Is Ferrari Market Letter worth the subscription? | FerrariChat

Is Ferrari Market Letter worth the subscription?

Discussion in 'Ferrari Discussion (not model specific)' started by ghost, Feb 6, 2004.

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  1. ghost

    ghost F1 World Champ
    Lifetime Rossa

    Dec 10, 2003
    Just curious to know whether you all have had a good experience with Ferrari Market Letter ("FML"), and would recommend paying the subscription money. I am looking to purchase a 355B, and heard that FML is a good option (especially after performing a search on the site). However, I went to their site today, and was surprised at the lack of detail that was provided. Admittedly, I was only able to check into their "guest" section, which has a dated (2003), and had a limited section of Ferrari classifieds, but nonetheless, was surprised to see that the descriptions were generally text, limited to no more than 5 lines, and didn't really differentiate from one another. I contrast this to DuPont, FerrariBuy and, of course, eBay, which seem to be much more comprehensive and colorful...and are free (to browse at least).

    Again, an online six-month subscription for $40 is not a big deal, but I guess I'm still surprised by the layout for the site. Maybe the guest section has not been updated.

    Also, is the print subscription quite different from the online version?? Worth it paying the $65 subscription?

    Would love to get your input.

  2. Tenney

    Tenney F1 Rookie

    Feb 21, 2001
    I don't frequent the website, but do take the mailing and have for some time. I like it.
  3. cmparrenzo

    cmparrenzo F1 Rookie

    Mar 3, 2002
    Full Name:
    Chris Parr
    FML is truly the Ferrari bible. You tend to find the best cars being sold by the best people in FML.

    Dupont stuff is normally overpriced and sold by the time you get the magazine. Ebay is actually a good advertising tool, but you should use caution and always do a PPI.

    I would reccomend the internet site if you are using FML to find a car, cheaper, faster.

  4. ghost

    ghost F1 World Champ
    Lifetime Rossa

    Dec 10, 2003
    Could you guys comment on the detail of the ads. As indicated, in the examples I saw, I found the ads quite sparse. Are you privy to additional detail as a subscriber. Pictures? Do you tend to find more private sellers in FML, than in other sources. Info to these questions would be very helpful!

  5. acw

    acw Karting

    Nov 3, 2003
    I think the FML captures the US market pretty well. Most available cars are listed in it. Of course, you can also check out the free ads including:

  6. cmparrenzo

    cmparrenzo F1 Rookie

    Mar 3, 2002
    Full Name:
    Chris Parr
    no pics, just the facts... almost all are private sellers.
  7. donv

    donv Two Time F1 World Champ
    Owner Rossa Subscribed

    Jan 5, 2002
    Portland, Oregon
    Full Name:
    FML does do pictures, although it seems like many advertisers are slow to adopt this. Many (most?) ads are from dealers, but this is probably reflective of the overall Ferrari market.

    The descriptions are so-so, the key is that they are required to include the serial number and the price. From there, at least on older cars, you can often find what you need to know from other sources.

    Personally, I subscibe to the online version of FML, and I find it is well worth the money.

    A second source of info you might consider is a Gold subscription to Sports Car Market. From there, you can search auction sales by serial number for the last several years, and often turn up interesting things.

    Good luck!
  8. jm2

    jm2 F1 World Champ
    Lifetime Rossa Owner

    Aug 19, 2002
    Full Name:
    I've been a subscriber to the FML for over 27 years and have bought and sold Ferraris and related Ferrari materials with the publication.I can't speak highly enough of Gerald Roush and his staff as well as the publication itself.You are correct in saying the descriptions may be succinct and to the point,but if one is interested in buying a car they would probably want to call for further information.The web site does not offer any more infomation regarding the actual cars for sale, but i seriously doubt that one would find a single source that has as many Ferraris and associated "stuff" ,parts , etc. for sale.All of this of course is my personal opinion,but i truly look foward to each and every issue.
  9. coachi

    coachi Formula 3

    May 1, 2002
    SC USA
    I too have subscribed to FML since the eightees...when I bought my first Ferrari, a 308 GTSi. I find the magazine useful, Gerald Rousch and family are very professional, and I will probably continue my subscription for years to come.

    However, I disagree with some statements made above...the majority of sellers are not private- many ads are by dealers (nothing wrong with that for sure). Also the sparsity of description is by design perhaps. The purpose of the magazine is to put the seller and buyer in touch with each other. I agree it would be nice to have color photos and better descriptions. O flal the Ferraris that I have bought and sold, most have not been through ads in the FML. But, it is a Ferrari Bible as someone said, and I find it useful in keeping with the pulse of the market. The asking prices are on the average 10% or maybe a bit more higher than the actual selling prices ( a rough estimate) but as Gerald says, he only lists what the buyers ask, and does not survey actual selling prices. Even so, this is valuable information.

    I used to find more parts and literature that I would buy through FML, but these days EBay seems to have cornered that market.

    All in all, it is worth the money and I am proud of my collection which I have kept since my very first subscription. Keep the Bible going, Garald. All the power to you and many thanks.
  10. dm_n_stuff

    dm_n_stuff Four Time F1 World Champ
    Lifetime Rossa Owner

    The ads are sparse, but, price and ser# are required in the listing. That gives FML the info it needs for its Asking Price Index, which is very helpful in establishing a range of prices for the car you are looking for.

    I subscribed online at the beginning of my search for a Dino, and it helped me save maybe $10-20K by steering me away from gus who had severely inflated notions of what their cars were worth.

    Sample ad:

    "F355 BERLINETTA, S/N 99948 (1995 USA model). Black with black interior. 24,950 miles. New SS valve guides, major service completed, new clutch, new headers & new tires. Runs & drives beautifully! Photos online. $75,000. 11/03 (TX)"

    Contact info deleted, 'cause it's only fair to FML that you pay for that info.

    IT'S WORTH THE $40.

    The paper version does have additional articles and info, as I recall, having only seen one or two from a friend.

    Good Luck!
  11. nerd

    nerd F1 Rookie

    Oct 12, 2003
    Coronado, CA
    Full Name:

    I have subscribed to FML for several years and had the pleasure of trading correspondence with Gerald on several occasions (placing ads, researching a Daytona, discussing his algorithm for the price index). No, it’s not glossy, the ads are brief, and now unfortunately dominated by dealers, but I seem to read every issue and refer back often. Some gripe that the FML price index is not the NASDAQ of the Ferrari market reflecting the instantaneous spot market, but FML has never claimed the price index to be anything more than a trailing estimate of asking prices for a given model. There are 2 Ferrari publications which I read in depth every issue; FML and Cavallino.

  12. funshipone

    funshipone Formula Junior

    Jan 2, 2002
    Harrison Twp. Mi. US
    Full Name:
    John Bicsak
    Yes FML is very much worth the money. Information makes for interesting reading.
  13. Joe G.

    Joe G. Formula 3

    Dec 9, 2003
    Los Angeles
    Full Name:
    Joe Gazzani
    I have found that the FML is NOT worth the subscription, especially if you're in the mraket to purchase.

    Here are my reasons:

    1. Many of the cars for sale in the FML are dealers, which can just as easily be found (the same dealers) on the internet for free.

    2. The cars are spread out all over the U.S. You'd be better off searching close to home first. Again, if you don't mind shopping all over the U.S. the internet will be your best bet anyway.

    3. Many of the cars in there are priced very high, beyond reality, and never really sell or transact at those prices. The index is made up of only asking prices which do not reflect real sale prices. A very poor indication.

    4. The FML price index is not broken up into model sub-group correctly. For example, it groups all 348's and all F355's (more or less) in the same groups. But people who are knowledgeable know that they're are year to year differences in each and every yearly build Ferrari does which equates back to different maintenance costs, relability issues, etc.

    5. It's slow. By the time someone puts an ad in there and it makes it to the next publication that car could just as well be gone. That's why dealers post their inventory in there at high prices and just sit and wait.

    other alternatives to finding an F355
    various dealers on the internet
  14. ghost

    ghost F1 World Champ
    Lifetime Rossa

    Dec 10, 2003
    Clearly lots of fans...and a few detractors. Thank you for sharing your thoughts. This has been helpful.
  15. Texas Forever

    Texas Forever Seven Time F1 World Champ
    Rossa Subscribed

    Apr 28, 2003
    Ghost, I get the online edition and just finishing browsing the most recent edition. Is it worth it, no doubt if you look at FML as a magazine like Forza, Evo, or whatever. If you are hot to trot to buy a car, FML should be one of the first places that you should start your search, but probably not the last place. For vintage cars, it may be just about the only stop besides hiring a finder/broker or something like Hemmings.

    Yes, FML has more dealers now than private sellers.

    Yes, the "asking prices" in FML are just a point of beginning. However, I have found that many dealers will list a car in FML for $5k to $10k less than what they show on their own web sites.

    And yes, I wish that FML had more editiorial comments like Keith Martin's Sports Car Market. The good news is it appears that things may be heading this way. I noticed that in the last edition had a request for reader comments on why 360 prices have remained so high.

    Bottom line is the FML is like F-Chat for us old guys who still like to do things the old non-interactive way, i.e., reading.

    Take Care, DrTax
  16. TTG

    TTG Formula 3

    Jun 11, 2002
    East Hanover, NJ
    Full Name:
    Todd Gieger
    FML is a really great guide to follow when searching...I'd go for it. Facts without the fluff/glamour


  17. El Wayne

    El Wayne F1 World Champ
    Staff Member Lifetime Rossa Owner

    Aug 1, 2002
    San Marino, CA
    Full Name:
    L. Wayne Ausbrooks
    It is published twice monthly. I seriously doubt that this has happened very often, if at all.

    Same here.

    This is true.

    In addition, the fact that sellers must list serial numbers (allowing potential buyers to research the cars) and asking prices is a major plus. This eliminates the "POA" bs and, as DrTax has pointed out, forces dealers to publish a more reasonable asking price since it will be listed along with several other similar cars for sale.
  18. jsa330

    jsa330 F1 Veteran
    Silver Subscribed

    Oct 31, 2003
    Full Name:
    I subscribed to online FML For a year when i was looking for a car.
    Excellent publication with generally quality cars advertised. I found some good parts there as well.
  19. SrfCity

    SrfCity F1 World Champ

    My online subscription ran out this month. I found I would not even look at it much when it came out bi-weekly. I did order a book and they were very helpful. I don't plan to renew unless I'm considering running a classified ad at some point. I get more out of F-chat and the price is right ;)
  20. sandersja

    sandersja Formula Junior

    Jan 16, 2003
    Portland OR
    Full Name:
    John Sanders
    During my rather long search for the "right" car, I valued the FML and its classifieds. The cars and dealers/sellers were of a higher standard than what is found through other sources. Quite soon after closely following the market you will realize that Dupont is not only expensive per month, but is rather worthless. As mentioned before, the cars can be advertised in Dupont long after they are no longer available. That is the same for many of the websites that try to collect listings from other sites/sources. Even the individual dealer sites are not always kept up to date.

    One great service of FML worked for me - they allow free want-ads by subscribers. After I exhausted all other avenues, I posted a description of what I wanted. FML is good in that the serious dealers follow it, and one spotted my ad and had an unadvertised car coming in on trade.
  21. davem

    davem F1 Veteran
    Silver Subscribed

    Jan 21, 2002
    Stepford, Connecticut
    Full Name:
    dave m
    My first Mondial i found on FML. This was the only place the seller placed it. Whats 40 bux when you are buying a Ferrari!?
  22. johnhoughtaling

    johnhoughtaling Formula 3

    Nov 6, 2002
    New Orleans
    Full Name:
    John William H.
    A subscription to the FML is a must for any enthusiast or anyone seriously looking for a Ferrari. If you are purchasing your first ferrari or your 40th, you need to research and take your time. The FML is the bible. If you are looking for a Ferrari without one, you are being foolish.

    The only good deal you can make on a Ferrari is to deal on a good one. Ditto on the comments about the FML being the place to find good people/cars. The reason for this is that the Ferrari community knows this is THE classified magazine for Ferraris. It has been so for decades.
  23. ghost

    ghost F1 World Champ
    Lifetime Rossa

    Dec 10, 2003
    I agree it's not much -- the question was not really about money (in fact, I've already subscribed). I was more curious to solicit member opinion on how FML has fared in light of increasing competition from other online sites, many of whom offer buyers free access. It seems that despite some it's shortcomings, it's still a great resource to have.

    Additionally, a search on F-Chat didn't really reveal a specific thread on FML. We now have one, so others with a similar question will be able to reference.

  24. El Wayne

    El Wayne F1 World Champ
    Staff Member Lifetime Rossa Owner

    Aug 1, 2002
    San Marino, CA
    Full Name:
    L. Wayne Ausbrooks
  25. ghost

    ghost F1 World Champ
    Lifetime Rossa

    Dec 10, 2003
    Thanks Wayne. Silly of me to think I could pull one past you ol' timers. :) But seriously, must have just missed it. Still glad to have discussed the topic, though. Hopefully others also benefitted from it.


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