We speak to people all the time who are interested in purchasing a Motion Pro II for their home or business as a training tool. However, many times when a customer hears the price of our Motion Pro II – which starts at $49,000 for a turnkey system – their response is “For that much money, I can buy a race car!”

The Motion Pro II was designed to serve as a training tool for amateur and professional racing drivers, a tool which accurately replicates the sensation of being on a race track. In the most controlled environment available – your own home – the Motion Pro II provides drivers an opportunity to jump into nearly any car on any track in the world. Professional drivers and champions routinely prepare for their upcoming races in our Los Angeles facility.

But to compare costs, and to see if it really is more inexpensive to buy a race car, we looked at the cost of buying a car and racing it in a few popular club and Pro-Am racing series.

Based on the first and second generation Mazda Miata, Spec Miata represents an ideal entry level class for people starting out in racing as well as veterans seeking a competitive class of racing. In a search for available cars, we found dozens of Spec Miatas available for sale with prices as low as $7500 up to $35,000. Keep in mind that if you race your own car, you’ll need a truck and trailer to get it to and from the track as well. If you don’t want to deal with all that, many shops provide weekends rentals for approximately $3500.

Stepping up in speed a bit, we looked at the new Porsche Cayman GT4, which is being raced now in the Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge and the Pirelli Driver’s Cup. The car, which comes with a $200,000 price tag, also requires a budget of $125,000 to compete in the ten-race Pirelli Driver’s Cup. It works out to roughly $1800 an hour to run the car.

The Porsche GT3 Cup is a standard in both Pro-Am and professional racing series around the world. Used examples will be in the neighborhood of $190,000 with the newest model costing around $270,000 by the time it is ready to hit the track. Costing approximately $2300 an hour to run, a season in IMSA GT3 Challenge will cost $400-450,000.

A new type of car that is quickly gaining traction in North America is LMP3, which will debut this season in the IMSA Prototype Lights series. Around $220,000 will buy you an LMP3 car from Ligier, Riley-Ave, Ginetta, Adess, Dome or Norma. In the European Le Mans series, with a cost to operate the car around $2000 an hour, a season of LMP3 will run you around $500,000 which includes one test weekend and six four-hour races.

A few things to keep in mind is that these numbers don’t include things like travel, time missed from work, or crashing! Over a season of racing, of course, you can expect some amount of damage. The average cost of running your Porsche Cayman GT4 or Porsche GT3 Cup into something is around $10,000.

Of course, nothing can replace the experience of driving a race car on a track, battling for position with other cars on some of the world’s best circuits (or even your local club track). But there are advantages to making the investment in a Motion Pro II. You will enjoy the potential of nearly unlimited practice without incurring the traditional costs of travel, consumables, and pit support. And the combination of the incredibly powerful software, motion control system, and visual options will provide an experience so realistic you’ll be more than ready for your next race.