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Despite the fact that most celebrities get chauffeured everywhere, celebrity car collections are some of the most exotic ones out there. From Kanye West to Jay-Z, these stars have expensive tastes in cars. But where do they go to buy these flashy vehicles? And how exactly do they go about picking one?

Land Rover Dealership Showroom
Land Rover Dealership Showroom | Gerald Matzka via Getty Images

Where do celebrities buy their cars?

We’re going to pull the curtain down and reveal a somewhat unsettling truth: celebrities are people too. Sure, they’ve got a seemingly endless stream of income, and a loyal fan base that’ll praise their every breath. But they’re not special in the eyes of the dealership, forced to go through the same process we all do.

Provided, their tastes are far more expensive. Think Maybachs, Bentleys, Rolls Royces. But all those fancy brands still have dealerships, though with higher quality customer service (you don’t want to piss off a celebrity). Their accountants walk in and fill out the paperwork, but all the inner workings of car purchasing is the same.

There are some exceptions. The New York Times discovered RD Whittington, who imports high-end cars and sells them to celebrities using Instagram. A simple 10-second clip could make him $10 million dollars, and he’s earned quite a reputation as a reliable, “no hiccups” car dealer.

And that’s one of the many things celebrities, or their managers, are looking for in businesses: exceptional customer service.

What do celebrities look for in a car?

We say customer service, but that’s an umbrella for many different things. For starters, celebrities have incredibly packed schedules, with records to produce and movies to shoot. They’re looking for a dealership, or a person like Whittington, who can operate around the clock. And in the case of Whittington, they don’t even meet him face to face or see the car before someone drops a boatload of cash on it.

But celebrities also love feeling special. Who doesn’t? That personalized experience and top-notch service are often what convinces celebrities to buy those cars. After all, the dealership/automaker wants nothing more than for a celeb to drive their product, as then other people will want that product more. It’s celebrity endorsement, but we’re diving too much into marketing.

Like you and I, celebrities also like to be comfortable. Granted, they can afford more than the plush seats of a Ford Focus (a surprisingly comfy car if you ask me, but you definitely don’t want to buy one). Larger athletes especially need those comfortable cars, with ease of access, in order to keep their bodies feeling good. After all, sitting in an uncomfortable car seat for hours could hinder their game-time performance.

So the only difference between the average Joe and the uber-rich is how much money we can spend. But after all is said and done, celebrities have to buy cars the same way you and I do. This begs the question, do they finance, or pay in full?

Do celebrities buy or lease cars?

Rolls Royce Ghost At Dealership
Rolls Royce Ghost At Dealership Ben Stansall/AFP via Getty Images

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One would think that the obvious answer is to buy a car. In fact, it’s cheaper to buy a car rather than lease it no matter how rich you are. And in reality, celebrities make decisions the same way you and I do. If they’ve got the dough, then yeah, they’ll blow it all at once, but that’s not always the case.

MC Hammer, who went bankrupt at the height of his career, financed an awful lot of things, cars included. In fact, his mansion had a 17 car garage, which featured custom Lambos. And while we don’t suggest blowing through your $70 million dollar fortune, financing cars can sometimes be a good option too.

As much as we like to picture celebrities as high and mighty, they’re really not much different. They seem so distant because of their fame, success, and wealth, but they’re not to be exempt from buying cars. Granted, their car buying experience might be better, because many dealerships would kiss the feet of a celebrity. But I doubt a salesperson would come kiss mine.