Porsche Might Make You Sign A Lease To Stop You From Flipping Its Cars At a Profit
Porsche is known for putting out many special edition models and it no longer wants speculators to get in the way and inflate pricesby Michael Fira, on
Porsche is looking at ways to stop people from looking at its cars as if they are merely opportunities to make a quick profit. This is especially true when it comes to the company’s limited-run models that seem to pop up rather quickly on the second-hand market with ludicrously high price tags. But all these resellers might be out of a job soon if Porsche goes through with its idea to include some sort of lease plan for special models that would inhibit owners from selling their cars for a certain period of time.
By looking at the numbers, you’d think that Porsche has it all figured out. The luxury and performance brand from Stuttgart, Germany, sold no less than 57,202 cars in the U.S. alone over the 12 months of 2018. This was an increase of 3.2% from 2017 which, in itself, was a record year. In fact, 2018 was the ninth consecutive year of growth for PCNA and the seventh record year in a row for Porsche Cars North America. But Porsche still has niggly little things it needs to sort out and one of them, in particular, is the matter of its special edition models emerging way too quickly with fishy price markups in place on the used car market.
You May Only Be Able to Lease Porsche’s Upcoming Special Models
Porsche knows its clientele. It knows what groups of its customers will buy which cars quite specifically. It knows who will buy the much-lamented 2020 Cayenne Coupe, who’s ready to put a deposit up for a fresh Porsche 911 (992) Carrera, and who’s now constantly checking the calendar awaiting the release of the Taycan. It also knows who will buy the company’s less mass-oriented models like the 2019 Porsche 935 Type 991 track car or the Porsche 911 (991) R that we’ve called "a wingless, manual 911 GT3 for purists".
But, among the mass of buyers, there are some who don't buy a Porsche because they like the styling, or the history, or the way a Porsche feels and handles, or the way it relishes on its history, but because certain models tend to become instant classics.
In other words, some Porsche models will be bought by well-to-do Porschefiles for almost any amount of money the seller asks for if said Porsche fans have missed their chance the first time. This was the case with the 911 R that, barely months after being introduced, was up for grabs on certain classified ads websites for as much as $1 million. Even before we wrote that story, in July of 2016, we saw one advertised for $1.25 million on eBay.
This situation doesn’t sit well with Porsche’s high brass, even the company’s CEO, Oliver Blume, commenting on it. "Our interest is to sell cars for drivers, not dealers,” said Blume, quoted by Autocar. “We put so much love into them, with the goal of people driving them not to put them in a garage," he added before pointing to a potential solution. "One thing we could do is look at leasing models to try to avoid this kind of dealing, so the car doesn’t get sold on for a period of time."
According to Autocar, regular customers are usually the first to get the chance to buy limited-run models through certain retailers, but speculators have historically been able to get on waiting lists and get their hands on some cars.
While it's unclear at the moment exactly what will Porsche's course of action be, many other manufacturers have looked into ways to stop people from flipping their special cars to make money.
We’ve talked a lot here about John Cena’s Ford GT that’s been up for auction no less than three times in two years in spite of Ford’s no-sell stipulation in the contract that one had to sign to get his or her hands on the $400,000 supercar. For the record, Cena’s car was a no-sell last time it hit the auction block because the highest bid of $1.65 million didn’t surpass the reserve!
Similarly, Mercedes-Benz wants the owners of each of the 275 Project Ones that will be sold to hold on to their cars a definite amount of time before setting up plans for selling them on. This, the German automaker hopes, will deter speculators since the car is obviously highly collectible and many will pay more than the $2.72 million list price on the used car market.
Aston Martin is also in the game of trying to block the resale of its most amazing car yet, the Valkyrie.
Apparently, you'll be stripped of your build slot if you dare to sell it on and a lawsuit may be brought up against you if you sell it on before a certain amount of time has passed once you've taken possession of the car.
The same goes for Mercedes-Benz although the lawsuit technique didn’t slow down John Cena since the wrestling star seemed untroubled when he settled the matter with Ford out of court for an undisclosed sum of money.
Maybe the most restricitive automaker of all when it comes to what you can and what you cannot do with its cars is Ferrari.
The Italians, for instance, won't let you keep your Corse Clienti cars (such as the 599-XX or the FXX-K) and, instead, they're kept and maintained at the factory and brought out to certain race tracks for you to come and have fun with them.
Very few owners of XX series models have been allowed to store their cars in their own garages. Ferrari was also one of the first to come up with a lease scheme for one of its models. All the way back in 1995, when it introduced the flawed but still awesome F50, Ferrari had you enroll in a lease-to-own program with a $240,000 down payment in place. The lease was scheduled for two years because Ferrari didn’t want to see folks re-sale its "F1-engined" miracle for a profit.
As you know, to be eligible to buy an F50 in the first place, you also had to have an F40 and a 288 GTO in your stable. Ferrari applies similar schemes to this day, denying customers the chance to buy certain special models if they don’t already own other special models (bought from the factory, not off the used car market or via auction houses) or if they have a record of flipping cars or otherwise acting in such a way as to damage Ferrari’s image (think Purrari).
Read our full review on the 2020 Porsche Cayenne Coupe.
Read our full review on the 2018 Porsche 911 GT2 RS Clubsport
Read our full review on the 2017 Porsche 911 R.
Read our full review on the 2018 Aston Martin Valkyrie