Welcome to this year’s dream-book/reality check-list and trip in the fast lane. The annual duPont REGISTRY Exotic Car Buyers Guide is all of the above and more. Needless to say, we can’t cover all of the exotics present in today’s world, but we can give you that quick glimpse that will take you further into dramatic styling, advanced engineering, and incredible performance known as the real world of exotic automobiles.
So, enjoy the “flights” of fantasy or the actual stimulus to your “buying gland” as you consider your next purchase (or investment) in automotive and performance art. Speaking of investment … let’s not forget the blistering records set recently for 50-60-year-old exotic automobiles. The two stand-outs (so far) are the $27.5 million 1967 Ferrari 275 GTB/4 NART Spider and the $35+ million 1954 Mercedes-Benz W196R formula 1 Race car.
Is there a chance that this year’s Exotic Car Buyers Guide contains the future $100 million car? Maybe. But, alas, it is all in the eye (pocketbook) of the beholder. However, I don’t think that we will have to wait over 50 years to reach that magical milestone.Regardless of the timing, here are a few of the “greats” that will most assuredly bring you great satisfaction in driving, and most likely in your wallet as well: Pagani Zonda Revolucion: It may be time to bid a sad farewell to the Zonda. The Revolucion is what Zonda calls the “apex of the celebration of performance,” and what we will call sorely-missed. Boasting 800 horsepower from a 6.0-liter V-12 and a six-speed magnesium transversal gearbox, it truly is performance revolutionized. LaFerrari: There’s no doubt that Ferrari is a manufacturer of legends.
The LaFerrari embodies the architecture that will remain in our hearts for years to come and engineering that is surely an enthusiast’s dream. An astonishing 6.3-liter V-12 hybrid engine is seamlessly crossed with the unique design we’ve seen evolve for the past 30 years of limited-edition releases. Porsche 918 Spyder: We have long awaited the successor of the Carrera GT and are glad to be presented a hybrid of a different class. The combination of two electric motors and a 4.6-liter V-8 producing 887 horsepower has us anxious to drive. The 918 utilizes some of the most innovative technology for a superior ride and boasts numerous sport modes to let you unleash its full potential. Oh, and let’s not forget the little red button.
Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG Black Series: The words “Black Series” coming from Mercedes-Benz already makes our hearts jump. But add those words to the end of a model already meant for high-grade performance, and we can’t possibly hide our excitement. Simply put, a 6.2-liter V-8 producing 622 horsepower and technology that is, well, just menacing on the track. Corvette Stingray Z51 C7: The Stingray is simply a supercar. It is the definition of American performance. It is a direct injected V-8 developing 460 horsepower and an astounding 29-mpg fuel consumption. The classic LT1 engine has been designed to have 90 horsepower more than the original. The new Stingray truly brings American performance to a whole new level.
Thomas L. duPont