Does it seem like the number of Porsches and Lamborghinis you see driving around has gone up? Feel like every week we’re breaking a story about an upstart sports car manufacturer with a new track toy or grand tourer for sale? It’s not just you—the sales of supercars may actually be ratcheting up, thanks to a surge in the number of millionaires worldwide.
If the proof is in the pudding, the pudding is Ferrari-flavoured. The Italian automaker is on track to reach its 2019 goal of building 9,000 units annually one year early, and so is doubling assembly shifts to two a day in 2018, a source told Bloomberg.
Because a big part of the draw of owning a Ferrari is its exclusivity, the company has set for itself its own 10,000-units-annually limit, but plans to break through that ceiling sometime in the next few years as it prepares to build its first-ever SUV.
Ferrari CEO Sergio Marchionne, who spun the brand off from its parent company Fiat Chrysler America (FCA) in 2016, sees breaking through that limit as necessary if the company is going to double its operating profit by 2022.
How can the company – and indeed, the booming supercar/sports car/track toy industry generally – sustain this growth? Thanks to a growing wealth of new customers that’s not predicted to slow.
“The number of millionaires worldwide surged 36 percent to 13.6 million people in the 10 years through 2016 and may rise another 37 percent in the following decade,” Bloomberg reports. “The number of billionaires increased 45 percent in the period, boosted by gains in the Asia-Pacific area.”
Ferraris are, for the moment, still pretty hard to come by, with a customer waiting list of 12 months for most of the marque’s models. But Marchionne says he has a plan to keep the cars exclusive despite this ramp up in production, a plan inspired by the words of founder Enzo Ferrari: the company will always sell one car less than the market demand.