Letters: Shows, photo shoots and more

Letters: Shows, photo shoots and more

Before the Sharjah Auto Show, and just after the Ford Ride & Drive, we had received a Jaguar XKR Portfolio for a few days. As soon as I checked out the car, I realised it isn’t much different from the standard XKR we already drove earlier this year. So I offered the car up to a photographer to try her hand at automotive photography for a morning, the results of which will be displayed later. On to the backlog of letters.

Adithyam says: we had waited for your response for some time then went ahead and bought a ford explorer top of the range. it’s good value for money vehicle. but not very happy with interior comfort – may be we cant expect that from a 4×4 meant primarily for offroading. the fact that we never do offroading take away some sheen fr our choice. good thing is we got up to 60 thousand km service free and also insurance free saving us almost 15k dhs.
we took sometime to sell our 2005 model honda accord. was expecting 42k finally sold it for 39k. may b value for 2nd hand cars have gone down after the govt decision to scrap old cars.
congrats again for your site – we kept referring to it again everytime some friend talks about changing cars. keep up the excellent work and thanks again for the feedback.

Good to hear. The price for your Accord may be due to that government decision as well as the economic conditions. Enjoy your new car. – MHC

Mohammed says: First, I would like to thank you for this amazing site. I used to rely solely on Edmunds, Topspeed, and Car&Driver sites for car reviews until I found your site. For example, they never discuss AC performance since it’s not an issue there, but it is always mentioned in your reviews since it is extremely important in our part of the world.Anyway, I am shopping for a mid-size SUV in the range of 120k-130k Saudi Riyals. My short list now has the Ford Edge and Hyundai Veracruz as I have recently dropped the Murano and the Acadia. I have read your test drive reviews for 3 out of the 4 cars above, which were extremely helpful. However, the Veracruz is not there. As you know, Hyundai range in general has become extremely respectable. I am leaning toward the Edge as my criteria includes: sporty drive, powerful engine, agile yet quiet, exterior design, and good at absorbing road bumps and holes (common problem in Jeddah). You might say that the Murano fits this criteria better than the Edge. I would agree on all, except for the last one as it failed miserably in my test drive. The steering wheel kept shaking with every hole and bump I drove over. The Acadia is a nice car, but is just too big and not athletic at all.I just want to note that I am not in a hurry as I can wait 2-3 months for all 2009 models to come out if you are of any changes for their models. Also, prices for European cars should go down dramatically as the Euro lost over 25% of it value versus the dollar in the last 3 months or so. Extremely appealing European options such as the Touareg or the XC90 (I love this car) might come closer to my price range.I would greatly appreciate it if I can have a recommendation as a reply on m email. I also hope that you would be able to test drive the whole Hyundai range, including the Veracruz and the Santa Fe. Regards.

I hear good things about the Veracruz, but sadly, testing any Hyundai is not on our books right now, as they hardly keep in touch with us. I think you’ve made your choice among the others. The XC90 will not be worth much when you try to sell it, but I also hear good things about it. The VW Touareg is in a different league, and drives very well, but it is extremely expensive to maintain, so watch out for that, as it eats brakes every 15000 km and a replacement costs Dhs 5000 each time here. – MHC

Mohammed Shafeeque says: I have 3 different category of cars in mind. 1. Dodge Charger 5.7 HEMI V8 2009 2. VW GTi 2.0 I4 2009 3. Jeep Grand Cherokee Limited 4.7 2009My prime concerns are Space, Durability, Reliability, Long Drives with passengers and stuffs, Handling, Spare parts availability etc.Among all three which one do you recommend? Thank You.

The least durable car in that group is the VW, which apparently fall apart in the first year. The other two will have only minor problems, but nothing more serious than a faulty power window or some such. The VW handles the best, but also the least comfortable. – MHC

Nikki Chee says: I’m thinking of buying either peugeot 207 or Golf. basically i’m more interested in peugeot than golf but my friends kept saying i should get Golf. and cousin of mine insisted that non-japanese cars have no resale value and kept on saying better to buy japanese cars. She has a Nissan Qashqai. So i would like to know which is a good choice? Peugeot 207, Golf Or Japanese Cars. I’m a cabin crew so i’m hardly in Dubai.

Basically, the VW is the least reliable of your choices. However, the VW has slightly better resale value than the Peugeot. But with the VW, you’ll be blowing luxury-car maintenance money on an economy car. The Nissan is new, so data is scarce, but it is likely the most reliable and has the best resale value. – MHC

Rehan Butt says: Hi, I am looking to get decent sedan for my family, my shorlisted cars are Honda Accord and Nissan Altima, but i heard Nissan has launched Maxima in USA, any idea when it will come to GCC. My choice of vehicle is subject to comfort and resale value, any other car in your mind which fulfill this criteria? Regards.

Hi, each car has its strengths and weaknesses, all of which I have listed in my reviews. For those specific points, the Accord has better comfort and resale than the Altima. The Maxima is undergoing tests here, so it will be a month or two before it is launched here. – MHC

Saad says: Firstly, great work on the website. Shocked to know, you handle this all alone, really. Anyway, I have a few questions to ask you. 1. Is the VW R32 reliable? 2. Is the Suzuki Swift Sport available in UAE? With the body kit and modifications? How much? 3. Are neon lights under cars banned by traffic authorities of UAE? Thanks for your time and guidance.

All VWs in general are unreliable, especially the early Golf MK5 models, but I don’t know of specific R32 problems. The Swift is only available with one 1.5-litre engine. Basic mods such as kits, spoilers and neon seem to be legal in the UAE, since they are not mechanical mods. – MHC

Craig Fawcett says: Hi. I just thought I would let you know that your price for the Nissan GTR is quite far off (Dhs 312,000). I just called Nissan today and they are quoting Dhs 435,000 which is for an American Import. The Middle East version should arrive around March. Regards.

True, the price mark-ups here are ridiculous for what is supposed to be a value-packed exotic. – MHC

Shariq says: I am using a Honda Civic 1994 in very good condition and due to the new rule coming up i am going to sell it. I am mostly planning to buy Mistubishi Lancer GT 2.0, but i am scared to buy because many people say its not a good car and does not have resale value. they suggest me to buy a Nissan Sunny 2009 Japan made classic edition. please help what should I do. Thank You.

Hi, the Lancer GT is a good enough car, but it is true that Mitsubishi Lancer does not have as good resale as a Honda, Nissan or Toyota, but it should not be horribly low for the new shape. The Sunny is an older design and therefore a worse car, but I haven’t heard of a Japanese-built classic edition for 2009. I can’t be sure of the resale on new Sunny models either, with the arrival of the Tiida. – MHC

Mohan says: Your website is very useful and it is the no.1 in gulf countries. Everything is fine. Please give the details of the resale value as like your old version website. It was very helpful like the expatriates like me. So please display the resale value details. Thanking you.

Everything is still there. You might be referring to resale values on new models. I do not post resale values for models which came out less than three years ago, as the car is too new and there isn’t enough reliable info. But you can look at resale values of older models within a brand to judge the resale of the new models. – MHC

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What do you think?



  1. between that 207, golf and qashqai, I’d go for qashqai without even bothering ’bout the other two… Its got AWD and its not a VW!

  2. Mashfique Hussain Chowdhury, We will make you disappear, if you mention SOMETHING BAD about Volkswagen’s products in your sentences again.

    General Manager

  3. Forgot to add that our new line of cars for gays will be out soon.
    General Manager

  4. i dont like vw also

  5. do General managers talk like that?

  6. The sunny classic edition is just a badging thing from what I’ve see…nothing different or great in it….

  7. mr.vw general managers real funny!!
    i do own a vw touareg.. its a nice car.. bt ur rite on th money bout th brakes! barely lasts 15k kms! bt besides tht.. th cars worth th money!

  8. Oh some volkswagen fan trying to pretend like GM. Anyways, japanese or korean, sunny still sells like cake (check gulf news / khaleejtimes for prices), it still survives all the abuse easily in all major driving institutes. Ask the instructors they will tell you, it’s still 1000 times better than so called new models. The Korean models are being used now, still didn’t see any tiida’s with driving institute logos.

  9. Mash, there is really something like Nissan Sunny Classic, I saw one today in Seal Blue in Al Ghuriar mall. The way the emblem looked it doesn’t seem somebody may have bought and sticked it by himself.

  10. Hi can you please recoment me which one is better a H3 or FJ and which car will bring the best resale value if i sell it after two years.

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