Features Editor Sami Haj-Assaad's Picks
Tech, luxury, environmental responsibility and near-effortless driving behaviour. These are the traits my dad calls for in his every day driver. Easily the perfect car for him is the Lexus LS600h.A rear-seat blu-ray entertainment system to entertain his friends? Check! Wireless headphones so the kids music doesn’t interfere with his classics? Check!
The additional luxuries of not having to worry about every other crazy driver in the Middle East(where he currently works and lives) will make his drives far less stressful, thanks to the front accident prevention system, pre-collision alert, lane-keep assist, dynamic cruise control, and every other driving aid that will help him focus on enjoying the fine luxury offered in the LS.
And of course, knowing him all-too-well, he’d net the exclusive LS600h, which is not only environmentally friendly, but is the only LS available with a bamboo trimmed interior. Like his many antiques around the house, he’ll ask me kindly not to smudge up his gorgeous car, but invite his friends to feel the unique texture of that bamboo.
Finally, as the owner of a 2008 RX400h, my pops is fully on board the hybrid bandwagon. While his personal car uses a V6 with two electric motors, the LS600h uses a far more potent V8 which works with an array of electric motors to put out a whopping 438-hp. Gliding to 60 mph comes quickly in the LS600h, about 5.5 seconds. I’d also love to think that one day my dad would join me at the track with his Lexus luxo-barge, and take full advantage of the Torsen limited slip center differential, and destroy my lowly FR-S on the straightaway, but knowing him, and his safe and sound driving style, I doubt that’ll ever happen.
When my dad isn’t entertaining me or his friends, he loves to take mom and head out of the city. Sometimes they’ll visit the vineyards, other times they’ll hit the casino. For that I’d imagine the gorgeous Mercedes-Benz CL-Class would be his go-to vehicle. He’s remarked a number of times about his inability to understand the logic of owning a coupe (despite his ownership of a Datsun Z back in the day) but I think he’d make an exception for the CL class, which is essentially a two-door version of the S-Class. That means it’s a more stylish cruiser that will compliment his love for the finer things in life, like live theatre, a romantic dinner spot, or the picture-esque roadtrip.
The senior Haj-Assaad has also remarked a number of times about how much he loves the sportier driving dynamics of modern German cars. The current owner of a BMW 7-series, he’d likely change a few of the little things about his personal car. For starters he’d prefer the style and elegance of the Mercedes over the more blunt and conservative design that’s currently in place at BMW.
Finally, when it comes to drive, the bi-turbo V8 in the Mercedes CL550 4Matic is hard to beat. Given a nice stretch of backroad, he’ll easily hit 60 mph in 4.8 seconds, and when the road gets twisty having the advantage of Mercedes-Benz’ rear-biased AWD system will help him stay cool and composed.
Powerful, cool, stylish those three words sum up both the CL and my dad, so it’s no wonder he’d be right at home in the flagship coupe from Mercedes-Benz.