Why Ferrari Sues Its Own Customers: Including Justin Bieber

In many ways, Ferrari is the champagne of car companies. Luxurious, expensive, and willing to take legal action to protect its name. Even if that means suing its own customers. 

Apparently, these extreme measures have paid off. Brand Finance named Ferrari the world’s strongest brand in both 2019 and 2020. The Italian car manufacturer even beat brand titans McDonald’s, Apple, and Coca-Cola. Before you find yourself in the fast lane, you need to know what you can and can’t do with your dream car. 

Here’s What You’re Not Allowed To Do

Money can’t buy happiness. But if you have roughly $240K going spare, it can buy you a brand-new Ferrari. 

At that kind of price, you’d think you could do whatever you pleased with your newly purchased car. Not exactly. It turns out Ferrari has quite a few rules for their car owners. And they are not afraid to sue you to keep those rules in place.

To start, you’re generally not allowed to sell your Ferrari within the first year of owning it. This rule is designed to prevent people from flipping the cars for profit. 

That rule is sort of understandable. But it gets weirder. 

Tampering with your new Ferrari in any way is pretty much prohibited. No engine modification, no paint jobs, and absolutely nothing that covers the Ferrari badge. (They really do not want you to paint their cars pink.) 

Any repairs and maintenance should go through the company. Otherwise, you risk invalidating your warranty. 

And apparently, if you own a Lamborghini, don’t even think about storing it alongside your Ferrari. That’ll pretty much nix your chances of getting on the Ferrari VIP list. Rivalries run deep. 

Of course, just because you break the rules doesn’t automatically mean you’ll get a cease and desist from Ferrari. But why take a chance?

Times Ferrari Took Surprising Legal Action

Is it too late now to say sorry? Justin Bieber is banned from owning a Ferrari. 

This ban comes after the pop singer broke many of the brand’s rules. Beiber redesigned his 2011 458 Italia F1 Edition to include gaudy additions like a neon wrap. And he auctioned off his 458 without Ferrari’s consent. 

German fashion designer and influencer Phillipp Plein also ran afoul of Ferrari. This time, the road rage incident happened on Instagram. 

Plein used his Ferrari as a backdrop for his own products. The car company was not impressed. 

Ferrari’s legal council accused Plein of using the trademark, “With a lifestyle totally inconsistent with its brand perception, in connection with performers making sexual innuendoes and using Ferrari’s cars as props in a manner which is per se distasteful.” 

Plein ultimately had to pay about $340K to the company. In other words, the kind of money that could have purchased him a new Ferrari. Unsurprisingly, Ferrari’s legal aggressions have discouraged some luxury car lovers. 

Rumor has it, famous car collector and late-night night personnel Jay Leno won’t be adding a Ferrari to his collection of over 180 cars. He likes the cars but doesn’t want to deal with the dealers. 

Too many rules for a car that you supposedly own. 

Martha A. Lavallie
Martha A. Lavallie
Author & Editor | + posts

Martha is a journalist with close to a decade of experience in uncovering and reporting on the most compelling stories of our time. Passionate about staying ahead of the curve, she specializes in shedding light on trending topics and captivating global narratives. Her insightful articles have garnered acclaim, making her a trusted voice in today's dynamic media landscape.