Last time you went to rent a car, chances are you were presented with a choice of a sedan or . . . a sedan. Even if you “upgraded” to something a little fancier – say a convertible or a luxury car – you probably didn’t turn a lot of heads as you pulled up to the hotel. Let’s face it – Mustangs are cool, but when 1000 people in central Florida rented one too, they aren’t terribly rare.
If you want to really get attention, why not rent an “exotic” car on your next trip? Specialty rental agencies will rent out everything from Porsches to Ferraris to Lamborghinis – provided you have the cash to pay for it. For example:
West Coast Wheels
Headed to Beverly Hills? In a town where residents’ garages are filled with cars that cost well over six figures, you don’t want a boring old Ford. Several rental agencies provide Mercedes, Bentley, Maybach, Rolls and BMW cars for rent. For example, you can get a Dodge Viper for cruising Rodeo Drive for the bargain price of $750 a day – or maybe a Lamborghini Gallardo is more your style? For $14,000 you too can cruise Sunset like a movie star. Just watch your speed; the 580-hp Lambo can hit 60 mph in under 4 seconds and has top speeds of over 200 mph.
The Big Apple
Exotic rentals aren’t just limited to the West Coast. In New York, Gotham Dream Cars rents Ferraris, Lamborghinis, Rolls-Royce’s, Porches and Bentleys. Maybe you could pile the family into the 5-passenger, 400-hp Maserati Quattroporte for about $1000 a day. Or if it’s just you (and maybe a special guest), a Ferrari 458 Turbo, for about $4,000 a day, might be a better choice. The Ferrari 458 is exceptionally rare – only a few are available in the U.S. – and offers an unparalleled smooth ride and top speeds over 200 mph.
Fun in the Sun
Miami and Las Vegas are other hotspots for exotic vehicle rentals. In South Florida, consider getting a convertible like the Ferrari Spider ($3000 a day) or Dodge Viper Convertible ($1500 a day) to soak up the sun. Miami and Vegas are chock full of high rollers who actually own their cars though – so why not stand out by renting something unusual instead? Xotic Dream Cars in Miami offers a 1949 Ford DeSoto pickup hot rod guaranteed to turn heads while you cruise South Beach.
Things to Remember
Renting one of these sweet rides isn’t like picking up a Hyundai at the airport. First, these agencies aren’t usually located at the airport; you’ll have to do some research to find one in your area, and then get there on your own. Some companies will actually deliver your exotic rental to your home or office; in fact, a few will actually transport the car hundreds of miles (like from New York to Florida) for an extra charge. If you can afford the rental fee, you can probably afford the delivery charge.
Thanks to the hefty price tags on these cars –the Ferrari Spider is listed at $225,000, the Lamborghini Murcielago has a $290,000 price tag-- and the likelihood they could be stolen or damaged, most require hefty deposits at the time of rental; you could be looking at putting down $5,000 or more to cover any issues. Most rental agencies also require drivers to be at least 25, although some will rent to younger drivers.
And don’t think that you’ll be able to just take off on an extended cruise in these cars. Most of the high-end rentals have strict mileage restrictions, and if you go over, you’ll have to pay a per mile charge of as much as $3 a mile or more. Exotic performance cars also require premium fuel, so factor filling the tank with high dollar gas before returning the car.
So the next time you’re headed out of town for a weekend getaway, or want to add something to a birthday or anniversary celebration, look into renting an exotic car. For a few hours or days, you can experience how the 1% lives. Just be careful – driving one of these super machines might lead to an obsession on how to come up with a couple hundred grand so you can buy one of your own.