I had to change the entire system which would cost me almost USD20,000! Luckily, I managed to find another mechanic who repaired the transmission for me for USD4,000. According to the local agent, they are not permitted by HQ in Germany to open up the transmission. To me this is just plain bs to make more money from owners! Anyway, this year, the engine seized up and it's now in for major surgery at the local agent. Estimated cost? Around USD4,000.

    This has, in part, prompted me to look for a replacement. Thanks for any input you or anyone else might have on my query above.

    CM
     
  5. gadgetman

    gadgetman Formula Junior

    Dec 21, 2008
    252
    Westlake Village, Ca
    Full Name:
    Curt W
    #4 gadgetman, Jul 19, 2009
    Last edited: Jul 19, 2009
    Yikes ! are you unable to buy in the states and import. I was just talking to a wholesaler that may take my Continental GT and sell it offshore. Would be a great deal unless shipping and taxes make it impossible. I"m not familiar with these things. As a baseline, i was thinking of selling my '07 430 coupe, nicely equipped, and have learned that it would probably get high 160's or low 170's (USD). Seems like you could get 'something' for less than DOUBLE that.

    oh and on costs, i just had the 2nd year maintanance done, i've got about 4700 miles and it as $1500 US. The newer models seem to be much more reasonable.
     
  6. cmnho

    cmnho Karting

    Jan 4, 2006
    166
    Singapore
    Full Name:
    CM
    Thanks for the offer but you got it ... taxes! Taxes and import duties more than double the price of the car. Also, the mark ups by the authorised importer on the cars are very high. Not surprising when you consider that they only sell about 30 to 40 cars per year for the whole of Singapore and there are considerable overhead costs to be incurred. For USD160,000 to 170,000, we could just about buy a new BMW 335i Cab! A new F430 would be in the region of USD550,000.

    And the maintenance costs of your F430 seem quite reasonable. Is this the general experience of most 430 owners? What about older 430's? Circa 3-4 years old?

    CM
     
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  8. Robdownunder

    Robdownunder Formula Junior

    Feb 6, 2009
    580
    Australia
    Full Name:
    Rob
    The costs downunder to purchase a used F430 F1 are about the same as Singapore then.
    Totally outrageous when compared with the US.
    eg. 2007 F1 coupe with 1400 miles with carbon brakes and daytona seats is $346000 US.
    Rob.
     
  9. gadgetman

    gadgetman Formula Junior

    Dec 21, 2008
    252
    Westlake Village, Ca
    Full Name:
    Curt W
    Wow! that's really unfortunate. As for maintenance, just from what i've read I think most 430 have similar experience. It's when you go to older models the costs can be high. i'm not the expert here, and i'm sure others more experienced can chime in, but from what I read in the chats, etc. this seems to be the case.
     
  10. AceMaster

    AceMaster Three Time F1 World Champ

    Feb 6, 2009
    31,039
    Calling a penalty
    Full Name:
    Mike
    this is great advice - if something were to happen, you will never live it down
     
  11. fc2

    fc2 F1 Veteran
    Owner

    Nov 2, 2006
    5,136
    Silicon Valley Ca.
    Full Name:
    Frank C.
    You need to have a pre-purchase inspection done by a Ferrari-authorized repair shop... or a Ferrari dealer themselves. While this won't predict what may go wrong, it will at least tell you what IS wrong with the car and if any warranty work was done on the F430. Based on my and many other 430 owner experiences, there are known issues with the exhaust tips and brackets. My '07 has 2500 miles on it and I've had both exhaust tips vibrate loose (sounds like a bunch of ball-bearings in a tin can) and the mounting brackets replaced. This is all done under warranty.

    Other than these issues the car has been flawless and amazing on every level.

    The Gallardo has had no issues... except for a sticky switch when I put the top back up (car is a spider). Sometimes the engine deck lid sticks open :-( and I need to jump out of the car and rattle it up and down... then it closes.

    Good luck.
    Frank
     
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  13. Jacky

    Jacky Rookie

    Mar 9, 2009
    25
    i am from Singapore, with a F430.

    i parked practically everywhere for food and drinks but there are some places you have to avoid because of the steep slopes. You can go to BMW-sg forums to check out those "dangerous" places.

    for valets, i only go for Meritus Mandarin, Marina Mandarin, Chjimes, Ritz Carlton, MOS (but they park in the carpark now, no more at the back of ex-MOS). I miss reverse cameras, so you have to be careful when you are reversing.

    Get used to passers-by taking pictures, i get pretty upset when they lean against the car, tend to leave some marks. I have my car groomed at Groomworks, so they take care of all my washings, and waxing. I got a scratch behind (vandalised) but my workshop took care of it in a day. Always get a good workshop.

    have not serviced my car so far, only got it in March this year. With the new distributor taking over, not sure how things will be.

    no regrets in getting a 430. Only makes you hunger for the Scud or 16M more.....
     
  14. Sareve

    Sareve F1 Rookie

    Oct 23, 2007
    2,953
    Singapore/Melbourne
    Full Name:
    Daniel
    #11 Sareve, Jul 20, 2009
    Last edited: Jul 20, 2009
    I'm from Singapore too. I've got no experience with a 430 but I use a 599 as my daily driver.

    You'll have some ground clearance issues, but the greater problem is the ridiculously large turning radius of the car. Perhaps 430s do not have this problem, but I find that I cannot use alot of carparks simply because the ramps are too narrow (the Cathay carpark comes to mind). Most public car parks are fine, you should have little to no problem parking in most places if you aren't paranoid about people scratching your car. I never let valets park my car, I don't even give them the keys after I've parked (except at Zouk since I've got no choice there).

    I think it all boils down to a matter of whether you want to do it. I doubt a few minor inconveniences are enough to stop you from getting an exotic, just get one and enjoy the hell out of it.

    Oh and considering you've been lurking here since 2006, I think it's time you started posting in the Singapore forum!
     
  15. cmnho

    cmnho Karting

    Jan 4, 2006
    166
    Singapore
    Full Name:
    CM
    Thanks again to everyone for their input, esp to my Singaporean friends. That's all very useful info. I'll definitely check out the BMW-sg forums for the "to avoid" car parks threads. In the meantime, I'll go round looking for a good deal!! And convince my wife that this is a good idea ... :) Thanks, again!

    P.S. Yes, Sareve, I have been lurking around for some time but have not really been active until recently when I thought of changing my C4S. Will start to do so when soon ....
     
  16. Jacky

    Jacky Rookie

    Mar 9, 2009
    25
    hi Sareve

    what's the color of your 599?

    turning radius for 430 is fine. Oh yes the Cathay carpark is atrocious. Also the Rendezvous Hotel.
     
  17. Sareve

    Sareve F1 Rookie

    Oct 23, 2007
    2,953
    Singapore/Melbourne
    Full Name:
    Daniel
    It's yellow.
     
  18. Jacky

    Jacky Rookie

    Mar 9, 2009
    25
    you are the 2nd person in singapore that i know with a yellow 599.
     
  19. Ferrarista3

    Ferrarista3 F1 Rookie

    Oct 30, 2007
    4,530
    MC/UK
    Full Name:
    Carlo
    Parking, parking, parking, attention, vandalism, parking, parking...and parking.

    Did I mention parking?

    I'm always super careful with parking (whether it's the 599 or the Fiat 500)...and yet door dings are always a risk. Another problem is that people want to take pics with the car...which is fine...except some want to SIT on the hood :mad: (parking the car with the nose against the wall may help solve this problem).

    Oh well...
     
  20. shawsan

    shawsan Formula 3

    Jul 2, 2004
    1,090
    Vancouver, Canada
    Can't imagine ever wanting to own an exotic car in Singapore. First, there's no where to drive it like a true exotic except in Malaysia. Singapore is as close as one can get to a 'police state' when it comes to controlling traffic and speeders. I chuckle when the bleeping or ringers go off in the taxi cabs when they exceed the speed limit, wondering just how long before they are imposed on private cars as well. Second, if you keep your heavily taxed, outrageously expensive exotic in pristine condition for the next 8-9 years, with perhaps 20-30K kilometers, you're then forced to sell it back to the government at some ridiculous 'blue book' value so it can be exported somewhere for resale. The only car that makes sense to me under these conditions is a baseline hyundi.
     

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