Porsches are the new Picassos for the super rich

Article date: 21 December 2010

It’s not just the likes of Jay-Z, Wayne Rooney and David Beckham who are building up their car collections, according to the UK’s largest insurer.

Statistics from Aviva show the number of people with four or more top-end cars is on the increase, with some clients owning more than 30. 

But like a treasured piece of art, some of the car collections are often more cared for than a mere form of transport, with staff employed to look after them for their owners, and the average vehicle mileage is 5000 miles a year, two thirds of the national average*.

Some of the rising popularity of prestige car collections is thought to relate to investors looking to new ways to invest their money in the current economic climate – unique and collectable cars hold their resale value, and some vehicles have changed hands for millions.**

The typical value of the prestige car portfolios is a cool £350,000, which though somewhat less than the reported £1.3m Beyonce paid for her husband Jay-Z’s 253mph Bugatti Veyron birthday present, is just over 69 times the value of the average new family car***.

Aviva’s records show that Porsche topped the list as this year’s most popular prestige car for insurance quotes on their Distinct contract (see table 1 below), with Bentley, Aston Martin, Ferrari and Jaguar making up the top 5.

Table 1: Top 10 prestige cars quoted for in 2010


Car Brand

Annual mileage

Value of typical

new model ****

Celebrities known for driving such a car




£120,453 (911)

David Beckham




£153,400 (Continental)

Wayne Rooney


Aston Martin


£170,500 (DBS)

James Bond




£207,075 (599)

Chris Evans




£69,900 (XK Coupe)

George Clooney




£157,500 (SLS Coupe)

Jeremy Clarkson


Range Rover


£66,395 (Sport 5.0 V8)

HM The Queen




£85,550 (Quattroporte)

Jamie Oliver, Bono




£166,784 (Gallardo)

Jay Kay


Rolls Royce


£195,840 (Ghost)

Simon Cowell

Source: Aviva Distinct Motor Insurance                                                                    

The most popular combination of cars in Aviva’s Distinct prestige portfolio in 2010 is a Bentley Continental, Range Rover, Aston DB9 or Ferrari 599 and a Fiat 500 or Mini Cooper. This seems to provide the perfect mix of luxury, sports and convenience for every occasion and all members of the family.

Modern new cars are most popular, with almost two-thirds (65%) of high end cars insured by Aviva less than two years old, reflecting the fact that high net worth customers tend to change their cars on average every 1.7 years. Personalised plates are found on around 50% of the vehicles. Perhaps not surprisingly, 85% of prestige car collection drivers are male. *****

Scott Leonard, high net worth underwriting manager at Aviva, comments: “The popularity of owning a collection of high value cars is growing among the wealthy of the population generally - it is not simply the preserve of A-list footballers and pop stars. It seems that people with money to spend and invest are now as likely to add a new prestige car to their possessions as a work of art, so perhaps Porsches are the new Picassos. 

“High value cars can be assets that appreciate in value too – some classic cars with famous prior owners have changed hands for millions of pounds.  However for many people with money, it is most likely pure enjoyment rather than return on investment that is top of their minds with a love of both the form as well as the function of these pieces of automotive modern art.”


Aviva Press Office:

Jenny Chapman: 01603 689894/07800 699668 Jenny.a.chapman@aviva.co.uk
Adam Cracknell: 01603 684916/07800 699517 Adam.cracknell@aviva.co.uk

The Wriglesworth Consultancy:

Suman Hughes/ Ben Marquand: 020 7427 1400 s.hughes@wriglesworth.com

Notes to editors:
Average annual car mileage in UK in 2009: 8420 miles (Department for Transport)
In May 2008 DJ Chris Evans paid a record for a second hand car, buying a Ferrari   250 GT California Spider previously owned by James Coburn for £5.5m
Ford Focus Zetec 1.6 5 door list price £18,695
**** New car list prices sourced on Parker’s Car Guide, 9 December 2010
        Models selected:
        Porsche 911 Turbo S Coupe
        Bentley Continental GTC 6.0 W12 Speed 2 dr
        Aston Martin DBS Coupe 5.9 V12 2rd
        Ferrari 599 Coupe 6.0 V12 GTB Fiorano
        Jaguar XK Coupe 5.0 V8
        Mercedes SLS Coupe 6.2 V8 AM6 2dr
        Range Rover Sport 5.0 V8
        Maserati Quattroporte Saloon 4.7 V8S 4 dr
        Lamborghini Gallardo Coupe 5.2 V10 LP550-2 2dr
        Rolls Royce Ghost Saloon 6.6 V12 4dr
***** Aviva data 2010

Notes to editors:
Aviva is one of the world's largest insurance groups* with 53 million customers worldwide and 46,000 employees.

Aviva’s main activities are long-term savings, fund management and general insurance, with worldwide total sales of £45.1 billion and funds under management of £379 billion*.

In the UK, Aviva takes care of its 19.2 million customers by helping them look after their future, protecting what’s important – from their health to their homes, their cars to their business – and saving for the future.

Aviva has a 10.5%** share of the UK life and pensions market and insures one in six homes and one in ten cars in the UK. It is also one of the oldest UK insurers, with a heritage stretching back more than 300 years.

RAC, which is owned by Aviva, provides breakdown and insurance services for individuals and businesses and has around seven million customers.

Aviva is carbon neutral worldwide, and is ranked in the top 10% of socially responsible companies globally by the Dow Jones Sustainability World Index. In the UK, Aviva invested £3.8 million into local communities in 2009. Read our corporate responsibility report at www.aviva.com/cr.

Aviva’s global Street to School programme is working in partnership with Railway Children in the UK to get children living on the streets back into education and everyday life. Find out more at www.aviva.co.uk/street-to-school.

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*based on gross worldwide premiums at 31 December 2009
**Source: ABI data released August 2010

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