McLaren MP4-12C - image courtesy of Tim OldlandEnlarge Photo
Time shares have long been a popular way for people to “buy” something they otherwise couldn’t afford. Whether you’re talking about vacation properties, airplanes or exotic cars, there’s a time share concept for almost any passion.
Écurie 25 is perhaps the best established supercar time share company in the world. Founded in London in 2005, the self-billed “supercar club” now has eight branches worldwide, including locations in the U.K. the U.S. and Australia.
Since Austin, Texas will soon be home to Formula One racing, the time is right for Écurie 25 to branch out in the Lone Star state. While some supercar time share programs (like Gotham Dream Cars, for example) have a point of entry affordable by almost anyone, membership in Écurie 25 comes with a Texas-sized price.
First, prospective members pay a $2,500 “joining fee,” which includes things like insurance and a required high-performance driving course. Once that’s taken care of, individual memberships run $25,000 per year, with only a limited number of memberships being available annually (to ensure car availability).
You get more than just supercars for your investment, however, as the price includes access to any Écurie 25 club worldwide (great for networking), as well as staged social events like parties, driving tours and VIP hospitality at races and car-related events worldwide.
For now, the fleet includes a McLaren MP4-12C, an Aston Martin DBS, a Ferrari 430, a Lamborghini Gallardo and a Dodge Viper SRT10. Since 2012 membership will be capped at 20 members, there’s a good chance that a car will be available when you want to drive it.
We’re on the fence with this concept. On the one hand, $25,000 per year is less than it would cost to rent an exotic car on a regular basis, and you never have to worry about getting a service invoice from your local Ferrari or Lamborghini dealership.
On the other hand, that’s a lot of money to charge for cars like the Viper SRT10, which can be had on the used market for about the price of two years worth of time share membership.
What’s your take? Would you spend the cost of a V-6 Mustang annually to drive exotic cars, or would you prefer to save your money and actually buy a clean used example in a few years time?