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What Ferrari Australia's boss thinks strong sales say about the economy

Ferrari Australia boss Herbert Appleroth shows off the new 488 GTB. Picture: Supplied

Yesterday saw the data released for Australian new car sales in 2015, and apart from the continuing rise in popularity of SUVs, another trend was evident: people are shelling out lots of money on super expensive cars.

Every supercar brand in Australia lodged their biggest year ever in 2015.

Lamborghini’s sales were up over 200%, Ferrari’s up by nearly 50% and McLaren by 40%.

Ferrari Australasia boss Herbert Appleroth said the huge growth in sales is thanks to a growing level of confidence in the economy.

“Luxury sales for everything are up, there’s a strong improvement and increase in the super luxury market, not just the goods industry,” he said.

“With interest rates low, people are now able to come into a dealership and buy their dream car.”

“In fact, over 60% of our orders last year came from new to Ferrari buyers. There was a level of abstinence during the GFC, people were selling their holiday homes and making sure they were secure. But now, the confidence has returned and they are rewarding themselves.”

Rebuilding confidence has been a key theme for the federal Coalition government. Earlier this week federal treasurer Scott Morrison said he and prime minister Malcolm Turnbull had been “very pleased with the movements in confidence indicators in recent months”.

Appleroth says the biggest growth in sales has been seen on the east coast, with Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane sales growing faster than any other part of the country.

He also notes most buyers who come in for a new Ferrari own a luxury SUV as well, reflecting the wider trend in the Australian market.

However with such strong sales in Australia, Ferrari is struggling to keep up with the demand. As it stands right now, the waiting period for someone wanting to buy its latest model, the 488 GTB, extends over two years.

Lamborghini is in a similar situation with customers facing a 12-month wait for the hugely successful Huracan.

Appleroth says that many customers are purchasing second hand Ferraris to tie the gap over, which resulted in a record 2015 for pre-owned sales as well.

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