Car News: Oversteer
What $250,000 Car Would You Get If You Could Only Have One Car?
Hello, and welcome to Ask Doug, your favorite weekly program where you ask Doug his thoughts on some automotive topic, and Doug replies with some immense wisdom you should always carry with you.
If you'd like to participate in Ask Doug, you can! Just email me at OversteerDoug@gmail.com, or send me a message on my Facebook page! Make sure to include a rational, reasonable automotive question and not some ridiculous hypothetical inquiry about buying a daily driver if you're a millionaire.
And now, it's time to move on to today's question, which is a ridiculous hypothetical inquiry about buying a daily driver if you're a millionaire. It comes to us from a reader I've named Erskine, who writes:
You've reviewed many $250k cars recently, so here's the dilemma. Say you have a quarter million burning a hole in your pocket and want a daily driver -- which car do you buy for yourself? Do you abuse a Lamborghini Huracan with a daily commute, maybe impress your friends with an Aston Martin DB11, or go for the perennial favorite a Ferrari 458? Or maybe you've got really tough skin and can ignore your friends when they sneer at your hideous-looking Bentley SUV?
Decisions, decisions... maybe you'd opt for a Porsche 911 Turbo S and pretend that there aren't 35 other versions of the 911 that look almost identical to your car at lower price points so only a small group of people realize that you're not driving a VW.
Clearly this is a 1-percenter dilemma, but for someone who's driven lots of cars, what do you put in your garage if that garage only fits one car?
Well, Erskine, this is an excellent question, except that it's so patently ridiculous. Why would someone who has enough money to purchase a $250,000 vehicle only have one parking space for it? The mere notion of this question is absurd, preposterous and laughable, and I won't stand for it.
Or at least, that's what I thought before I moved to Philadelphia. Here in Philadelphia -- in any crowded city, really -- parking is at a serious premium, and I've seen many different homes offered for sale for over $2 million with absolutely no parking attached to them at all. In some cases, a 7-figure home will have parking for one car in a tiny, dingy garage. And this is just Philadelphia, which is by no means the world's most expensive city. There are virtually no private garages in New York, Hong Kong, Singapore or many other places where this question actually might make sense to people.
In fact, in my own house, I only have one parking spot -- despite owning four cars. The rest of the vehicles are kept at a parking garage two blocks away, which solves one problem (parking) but adds another (inconvenience).
And so, this got me thinking: What highly expensive car would I buy if I was really confined to just one parking spot?
I'm embarrassed to tell you people the answer, because I think you'll laugh at me, but I'd probably go with the Bentley Bentayga -- or, as Erskine calls it, the "hideous-looking Bentley SUV." The primary reason is that I've never driven one car that manages to combine so many nice things -- luxury, performance, interior room, technology, capability -- into one single vehicle. In fact, my friends at Morrie's Luxury Auto in Minneapolis brought a Bentayga on the race track -- somewhere I don't think it would really feel out of place.
Now, I admit, I'd be tempted by something like a Lamborghini Huracan or a Porsche 911 GT3RS, but I'm going to tell something to you plainly: Those cars are a nightmare to drive around. Here in Philly, the potholes are big, the curbs are tall, the other vehicles are menacing, and parallel parking is usually done by feel. And it's even worse in New York. The truth is, you don't want an exotic car in a place like this -- and Erskine's question sort of presupposes you live in a place like this. For that reason, I think an exotic car is out.
Of course, I have no doubt you're going to come on here and tell me I'm stupid, I'm wrong, the Bentayga is a horrible answer, and you'd drive around in a Ferrari 458 all day. But as someone who's actually lived in a big city with a Ferrari, I can tell you that when you're cruising around in your 458 and pull up next to me in my Bentayga, you'll probably be jealous of my luxury, my comfort and my seating position. And then, you'll wake up from this ridiculous dream and remember you actually drive a Honda Accord.
Doug DeMuro is an automotive journalist who has written for many online and magazine publications. He once owned a Nissan Cube and a Ferrari 360 Modena. At the same time.