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  • Writer's pictureRoad Test Team

Three (Surprisingly Affordable) Summer Supercars

Some say summer is about BBQs, beer gardens and long days at the beach. And that’s true – to an extent. But mostly it’s about heading out on balmy evenings to enjoy exquisite performance cars.


Audi R8

Always something of an outlier in Audi’s otherwise safe and sturdy range, a pre-loved R8 offers supercar fun across a range of price points. At the affordable end of the spectrum there’s the still-gorgeous first-generation car, particularly with the V8 engine option and manual gearbox. And if you’ve the budget there’s the magnificent second-gen car – essentially all the drama, performance and V10 wonder of a Lamborghini Huracan in a more affordable package (and with a bigger dealer network…).


Budget £40-50k for a nice first-gen manual. £100-110k buys an immaculate second-gen Spyder, and the chance to hear that mesmerising V10 roof-down…

McLaren 570S

The first road-going McLaren, the legendary F1, cost half a million pounds back in 1992. Almost everything about the car was special, from the BMW-developed V12 to the actual gold foil in the engine bay. But it was the car’s carbon structure that represented the biggest single leap forward. Before the F1, even Ferrari’s flagships used tubular steel (1987’s F40). After the F1, Maranello had no choice but to embrace light, stuff and expensive carbon (1995’s F50).


But this summer you could be driving a carbon-tubbed McLaren for less than £100,000. The 570S, launched in 2015 in coupe guise, is one of the least complicated cars McLaren Automotive’s ever built – and yet one of the very best. Lightweight, ballistic, agile and outrageously good-looking, the 570S is also everyday usable, despite its trackday-ready performance. A Spider followed in 2017, too, for the full summer supercar experience. 


Take a look at a 2020 car for around £100,000. ‘The residuals are relatively strong now and they finance really well considering the calibre of car,’ says Dean Clarke, head of motor sales at Charles & Dean. ‘That initial hit of depreciation is done after three or four years and they’re great cars, as is the 720S if you want to go really crazy.’


Porsche 981 Boxster Spyder/718 Spyder

‘All Porsches finance really well – we finance more Porsches than anything else,’ says Dean. And the more specialised, rare-groove Porsches are a particularly good bet. So, why not check out the underrated 991 911 Carrera T? Or, if you fancy feeling the sun on your face, cars like the 981 Boxster Spyder or 718 Spyder, with their magnificent flat-six engines? £80-85k buys an immaculate 718 Spyder; £65k a superb example of the earlier (but no less special) 981 Spyder. 


The Biggest Myths in Supercar Finance – And the Truth 


🤔 Myth 1: Monthly payments correlate to list price

False! It seems obvious, doesn’t it? The more expensive the car, the bigger the monthly payments. Well, no. ‘Say you’re paying £1400 per month for a £100,000 Range Rover,’ says Dean. ‘The assumption is that a £180,000 Porsche 911 GT3 is going to be more per month. But it’ll likely be less, because of the Porsche’s stronger residuals. It’s always worth giving us a call.’


🤔 Myth 2: You won’t own the car

Again, not true. Dean: ‘A PCP is a Personal Contract Purchase, and there’s always the option to purchase the vehicle. A lot of people do change cars come the end of the agreement, but a PCP can be a useful way to try a car without tying up a lot of capital. You get to experience the car for a while and, if you find you really love it, you can keep it at the end by paying the balloon payment. Again, we can finance the balloon to make that more manageable.’


🤔 Myth 3: You can’t exit a finance agreement early 

Not true. ‘If yours is a regulated agreement, which most are, you can settle the finance at any time, which some people do by simply selling the car to raise the required funds,’ explains Dean. ‘You can also ask to give the car back once you’ve paid back half of the total amount payable, which can be a great protection when you’re looking at negative equity; with an electric car for example.’


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