Supercar Buying Advice in India

Supercar Buying Advice in India

Supercars in India aren't cheap. They aren't easy to find, they aren't exactly easy to get rid of either. Yet, the new Ferrari SF90 priced at 8 crore plus has sold their entire India allocation for the next 2 years, which was 8 cars. Lamborghini is running 18 month waiting periods and very recently Porsche India started releasing some of their supplies only to land back in a crunch again. What does this imply? The supercar market of India not only exists, but thrives in a craziness of its own. Only a few other players have truly understood and mastered the art of trading supercars. 

Supercars in India - A preface-melt

The supercar market in India is currently witnessing a "sellers market" as of the first half of 2022. Excessive demand coming in from various clouts of society for very limited supply items. Chip shortages has meant limited allocations and post-Covid freight-container shipping cost is an apocalypse of its own.

Third generation business owners that have just taken their first passport size photograph for their learners licence, have already made down-payments for their next Porsche Carrera, booked a Lamborghini Urus for Dad and a Mini Cooper JCW for Ramu Kaka when he does the family vegetable shopping runs. Dispensable income from cash rich businesses that made too much profit need a nice outlet to book some depreciation and what better than a brand spanking new Huracan Evo for the next 6 months to be quickly flipped into a Huracan STO? or shall we say Huracan STOP!

Bull market or Bear Market - Pandemic or Scamdemic - someone is always making money. Theres no better feeling than an Italian sports car sitting on the porch to remind your of all the hard work you put in to get where you are.

So, we now know supercars are always in demand, but how do you find one that not been subjected to absolute carnage (pun intended). When you take a fine comb and filter out the really good cars, you're only left with a few collectibles that "initiated customers" are willing to sell their house for and the existing owners of those cars don't have an "asking price", they only have a "last rejected price" driving up the price for these cars with no actual intent to sell.

If you're looking to buy your first supercar in India then get ready for a whirlwind of surprises that will leave you pulling your hair out - and making it worth while all at the same time. Not only will everyone now see you with prying eyes, you will also be subject to discrimination for being a minority, in a good way.

Enough monkeying around, let's jump into the 9 things you need to keep in mind when you're about to over-leverage yourself to feel cooler than everyone else around you.

1. Engine Type

Are you looking to hold on to this supercar for a long time or flip through it quickly? Vague question to be asking while discussing engine type, I know, but this plays a pivotal role in the resale, when the time comes. With these new battery-powered-refrigerators most car companies are now producing, also known as EVs, the trend is fully shifting to bigger engines for the long haul. If you're a true petrolhead then you've already tried to score that Murcielago you had a poster of on your wall since you were a child, or at least have thought about it, and if you have, your head's in the right place - welcome to the club buddy! now get in line!

V12s and V10s are the way to go if you're looking to spend a F**k ton on maintaining your impractical garage queen - But fear not - you will end up making it back a tad bit of it because they will tend to hold some value in due time. Accumulate and hold V12s and V10s like you would Bitcoin.

Buy a silly BMW M-something if you want other drivers on the road to also know what your car ate for lunch - amplified by the gurgles and farting sounds all the new ones make - you'll have fun in the process and I guess thats the real JOY in BWM ownership. Not your type? bring the 12 year out in you and buy a Ford Must-hang if you feel you're not losing your money or your self-esteem fast enough - at least you'll burnt through 24 tires in finding out the answer to that one AND that has it's own novelty.

2. Body Trim

Choosing the right body style can be such a pressure cooker situation. Imagine showing up to the racetrack in your convertible Maserati Gran Turismo and have all the Racetech boys laugh at you while they belt around their GT3-RS-GTR EVO modded SF90s that have been pushed to 2000 bhp while still featuring comfort massage seats - you dont want that. So, knowing the kind of driver and user you are will define the smile on your face each time you push that start button. Choosing a Carrera Cabriolet over a track specced GT3 is precisely the question you need to ask yourself, and then don't settle for the other.

The body trim will also be defiant to your ability to flip through it, the time it takes and the value you get for it. Track specced cars are harder to resell, so if you're getting one, make sure you're intention is to make it your new best friend - because she ain't going anywhere! (unless you have track loving friends of course!)

3. Colour

Dont judge a book by its cover but definitely judge a supercar by its colour. A red Ferrari is as unpleasant as a technicolour Rolls Royce Phantom. Sure a Ferrari in Rosso is everyone's dream, but the chance of getting hold of a non-Rosso Ferrari is what the 3rd-time supercar buyer is interested in. Choosing the right colour hence becomes crucial to how much we get to look at it and say Faaaaaaaaaaa**k" repeatedly. Its also your inherent responsibility to ensure car spotters are able to get good pictures of your car in daylight and during night drives, so please choose wisely. We recommend off colours to make the car more desirable than the rest. If we wanted to see what was on the catalog - we'd download a wallpaper bro. 

4. Modifications

So what if she's got some makeup on to look prettier? Contrary to the traditional belief - I believe some modifications are good and must haves on supercars. An exhaust is almost a hygiene factor. The entire driving experience changes after an aftermarket exhaust and the car really unleashes its true society-disturbing capacity. Sure you might think she's been used roughly and the engine is made out of cotton and will melt but the reality is supercars are barely used in India and are engineered to be pushed to the max, a few low-gear clips isn't going to bring her to her knees. So don't outrightly reject a car for its mods. Evaluate them and then take a call.

5. State of Registration

With new National road tax policy to be made uniform across the country, India is about to hit a major milestone in supercar ownership convenience. Gone are the days of fake rent agreements to hustle a PY plate on your 12 Crore Phantom you use once a quarter. Nor will you have to be subjected to National amazon-type road-tax-schemes and are left wondering which will be the next state you need to make a new RTO buddy in - its all simpler herein.

For the older cars in circulation -  WB plates expire in 5 years, watch out for those. PY cars are hated by all traffic policemen with a passion and MH is the state to register your supercar in as of June 2022 for its 20L cap across all vehicles.. HP plates are dodgy and Delhi police doesn't care where your car is from - only who your dad is - Sorry guys! but I'm from Delhi so I'm allowed to crack this one!

6. Owners & Mileage 

This is a common one most look for but did you know the V8 R8 that's available for 45L has actually been used by 23 owners? Shocked? let me explain. The R8's in 2019-2020 were in serious supply. A lot of owners left their cars with dealers, who would use the car for a few months and then pass it along to another dealer. While with one dealer, every cousin, neighbour and passerby has taken a shot at the car, and then the vicious cycle repeats with the next dealer. This entire time the car was still in the original owners name. So next time you see R8 - Single Owner - driven 22,000 Kms - Think again.

7. Shape of You

Isn't Ed Sheeran playing in your head just now? This is important, so listen up. If you're a 500 ton Godzilla like me, then an Abarth 500 isn't the car for you. KYC - Know Your Car-sitting-ability is probably the first reality check you need to give yourself. Apart from your car being comfortable for your own good - you need to look amazing rolling around in it too - so choose your supercar accordingly. You can get the same car to fit two body types - take the Audi R8 Vs the Huracan or the Gallardo. The Lambos are way narrower with sharper seating positions while the Audis are generally a little more spacious - both run the same chassis and engine. Same way - you don't want to be so small in your G63 that you make it look like an autonomous vehicle - so please keep your shape in consideration to the shape of your beast.

8. The time you drive

When you buy a supercar, you might think you're going to drive the living lights out of it but that passion usually dies out in about 6 months. The car eventually becomes a garage queen which has more Carnauba Wax going onto it rather than petrol going into it. To avoid this - decide an extreme time of day that suits your lifestyle and free it up from your calendar. If you're a morning person then Sunday morning drives followed with some breakfast are the perfect ways to gain closure on the week that was. If you're a night person then Tuesday night post midnight will be your best bet - that's the time of least traffic - tried as tested.

The car you buy will define your comfort of driving depending on the time of day you drive usually. For night drivers please make sure your cars are equipped with Adaptive headlights, no stone chips on the windshield and a regular check of your tire health.

9. Intent of Use

Contrary to public belief, we know not all supercar owners are show-offs. In fact some of us are repulsed by the public attention. So if you're one of those petrolheads that's diving into this journey of supercar ownership purely out of passion then know this - the journey is difficult from all aspects, specially in India. The entire system is designed to punish the capitalist. To tax your gains and to take from you and give to those that "need" it more than you. It's a discriminated world with ample amounts of overcharging across the board for everything. Services are going to be expensive. Damages are going to feel like the end of the world. Long drives will leave your back broken and you'll be giving a lot of people answers to the question "Kitna Deti Hai" - but its all bloody worth it and I'd do it a million times over - because the petrolhead that knows that love for a supercar - knows that love for a supercar.

Author - Aditya Arora - CEO - Boit Club
A supercar owner for 10 years and a driver in India for nearly 30 years, Fatman as we affectionately call him, started driving at a young age of 9 and has owned some special cars through his years. With a strong hold of the supercar market, dynamics and a vast network, Aditya founded Boit Club in 2017- the one place for everything supercars - made easy, transparent and financially sensible. Follow him on twitter here.

 

 

This article is written without any intention to offend anyone and are purely experiential, fun, personal points of view of the author. Any offence is without intention and deeply regretted. For genuine car buying advice - Contact Boit Club Registry.

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