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Sun 22 Jan 2012 09:50 AM

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Wealthy petrolheads drive bespoke car sales in the UAE

From niche paintwork to jewelled inlays, customised cars are on the rise in the Gulf state

Wealthy petrolheads drive bespoke car sales in the UAE
Al Ghandi Motors' Chevrolet Silverado 3500 HD won MBC Action 'Battle of the Garages' competition in September (Image courtesy of Al Ghandi Motors)
Wealthy petrolheads drive bespoke car sales in the UAE
A Fiat 500 is customised with pink interior (Image courtesy of Al Ghandi Motors)
Wealthy petrolheads drive bespoke car sales in the UAE
Al Ghandi Motors spent around $68,000 customising the Chevrolet Silverado 3500 HD (Image courtesy of Al Ghandi Motors)
Wealthy petrolheads drive bespoke car sales in the UAE
New features included customised interior and a new electrical system (Image courtesy of Al Ghandi Motors)
Wealthy petrolheads drive bespoke car sales in the UAE
Total car sales in the UAE are expected to increase 32 percent to 25,010 this year, according to IHS Automotive (Image courtesy of Al Ghandi Motors)
Wealthy petrolheads drive bespoke car sales in the UAE
The UAE is the Gulf’s largest market for luxury sales (Image courtesy of Al Ghandi Motors)
Wealthy petrolheads drive bespoke car sales in the UAE
UAE car sales increased 16 percent in 2010, according to IHS Automotive (Image courtesy of Al Ghandi Motors)
Wealthy petrolheads drive bespoke car sales in the UAE
The UAE has seen bespoke services continue to grow as wealthy individuals look to their cars to set them apart (Image courtesy of Al Ghandi Motors)
Wealthy petrolheads drive bespoke car sales in the UAE
Customers in the UAE typically opt for brighter colours than those in Europe (Image courtesy of Al Ghandi Motors)
Wealthy petrolheads drive bespoke car sales in the UAE
The UAE car market was hit hard by the 2008-2009 global financial crisis but recovered partially last year (Image courtesy of Al Ghandi Motors)
Wealthy petrolheads drive bespoke car sales in the UAE
Around 66 percent of all new car purchases in the UAE are made by customers aged 18-29, according to BMI (Image courtesy of Al Ghandi Motors)
Wealthy petrolheads drive bespoke car sales in the UAE
The pink interior of a Fiat 500 customised car (Image courtesy of Al Ghandi Motors)
Wealthy petrolheads drive bespoke car sales in the UAE
Rolls-Royce's 'Thoroughbred' features the silk shirts of the 35 jockeys that raced in the Glorious Goodwood race in 2011 (Image courtesy of Rolls-Royce)
Wealthy petrolheads drive bespoke car sales in the UAE
The Middle East is Rolls-Royce’s biggest market globally for bespoke, said regional director James Crichton (Image courtesy of Rolls-Royce)
Wealthy petrolheads drive bespoke car sales in the UAE
Rolls-Royce sold 23 percent more cars in the Middle East last year compared to the same period the previous year, the firm said Jan 9 (Image courtesy of Rolls-Royce)
Wealthy petrolheads drive bespoke car sales in the UAE
Rolls-Royce bespoke starts at $15-20,000 for customised paint and can go up to $100,000 (Image courtesy of Rolls-Royce)
Wealthy petrolheads drive bespoke car sales in the UAE
Rolls-Royce exported its most expensive car to the region last year, valued at $1m due to its “high bespoke” design (Image courtesy of Rolls-Royce)