Wealthy individuals are now buying used Bentleys, Rolls-Royces and McLarens to cut down waiting time

With travel plans and social events put on hold indefinitely due to the coronavirus pandemic, wealthy individuals have turned to retail therapy as a means of escape. This is benefitting luxury automakers more than ever before, with most posting record sales and having production maxed out until the Q2 2022.

This means the rich would have to wait four to six months for their bespoke vehicles to be delivered, but not every high-net-worth individual has the same level of patience, so they look to the used car market for instant gratification, Bloomberg reports.

Rolls-Royce North America communications head, Gerry Spahn said prior to pandemic, only one out of three vehicles it sold were from the Provenance pre-owned range. “Now, it’s closer to 75%,” he said. For Bentley, pre-owned car sales rose 150% from January to May.

According to Edmunds.com, average used car prices have shot up by 30% from 2020

For McLaren, this figure is only up 2% compared to the same period last year, but used McLaren supercars are fetching a higher price than when they were new. McLaren North America acting president, Nic Brown said “the 765LT coupes are trading on the pre-owned market at up to 40% over MSRP, which is staggering.” That’s a much faster rate of return than some old JDM specials.

Certified pre-owned car programmes is not a new thing for luxury car brands. The report said the minute a brand new Rolls-Royce Wraith drives off the showroom floor, it depreciates by 20%. Over the course of five years, the said vehicle will lose 40% of its value. Therefore, customers who are not particular on the exclusivity that a bespoke car offers won’t mind buying a used vehicle (with warranty) for less money from an established pre-owned programme.

Michael Rice, Bentley’s regional director and former manager for its pre-owned programme, said “for many customers, buying a Bentley pre-owned is their first foray into the Bentley brand, and many will become repeat customers. A significant number of these customers will ultimately purchase a new Bentley.”

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