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Discussion Starter #1
Greetings to all,
I am new to this forum but a "veteran' of five previous Ferraris'who has strayed from the fold over the past several years. I now have a Volvo V70R as a daily driver and a Porsche GT 2 for amusement; however, having recently had my first behind the wheel 550 experience...well, I'm sure you guys know where this is going. My question is: How have these cars been with regard to overall maintenance and .practical usability/ suitability as a, if not daily driver, perhaps as a "frequent driver" ? Are there specific concerns that I should be aware of in my search, and ultimately, as an owner. Also, are there any high milage cars out there? I have searched the archives and not found much information so please forgive me if this question has been raised before and I missed it in my search.

Many Thanks.

DAB.

P.S.: Anyone want to buy a nice GT 2???
 

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I met a Doctor last time I was in Florida who had a red 550 I believe he used as a daily driver. My guess the main drawback is the more frequent maintenence required (scheduled) and the dip in resale. However, that being said, it is only money and you can make more... ;) If these two factors don't add up to too much drawback for you, than go for it.
 

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I am curious, how did the 550 drive vs. GT2. I have driven the 550 but not the GT2 and am wondering how you compare the two (understand they are two different categories but still both are sports cars). I am curious and want to see why you want to switch to 550.

Cheers,
 

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Bart needs to chime in here. I believe he drives his 550 daily. :D

Welcome aboard!
 

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Porsche vrs. Ferrari Daily Drivers

As an owner of a 550 and a past owner of a 2001 Porsche Turbo, a '99 Carrera, and a '96 Carrera I can say that none of these cars, with a stick, is really a good daily driver but the Porsches may have been more user friendly. Ferraris and Porsches really do better with a spirited 45 minute jaunt on open roads. After that I am ready for a break. I did feel that the Porsches were more comfortable on longer trips. I guess I also have to restrict my thoughts to what type of daily driving is done as well (freeways, cross town on surface streets, etc.). I think the GT2 probably boarders on a track car and would think it transmits the road to the driver a little harder than the 550. Also with the 550 you always are worrying about parking, door dings, scrapping the front end etc. Frankly, I am happier driving my Ford Focus as a daily driver, believe it or not! At the end of the day I guess I am too tired to be thinking about what gear I am in, listening to motor noise and gaukers. I will say that the Ferrari has warmer more inviting feel than the Teutonic Porsche and is a more satisfying experience despite the better performance stats of the Porsche. Before the Porsches, I had a Testarossa and felt the same way about it as well.
 

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Just to comment on the drivability aspect of Ferraris, I have to agree that the clutch on a stick shift does get a bit heavy in traffic. My current 360 is an F1 and that really takes all of the pain out of driving at low speed around town. I could easly use it as a daily driver if it was not for the constant attention and the fear of paintwork damage when parked up etc.

I just came back from a 3 hour drive up to San Francisco, what a blast!!! :lol:
 

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I just returned from driving to the Bay Area and back. I put on around 1,000 miles over this week end. (Did get a ticket going up the grapevine) I am at 44,000 miles on my beast. Since I work only 3 miles from my home, Ido not drive it every day. I just drive it ever chance I get.

The cost of my maintaince is OK. An oil change is done every 3,000 miles and runs around $250.

I never buy anything for myself and look at the price of when I sell it.

Having driven the GT2, I prefer the 550. It is much more solid and smoother, V-12 vs. flat 6.

One does not get as tired driving a 550 as in most cars. Get one!!!
 

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Dermot said:
Just to comment on the drivability aspect of Ferraris, I have to agree that the clutch on a stick shift does get a bit heavy in traffic. My current 360 is an F1 and that really takes all of the pain out of driving at low speed around town. I could easly use it as a daily driver if it was not for the constant attention and the fear of paintwork damage when parked up etc.
I have the opposite opinion, in bumper to bumper trafic I want a clutch (or a real auto with torque converter. I find the 550 much more relaxed in trafic than the 355F1. Torque, full control on the clutch.

My answer to the original question of the thread is "depends on what your daily drive is". Practicalities such as the place where you have to park, the weather, trafic, road quality can make a difference between a daily pleasure and a waste.
Have not had my 550 long enough to talk about experience on reliability and maintenance, but there does not seem to be that many horror stories out there.
 

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I have to agree with ze_shark. Manual gearbox is definitely better if you're always stuck in traffic. I had a 360 with F1 and it's quite stressful to be stuck in traffic because the clutch will overheat and the alarm will set-off. Very annoying!!
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Many thanks to all who have been so very helpful.

4i2fly: The 550 and GT 2 are so very different as to make a meaningful
comparison difficult. The GT 2 has a raw and visceral quality that in
many ways is reminiscent of sports cars of years gone by, it is
truly a no nonsense monster and quite apart from the 996 TT
which, in my opinion, is a good thing.
The 550 is a more refined and hospitable experience without giving away
anything to the GT 2 in real world performanse while avoiding all of the "lexusishness" ( my
apologies to Webster) of the TT. Perhaps I am harkening back to
my earlier Ferrari days, but it just feels right in a way that eludes
my rhetorical skills. I also have never heard a Porsche that can
compete with the sounds of an Italian V 12, although the Carrera
GT may come close. Another consideration for me is my
preference for normally aspirated engines.
I guess that for me it comes down to cold, teutonic efficiency
versus warm and flamboyant Italian charm.

Bart: I think you and I see things in much the same way; your coments
were really very insightful.

I tend to agree with those who prefer manual gearboxes. I live in a rather rural area of Palm Beach County and have taken a rather early retirement, so commuting and winter driving are not factors for me. Of course, having just had Cavalino in my "back yard" might have had some influence on all of this as well !!!

Again, thank you all for your thoughts.

DAB.
 
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