A riot of colour in the front garden, stunning façade, grand porch and a solid oak front door with the all-important brass knocker. It’s all about kerb appeal. But the loudest statement of all is the car.
Great house, crap car is like having a Michelin meal followed by a Mars bar for desert. For the complete package the right car is as essential to your persona as cuff links are to shirts. Why? Not only are supercars luxuriously stylish, smooth, fast and rare but they cost a bomb to buy and, perhaps more significantly, the ongoing insurance and maintenance costs are equally lofty – in short they’re a badge of exclusivity. Having a supercar is the equivalent of having a direct line to senior government minister – very few people can boast that privilege.
Let’s take a look at the top five in 2017 (in our subjective opinion).
1. Ferrari FXX-K – £3,500,000
Ferrari at number one – what else did you expect? Perhaps because this year marks Ferrari’s 70th anniversary we nudged this car up a few spaces. The FXX-K is an exclusive race car with production capped at 40 – you’re unlikely to find the Jones next door buying the same car.
It comes with four preset driving modes: Qualify (short distance, maximum performance), Long Run (long distance driving), Fast Charge (faster recharging of the battery), although it is essentially a racing car. Designed by architect Flavio Manzoni, Ferrari’s chief architect, its flawless slick red exterior does not disappoint.
The car’s performance metrics are almost superfluous as with overall maximum torque in excess of 900 Nm and a 0-60 of 2.4s you’re going to find yourself jammed back firmly in the seat the second your foot taps the accelerator.
Pitch up in a FXX-K and heads will turn…if you can get hold of one. With only 40 cars produced, new cars were snapped up long ago. You’ll need to work all your contacts and find a dealer to pick one up on the secondary market. Don’t hold your breath!
While we’re talking Ferrari, do watch the following video that celebrates a Ferrari’s remarkable 70-year story:
2. Bugatti Chiron -$2,700,000
In a word elegant and with worldwide production capped at 500 units, you are guaranteed exclusivity.
Fortuitously, Bugatti is bringing the Chiron to London next week (19 June). Nip into the HR Owen showroom near Berkeley Square (18-20 Bruton Street, W1 6QB) to catch a glimpse of this gem without having to hop onto plane.
The Chiron is our favourite, not so much because it tops the stats (although a 0-60 of 2.5 places it firmly in the elite league) but because, uniquely, Bugatti has managed to marry the slick modern feel of a supercar with an aura of old money elegance. The comparison might best be described in financial terms as the brashness of a young buck hot shot trader making millions and the calm assuredness of the old hand veteran asset manager tucked away in a quiet suburban street managing billions. We had wanted to crown the Chiron with pole position, but given this year is Ferrari’s 70th anniversary and we are of a generous disposition, it will have to tuck in behind the FXX-K…just.
3. 2017 Lamborghini Centenario – £1,700,000
The Cenenario was created to celebrate what would have been Lamborghini’s founder Ferruccio’s 100th birthday. With a production cap of 40, as with other supercars, you’re assured exclusivity.
We liked the Centenario is the first Lambo’ to deploy rear-wheel steering. This gets a thumbs up for urban driving as the increased maneuverability at speeds below 45mph is a god-send. While the Centenario is nothing to smirk at, boasting a top speed of A top speed in excess of 217 mph, clocking the fastest lap time was clearly not the focus of the designers. Making a luxurious experience was. The centre console boasts a bespoke infotainment system packed with the usual features of set-up, satnav, media. Theres also a telemetry that allows you to log lap times, throttle inputs, breaking points and gear selection in the event that hit the race track – all allowing you to shave seconds off your lap times.
Perhaps due to its overall versatility we’ve placed this as high as number 3.
4. McLaren P1 LM – $3,700,000
No discussion of supercars would be complete without our very own British McLaren and although we’ve listed the P1 LM, we’re going to slip in the 720S here too for comparison.
Its beautifully designed, sleek, sporty, sexy and oozes virility. With a 0-60 mph of 2.4s and a top speed of 217 mph and a ball-crunching torque of 1000 bhp/735 kW Nm, the P1 LM has serious grunt. Last year it made headlines when it made a fairy-tale launch at the GoodWood Festival of Speed where it clocked up the fastest lap time for a road car.
So what of the 720S? Well, the P1 is faster with more torque but the 720S handles better. Given that top speeds are almost irrelevant for most people (what’s the difference between 212 mph and 217 mph?), the 720S’s superior handling is arguably more important for road users. Whichever model you opt for, the McLaren is a loud statement car. Be sure to grunt the engine as you pull in to your engagement.
5. Lamborghini Veneno – £6,000,000
The carbon fibre frame and sports style cockpit are now familiar themes with the Lamborghini, as is the power-to-weight ratio of 1.93 kg/hp giving it plenty of grunt. Boasting a top speed of 355 kmh (220 mph) and 0-100 kmh (0-62) of 2.9s you’re never going to left stranded at the lights.
In terms of performance and handling, the car is faultless. So here’s the ‘but’. I’m not a great fan of its aesthetics – it looks too new money, too ‘flash’ (if that’s not a contradiction in terms). It almost reminds me of Batman’s bat mobile! That’s why we’ve put this at number five. We know we’ll take some flak for this but this recent video of one in real life in London (as opposed to promotional videos) might sway you. What do you think?
Let us know your top choices.