You’re considering upgrading your car? The idea of driving a sports car may be thrilling, but owning a vehicle that easily cracks 200 km/h and costs more than many people earn in a year, isn’t all sunshine and roses. To help you make an informed decision, we’re asking the burning question: Are sports cars really worth it? We’ve compiled the biggest benefits and downsides to owning a sports car in 2020.
In 2019, Australia’s overall sports car sales were down by a massive 20.9 per cent. The slump in popularity can be attributed to a recent economic crunch, but we believe there is a lot more to it. Have these supercars known for their good looks, performance and a devil-may-care absence of practicality, all of a sudden fallen out of favour with local car enthusiasts?
It is true, sports cars have always had a different appeal to people. Opinions are divided on what matters most: It’s the old question of practicality versus performance. To many owners – and those hoping to belong to the same category one day, sports cars are a thing of pure joy.
They are a brilliant conversation starter, and for many, a status symbol.
But, not all that glitters is gold. Some sports cars are infamous for being loud, extremely impractical and poorly designed. And those are not the only drawbacks owning a sports car can have: From a hefty price tag to safety concerns, the disbenefits weigh heavy. For many buyers, they make a decision against sports cars a no-brainer. A persistent tried and true car-enthusiast, however, will seal the deal no matter what. What category do you belong to? You’re about to find out!
Here are four benefits and four downsides to owning a sports car in 2020!
Are Sports Cars Worth it? – Benefits & Disadvantages
PRO: The Driving Experience
Powerful engines and aerodynamic design solutions: Sports cars push the boundaries of what we thought was possible. Iconic and mystique as they are, sports cars are created for a superior driving experience. These speed devils accelerate from 0 to 100 km/h in a matter of a few seconds, trumping the performance of any other type of vehicle.
Whilst regular cars are made with functionality and affordability in mind, sports car designers don’t seem to worry about such banalities. What matters is giving every driver the thrill of a lifetime.
The Porsche 911 is one of the most iconic, classic sports cars of all time. With prices ranging between $229,500 and $466,900, they’re the perfect ride for car enthusiasts that don’t mind reaching deep into their pockets.
CON: Safety Concerns
Sports cars are built with a focus on performance and aesthetics. In terms of safety features, however, sports cars seem to be the poor cousins of Sedans and SUVs. In the wrong hands, they can quickly become dangerous
Some of Australia’s favourite sports cars, such as Porsches, BMWs and Maseratis, are involved in up to five and a half times more accidents than the average vehicle. In the ANCAP safety rating, Australia’s most popular sports car, the Ford Mustang, received meagre 3 out of 5 stars, ranking it the worst sports car in terms of safety.
Let’s be clear. Sports cars in themselves aren’t inherently more dangerous than regular cars.
But unfortunately, we’ve seen a rise in the number of motorists who seem to lack common sense, many of whom underestimate the power these vehicles possess. The result? Overwhelmed drivers that total expensive speed devils within a few miles of having driven off the lot. If the damage is limited to their physical property they can consider themselves lucky.
The Nissan GTR, a real-world example of a supercar, gets you from 0 to 100 km/h in 2.7 seconds. This mindblowing performance comes at a cost of $172,000 to $182,500.
PRO: Personalisation & Self-Expression
Every car says something about their owner. That holds true for regular vehicles, but even more so for sports car owners. Personalisation is a sports car makers’ answer to their customers’ search for individualism and self-expression and so they encourage their imaginative clients to come up with new ideas: From the choice of paint colour to the fabric being used on the seats to the colour of the brake callipers.
Personal, emotional investment is the key to securing a second or third sale. And so, nothing seems impossible. It’s the pinnacle of luxury. And it comes at a price. One that true sports car enthusiasts are willing to pay. A newly created shade of exterior paint at McLaren, for example, can easily add $50.000 to the original price of the vehicle. So, if you’re keen to distinguish yourself from the crowd and have the coins to spare, a sports car might just be what you’re looking for.
From one of the most famous German car manufacturers comes the Audi TT, a two-door vehicle that takes driving experience and performance to a new level. At a price range of $69,350 to $139,990 is the perfect entry-level sports car. But watch out, it might just get you hooked.
CON: The Price Tag
Ok, this one seems rather obvious. There is really no denying: The purchase of a new (or even second hand) sports car pilfers your pockets. They’re amongst the exclusive group of the most expensive cars, competing for the title only with luxury car brands such as Bentley, Mercedes and Jaguar.
Carmakers charge more because they can. Brands like Ferrari easily book a profit of $80,000 for each car they sell. Sports cars are highly desirable and those who are able to afford it, are more than happy to pay whatever the price may be, to not only look good but enjoy their ride. Let’s not forget, it’s one they’ve most likely worked hard for.
PRO: Good Looks that are Hard to Beat
Can you already see yourself hunting for your reflection in the storefront windows? As the owner of a sports car, you can rest assured, all eyes will be on you. If you want to feel like a million dollars, a sports car can give you just that.
Sports cars don’t usually carry more than two adult occupants. And they’re not meant to. As opposed to your typical family vehicle, they often serve as a fun second car, safely stored in the garage during the working week and only taken out for a spin on weekends and holidays. Therefore, sports car designers and engineers don’t have to prioritise cargo space or legroom over aesthetics and can devote their ideas and creations to designing beautiful aerodynamic, ground-hugging and lightweight four-wheelers.
The Ford Mustang is Australia’s favourite sports car. In 2019 alone, Ford took out 26.8 per cent of all sports car sales across the country. With a relatively low cost of $48,777 to $72,479 for the most recent models and thanks to their excellent performance and aesthetic, Ford can be expected to continue as a leading force on the sports car market.
CON: Unpractical Size
You’ve already learned that choosing a sports car, also means sacrificing space. Even the best of sports cars struggle with it: Long and heavy doors that need a lot of space to open make parking your vehicle a logistical nightmare. The aftermath? Dented body panels, ugly scratches and a long list of apology notes. And that’s not the only compromise you’ll have to make: Low, sloping rooflines take a toll on headspace and are the reason why tall people often have trouble finding the perfect sports car.
Low riding height is also closely related to the effects of impractical sizing and should be taken into consideration when you’re trying to decide if sports cars are really worth the money. A common problem for sports car owners is getting their precious four wheels out of their office building’s basement or the supermarket car park. Even speed bumps become a real hazard. If you hate the idea of scrapping your car’s belly or looking a little silly as you’re trying to climb in and out of your car, you should probably consider investing in a more practically sized luxury car, like the Bentley’s Continental GT.
Looking for a tough-looking car with a lot of horsepowers? The Subaru WRX might just be for you! At $38,990 to $45,990, the former rally legend offers appeals to a wide audience, without ever losing the appeal of being one of the most exciting cars on the market.
PRO: A Great Investment
Whilst most new cars depreciate in value as soon as they leave the showroom, sports cars are great at holding their value and are far more recession-proof. So while you initially will have to reach deeper into your pockets, you might be able to make up for it in the long run.
Assuming that they’re kept in pristine condition, older sports cars can also become collectors’ items over time. Some of the most sought after models are now worth a whopping $1 Million.
Just take the E-type Jaguar as an example!
Looking for something sporty and practical? The Hyundai Veloster SR Turbo is a fantastic new model with a power of up to 150kW. Best yet: If you have $32,990 – $35,290 to spare, you can park this funky sports car in your own garage.
CON: Cost of Maintenance
Another issue that shouldn’t be underestimated is the cost of maintenance. Owning and maintaining a sports car isn’t necessarily a cheap undertaking. It can cost thousands of dollars to cover maintenance costs, luxury car tax (a tax on cars with a total value above a threshold which is set by the ATO) and car insurance.
And what happens if something breaks? A cracked windscreen, a broken fan belt or suspicious engine noises. Finding the right replacement parts can be a challenge, especially for older European models. Not to mention the stress of finding a mechanic that specialises in vintage sports cars and provide the necessary level of service.
The Toyota 86 has been a sales sensation since the day it first launched. As an affordable solution for a wide range of consumers, the 2.0-litre Subaru boxer engine has an output of 147kw.
In a Nutshell
Sports cars are not for everyone. If they’re the right choice for you, is ultimately up to you. If you’re happy to live with the discussed downsides of owning a sports car, then you’ll find that nothing competes with the thrill of driving your own sports car.
Known around the world as the global leader in auto glass technology, you can count on NOVUS to be where you are when you need us the most. We always go the extra mile for our customers. For a complete list of our service offers, visit our website or contact us directly the next time your windscreen or car window is in need of a service!