Nokia Makes the Ferrari of Phones...Literally

Limited-edition Ascent Ferrari phones are as sleek as sports cars, and similarly pricey.

If you thought the iPhone was overpriced, stop reading now.

Nokia’s Vertu subsidiary is selling a $25,400 phone in shops in Paris, London, Hong Kong and Singapore.

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The Ascent Ferrari 60 was created to commemorate sports-car maker Ferrari’s 60th anniversary. The phones are hand assembled using stainless steel and titanium components, as well as leather from authentic Ferrari suppliers, says Elizabeth Maragh, a Vertu spokeswoman.

In accord with the 60th anniversary theme, only 60 phones have been produced.

Vertu's $25,400 Ascent Ferrari 60 phone

Vertu has been selling the Ascent Ferrari 60 for several months now, alongside another Ferrari-inspired phone called Ascent Ferrari 1947 Limited Edition.

Both phones feature the Ferrari prancing horse logo and take design cues from the sports cars. (No steering wheel but it’s pretty sleek.)

But who would spend $25,400 on a phone?

Someone who appreciates fine craftsmanship, Maragh says. “The Vertu phones are very much based on craftsmanship and unique materials. All of our phones are handmade and we go to great lengths to choose materials that we feel are the highest quality possible. A lot of people who buy our phones appreciate these things in life.”

“A lot of people” reportedly includes Mariah Carey, Jay-Z and Catherine Deneuve.

In other words, just plain folk.

Incidentally, anyone hoping to save a few thousand bucks by waiting for Vertu to suddenly slash prices (as Apple recently did with its iPhone) for the gift-giving season is probably waiting in vain. According to Maragh, a holiday price cut is unlikely.

Copyright © 2007 IDG Communications, Inc.

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