Originally Posted by Hutnicks
In racing we used to say "The only way to beat cubic inches is with cubic dollars".
One look at the farce known as Barret Jackson, is all you need to figure out it's basically a game show for the rich and frivolous. They seem to exist for no other reason than to drive prices sky high on cars that would be a hard sell otherwise.
BJ is awful all the way around, at least Gooding will make sure the cars are sorted and in working order, unless otherwise stated. Sure, there may be some niggles, like a bad washer pump or a non-working radio, but Barrett will enthusiastically sell you a pig in a poke (albeit one that's been nicely detailed). Also, I've heard they're more likely to take bids off the wall
, and they deliberately choose to operate in one of the few states where the practice is still legal. That's one of the sore points I have with bidding online or via telephone, you can't look for the other bidders. (Part of the fun is making eye contact and gaming them, too). I'll still keep working with Mecum, but that's about it.
Originally Posted by billybob_jcv
All collecting is the same at the summit - more of a fashion statement than a hobby. I have a friend that is in the rare flower business (a particular species) - and in addition to breeding, growing and selling high-end plants - he also lectures to clubs on various topics related to growing & judging the flowers. One of the odd parts of his business is consulting to wealthy people on how to care for their collections. He will travel to their very expensive homes in Beverly Hills, Belaire, Malibu, Orange County, etc and see their plants and give them advice. HOWEVER - in almost all cases, he doesn't really talk to the owners. He talks to the groundskeepers and gardeners that actually care for the plants. The actual owner knows nothing about the plants - except that they are rare and expensive. All the owner cares about is how rare the plant is and how many awards it has won. It doesn't matter if it is flowers, cars, horses, dogs, wine or whatever. IMHO, once you have no actual interest in the items you are collecting, and all you care about is the bragging rights, then you no longer get to claim it is your hobby.
Here's another story... I once worked for a high-tech electronics company who's founder was your typical techie geek engineer - it's the old high-tech dream - he had a good idea and he and a few of his engineer friends worked their butts off to create a company worth hundreds of millions of dollars. He built a beautiful & huge home that included a very large wine cellar that was temp & humidity controlled - all the bells & whistles. He maintained an extensive wine collection worth big bucks. Only one problem... He and his family are Mormons. They don't drink wine or any alcohol at all - absolutely none. The wine cellar and the wine was there ONLY to impress the other nouveau riche that were invited to his home for dinner. He hired wine buyers to stock his cellar with the best bottles they could buy and to monitor and run the high-tech wine cellar.
Yep, I hear the Romneys have quite a cellar.
In all things, there are collectors and there are enthusiasts, they aren't mutually exclusive, but in the auto world they generally are. Some people have bucked the trend, like Leno, Seinfeld, and Tim Allen. They have money and keep a huge collection of vehicles, but they also know practically every nut and bolt on every one of them. In my mind, it's the difference between being a true amateur (you do it because you love cars) and an investor/speculator. That links to what I talked about earlier, the values of certain vintage Ferraris. These are now status markers for billionaires, and a man isn't a man unless he has a 250 Cali or GTO in a hermetically sealed viewing salon. *spit*
I have great respect for people like the BBC's Chris Evans, who aren't billionaires, but build collections to preserve the classics and
drive the nuts off them. Chris has actually caught flack for putting ~3k miles on his Coburn Cali since he bought it, oh the horror!
I hope he wills it to someone who will drive it and care for it, and it doesn't end up rotting in the hidden warehouse of some sheik somewhere. Other, lesser known Ferrari models, haven't received that attention, but with such limited numbers and the ever-growing population of billionaire playboys, it's inevitable that they will.
There are other vintage models I want, but not too many. I'm hot on the trail of an almost-pristine Boano in Canada, and looking at a `58 250GT TdF Scaglietti re-body (performed in 1959 after the car was nearly destroyed in a garage fire). That's my favorite of all the 50s and 60s Ferraris.
Originally Posted by wingtsun
I thinks that's how pretty much everything is now priced. Consider fuel, for example. I have a Jeep Wrangler JK two dor, a car you guys in the US will know all about. To fill it with diesel now costs me $135 USD. $135 USD for one single tank of diesel!!! Do you smoke? A pack of 20 over here now costs $13 USD. The price of everything has now gone beyond a joke. It's now cheaper to fly to the other side of Europe than it is to travel 100 miles up the road in your car.
That's one reason I convert so many cars to ethanol, E85 is only $2.76 /gallon.
My Falcon F7 is almost complete, today they called for my measurements for seating and pedal/shifter position, which will piss off my wife because that means she won't be able to drive it without a booster seat and leg/arm extensions. I thought they'd forgotten about me, but it turns out they've been having issues sourcing the CF panels, due to current demand far outstripping supply.
On the plus side, it's the first 2014 model and... it's a one-off that has two little intercooled Garrett turbos that are about the size of large bagels.
I'd talked with them about it earlier in the year and they seemed dismissive, but later they came around and agreed to charge me more money (heh). Perhaps because of the ensuing 1000bhp supercar war, maybe (or just for more money). Anyway, from them will make 750hp at the flywheel, but it has a whole lot of headroom (est 900+) and it's open for tuning (and smashing my warranty to pieces, of course).