When you come across a rare car, even if it’s just a luxury midsize SUV, it feels special
– By Anand Mohan
A statement like that requires me to set the stage. So here’s an analogy if I may. Do you know the truth about diamonds? The rare stone that denotes luxury, riches and love was not actually a scarce commodity. Mines in South Africa were digging them by the tons and although it was a precious stone, it wasn’t as precious back in the late 1800s as the value these stones have now. Cartelization and shell companies controlling the diamond trade led to artifi cial scarcity of diamonds and the corresponding increase in prices. This was followed by a smart marketing campaign (remember ‘diamonds are forever’?) that increased sales of diamonds. However, the forever theme also meant that those who bought them paid a high price for them and never sold them back in the market, thus reducing the trade of ‘used’ diamonds and keeping the high pricing of diamonds intact.
Long story short, scarcity of a product can allow you to price it high and make you set it on a higher pedestal than it should be on. A rare product will fetch you more money. While some might argue that it is a bad practice, and to my eyes, it is, true scarcity of something does make it valuable, and its rarity adds to its beauty. Case in point, supercars that sell for more crores than the fi ngers on your hand; these are rare commodities and they just can’t be mass produced because they require skilled craftsmanship in certain aspects that take time. The Ferrari 250 GTO vintage car was auctioned for 38 million USD (that’s Rs. 250 crore). For affl uent mere mortals, when it comes to cars, it’s a new luxury car brand.