Well, you can now add Aston Martin to the list of automakers – along with Dodge, Ferrari, and Porsche – who’ve said they’re taking measures to cut down on customers flipping their most valuable and sought-after cars for profit.
Get caught trying to sell your new Valkyrie in order to make a buck, and the British marque will enforce a new sales policies penalizing you for doing so—by taking your car away.
Aston Martin CEO Andy Palmer was the most recent auto exec to take a stand against the problematic practice of exotic car flipping, saying in a tweet July 4 that if the brand discovers customer plans to flip a Valkyrie allocation, it will withhold the car from that customer.
Further, Palmer says the automaker will watch for customers who flip their Valkyries, and if discovered, they’ll be barred from purchasing limited-run “specials” in the future.
“I doubt they [car flippers] have a slot, but if they do and we identify who flipped, they lose the car,” wrote Palmer in his tweet.
“If they flip, then they never get another special.”
Porsche’s head of GT road-car development, Andreas Preuninger, voiced the German sports car brand’s stand on the matter late May, explaining he doesn’t like to see his cars being sold for a profit, and that the brand is closely watching re-sale activity to determine who is flipping GT cars and highly-coveted hypercars such as the 918 Spyder.
“I don’t like this business of people buying our cars to make money on them. That was never our intention. The purpose of limiting a car is not for it to gain value. We don’t want to be laying money on each car’s roof when they run out of the factory,” said Preuninger.
“We are monitoring very closely who is flipping cars,” he said. “We do not build too many cars and we know most of our customers well—we like to have a name for every car before we build it.”
While it’s not clear if it’s a corporate policy or enacted independently from the brand, many Ferrari dealerships are reportedly including a clause in their sales documentation that precludes new owners from selling their cars to anyone other than the dealership they bought their car from for a period of one year, or in some instances, six months.
This approach would severely limit car-flippers from turning a profit on Ferraris, since they’d have their money tied up for a year, and, furthermore, the dealerships are said to block sales to car-flippers once discovered, meaning they could only pull it off once.
Finally, Dodge has taken steps to block quick-cash car-flippers – and markup-eager dealerships – by delivering Demons that sold for above the company’s MSRP after cars that were sold at MSRP, meaning would-be car-flippers who may have paid extra to grab an early build slot will actually have to wait in line behind everyone else.
So, what should one do if ready to pull the trigger on a brand-new limited-edition sports car?
For some brands, owning a number of similarly badged sports cars goes a long way in securing an allotment for hot new product—it’s what Ford looked for when it selected owners for its new GT, for example. But, as in most corners of capitalism, timing is everything.