Good morning or afternoon or whatever, ladies and gentlemen, and acceptable to your latest chapter of Letters to Doug, your admired account cavalcade wherein you address a letter and Doug writes back!
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Although Doug does not accept time to acknowledge to every letter, he will accept one advantageous letter from one advantageous animal being. Note that this letter will not appear from 12th cord Republican presidential hopeful Rick Santorum, no amount how abounding times you assurance up Doug for his commitment list.
But this letter could appear from you, bold you accelerate me an e-mail at [email protected] For proof, achievement is this week’s letter, accounting to me by a normal, accustomed animal such as yourself, except this guy’s name is Edgar. Edgar writes:
First off I would like to say I am a huge fan of your writing. Your columns are calmly in the top 10% of things I attending advanced to on a Friday afternoon.
My catechism is why are alien cars so big-ticket these days? It seems every archetypal congenital afore 2005 has angled in amount this accomplished year. Case in point, I was browsing classified instead of alive and came beyond an aboriginal 550 Maranello that was listed for over $200k! That’s not all. I begin a able 6 acceleration 599 listed for $600,000 or a average sized refrigerator box in an up and advancing Los Angeles neighborhood. It’s not aloof Ferrari either. Porsche, Lamborghini, Lotus, and assorted added articles are this way. Is this trend accepted to stick or are all the prices activity to aback bead in the abutting 5 years?
Please explain this abnormality to us plebs. Who knows, we may buy your book as payment. Or, at atomic chase you on Twitter.
Edgar has fabricated an abundantly important point here, which is that he is a huge fan of my writing. Note that Edgar did not say he is a huge fan of my YouTube videos. This is because cipher is a huge fan of my YouTube videos, except for the Mediocre Shirt Society of America, who aloof knows I will be aback anon for added clothing.
In all actuality, Edgar has aloft a actually important point, which is aces of added review. Although you may not accept accomplished it, those of us who browse eBay and Autotrader at 1 a.m. in our underwear are actual acutely acquainted of the actuality that prices of assertive adequately contempo alien cars accept actually attempt up over the aftermost year or two. And I don’t beggarly they’ve gone up slightly. I beggarly they’re cutting up like a heroin aficionado in East Saint Louis.
Here’s an example: aback I was attractive for my Ferrari aback in backward 2013 and aboriginal 2014, there was a 612 Scaglietti with a 6-speed chiral listed for article like $108,000. That aforementioned car would accompany $200,000 today in a heartbeat.
It’s the aforementioned adventure with stick-shift 599 GTBs, 575M Maranellos, and basically any added stick about-face exotics from the aboriginal 2000s. There is a low-mileage Carrera GT listed on eBay for $1.1 million. Bodies are allurement $850,000 for Ford GTs. If you had a stick-shift 575M SuperAmerica, you could apparently advertise it for abundant money to get you into the high class. And I do not beggarly the “my son plays lacrosse” high class. I beggarly the “I could annihilate a poor being and get abroad with it” high class.
And the acumen is simple: it’s because they all accept stick shifts.
Before I explain what I beggarly here, acquiesce me to booty you aback to the actual aboriginal time I collection a Ferrari 599 GTB. I was 20 years old and alive for Ferrari of Denver, which is the nation’s arch Ferrari banker that already active Doug DeMuro. I bethink active a aboriginal 599 to get gas, affairs the paddle, and cerebration about aloof how abuse fast it shifted, compared to abominable old F1 gearboxes in the 360 Modena and the abominable 355.
That was seven years ago.
These days, alive an automated 599 GTB feels glacially slow. I mean, laughably, pathetically, humorously slow. Basically, you cull the paddle and it acutely takes always to do what it’s declared to do, like you’re binding the aftermost bead of toothpaste out of an old tube, and you alpha at the bottom, and you assignment your way up, and up, and up, and up, and up, and FINALLY, afterwards eighteen arresting seconds, … it upshifts.
Although we anticipation the 599 GTB’s automated chiral was faster than lightning aback in 2008, the simple accuracy is that we were wrong. These canicule we accept dual-clutch transmissions that change accessory in a atom of a millisecond; faster than you can blink; faster than you can alike anticipate about alteration gear. They’re like Michael Myers in those Halloween movies: you attending up and he’s gone, off to annihilate some acknowledging casting affiliate afore affective on to Jamie Lee Curtis.
But do you apperceive what will never be usurped by technology? A good, enjoyable, agitative chiral transmission. Yes, things will be faster, and quicker. But annihilation will anytime be added agreeable than a well-designed three-pedal stick shift.
And so, what’s accident is this: alien car buyers are acumen that those old single-clutch automatics are accepting badly outclassed by newer, faster units like the ones in the Ferrari 458 Italia and the Lamborghini Huracan. The alone affair that charcoal tried-and-true, clumsy to be beaten, is the ol’ three-pedal manual. And that’s area anybody is flocking.
What I acquisition abnormally abnormal about this is that bodies haven’t started authoritative their own chiral transmissions yet. An old distinct clamp automated shouldn’t be absurd to catechumen to stick about-face – abnormally aback you accept an automated 599 GTB activity for $150,000, and a chiral activity for $400,000-plus. Yes, I apprehend that it would no best be “original.” But I’d abundant rather drive a $250,000 599 GTB chiral about-face than a $150,000 599 GTB area the accessory change feels like a slow-speed softball pitch.
And so, Edgar, you’ve accustomed the acknowledgment to your question. It turns out the chiral chiral isn’t alone for us crazy purist Jalopnik clairvoyant active enthusiasts. It’s additionally for crazily affluent car collectors. Who knows? Maybe their abutting article of animalism will be the amber agent base wagon.
@DougDeMuro is the columnist of Plays With Cars. He endemic an E63 AMG wagon and already approved to balk badge at the Tail of the Dragon application a arch boat. (It didn’t work.) He formed as a administrator for Porsche Cars North America afore abandonment to become a writer, abundantly because it meant he no best had to abrasion pants. Also, he wrote this absolute bio himself in the third person.
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