Want a Sports Car? 10 Reasons You Should (and Shouldn't) Buy One
Posted by: Dan on 20/07/2016
We’ve all been there: that moment when you’re at the mechanic getting a new part installed, wandering through a dealership looking to get some paperwork done, or at your local tyre shop getting a new set of tyres. Then you see it: a 4-wheeled wonder that would leave even AC/DC thunderstruck.
But then reality hits. You recognise that although that sports car looks amazing – and even seems quite affordable! – it’s not a simple decision. There are a lot of considerations you need to take into account before buying a sports car.
True, it can feel like a bit of a puzzle – so here are 10 pros and cons of sports car ownership that you need to know.
1. Pro: Every drive will feel special
When you’ve got a cool ride, even sitting in traffic is something you don’t mind (too much). Others stuck in the jam may feel a bit upset that they chose that very sensible brown sedan with two cup holders; meanwhile, you’re lined up in a red rover that wouldn’t look out of place on a racing track.
And, when you finally get moving, that feeling of driving a car you really love is a great thing.
2. Con: Luxury tax
Depending on what sports car you are looking to buy, luxury car tax can be a factor. Of course, if you have your heart set on a once-in-a-lifetime vehicle, paying a little extra tax may not be a dealbreaker. But if you just came across a sports car by chance as you were looking to replace your old vehicle? That could be more of an investment than you want to make, so consider any new sports car with luxury tax in mind.
3. Pro: It’s a good time to buy
Taxes aside, with luxury car sales booming in Australia – growing from 10.3% of the market to 17.3% in 2015 – it’s a great time to finally make that purchase. In particular, if you have some flexibility about the sort of car you want – whether from a certain manufacturer or a certain era – your chance to drive a hard bargain with the seller is significant.
4. Con: Size
A little two-seater may seem like a fabulous choice for a weekend drive along the coast, but if you have five kids and regularly find your current car filled to the brim with boxes, school bags, and sports equipment, the logistics of owning a sports car may need to be considered a bit further.
5. Pro: The cool factor
On the other hand, your kids may be quite happy to sit with their school bags underfoot, so long as their parents are driving them around in the coolest ride in the neighbourhood. The fact is, when you own a sports car, efficient management of space is a requirement. Just like someone who commutes back and forth to work each day on a bicycle, it takes some good planning beforehand.
6. Con: Sports cars can be uncomfortable
You see it in the movies all the time: someone cruising along a highway, with the sun shining and the top down on their red roller. It all seems so perfect – and sadly, seems is the keyword. If you replicate that scene in real life, chances are you’ll find yourself at risk of a sunburn and have insects buzzing around you while you drive – not to mention the wind factor (driving a convertible can sometimes feel like you're speeding into a black hole).
This is not to say you can’t manage the situation: only put the top down when you're driving at a slower pace or when it’s not the brightest and sunniest time of day – but realising that the perfect summer drive may be a little bit romanticised is an important thing to understand before signing on the dotted line.
7. Pro: You’ve found a car that retains its value
Take a deep breath here, friends – however you cut it, a Ferrari Dino is going to be a really expensive purchase – but one of the great things about sports cars is that there are a number of them that retain their value quite well.
In many cases, this is more of a reality for dedicated investors, not car fans (and even then, being able to resell easily is not always a certainty). But if you know a friend of a friend intent on offloading his classic Ford at a bargain price? It may be a worthwhile buy even if you don’t decide to keep it forever.
8. Con: Insurance
That 1970s classic you just found? Even if you got a great deal on the vehicle, the insurance bill you get could give you a bit of sticker shock. Just like the luxury car tax, most drivers recognise that a classic car will cost more in insurance, but when that first bill comes it can still be a bit of a shock to see those extra zeros. So, just like the luxury tax, be sure to do your research before you officially become a sports car owner.
9. Pro: It’s the right time in your life
If you find yourself at a place in life where the type of car you own is not predetermined by your lifestyle – such as the need to get an affordable car in your 20s, or one to chauffeur the kids around in your 30s – then taking advantage of the opportunity to buy the type of car you’ve always wanted, but could never have, can give you a whole new lease on your driving life. So, if the time is right, be sure you get a car that's right for you.
10. Con: Theft
It’s an unfortunate reality, but sports cars will always be an attractive prospect to thieves. Certain areas of the country are experiencing a high rate of auto theft, so even if you consider your neighbourhood to be relatively safe, you may still attract thieves if you have a desirable ride.
Being aware ahead of time of the makes and models that are most often stolen can help you to determine the type of security you need in place. If you don’t feel that you can secure your vehicle and property appropriately, you may want to consider waiting another year or two until the crime rate settles down. You don’t want the enjoyment of your new vehicle to be diminished by concerns surrounding its security.
As you can see, there are many pros and cons to owning a sports car. But ultimately, it’s true that sometimes driving just needs to be all-around fun. A nice bottle of wine or a 5-star meal can have a negative effect on your wallet, but at the same time, life is too short to just focus on money. So, if you dream of that sports car? Go get it – and enjoy it.
Do you have your eye on a sports car at the moment? Have you ever owned one and want to share your experience? Let us know in the comments below: