My car: Lexus LS 400

Muhammad Ashfak juggles a busy job as a trainee network administrator with studying computer networking. His Lexus LS 400 makes the high-wire act a bit easier.

Muhammad Ashfak with his 1995 Lexus. Al Badia, Dubai. 24th December 2010. Duncan Chard for the National
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Muhammad Ashfak juggles a busy job as a trainee network administrator with studying computer networking. His Lexus LS 400 makes the high-wire act a bit easier.

Ashfak, a lifelong Dubai resident whose family hails from Pakistan, had the car shipped in from the US a year ago.

Unlike a lot of people who have encountered hurdles importing cars into the UAE, he found the process to be relatively smooth.

"When importing a car, you have to be a little patient. But if you really want it, it would be worth the wait," he says. "All you have to do is meet up with a car's dealer, find out about the car he's offering and then you fix the payment, before or after the car arrives, depending on the dealer."

Ashfak bought his car from an Ajman-based dealer that imports cars from Japan and America.

"They were very co-operative and I had no trouble importing and getting my car registered," he reports. "The car was imported from the USA and is a certified pre-owned vehicle."

He is enthusaistic when he talks about the car. "Saying 'I love it' would be an understatement - it has the luxury, the handling and the speed enforced by the V8 engine. What more could a car fanatic ask for?"

Ashfak continues to wax lyrical, describing the Lexus LS series as "one of the finest works by the Japanese. I think it is among the best machines ever manufactured.

"It possesses its own appeal; be it a long drive or a short trip, it would live up to your expectations."

He is also impressed by the quality control of Lexus, saying his car has "no vibrations or unwanted irritating sounds, even at the highest speeds, and the V8 engine just keeps my adrenaline pumping".

Continuing his general positivity about motoring in the UAE, Ashfak says the best thing about driving here is the roads.

"The roads are clean and smooth and I can enjoy driving my car to the fullest," he says, but adds that "people driving slow in the fast lanes and fast drivers in the slow lanes cause accidents and extreme inconvenience".

Ashfak's father taught him to drive in Dubai and his first car was a Mitsubishi Pajero. He passed his driving test two years ago but,unlike the importing of his Lexus, that particular process was not without its hiccups.

"I failed my driving test twice before getting through," he recalls. "I failed the first time because I argued with the inspector and the second time I failed I was above the speed limit."

Before he bought his Lexus, he was rather loyal to the Mitsubishi brand.

"I've owned a Pajero, a Mitsubishi Galant and a Mitsubishi Lancer - yes, a lot of Mitsubishis indeed," he laughs.

But when it comes to replacing his beloved Lexus, something he doesn't plan to do anytime soon, he would need a much bigger garage to house all his fantasy cars.

"I don't really dream of a single car," Ashfak says. "I have favourites in varying categories.

"For luxury I would go for the Lexus LS 460; for off road trips I would love to bash dunes in a Nissan Patrol; and for speed and control, I would floor a Nissan GT-R or a Lancer Evolution X."