Well it is an intimidating world... - Ferrari Life
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post #1 of 23 Old 02-25-2012, 06:13 PM Thread Starter
 
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Well it is an intimidating world...

Let me start with the little story leading to this thread...

I was always a car crazy guy... As a teen, I was keeping my shape just riding my bicycle around the city many times a week and going in front of every house with a cool car. I did that all the time all summer long... It was the mid-eighties and my dream car was a Ferrari Testarossa. I always said to everyone that I would get one of these someday. A couple years later Enzo died and my dream became something more like a fantasy... I had to try to find ways to cope with the idea of not owning my Ferrari. I had a few VW Golf GTIs that were a ton of fun and later a couple BMWs. No Ferrari there but I treated them like if they were. All of them were kept and maintained in perfect mecanical order and in like new exterior and interior, they were stored for the winter and driven regularly on the street and track in the summer. That was some time ago... But now it is 2012 and a TR is worth just a little more than my daily driver (BMW 3series) or my heavy duty Dodge RAM truck...

One of the things that made me "quit" and stop spending so much on cars is that I started my horse breeding business and needed all time and financial ressources to make it work. My passion for cars was still there and I named a good number of horses with car or racing names. I named a nice promising colt "DB7" (An Aston Martin). He was the baby of "Volante" (another Aston Martin) and ""UB40 so I needed an alpha-numeric name related to Aston Martin! When I decided on the name, I also said that when I sell this horse later, I'll take the cash to buy an exciting car. Guess what; DB7 will leave the farm next week and was sold as a super fancy prospect in the kind of budget to consider buying a very nice TR!

But like I said to start with... This is an intimidating world. I don't really know where to look and more precisely what to look for. I'm affraid of a world I don't know. BMWs are everywhere and if I buy the wrong one I'll lose 5000$. Ferraris are different and I realise it now that I look at it seriously. I want my ownership experience to be as fun or more than my longtime dream.

But thanks to some luck (I'm not an internet type of guy!) found Ferrari Life! It is amazing to see so many experienced owners and enthusiasts discussing those super cars in a real world style, not stars or business moguls who own the cars for the looks but people who drive the cars. Of course there is a very good chance that some of you are movie stars or empire builders who come here under alias names to share their passion incognito but again true enthusiasts.

Any observation, comment or advice is very welcome. Just reading a couple threads, I already realised that a TR might not be the best choice for me, or a least not for now... It may be a good second or third Ferrari maybe? Maybe not! I like the 328s a lot. I like the 308s also but they are getting older so maybe not as user friendly... Or maybe they are the best? I also have to consider the 348 and 355 in my budget but don't know as much on those cars. For some reason I never really liked the Mondial but would consider taking a serious look at them if they turn out to be the best "starter". Newer models might be priced a little too high and would compromise my financial capacity to keep them in perfect condition and I don't want that of course. I'm not in a hurry and will take the time to do it right.

So here is my situation! I hope to become a contributor to all this one day! Thanks in advance!

Francois

Please forgive my strange (Maybe!) english, it is my french accent! I am from Quebec, Canada.
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post #2 of 23 Old 02-25-2012, 06:26 PM
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Hello Francois,

Welcome to Ferrari Life. The 308 and 328 are considered by many to be the perfect entry point into Ferrari ownership. Yes, they are getting older now, but the price range leaves new owners with a little padding in the bank account to help sort out any issues.

There are a lot of owners here to draw upon for help, and lots of good cars out there.

Have fun in your search!
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post #3 of 23 Old 02-25-2012, 06:45 PM
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Francois,

Welcome to FerrariLife. Both a 308 and 328 are good starting points. If you want more performance, a F355 GTB/S would be the way to go. The only complaint I had with my 308 were the brakes, they just aren't that great. F355 is an all around awesome car, if you look at these, be sure to have a PPI (for any car really) and have the headers on the 355 checked, they are common problems along with the slow down engine light being triggered.
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post #4 of 23 Old 02-25-2012, 07:41 PM
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The 328 is probably the most bulletproof of the 3x8 series. A perfect starting point for a reliable car you can drive everyday. Plus, you will never lose money on it. Just give it regular maintanence and it will always be worth at least what you paid for it.

Capt. Pete
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"Time is what prevents everything from happening all at once."
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post #5 of 23 Old 02-25-2012, 07:51 PM
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Francois- Welcome to Ferrari Life. I agree with everyone who says a 328 is a great starter Ferrari. They are reliable and service is not that expensive. Both the 348 and F355 are higher performing, newer cars, but like the TR you wanted, require regular engine-out service. The 328 does not require engine out service.

If you go to ferraridatabase.com, you can download owners manuals, workshop manuals, and articles on the various Ferrari models and learn more about them.

Yell if you need any help and there is usually someone here who can answer your questions.

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post #6 of 23 Old 02-25-2012, 09:40 PM
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Welcome to FL, Francois. What a great, great story and way to start. You are a contributor already. Feel right at home. I would let the other expert owners do the talking and cajouling of which Ferrari might be best for you.
Ask, ask, and ask. Good luck with your search.

w/ smiles
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post #7 of 23 Old 02-26-2012, 09:17 AM
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Francois, don't be intimidated. Find a knowledgeable professional to inspect the car you like before you buy it and you will have done all any of us can do. No stress! TR's are pretty straight forward, as are 328's. Plenty of good ones to choose from and relatively inexpensive. Have fun.



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post #8 of 23 Old 02-26-2012, 10:19 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pete04222 View Post
The 328 is probably the most bulletproof of the 3x8 series. A perfect starting point for a reliable car you can drive everyday. Plus, you will never lose money on it. Just give it regular maintanence and it will always be worth at least what you paid for it.
Agree completely with the above great advise.

Welcome to FLife.
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post #9 of 23 Old 02-26-2012, 01:26 PM
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Bonjour Francois, welcome to Flife!
I'd like to add the 550 maranello to the list of cars you might want to check out. Great value for money, these cars are for sale for very reasonable prices these days! Fantastic and bullitproof 12 cylinder engine, relatively low maintenance costs and HUGE fun to drive!
If there's anything (really anything) you want to know about the 550, ask Tazandjan, he's the absolute connaisseur, there's nothing he doesn't know about this fantastic car!

Jeroen

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550 Maranello 7-2000 nero/nero
1974 Ducati 750 Yellow Sport
1974 Ducati 350 Desmo Yellow Sport
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(And a few Alfa Romeo's and Range Rovers)

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post #10 of 23 Old 02-26-2012, 02:16 PM
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welcome . I am very confused by your desires . please give more clearly what car you're looking for in object of your dream .

Guide to the Galaxy: Don't Panic
Rik -- LAH !


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post #11 of 23 Old 02-27-2012, 10:47 AM Thread Starter
 
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Thanks for the nice welcome everyone!

Sorry for confusion... Probably my french accent! : ) The plan was always to get my TR but now that it will be a reality, I ask you all what do you think is the best car to "try it"... No particular other wishes.

And reading most of you it seems that a 328 is the way to go to have a happy start in Ferrari world... It's a good thing because I really like this car. It is very good styling with fair performance if not great.

The good points (reliable, reasonable maintenance, strong value) are interesting as I intend to drive the car for a while and maybe "move up" without spending a fortune or loosing on resale. I wish to put my hands on a reliable car that can be driven regularly with affordable maintenance cost. If a 355 has the same kind of maintenance (engine out) as a TR I would go with the later no question.

I have a strange question... Why do I read so many of you saying "It started" or "handled this 20 minutes of stop-trafic" with no problem?... Doesnt look like you trust your cars!! : )

Would you look at "local" market or all NA? Good things are wider market and availability of good shop for a PPI but I have to travel to try the car... Can be a lot of time and money just to be disapointed! Local has just a couple examples and not a lot of good shops.

Also, as for service and maintenance. When you say to give it regular maintenance, what does it include? Of course mecanical can always break but what should I plan in terms of maintenance and prevention work. Of course if 328 have a tency to go through brakes every 3000 miles I would like to plan it! : )

Thanks for the 550 idea Jeroen... I would love this car for sure but from what I can see, a 550 cost a lot more than a 328, 348, or 355... I was in Holland a couple weeks ago btw... I breed dutch horse so I go a couple times a year. I love every trip to Holland!

So my search has started... Thanks for your input! I'll keep you informed of the process and will certainly ask a ton of questions along the way!! : )
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post #12 of 23 Old 02-27-2012, 11:12 AM
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Originally Posted by lachfran View Post
I have a strange question... Why do I read so many of you saying "It started" or "handled this 20 minutes of stop-trafic" with no problem?... Doesnt look like you trust your cars!! : ))
These cars are getting older (mine is 32 years old) and due to the nature of most of them being toys they don't get regular use. When mine hasn't had the car cover off in 3 months and it starts, yeah, that's a good thing. Ferraris that are driven regularly have less issues then ones that sit. The 308 has many electrical issues that seem to have been sorted with the 328. I haven't heard of a 328 that had any major problems. Other than the battery. It seems like the 3x8 battery needs to be replaced more often than on other cars. Probably due to what I mentioned about the car sitting and the battery deep-cycling by going completely flat and then being charged up at a high amperage. Regular use should extend the life of the battery.
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Originally Posted by lachfran View Post
Also, as for service and maintenance. When you say to give it regular maintenance, what does it include? Of course mecanical can always break but what should I plan in terms of maintenance and prevention work. Of course if 328 have a tency to go through brakes every 3000 miles I would like to plan it! : )
Normal oil changes and inspections and repairs as with any other car. The timing belts and idler pulleys every 30,000 or 3 years is the only difference. (Actually, 5 years is ok). I've spent more money in maintenance on my 2006 Chevy truck than I have on my Ferrari.

Capt. Pete
'79 308 GTS, '82 Jeep CJ7 Jamboree
"Time is what prevents everything from happening all at once."
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post #13 of 23 Old 02-27-2012, 01:08 PM
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Originally Posted by lachfran View Post
Thanks for the nice welcome everyone!

Sorry for confusion... Probably my french accent! : ) The plan was always to get my TR but now that it will be a reality, I ask you all what do you think is the best car to "try it"... No particular other wishes.

And reading most of you it seems that a 328 is the way to go to have a happy start in Ferrari world... It's a good thing because I really like this car. It is very good styling with fair performance if not great.
This part:
- TR is a much different car than the 8cylinder 328
- Since you are somewhat content with the thought of a 328, then YES I would make that my entry car and then consider the TR, which is not only vastly different but requires more expertise in maintaining.

Get your feet wet, then go from there, so the 328 is a great entry level Ferrari.

Guide to the Galaxy: Don't Panic
Rik -- LAH !


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1995 456 GT 2+2 SN 99987 : Roso Metalizzato [Fer 311/C] & Tan
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post #14 of 23 Old 02-27-2012, 09:48 PM Thread Starter
 
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So a reasonable car to maintain (328) versus one that "requires more expertise" (TR) is a big difference that speaks to me...

I'm looking everywhere I think to find some 328s for sale. There seems to be a big difference between low and high prices. Should I be affraid of a car with 40000+ miles? Mileage looks to be a key factor in pricing. Of course I would like to have a correct car but not a concours car but one to drive so cosmetics are not as important as reliability.

When I read you Pete, it makes me think a 45000 miles car that was driven regularly (and maintained accordingly) will likely be a safe bet as well as being less expensive than a always-garaged one... Makes sense?

Is rain affecting those cars? I don't plan on using it everyday and every time I need milk but weather is not really nice arround here so there is a good chance we hit some showers whenever I leave for a week-end...

If someone is using a 328 as a real daily driver I would like to hear more about it...

Almost decided to go for a 328 first. Its funny how something that was not my idea a couple days ago seems like the perfect buy thanks to FL and your help. Now I just need some 4 feet of snow to melt! Ever been to Quebec? Its sooooooo nice, really!
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post #15 of 23 Old 02-28-2012, 12:37 AM
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Hi Francois, welcome.

The TR is not the unreliable scary beast that it is made out to be. But you do need a good specialist, and maintenance is certainly more expensive than a 328. If you take care of it, however, then it will take care of you and owning one is a very rewarding experience (not that I speak of experience, but I know someone who has one). There are knowledgeable people on here and elsewhere on the internet to help you with any question you might have. So owning one is not as scary or difficult as it used to be.

A TR is a unique driving experience, and I suggest that before you make up your mind you go for a couple of test drives and see what you like best.

When all is said and done, the 328 is a fantastic car that has a special significance for me (as the first Ferrari I ever drove), and it is a great first Ferrari.

So, whatever you choose, it will be fantastic fun. I hope you take your time and have fun deciding what you want. But please - don't rush into a buy, wait for a really good car to come along. If you go see a few cars, you will quickly learn how to spot a good one.


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post #16 of 23 Old 02-28-2012, 02:23 AM
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Funily, I just drove my mechanics non cat 86' 328 GTS yesterday evening for 30km's and it was lots of fun, strong push after 4' rpm's, light handling and very smooth running. Really a fun car. In the cockpit everything nicely arranged. Do not know about how much the non-cat factor played importance as this car seemed to be "more open" than a 328 I drove about an year ago. It was really fun. If I would think of a great price/what you get collection of Ferrari's the 8/12 cyl. combination of a 308/328 together with a 550/575 Maranello is about as good as it may get price wise. (Both for half the price of a great Dino or half the price of a great Boxer)
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post #17 of 23 Old 02-28-2012, 03:03 AM
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Originally Posted by lachfran View Post
I'm looking everywhere I think to find some 328s for sale. There seems to be a big difference between low and high prices. Should I be affraid of a car with 40000+ miles? Mileage looks to be a key factor in pricing. Of course I would like to have a correct car but not a concours car but one to drive so cosmetics are not as important as reliability.

When I read you Pete, it makes me think a 45000 miles car that was driven regularly (and maintained accordingly) will likely be a safe bet as well as being less expensive than a always-garaged one... Makes sense?
It's funny, when people look at a 5-year-old Ford or Chevy with 45,000 miles they consider it low mileage, why would 45,000 miles be considered high on a 25-year-old car? Given a clean car that was obviously someone's pride and joy, a good maintenance history and a recent timing belt change I would not let mileage influence my decision on a 328. When you find the car, invest in a PPI and go from there.
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Originally Posted by lachfran View Post
Is rain affecting those cars? I don't plan on using it everyday and every time I need milk but weather is not really nice arround here so there is a good chance we hit some showers whenever I leave for a week-end... ?
Well of course the tires will determine the handling in rain. The headlights suck on the 308 and it is hard to see, the 328 is better. What worries me in the rain is other people seeing me. It is a small car and low to the ground.
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Ever been to Quebec? Its sooooooo nice, really!
Yeah, I live in Maine so I've been to Quebec. They like me there because I'm not Canadian.

Capt. Pete
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"Time is what prevents everything from happening all at once."
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post #18 of 23 Old 02-28-2012, 05:52 AM
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post #19 of 23 Old 02-28-2012, 09:55 AM
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I’m surprised nobody mentioned that you talk to me if you had any questions….

Salut Francois,

Tu es ou au Québec? Je vois que tu cherches une maitresse qu’on appelle Ferrari? Et biens, je peux t’aider sur toutes les questions que tu as. J’ai fait plus de 6 ans de recherche pour savoir tous sur les modèles 308, 328, 348, 355, Testarossa et 550.

Moi j’ai une 348 TS. Je peux aussi t’aider avec les endroits ou regarder ou avec qui parler pour en trouver une. Aussi, ou trouver les pièces et toutes tes questions comme les freins.... si tu brule tes freins a 3000 mile tu brule les freins sur ton Dodge aussi as se millage là.

Le plus gros problème de ses voitures est que les gens ne les conduisent pas assez et quand ils veulent aller prendre une ride, le char part pas….ben la, ça prend pas la tête a Papineau pour savoir que si tu conduis pas un char pour 2 mois, ya des chance qu’il part pas…..


Laisse-moi savoir tes questions et inquiétudes et je vais te guider dans la bonne direction.


Bienvenue a Ferrari Life




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Mario

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“I build cars for young men that only old men can afford” - Enzo Ferrari

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post #20 of 23 Old 02-28-2012, 02:10 PM
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Welcome to Ferrari Life Francois.
Personally I think I would pick a 3x8 model over a TR as a first Ferrari. Given the budget would definitely consider a 360, 550 or 355 as well, all of which are nearing the bottom of their depreciation curves...

Ferrari's: 360 Modena, 550 Maranello
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