For a slightly enlarged AMG version of the Mercedes A-Type – the kind that Nael took his killer ride on – the list price is currently easily €50,000. Not exactly how much a 17-year-old pizza courier can charge. According to the latest reports, he was going to borrow the car from a “friend”. But either that friend – according to the license plate – has Polish citizenship or is related to a car from a Polish rental company. The latter option seems more reasonable. Because: “While car rental prices are exploding in France, many young people – mostly from the Parisian suburbs – are now heading to Poland for long-term car rentals,” some French newspapers reported on this striking trend last summer.
Poland was literally called El Dorado – say: the Promised Land of Gold. “With competitive prices for attractive sports cars that can be much lower than in France,” says the paper. Le Parisien, who also immediately spoke to a car rental company from the Parisian Ile-de-France region. “Before Poland there was Germany and Luxembourg, but Poland has been the standard for a year now. The Eastern European country has cut prices dramatically. In France, customers will pay five times as much.”
To be able to unload even an extended suburban Mercedes AMG, a rent of 1,500 euros per month is enough. It is not uncommon for these cars to be sublet as well. This is how a young French man witnessed Le Parisien: “I rent my Mercedes AMG, sometimes on weekends – in black – for ‘events’. The car has already been used to shoot a couple of rap videos and also at a wedding. As a result, I can sometimes get back my 1,500 monthly rent euros in one weekend.
Driving license with points
Then there is another big ‘feature’ for the young French drivers. In France, a driver’s license is used with points. Each driver usually gets 12 points, from which points are deducted for serious traffic violations. But since 2004 there has been a “trial permit” for novice drivers: they start their first two or three years – depending on their driving training – with only 6 points. “Renting a car directly in Poland is therefore a godsend for young Frenchmen, as with a Polish license plate there is almost no risk of losing points, even if a fine follows,” he explains. Le Parisien that feature. An unknown driver in that newspaper also nodded. “It’s less of a hassle for insurance companies. And then you can also play some shit without being bothered by radar or police.”
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