Hello Lotus!

Post by Mark

Those of you who follow me on instagram and twitter probably already figured out that I sold my beloved Datsun last week because I bought a Lotus Exige instead. It wasn’t a planned purchase, it just happened, I guess something like an impulse buy but on a grander scale. Last Saturday I went with a friend to check out a 1972 Chevy C10 pickup truck which I was planning to buy. On our way back I had to drop my friend off at a garage when I came across a used car lot that had a yellow Lotus Exige displayed for sale, the same one I had reviewed nearly a year ago. So I sent the Lotus brand manager a message about it and he told me if I had an itch to drive the Exige again, they had the roof off on their current vehicle and I could come in the next morning and take the car out for a couple of days. Who would say no to that?

The next morning I headed straight to the Lotus dealership and picked up the Exige. A few minutes after driving off in the car, I had a huge smile on my face I remembered why I loved it so much when I took it out last year to review. So when the brand manager messaged me back the next day to confirm I would be dropping the car off in the evening, I told him I had fallen in love with it and this time I wasn’t bringing it back. After a couple of days of negotiating on the price over whatsapp, I went back to the dealership and paid for the car. I’m still unsure if I got a good deal or not since I don’t consider myself a great negotiator (Tip: Do NOT tell the dealer you love the car), but I’ve got the car now with no regrets so thats all that matters.

When I originally wrote my review of the Exige last year, I described it as a car not meant for 99.9% of the people and I still stand by that. I actually spent most of that review complaining about the car. It’s extremely quirky to put it nicely with a lot of odd and unorthodox things about it. But, with all the issues I had with the car when I reviewed it, something about it really attracted me to it. I’ve reviewed a lot of amazing cars for the blog but nothing connected with me the way the Exige did. I love sitting inside the small cozy cockpit, I love the way it looks on the outside, I even love how awkward it is to get in and out of and I definitely love recording videos of my friends trying to get out of the car. If the Exige was a person, it would be an awkward introvert and I think thats why I love it.

There are only 3 Exige’s in Kuwait at the moment, my midnight blue one, a white one and a yellow one so it’s a pretty rare car and I feel special. But, I’m now curious to see what that means to the cost and availability of parts, supposedly service costs is similar to Lexus which is great, but I didn’t ask about the parts since I didn’t want to freak out and change my mind about buying the car. Speaking of parts, there is a pretty active online community of aftermarket parts and I’ve already got my eye on some carbon fiber body panels and other upgrades, but the first thing I want to modify on the car is the license plates. For some reason Alghanim (the dealer) installed square ones on the car but I think the wider rectangular ones would look so much nicer on it. So if anyone knows what the process is for swapping the square plates for the rectangular ones is, please let me know!

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Goodbye Datsun

Post by Mark


Next week would have been my one year anniversary with the 240z but yesterday, I sold the car. I didn’t want to sell it, but I’m getting another car and it just wouldn’t have made sense to own three cars. The night before I sold the car, I took it out for one last drive and it was just so sad. I felt like I was giving away my dog. Not sure why I was being very sentimental since I had the car for only a year. I think was because I was driving it everyday and had spent so many late nights at my mechanic making her a daily drivable car.


Luckily a good friend of mine who is a car nut bought the Datsun from me so I’ll still get to see it. I’m actually looking forward to seeing what he’ll do with it since he’s restored other old cars before and my Datsun could use a bit more TLC from someone like him. Watching him drive off with the car though was still a pretty sad moment.

So no more Datsun, it was fun while it lasted.

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Fahaheel Expressway Flooded

Post by Mark

A friend forwarded me the video above of the Fahaheel Expressway near Mangaf completely flooded. As you can see in the video a lot of cars drowned sank and many people were stranded. I have a friend who lives in Mangaf as well where their whole neighborhood flooded and all the underground parking lots filled up drowning their cars as well. Pretty messed up.

Thanks Ghadeer

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Kuwait Motor Town Race Circuit from Space

Post by Mark

The Kuwait Motor Town Race Circuit is expected to be completed sometime next year but you can already see the layout of the track from space using Google Maps. You can compare the satellite view from top to the rendering below for a better idea of what you’re looking at.

For some reason the track doesn’t show when using a desktop browser but only when accessing the coordinates from your phone. I guess the desktop version of Google Maps isn’t updated yet. So if you want to see the track from your phone, click [Here]

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Portarage Roadside Assistance App

Post by Mark

This is kinda related to my previous post, Portarage is a local roadside assistance app that allows you to request help if you run into car problems. The app has four different kinds of assistance you could call for:

– Tow Truck
– Flat Tire
– Petrol
– Battery

A couple of years back I had posted about a similar app called Winch but that’s no longer available or working and was only for calling a tow truck. Portarage should be a better alternative since not only can you request a tow truck but you could request a jump start, help fixing a flat tire or call for fuel in case you run out.

The app is available for both [iOS] and [Android] and is free to download.

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Niceness Level 10

Post by Mark

I ran into a mechanical problem on my way to work this morning in my Datsun. As I was driving down the Gulf Road, my accelerator cable broke. Luckily I was driving fast enough so I could change lanes all the way to the right and then coast through a green traffic light until I managed to take the exit into the Chili’s parking lot. By then my car was going super slow but it still had enough momentum for me to find a spot and park my car. I checked under my dash right away and saw the frayed cable. I was upset but calm since I know with old cars you need to have patience and mine barely gives me any trouble anymore considering I drive it everyday and I’m not really gentle with it. After a few minutes of contemplating what I should do, I decided I would just try and fix it myself since I kinda knew what I needed to do. Cut the story short, I connected the cable back to my pedal but then ran into an issue with the cable no longer reaching my carburetor. So then had to move my cable bracket closer to the carburetor and readjust the location of my throttle spring and got everything working. If you want to see all the steps I tweeted them: [1] [2] [3] [4] [5] [6]

It took around an hour and I felt a sense of accomplishment when I was done, but thats not what this post is about. While I was working on my car in the Chili’s parking lot, two guys came up to me and asked if I needed any help.

The first guy looked a bit “3agaidi”. He pulled up in a white Hyundai with fully black tinted windows as I was about to start work on the car and asked me if everything was ok and if I needed any help. I told him I was good and explained to him what the problem was. He offered to drop me off to Shuwaikh or home if I wanted to but I told him I was going to fix the car myself. He then told me he had a 79 Datsun himself, but that he uses it only for “استعراض” which roughly translates to, “I do burnouts in the middle of public roads”. He was pretty nice though and left after a few minutes by driving out of the parking lot the wrong way (of course).

The second guy who came up to me was an older American guy. I was halfway through the job and he also asked me what was wrong and if I needed any help. I told him the accelerator cable broke but I managed to reattach it. He asked me if I had enough slack left to get the cable back to the carburetor and I told him I didn’t, but I was working on a fix for that by moving the cable bracket closer to the carb. He told me he was a Suburu guy so he knew a thing or two about repairing cars (car people will understand this). He was with his wife and they walked around looking at the car for a bit before they went into Chili’s for brunch. Now here is the cool part, around 25 minutes later as I had just finished up and was done testing the throttle, the American guy comes back out with an ice cold lemonade! He’s like you’ve been working under the sun so I figured I’d get you a lemonade.

Like seriously wtf? That was probably one of the nicest things a complete stranger has ever done for me. He handed me the lemonade and then walked all the way back into Chili’s. I was thinking like wtf? Since when are people this nice? It also made me feel like such an un-nice person myself. I would never have thought of doing something like that to a complete stranger. I mean, I think I’m a nice guy, but if I was like Level 6 on the nice scale, this guy was a Level 9 or 10. I wish I had gotten his name or went inside to Chili’s after I was done and thanked him again. But at that point I wasn’t thinking straight, I just wanted to get out of the sun and my car out of there and back home. His niceness really only hit me once I was driving back hone drinking the lemonade.

Although my morning didn’t start off great, the experience with the two strangers was really an eye opener. I kinda want to try and be nicer to strangers from now on. I’ll have to check back on this a year from now and see how this plan turns out.

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Q8Car Now Part of 4Sale

Post by Mark

I’ve been a huge fan of Q8Car since as far as I can remember. I always considered it one of the most successful local websites and I personally used to check it a few times a week just because I like cars and I like to know whats out there in the market. I think most guys do this, or at least a lot of my guy friends also do this. Recently though, Q8Car was shutdown and integrated into 4Sale.

I’ve posted about 4Sale before, its an extremely popular classifieds website/app and I love it since you can basically find everything and anything for sale on it. I actually had to uninstall the app from my phone so I wouldn’t end up impulse buying old cars that I’d find and like. 4Sale and Q8Car were owned by the same person and I guess the car section in 4Sale was doing a lot better because Q8Car is now the 4Sale car section. No more standalone site.

I don’t mind this move much except for the fact the car search features are a lot more basic in 4Sale. For example you can’t list all the cars on the website now from oldest to newest which was one way I used to look for vintage cars on Q8Car. Looking for a 1991 Porsche? The only way to see if there is one for sale now is to go through the whole list of Porsches for sale. Not that practical. But anyway, you can checkout the “new” Q8car website yourself by clicking [Here]

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Double Decker Busses Now in Service

Post by Mark

Nabil Al-Jeraisy, Vice Chairman and CEO, stated that City Bus is committed to providing world class public transportation services to its customers in Kuwait in cooperation with the Traffic Department Authority to contribute in the reduction of traffic congestion and support the environmental protection agenda.

He also affirmed to providing a better service to citizens and residents alike, and to encourage drivers to abandon their cars and use these public transport services. Here Al-Jeraisy invited both citizens and residents to try the new “double decker buses”, which will begin its maiden trip today on Route 999 starting from Sheraton hotel bus stop in Kuwait City going along the coastal road of the Arabian Gulf passing through “Al-Ta’awen” street to Fahaheel costal road ending in Fahaheel area and then return. [Source]

I doubt people are going to abandon their cars for busses anytime soon, but I like his optimism. Now the metro on the other hand, I’d use that for sure.

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Alfa, Dodge and Porsche

Post by Mark

Yesterday while getting my FJ serviced I decided to pass by the dealerships check out if there was anything interesting. One thing I found surprising was the fact a lot of dealerships still had 2015 cars that were unsold. So for example Jeep had a brand new 2015 Grand Cherokee SRT for a heavily discounted price of KD16,000 while a new 2017 model goes for KD24,000. Same with Nissan who had 2015 model year 370’s selling for a heavily discounted price of KD9,000.

Anyway, the cars below are the ones I figured car fanatics might be interested in:

Read the rest of this entry »

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How To Get Your Car Plates Back After Parking Illegally

Post by Mark


As you’re probably aware by now, cops are resorting to remove the license plates of illegally parked cars in an effort to stop the habit. A reader last week left a comment under one of my old posts detailing the process involved in getting back the plates and I’ve went ahead and summarized it into bullets points below:

– Cops took his car plates after he illegally parked in old Salmiya

– They left a ticket and a sticker on the windshield with information on which traffic station to go to

– After waiting for a few days he went to the traffic station in Jabriya where he presented them with his traffic ticket and paid a fine of KD20. He then had to get a signature from the supervisor and after that was told to come back the next day

– Next day he headed back to Jabriya where they told him to go to the Salmiya traffic station instead

– After getting to the Salmiya traffic station he had to get another signature from the supervisor there

– After getting the signature he then had to go to another room where an officer gave him back his plates and asked him to sign a document stating he received his car plates

– You don’t get your screws back so you need to pass by a hardware store before you head back to your car with your plates to screw them back on

The process seems like such a hassle I hope I never get my plates taken. Not that I park illegally anyway, but in Salmiya there are some parking spot you might think are legal but are most likely illegal (Exhibit A).

Thanks RJP

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