Two of the world’s most glamorous and well known cities – Dubai and Los Angeles in California – might be separated by a 16-hour flight over the North Pole but they are similar in many regards.
The sun almost always shines over both (although not at the same time), they both enjoy thriving beach scenes and have mountainous regions to the north. They’re both flat expanses of what used to be desert and they both draw millions of visitors every year. And, more than anything else, they’re like conjoined twins when it comes to their shared love of the automobile.
Los Angeles has been a major city for decades, growing organically and is now home to approximately four million people. Dubai, on the other hand, has practically exploded out of nowhere and has a population roughly half that of its US counterpart but, as with many things, it probably won’t be long in catching up. As a result, then, LA’s car scene is predictably more diverse that that in Dubai, simply because people have been buying and using automobiles for far longer. LA’s temperate climate has been good for old cars, too, and classics are used daily by people who love the glamour and sense of drama they add to even the shortest journeys – something that’s only just starting to take off in our part of the world.
Naturally, then, we might expect that prices for used cars would be rather similar, with plenty on offer – an oversupply in some instances – to suit every budget and taste. What we found, however, was quite startling. Let’s consider some of the UAE’s most popular models and compare them to similar offerings in LA, along with some of the more exotic stuff that can be seen cruising around either city after dark.
To keep things relatively fair and simple, we looked at cars on sale in a 100km radius of Los Angeles for a realistic comparison with those on sale in Dubai on dubizzle.com, using a number of different classifieds websites
TOYOTA LAND CRUISER
It’s the king of the dunes and roads here and, at the time of writing, in Dubai there are 376 Toyota Land Cruisers listed on dubizzle. In LA, however, we struggled to find just six listings for Land Cruisers but it was a different story entirely with the hybrid Prius. While there are, understandably, no listings at all for the eco warrior in Dubai, in LA there are 465 – as good an indicator as any to the buying habits and environmental awareness of both cities.
We found a 2013 Land Cruiser in Dubai with 33,000kms under its belt for AED180,000 while the nearest LA equivalent was $80,000, or AED294,000 – it’s all about supply and demand, see?
Getting a bit older, we saw a 2004 model with 136,000kms in Dubai for AED54,500 and a 2003 Land Cruiser in LA for the equivalent of AED56,758. But (and it’s a biggie), the LA car had covered three times the distance.
BMW 7 SERIES
The most popular luxury saloon car in the UAE is also a big hit with execs on the Sunset Strip and it’s easy to see why: the 7 is good looking, well built, loaded with technology and overflowing with luxury. And, possibly because there’s a plentiful supply of used examples in both cities, prices seem to be on more of a par than with the Land Cruiser.
We found 289 listings on dubizzle for 7s and 157 within our LA boundaries and, as we found to usually be the case, the bargains are to be had in Dubai. Take, for example, the 2007 model 750Li on sale in LA, with a recorded 104,000 miles and an asking price of $17,000 (which work out at 167,371km and AED62,452) and compare it with the 2008 750i here in Dubai with just 35,000km and a frankly bargain AED35,000 sticker price. It might be expensive to live here but there’s no denying that luxury motoring is really quite affordable.
Like the big BMW, there’s a shared love between the two cities of exotic supercars. We discovered, for instance, that there were 154 Dubai based Ferraris advertised on dubizzle (the majority being 458s) and 183 in LA, although the model mix is much more diverse stateside, as you might expect.
In Dubai we found three Bugatti Veyrons on dubizzle, 21 McLarens (including a P1), 74 Lamborghinis and 26 Mercedes-Benz SLS-AMGs – all significantly higher numbers than in LA.
Of course, that doesn’t mean the cars aren’t there in the City of Angels – it’s just an indicator of how people view ownership in either city. Here, cars can change hands within days of them being sold whereas in LA owners tend to keep hold of them for much longer, enjoying them for what they are rather than viewing them as quick return investments.
But there’s no escaping the fact that, when it comes to buying and selling supercars, dubizzle is the world leader – no other site anywhere on the planet enjoys the same amount of exotica and it’s the first port of call for anyone looking to buy or sell cars that are worth millions. If you’re serious about owning a supercar in the UAE or simply daydreaming, there’s always plenty to keep you interested on dubizzle – you never know what you’ll discover next and that’s all part of the fun, isn’t it?
Did you know that the number of vehicles in Dubai has doubled over the past eight years and now more cars per person than New York or London? There are 1.4 million vehicles in Dubai – compared to a population of 2.4 million – meaning there are 540 vehicles here for every 1,000 people. That contrasts with 305 vehicles per 1,000 in New York and 213 per 1,000 in London, according to figures released by the RTA.