It’s usually guys that customise their rides, but it’s great to meet a woman with a really well-maintained and modified car.
Thanks but I would have to disagree with you — girls can be petrolheads too. I come from a background where cars are owned and driven with passion. My dad taught me to drive a stick shift and my hometown, Odessa, is a city filled with ambitions and dreams. With expensive cars lurking around every corner — one starts to develop a taste for good cars.
And a very good car you have too. Before we get to it, you’ve owned quite a few decent cars. Tell us about them…
My first car was a 1998 Mitsubishi Galant VR. The best thing about it was that it was a stick shift. It had a slick front end and that was the reason I bought it. But Dubai being a place for car lovers and enthusiasts and a place where you can fulfil your dreams, I decided to sell it after a year. Since then, the list of cars that
I have had keeps growing.
Run us through the best of them…
Over the years, I have owned a 2006 Audi S4, 2006 Nissan 350Z, 2006 Mitsubishi Eclipse GS Turbo, 2005 Audi TT, 2007 Infiniti G35, 2008 Mitsubishi Lancer GT and a 2007 Lexus IS Saloon. Most of the cars I have driven were stick shift and it felt good to see all the other cars in the rear-view mirror.
Yes — manuals can really help wake a car’s engine up. Do you have a dream car?
I do; the Maserati Gran Turismo S. I have already started exploring my options.
Great choice! You’d turn heads in that. But you already do that in your Lexus IS 300 C. Tell us about it…
Well, I’ve always enjoyed the smooth drive of a Lexus and the refined interior. When the IS C was launched, I had set my heart on one and started saving.
I had this one imported directly from the US and it came equipped with features such as projector DRL headlights, an optimised audio system, Bluetooth technology, a parking assist system and even a backup camera. Its voice-activated navigation system is a welcome bonus and it is equipped with a Home Link remote control which allows you to control external devices like opening or closing garage doors. It also has the F-Sport package and, most importantly, a Mellow White interior.
That custom Pearl Red paint with Rainbow Metallic specs looks hot! Why did you choose this colour?
I had to decide between Metallic Chocolate and Pearl Red and the latter won out because it complemented the Mellow White Interior so I went ahead with that. I am still considering the Metallic Chocolate for my next project. I love the clean and sharp lines of this car and most importantly the hard-top convertible. I like to drive cars that define me and my personality.
We like the carbon-fibre spoiler and those 19in alloys. Who did the all the work for you and how long did it all take?
Over the years, I have become acquainted with many talented friends who share my passion for cars — and tolerate my attention to detail! It took us two weeks to bring it to its current form. I had done a similar glittery paint job on my G35. I treated it to a Lamborghini Sunset Orange colour with similar Rainbow Glitters.
Ladies sure love diamonds. You’ve had the emblems of your car trimmed out in decorative stones… Not real are they?
No, they’re not real diamonds, just zirconium stones. I wish they were diamonds though. Maybe I’ll get them on my Maserati one day.
If you do, you have to come back and show us! You plan to add Brembos and front and rear skirts to your IS C too right?
Yes I intend to add four-piston Brembo callipers with larger rotors to the front and standard callipers to the rear to enhance the braking system. I want to add carbon-fibre front and rear skirts to create a better ground effect. I have already dropped it by one inch.
Yes, it has a rather low and wide stance. You are an attractive-looking woman with an attractive-looking car — you must get a lot of attention from others on the roads…
Yes, they include cops too. But I don’t mind them complimenting the work I have put into my car. Some even ask how they could get their cars pimped in the same manner… I can just imagine a glittery cop car! My family and friends love my car and think I’m obsessed with cars. In addition to travelling and handbags, I like to spend money on my car.
You’ve struck the perfect balance. How does it perform? Is it all show and no go?
Not at all, it is armed with a powerful 3.0-litre V6 engine with 230 horses and a smooth-shifting six-speed paddle-shift-sequential automatic. It does 0-100kph in just under nine seconds. I like taking it out to JBR and the beaches where I can drop the top, feel the breeze and show off.
That sounds like a lot of fun. Is this one for keeps?
I plan on sticking with the IS C for at least a year until I have set my eyes on something better.