In almost all aspects of life, image matters. As superficial as this may sound, how people see us, and what they think of us matters. In terms of the business world, the most important thing is the numbers. If you can make a lot of money for someone, there is not much your mere image can do to tarnish the business; however, to prove to others that you can make them a lot of money, you must first get your foot in the door. This is where your image comes into play, and is especially true when doing business with international business people. Think of it this way:
You have a potential business person flying in from China, and you have the option to pick them up in a Toyota Prius, or a Bentley. If you want that business person to have the immediate thought that you can make them good money, which car would you choose? When you show up in a Bentley to pick them up from the airport, they will have the first impression that “this person knows how to make money, that’s why they can afford such an expensive vehicle.” In a sense, this turns your choice of car into a business investment that can be used to lure in potential clients.
Even if you are not trying to impress someone or pick up a client, purchasing a chauffeur service may still be incredibly useful. If your time is valued at $700 per hour, rather than driving around in a car, and increasing your opportunity cost, you can hire a chauffeur for $100 per hour. This way, you can comfortably and safely sit in a car and do your work with the wi-fi provided by the chauffeur.
There are many things you must take account for if are trying to decide on how to make this particular business investment. Your decision must also take into account the purpose of the event you need a chauffeur for, along with the type of client you have. The rental price of a chauffeur is greatly correlated with the retail price of the vehicle, so one must always take account for the price of the vehicle when purchasing a chauffeur service.
5 Chauffeur Driven Cars to Choose
Amongst the cars viable for chauffeuring people, Mercedes Benz has the largest variety of options to choose from. Starting from the lower end, you have the E-class, all the way up to the Maybach. The E-class Mercedes is likely the cheapest option on the list, that being said, you do get what you paid for. There is a general understanding that the E-class is not that high end of a car, though still luxurious. If you are on a budget, you should take the E-class, but otherwise, the S-Class and Maybach are probably much more desirable.
The S-class Mercedes is likely the most comfortable and best-engineered car on this list in respect to price. The S-class Mercedes comes with many packages, most notably, there is a package that allows for the back seats of the car to be able to recline. If we are speaking of getting a car to chauffeur people, the package is a very high-value purchase. If you are picking someone up after a long flight, it would be nice for them to relax and get some rest as you are driving them to the residence in which they plan to stay.
Lastly, among the Mercedes is the Maybach. The Maybach is the highest end luxury sedan that is commercially available by Mercedes Benz. The thing with cars, in general, is that the cost of a car produces diminishing returns in terms of the marginal benefit of every added dollar inputted into the car. Although the Maybach is the nicest luxury sedan that can be obtained from Mercedes, it is about 150% the price of the S-class. At the elevated price, the value comes from conspicuous consumption; however, the Maybach has limitations when it comes to this. To explain why this is, we can take a look at Hyundai.
In 2014, Hyundai put a lot of money into marketing for their Equus model as it seemed to be dying. This effort was wasted even though, compared to their competition, the amenities of the car were greater in number and the many people found the car to be much more comfortable. The Equus was a car by Hyundai that was made to compete with cars like the Mercedes, but problem arose when you take account that Hyundai has an existing image. This is the image that Hyundais are low to mid-tier cars. The original MSRP of the car, was between $61,000 and $68,000 depending on the year and package that was bought; however, the general public would value it at around half that value because of the logo in the front. If Hyundai decided to sell their car for $40,000 instead of the original MSRP, and a customer had to choose between this marked down Equus, and either a BMW or Audi at $40,000, people would still choose the latter even if it was less value.
This is the same issue that the Maybach must deal with because Mercedes does not typically sell their car at the price range of the Maybach. The Maybach is simply an outlier, and the marketing of Mercedes does not allow them to easily make the Maybach appear to have a value equivalent to its cost.
- Largest Variety of Vehicles to Choose from
- Probably the best value for your dollar amongst these cars
- Highest safety rating on this list
- Cheapest/most affordable
- The diesel option is available for some models if you want to save a bit of money on gas
- The value peaks at the S class
- It does give a lot of room of conspicuous consumption
- Not the most stylish cars
- Less unique
When determining the status that a given car grants the driver, simply ask, “How often do I see someone driving this car?” These next two cars get the majority of their value from this question. The Bentley, engineering-wise, is not hugely different from the Mercedes Benz cars, but the car is much more rare, better marketed for its price range, and a bit more comfortable to sit in. Bentleys, however, are a bit harder to drive and have much more rigid suspensions. If you do not master driving this type of car, the comfort gained from the seat design and high-end materials is lost from the discomfort of the driving. Bentleys specialize in sedans and designing these cars are their bread-and-butter. The design of Bentleys are generally much nicer than Mercedes, but note that the cheapest Bentley is more expensive than the Maybach.
- A great status symbol
- Very comfortable and very well designed
- Top end materials used
- You can buy 2 S-class Mercedes with the price of the cheapest Bentley
- Rigid and hard to drive
- Does not have the highest safety rating
The Rolls Royce is the epitome of luxury cars. In terms of status, Rolls Royce does to Bentley what Bentley does to Mercedes Benz. Rolls Royce’s are so rare and unique they only sold 3,362 units in the entire year of 2017. To put that into perspective, in 2014, Toyota was selling an average of 4246.5 units per day. In terms of the image that a Rolls Royce gives, this will let you truly stand out to a client, as it will be a very memorable experience being able to ride in one of these. The interior is unmatched in elegance and luxury, coming equipped with refrigeration and enough leg space for most people to have full extension of their legs as they ride.
- This is the highest tier of conspicuous consumption outside of buying a hypercar
- Car displays/is associated with authority
- The interior is top-notch and grants extremely high comfort
- The cheapest Rolls Royce has a higher MSRP than the most expensive commercially available Bentley.
- Rolls Royce makes incredibly heavy cars with curb weights that are around 5,445lb, roughly 1,000lb higher than its Mercedes Benz counterparts.
- Not fuel efficient/not good for your carbon footprint.
If people do not know cars very well, they do not realize how expensive the purchase was. They had a study showing people an image of the Rolls Royce Phantom, and they asked people how much they believed the car sold for. Many people would take account that it is a Rolls Royce and guess that the Phantom sold for around $200,000, but it actually sells at an MSRP of $417,825.
If you need to drive larger groups of people or you need to have more trunk space, this second half of the list has a larger application to your necessities.
The Range Rover is the highest class of the available cars that are not from the brands that primarily sell sports cars. Lamborghini and Porsche sell SUVs as well, but that is obviously not their specialty. Though they are more expensive, they are generally more expensive for the sake of being more expensive, while Range Rover backs up its price with actual value. The interior is made with leather and is built for comfort. Furthermore, the back seats have screens to provide entertainment for passengers during long drives. Like all SUVs the Range Rover comes with a lot of trunk space, so picking up a client from the airport is made easy as they can store their bags in the trunk without much difficulty.
- Well priced, you will get good value for your money.
- 4 wheel drive, allowing you to drive wherever you want.
- Very comfortable car
- Not the most stylish car, but its style is not awful, just mediocre
- Very expensive for a 4-wheel drive SUV, so maintenance is rather costly
- It does not hold 7-8 people like most other SUVs, generally only holds 5 people comfortably.
Mini Van & SUVs
If you have a small group of people, getting a minivan or SUV may be necessary. If you are getting one of these and also hoping to display a level of prestige, you are most likely going to want to buy either a Mercedes Benz V-Class or a Cadillac Escalade. These cars are generally very comfortable and have a lot of space for passengers and luggage.
- A lot of space and seats
- Fulfills a niche usage that other types of cars do not
- 4-Wheel drive
- Decent range for budget to luxury prices
- Not very eco-friendly
- There are limitations on how much wealth you can reasonably display with this type of car.
- Lower car maneuverability and does not accelerate very fast.
If you have a very sizable group or you need to travel extremely long distances, having a luxury coach is very ideal. Luxury coaches are often also known as party buses and is often used to go clubbing, or for things like prom. However, they are not exclusively used for this; instead you can use them for long road trips or driving people to conventions. There is an issue when it comes to driving as busses require special licenses to drive.
- Very comfortable and usually allows for walking if passengers feel a need to stretch their legs.
- Can hold the largest number of people of any commercial land vehicle.
- Can come with restrooms inside so people do not have to go down for rest stops.
- Very bad/inefficient gas usage.
- Requires special licensing to drive
- The drivers for these cars will often cost a bit more due to their specialization.
The use of a chauffeur acts to do several things. Chauffeurs are certified by ROSPA to ensure your safety as you ride and possibly work on your trip to your destination. Furthermore, they allow you to show off a premier level of status to impress clients and others that may potentially do business with you. There are many unique vehicle options that may suit you based on your needs.