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Discussion Starter #1
I just recently found out that post retirement I have enough financial substance to consider a lifelong dream, the content of which should be evident since I've posted this on this forum. But a few practicalities remain that need to be considered:

Is there any particularly unreliable V-8 Ferrari, that would be hard to keep useable on a daily basis?

Is there a V-12 Ferrari that's in the ballpark with the V-8's as far as cost of purchase and maintenance expenses?

How important is it that the car be serviced by a Ferrari dealership, none of which may be nearby?

Is it possible to flat tow a Ferrari for lengthy distances? My plan is to motorhome the south in the winter (here in Buffalo New York, getting the hell out of here for the winter post retirement is a no-brainer). Originally I had it in mind to tow an Acura Integra but a 308/328/whatever, or a different model you folks on this forum come to consensus about would be a lot more of everything worthwhile (Duh!). I haven't bought the motorhome yet; if the Ferrari thing works out but it needs to be on a trailer, the motorhome choice therefore has a requirement to be met: pull a car trailer. The Integra would go on one of those front-wheel dollies, but a rear-drive car must certainly have some further considerations. Any insights? Anyone else doing this? Should I stick with the Acura?

Thanks in advance for whatever anyone can offer me in the way of advice, experience or admonishment.
 

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Any well maintained Ferrari should prove reliable enough for your use. I would probably steer clear of the older ones that use ignition points. Electronic ignition is the way to go for reliability. I converted mine over to increase reliability. Probably a 328 or a Mondial. The 12's would be more expensive to maintain but I can't give you cost comparisons.

Unless it is a new car with a warranty, I don't think it is that critical to have it serviced at the Ferrari dealer. There are plenty of independant garages around that specialize in Ferrari. (I've even got one close to where I live in Maine.)

I'm not a big fan of flat towing. You might have some problems with a Ferrari (especially a 328). Some transmissions do not get proper lubrication when being towed in neutral so you could cause damage to the tranny. Should you put the rear tires on the dolly and tow the car backwards, you are sure to damage the front spoiler. My feeling is that flat towing causes excessive wear and tear on a vehicle.

Towing on a flatbed is better for the car, safer, and a trailer is actually easier to maneuver with than a flat towed car. (Have you ever tried backing up with a flat tow? Especially a small sportscar you can't see.) I understand that many of the motorhome owners prefer flat towing over trailered towing because many of the parks and grounds count the trailer as an additional vehicle and charge for parking.

My opinion - if it were a 10k Ford Focus I'd flat tow it. If it is a $50k Ferrari, I'd trailer it and pay the additional parking.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Pete-
Thanks for the reply. After thinking about it for a while it occurred to me how dumb an idea it was to consider flat towing a Ferrari! If I DO combine the realization of 2 lifelong dreams (owning a Ferrari and being free to cruise the homeland top to bottom), a trailer it will be- in fact there are race-car transporters that show up now and then on eBay Motors that would work just fine.

I guess what I really need to examine critically is whether I should combine the rigors of living on the road for a few months in a motorhome with dealing with a Ferrari at the same time. I have a 4 bay garage at home, where I'll be for the summer months (nobody in the contiguous 48 states has better summer weather than we do, if we're lucky), which would be a better place for a Ferrari than dragging along behind, into unknown service and at risk a whole lot of ways. The Integra is better for that role.

Again, thanks for writing. And it's just marvelous to find a mature car forum, absent the teen dreamers that have pretty much ruined Road and Track's, and Car & Driver's forums.
 

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eddyvf750 said:
Again, thanks for writing. And it's just marvelous to find a mature car forum, absent the teen dreamers that have pretty much ruined Road and Track's, and Car & Driver's forums.
No problem Eddy, I'm glad you like the forum and hope you check back often. I think it is a pretty mature forum but I wouldn't say we are absent of teen dreamers. As for dreamers, I think that applies to all of us (including you :green: ) As for teens, we have quite a few young people on the forum but they are all intelligent, well-spoken and add value to the posts. I have seen other forums where a bunch of kids just ruin it for the others.

When you start looking for a Ferrari, be sure to check in here for info (and to post the photos when you get it!!). When you start looking at motorhomes, post in the general section. I have some knowledge about them and I'm sure others on here do also.

I was just thinking about what you said about combining the rigors of a motorhome and Ferrari. I think I would intend to agree. It would be a lot more relaxed travelling and you could enjoy the motorhome more if you were dragging around a car you really didn't care about. Having a Ferrari in the garage gives you a good excuse to go home also. The enjoyment is not over just because you arrived back home. Now the Ferrari comes out!!
 

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Eddy, having 4 school-aged kids I have also looked into motorhome vacations, and cetainly having a runabout vehicle with you would be a plus. Inevitably you will have just settled down at a park for the evening & unpacked all the packed-away stuff when you realise that you need something from the shops. Ugh! Pack away again & motor into town & back, etc.

What I have seen work well here (Australia - it's a big place too!) is to tow a small cheap 4wd (Suzuki, Kia, Isuzu, Toyota, Mitsubishi, etc) on a little mini car trailer behind the "bus". This also gives you access to all those interesting off-track places that the Integra won't be ideal for, and they are great for just popping down the street for dinner, etc. If you also want some fun (of course!), why not also take a bike or quad-bike (or boat / jetski / skidoo / scooter / sailboard)?

I'd leave the Ferrari at home, as you wouldn't want to tow it everywhere you go sightseeing, and you'll worry about it whenever you leave it. Plus, if you took the Ferrari for an interesting drive, you'd then have to come back again to collect the bus! :nuts:
 

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Discussion Starter #6
I thought to include a small motorcycle in my "kit"- I have no wife any more (thanks to fortuitous divorce) so instead I have a 4-bay garage full of toys, 6 bikes among them including a couple of dual-purpose dirt-street Yamahas from ages ago and an ancient trialer (TY175). My days in the dirt at too much speed are pretty much in the past- 62 year old bones and a commensurate vivid imagination of wheelchairs and such make trials my sort of off-roading, except I've sort of burned out off-roading over the last 40-odd years. So the wilderness isn't really on the menu- my idea of "motorhoming the country" (to coin a phrase) leans more toward urban delights, and maybe a beach or two. I have a summer home in the Adirondacks for quiet lakeside retreating in a forest during our excellent summer; finding the 4 star restaurants, art museums, concert and theater venues in the cities of the winter-warm parts of this country is what I had in mind. Thus the Integra- nice snappy little car with a purposeful growl at 6000 rpm, sticks to corners well, has air and cruise and 40 mpg, and front drive for towing in one of those dollys that carry the front wheels (thus low hitch weight, but backing up problems as someone correctly pointed out here). Behind a reasonably sized class C with a big block GM engine, things should go ok. I've heard that the Ford V-10 that lately shows up in a lot of RV's is a true glutton for gas- can you confirm that rumor?

I used to really enjoy the car magazine forums. I posted maybe a few hundred on both R&T as Eddyvf750 (after the model of my Honda motorcycle) and C&D as V8Datsun (after my '73 240Z with a small block Chev in it). But lately they've degenerated into arguments over which is "better", an Enzo or the Mercedes supercar or a Lamborghini, each furiously defended by someone who's never even seen these cars except in the mags, much less driven one of them.

And yes, I've dreamed of owning a Ferrari all of my life since I first read Road & Track in the mid 1950's. I have a copy of their 1958 road test annual wherein they collected all the road tests they published that year. Such cars as Morgan 4/4, Porsche 550, Jaguar XK-SS (roadgoing D-type), and my favorite, a Ferrari 2.5 Liter TRC (Testa Rossa Competition) are there, and I've memorized what they had to say, having read the articles countless times since 1958. Just recently, after I had a detailed accounting of my retirement finances, much to my surprise I found I have enough resources to contemplate a 328 in good condition along with everything else I had planned, and there aren't words to describe the excitement and deep joy the idea of really, actually owning a Ferrari gives me. But I'm sure if anybody knows what I'm talking about, you fellows do. And I apologize for the length of this; I'm so excited I can't sleep and so here I am blathering away. It feels like the time just before I picked up my first date with a female that eveyone knew to be emancipated (to say it nicely).
 

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Eddy, it sounds like you're in for a good "retirement" (that doesn't quite seem the right word, somehow :D ). I was actually going to suggest taking a Harley but thought maybe expensive bikes weren't your thing. But heck - you can sure cruise the cities / beaches / scenic parts, etc well that way & would be an easier tow (on a bike trailer) than a car.

There are lots of 328s out there and you shouldn't have much trouble finding a good & well-loved one. When you are down to a short list put your queries here - there are many folks here v. experienced in 328s who would love to help.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I thought of a bike as well, but I'm not much into the cruiser thing so it would have to be a sport bike which isn't as appropriate now as it was, and anyway I'd like to be free of weather considerations. And it's also probably true that any female I might find along the way that I could intice into accompaning me might balk at a motorcycle. Odds aren't good for 62 yr old bald guys no matter how glib and I wouldn't want transportation considerations to intrude on whatever scrap of good luck I might enjoy in that respect.

And thanks more than I can say for offering advice on buying a car to me. There's no one around here that I can turn to for advice/information/instruction/admonishment re: Ferraris. Spending $40-odd thousand in the dark is a bit daunting!
 
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