- Jul 8, 2011
High oil prices see sheikhs on supercar-buying binge
Bugatti Veyron Grand Sport L'Or Blanc - Click above for high-res image gallery
Bloomberg is reporting that the sale of high-end and exotic cars in countries like the United Arab Emirates may swell by as much as 20 percent this year. The reason? Civilized countries just can't seem to kick their thirst for gasoline, and as a result, the price of a barrel of crude oil continues to hover at around $100 per barrel. All that cash is flowing straight into the bank accounts of aristocrats like Sheikh Hamad, who happens to own over 200 vehicles housed in a pyramid-shaped garage. Among his collection are a 16-foot-tall Dodge Power Wagon and what Bloomberg calls a "see-through disco car."
The exotic car take rate in the Gulf states is more than double the industry average, thanks in part to the fact that buyers in those areas are more comfortable with displays of wealth than their American or European counterparts. Fiat, for example, says that thanks to demand in the U.A.E., the company may run low on Maserati models. Buyers in the country face a three-month waiting list for the Porsche Cayenne while fetching a 911 takes somewhere in the neighborhood of seven months.