Money, Money, Money – The Rise in Supercar Sales
Written by Cieran Boyne on 31st March 2023
With luxury car sales on the rise, Cieran Boyne investigates their desirability with insider knowledge from a car collector and the UK’s fastest growing prestige car showroom.
Supercar/luxury car sales moving into 2023 have increased significantly upon previous years in the market, particularly since the on and off lockdowns between 2020 and 2021. The market itself has grown near 20% from 2022 to 2021 and that rate is still on the increase leading into 2023. Most of this growth seems to be attributable to the 2030 ban on new ICE cars.
Tom (@wam.barn on Instagram, surname undisclosed for privacy) is a collector and purveyor of the collectable supercar. Based in the North Pennines, his collection covers all grounds and bases of the luxury automotive world from the futuristic electric Tesla Model X to some of the fastest modern supercars on the road. While most car collectors focus on the value of the cars, in the hopes that after their purchase and a few years down the line, the car’s value will have increased so that it is not just a fun experience but a profitable one as well. However, when it comes to the cars in Tom’s collection, he sees things a bit differently:
“I buy most cars with that long term value in mind, but it is not the main reason I’d buy them, I don’t buy them as investments, I buy for fun and enjoyment. But I probably wouldn’t buy something that was clearly going to devalue rapidly and harshly just because there are so many options out there that you don’t need to buy a car that’s going to plummet in value.
I think the one exception for that is an electric car because obviously as a business owner and in my case, a multiple business owner these days, you’re encouraged to, by the government at the moment, to buy and use electric cars through a business, so in the same way as it used to be for diesel cars. Yeah, in that case, we don’t really worry a great deal about the value dropping in an electric car.”
Some of the highlights of Tom’s vast collection include a Porsche 918 Spyder valued at £1,250,000, which he has had wrapped in gloss orange, as well as a few track toys with the Porsche Cayman GT4 RS (£235,000), McLaren 765LT (£350,000) and a Lamborghini Aventador SVJ with a Gintani exhaust system (£450,000). When asked about his affinity for particular manufacturers, he said:
“Yeah, Porsches I definitely have an affinity to, Lamborghinis I have an affinity to as well because I think they really nail it with the handling on the SVJ but also the Huracan Performante and the STO, I think are amazing cars, they have so much theatre about them. But I also love some of the older stuff, like I have a couple of R34s, one V-Spec, one V-Spec II Nür and I absolutely love driving them…. So, honestly, I love all cars, I don’t play favourites. I don’t have a Ferrari at the moment but there’s not really a reason why, I would love one. I would love like a 458 Speciale, I’d love a LaFerrari, I’d actually love an F40 their value has gone through the roof, should’ve bought one last year.”
The increase in supercars being sold in the UK also relates to the bespoke and unique manufacturers such as Pagani, Koenigsegg, McLaren and the newest hypercar on the market, Zenvo. Given that the UK is banning the sale of new internal combustion engined cars in 2030, the increase in sales of luxury cars seems to be a sign that consumers want to make the most of the remainder of internal combustion. Tom has recently acquired a new car for his collection, being the one of 25 Koenigsegg Agera RS which he has had custom designed for him. This car has a value of £3,000,000 and is one of only three currently in the UK.
While potential buyers are taking advantage of the rising sales in luxury cars into 2023, the people taking the most advantage are the salesmen and dealerships themselves with the luxury car market in the UK predicted to reach £1billion by the end of 2023. 2022 provided the highest sale price of any car at auction with the 1955 Mercedes-Benz 300 SLR Uhlenhaut Coupe, with this one of one road racer selling privately through RM Sotheby’s for £114,000,000.
Redline Specialist Cars is the UK’s leading prestige, performance and supercar specialist dealership, based in Knaresborough, North Yorkshire, and home to some of the most valuable cars currently for sale in the UK. Their stock currently includes a fully carbon-fibre McLaren Senna, a one-of-99 Aston Martin Vanquish Zagato Shooting Brake and the only Ferrari 599 GTO currently for sale in the UK.
John Graeme is one of the two men who founded Redline Specialist Cars back in 1997 and has watched it grow into one of the most valuable car dealerships in the country. He has noted previously that the pandemic has had a significant effect on sales, be it directly or otherwise. He said:
“Yes, this was the case since the middle of June 2020. We were allowed to sell online with dealerships shut at various times for 2 years. Initially, cars were available, and customers didn’t have the ability to spend money on anything else at the time, couldn’t go on holiday or anything for entertainment so it led to a boom in online sales and the car market suddenly became online focused.
To recap – pandemic and increased sales, more money available, still able to fund them, people treated themselves, cars didn’t devalue so a safe place for their money.”
Redline Specialist Cars have had two record years for sales with 2020 recording 1700 sales for the year and 2021 holding their annual record at 2100. Based on sales so far this year, they expect to sell 1700-1900 cars in 2023.