Written By Fourwheel Trader
According to many, the Ferrari 488 is less desirable than a Ferrari 458. In this article, I will figure out if the market agrees to this by investigating the depreciation pattern of the 488. After all, if it is less desirable, the market should discount the values heavily. Let’s start by inspecting the mid-engine Ferrari market.
In the graph below, almost all the generations are included; the 360 is displayed in blue, the 430 in orange, the 458 in green, and the 488 in red. If we first focus on the full curve, then we can see that this is relatively flat. Typically, for other car models, you will see a huge drop in the first 3-4 years, after which the market starts to bottom. That’s not the case here, the depreciation behavior is consistent and stable. However, the F8 Tributo is not included. Including this car would increase the slope of the curve in the beginning.
If we focus on the 488, then we can see that the older ones are actually priced in line with the 458. I didn’t expect the difference to be this small. A 458 from model year 2015 will set you back $220k, and $223k for a 2016 488. What makes this even more crazy is that a 458 at that price tends to have a mileage of 13,000 miles while a 488 will have a mileage of around 5,000 miles. Hence, you pay the same price for an older car with a higher mileage. To me, this is an indicator that the market indeed sees that the 458 is something special and that it is the last of its kind. Normally, you see small market breaks between two generations of the same model.
When we want to evaluate the depreciation of the 488, we need to split the market by the Spiders and the coupes. For any given model year, the Spiders are $45k more expensive and a big reason for this is that the MSRP of a Spider was $28k higher. Of course, the interesting part here is the difference in prices now, $45k, versus then, $28k. Since both the Spiders and the coupes have the same mileage, there can only be two explanations for this. First, the spiders were specced a lot higher. This would mean that the average price gap between the Spiders and the coupes was a lot more than $45k. Second, and this is the more likely explanation I think, the Spiders depreciated less than the coupes. This in turn would also mean that the Spiders are more desirable than the coupes. On the supply side of the market there are at least no issues, there are 107 coupes for sale and 111 Spiders. If we look at depreciation numbers, then it indeed seems to be the case that the spiders are more desirable. They namely lose an average of $13.9k per year while this is $17.3k for the coupes. I also compared this rate to many other cars such as the Porsche GT3, GT3RS, McLaren 720S, and AMG GT R. If you are interested in that comparison, then I recommend that you watch the video.
Next to the model year, the mileage is a key driver for the price. Therefore, to understand the 488 market, we also need to consider the depreciation per 1000 miles. This is displayed in the graph below. First, we can see that quite many cars which are garage queens and have only around 500 miles on the clock. However, there are a few examples which have more than 10,000 miles. If we look at the depreciation rates, then we can see that the coupes lose on average $3,3k per 1000 miles and the spiders $4,3k. Just as for the depreciation per year numbers, please bear in mind that these numbers reflect averages. For example, if you look at the coupe, then you can see that there is a huge price drop once you cross the 1000 miles. After that, the price sensitivity to mileage decreases.
So then, what does this mean for the forecasted values? That’s probably what you are really interested in. Well, if you want to know the forecasted value for a car from model year 2017,2018, or 2019, you can just follow the depreciation line. Depending on the miles which are added to the car, the car will lose less or more than forecasted. But what about the cars for model year 2016? For those we don’t have the depreciation curve yet. We can, however, forecast the prices based on the current depreciation per year and per 1000 miles driven. That’s then also what I did with the forecasting model. The results of this model are displayed below.
This graph is the same as at the one the beginning of the article, but includes the forecasted values for a 2016 488 in purple. You can see that there are quite many forecasted points and that’s because each point shows a forecasted price for a car with a different mileage. The cars with the highest mileage are forecasted to be priced the lowest and the ones with the lowest mileages the highest. Forecasted prices start at $182k and this is the forecast for a car with 16k miles. Forecasted prices go up to $235k for a car with 800 miles. Interestingly, and I didn’t plan this, the price range matches almost exactly the one of the 458. Naturally though, this only holds if 458 prices don’t change. Finally, please keep it mind that this is a forecast and that a forecast contains uncertainty. Therefore, there is a risk that it might not materialize.
In general, mid-engine Ferraris depreciate in a predictable way. There are no large price drops visible and as the car ages, the absolute rate of course decreases. The 488 sits, however, in a difficult spot. The depreciation rates are not bad at all, especially if you compare them to its main competitors. However, when you compare them to the 458, then it might turn out that this is actually the biggest competitor. Prices of the old 488s came down to the 458s levels, and this is unusual. It will then also be interesting to follow both markets to see if 488 prices will dive under 458 prices. The risk is there, but only time will tell.
Disclaimer: The content is for educational purposes only, you should not construe any such information or other material as legal, tax, investment, financial, or other advice. Nothing contained in this video constitutes a solicitation, recommendation, or endorsement to buy or sell any cars.
The information published has been obtained from or is based on sources which are believed to be accurate and complete. Although reasonable care has been taken, the completeness and the accuracy of any information published cannot be guaranteed. Any opinions may be wrong and may change at any time. You should always carry out your own independent verification of facts and data before making any purchase decision.
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I publish actual depreciation numbers and buying guides for a large variety of cars. I will show you the average market prices, depreciation per year, depreciation per 1000 miles, and the cars which offers the best value for money in the current market.