Who doesn’t dream of owning a Lamborghini, Rolls Royce or Porsche? For sure, you’d give anything to drive one home!
But things are different in Dubai – a lot of people in the city are actually abandoning theirs. So why on earth would someone discard a very expensive car?
Let’s find out why luxury cars are abandoned in Dubai!
Why are luxury cars abandoned in Dubai?
Luxury cars are usually abandoned in Dubai because of debt. This is the most common reason owners leave their vehicles in the airport, in parking lots and other places in Dubai.
A few years ago, social media went into a frenzy when news came out of a AED 110 million red Ferrari Enzo abandoned in a parking lot in Dubai.
People were baffled that one of the rarest Ferrari models in the world was left under the intense Dubai sun and collecting dust!
According to reports, the car was owned by a British expat who lived most of his life in Dubai. He built a fortune while he was in the city and collected cars including the Enzo.
However, he was one of the entrepreneurs who took a hit from the financial crisis and was left in debt. He wasn’t able to pay off the loan on his supercar and decided to flee Dubai to avoid jail time, leaving the car behind.
But this isn’t new to Dubai authorities. In fact, it’s said that up to 3,000 luxury cars are left in Dubai’s parking lots and in airports every year mostly due to similar circumstances.
Dubai has a largely expat population with most of them moving to the city to build their fortunes. But when they start to earn good money, they also begin to live a more lavish lifestyle accumulating properties and supercars in the process.
Unfortunately, Dubai was among the cities hit the hardest by the 2008 global financial crisis, and a lot of these expats found themselves losing their jobs or businesses and in real debt.
And because debt is a criminal offense in Dubai, a lot of these expats choose to leave the city and all their assets rather than suffer from imprisonment.
What happens to abandoned luxury cars in Dubai?
So, where do these abandoned luxury cars go? According to Dubai regulations, authorities are not obliged to remove these cars unless they receive a complaint that the car is a nuisance or if it’s blocking traffic.
If the authorities move these cars, they will be impounded by the Dubai Municipality and the owners will be given 15 days to claim their vehicle.
If no one claims these cars after the given time, they’re sold in auctions at a much lower price, especially considering their condition after being abandoned. In some cases when a car has been damaged beyond functional use, the parts are sold separately.
Can you buy an abandoned luxury car in Dubai?
Abandoned luxury cars can sometimes be sold at auctions at rock bottom prices. If you’re considering buying one for yourself, you have two options:
Go to a Live Auction
You can get in touch with the Dubai Municipality for a schedule of its auctions. You need to secure an invite since walk-ins are not allowed in these events.
You’ll receive a document containing a detailed description of every car that will be sold during the event. You’ll need to bring your Emirates ID and pay a deposit fee to register, which is 20% of your bidding limit.
So, if you plan to bid up to AED 200,000, you need to pay a security deposit fee of AED 40,000 through your credit card or bank deposit.
But if you want to pay through a check, you need to pay the full bidding limit. Once this is done, you’ll be given a bidding number to use for the auction.
If you win the bid, you’ll be given 48 hours to pay the full price of the car and you’re good to go.
Buy from Auction Agents.
If you don’t get an invite to an auction or you simply don’t have time to attend one, you can go to car resellers or auction agents to buy your luxury car.
Although you can expect to pay higher when you take this route, it’s also more convenient since these resellers have already checked the car, cleaned it and done some repairs.
All you have to do is close the deal and you can start enjoying your luxury car after the purchase.
Things to Consider When Buying a Luxury Car in Dubai
Whether you’re buying from an auction or through a reseller, it’s very important to keep these tips in mind to get the most value from your investment when buying an abandoned luxury car:
Let a professional check the vehicle.
A car may look good from the outside, but it’s not always the case inside, especially if it’s been abandoned for months.
So, it’s best to have a professional check the vehicle before closing the deal to make sure that you’re getting a usable car.
Check the car’s documents.
It’s very important to be thorough when you’re buying an abandoned luxury car to make sure that it’s legal and fully registered.
Check on the VIN and chassis, have the car’s history checked and ask for documents from the seller.
This way, you’ll know if you won’t get in trouble down the line if you’re buying this car.