Ferrari boss Luca di Montezemolo has announced an unusual plan for the Prancing Horse: to sell fewer cars in 2013 than the 7000 it delivered in 2012.
Speaking in Maranello, di Montezemolo stated that 'this is a far-sighted decision to strengthen our brand equity, from what I learned from Enzo Ferrari… We must resist people who say the competition will benefit from us making fewer cars… When others penetrate our markets, we are happy to meet this challenge.'
Is Ferrari mad to chase fewer sales?
It is not the first time that Ferrari has decided to limit supply: 'In 2003 we did the same,' explains Montezemolo. 'It is important for the dealers: they must learn to grow on quality, not just quantity. I have a 12-year-old daughter who speaks perfect English, and she can take reservations for a Ferrari – even a 12-year-old girl can do it!
Montezemolo suggested increased revenues should instead come from capitalising on existing sales.
'We are not looking at more market niches, we are looking at building more special cars, like our Tailor Made programme [a bespoke options programme, entry to which is based on a minimum spend of around '€30-€50,000,' according to one source], to give our customers the chance to have something unique.'
Di Montezemolo also dismissed suggestions that Ferrari road cars were already becoming too ubiquitous thanks to growth in emerging markets such as China.
'We are slightly growing in traditional markets,' he said, 'and we sell 500 cars each year in China – this is much more than exclusivity, so China is not a problem for us.'
What's the current rate of Ferrari road car sales?
In the first quarter of 2013, Ferrari has sold 1798 road cars, up 4% on the same period last year. Revenues are up 8% to €551m, with a net profits up 36.5% to 54.7m.
Which means it's already off target to meet that self-inflicted sales decline. So if you're going to bag your brand new Ferrari, you best get on the phone to Luca's daughter sharpish.