As it goes, vehicles in high demand typically command a premium over the manufacturers suggested retail price.
The Ford Shelby GT350 Mustang — and its slightly wilder GT350R variant — are no exception.
The 526-horsepower rig is a modern-day, all-American hot-rod, and it comes with everything you would expect from a rabid Ford muscle car.
There’s the raucous V8 engine, a six-speed manual gearbox, massive wheels, and launch control — because flooring the gas pedal unabated in this beast would probably just be an exercise in tire destruction.
Ford allocated only 137 of these cars for production (100 GT350s and 37 of the GT350Rs) for a few lucky enthusiasts to clamor over.
In a market where US consumers are buying more cars than ever, scarce supply primes the GT350 for hefty dealer markups.
Ford’s suggested retail sticker for a 2015-2016 Shelby GT350 is somewhere around $48,000. The track-ready GT350R comes in at about $62,000 but, again, because they’re rare, you can expect to pay much, much more if you want one.
Yahoo Autos writer Justin Hyde pointed out one such example in East Rochester, New York. A 2015 Shelby GT350 Mustang there is listed for a “haggle-free” price of $149,500 — more than $100,000 over MSRP.
A search on AutoTrader revealed a half-dozen GT350s throughout the US that are priced $100,000 and up — with the most expensive model listed for $175,000.
Carmakers generally frown on dealers that mark-up prices, but Ford’s dealership communications manager, Elizabeth Weigandt, suggested in an email to Business Insider that because “dealers are all independent from the company,” there isn’t much that can be done when one jacks up the price.
“We recommend to all our dealers that they offer our products at the manufacturer’s suggested retail price,” Weigandt wrote.
A fair enough assessment perhaps, but for new-car dealers, which typically operate on thin profit margins for low-volume cars, the incentive to capitalise on demand is clearly tough to ignore.