On the 29th April this McLaren 720s sold on Collecting Cars for £130,500. Cars dealers said it was just a blip, but market opinions differs. In the Twitter chat after the sale Harry Metcalfe made the following comment:

This was something that had been on my mind for a while, not necessarily in relation solely to sports cars as was Harry’s point, but more price increases brought about by brand engineering.

I think JLR have been more successful in their Land Rover efforts than their Jaguar ones and this was really the manufacturer that I had in mind. When the Range Rover came out in the 1970s the aim was to make a off-roader drive more like a normal road car. Fifty years later it is now talked about as a competitor to Bentley and the Mercedes-Benz S-Class as it is continually positioned upwards.

The same is true in other parts of the JLR lineup. The Discovery was introduced as there “was no car in the Land Rover line-up for the true countryman, who wanted one car to take his cows to market and his family to the pub. The Discovery filled that hole nicely“. The only cows getting near a Discovery now are the ones used for the seats.

As well as existing models being pushed upwards lineups have also swelled in the past twenty years as manufacturers introduce new models at lower price points than they would have traditionally focused on. As manufacturers have assembled a range of brands over the same period this been more common place.

VAG do this well with their MQB platform, but I think JLR for one have struggled with this at the lower price points as they target the same part of the market with a product which is not truly differentiated. Think Discovery Sport / Evoque / E-Pace.

With so much change they is a degree of interpretation with regards to the below figures. For example, what is the modern equivalent of the Ferrari 360? It could be argued that the California / Portofino took this spot as the entry-level car, however I would argue that this is a new lineup and therefore the F430/458/488/F8 Tributo line is actually the successor.

It is also not unusual that new Lamborghini/Ferrari/McLaren models now have £40,000 of £50,000 of options added. So, it could be argued that this using base spec prices is unrealistic, but to start including typical options would just make it a minefield so the line has to be drawn somewhere.

By and large I tried to focus on the year 200, however some models, or the availability of original pricing data meant that this was give or take a few years. Here’s the data:

8. Jaguar Coupe

1998: XKR Coupe – £59,300 (2020 inflation adjusted: £105,136)

2020: F-Type R-Dynamic P450 AWD – £70,025

Difference: -33%

7. Ferrari V12 2+2

2004: 612 – £187,745 (2020: £290,424)

2020: GTC4 Lusso V12 – £231,310

Difference: -20%

6. Porsche Entry Level

2000: Boxster 2.7 – £31,630 (2020: £53,641)

2020: 718 Boxster – £46,651

Difference: -13%

5. Lamborghini Entry Level

2006: Lamborghini Spyder – £131,000 (2020: £190,976)

2020: Huracan EVO Spyder – £181,781

Difference: -5%

4. BMW M3

2004: M3 – £39,730 (2020: £61,458)

2020: M3 – £59,905

Difference: -3%

3. Porsche 911 Turbo

2001: 996 Turbo – £86,000 (2020: £143,308)

2020: 992 Turbo S – £155,970

Difference: +9%

2. Ferrari V8 Coupe

2000: 360 – £101,243 (2020: £171,697)

2020: F8 Tributo – £203,476

Difference: +19%

1. Range Rover

2000: P38 4.6 Vogue – £53,995 (2020: £91,569)

2020: L405 5.0 Supercharged – £112,515

Difference: +23%

Although a relatively small sample I would interpret these in the following way which are all fairly obvious.

  • JLR are milking the Range Rover brand. Not really a new headline *cough* Velar and Evoque *cough*.
  • Ferrari are pushing their V8 coupe upwards, when you add in another £40k of options the increase in real terms gets a bit eye watering.
  • A 2020 F-Type R is comparatively pretty good value. Although the line-up now includes the SVR meaning the R is no longer the range topper I think spiritually it is the successor. Today you can buy a brand new F-Type SVR stock car for £110k which is still value historically speaking.
  • M3 & 911 Turbo brands have both stood the test of time seem to be sensibly positioned to continue going forward.

There is some subjectivity to the above and I’m interested in any challenges to the assumptions used.

Published by Mark Tofts

Freelance consultant working on business concept design and research projects with an interest in all thing automotive.

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