Following on from our first impressions of MADE Dubai and a focus on the JDM side of things, I wanted to put some breathing space between the main pieces of event coverage by taking you outside the show.
While a show will always be carefully curated, what turns up outside an event is often a much more reliable measure of a local car scene. I’ve clearly applied this logic in hindsight, because really, I just happened to notice a Porsche 964 parked right outside the front of the show that I wanted to take a closer look at.
What I thought would just be a quick diversion out and back ended up escalating, as just a few cars down from the 964…
…was the distinctive whale-tail of a 930 Turbo. That’s a lot of car to be sandwiched between two commuting appliances.
With the two Porsches offering encouragement to explore some more, I started walking further away from the venue to see what else was about.
A camo-wrapped Mk7 Golf GTI brought me past some retro-Americana, a carbon-clad BRZ on RAYS Volk Racing TE37s, a lifted Lincoln Town Car, an over-fendered Lexus on Work Equips, and the unlikely pairing of a C6 Corvette and an NSX.
Walking back in the direction I had originally come from revealed an E60 M5 beside a Tommi Mäkinen Edition Evo VI…
…and another Porsche, this time a 997 Turbo. Happy with what I had seen, I was ready to go back inside when the distinctive sound of some inline sixes drew my attention to the main street.
The arrival of several GT-Rs, predominantly R32 models with a lone R34, was a sight I don’t think I was ever expecting to see in Dubai.
Japan? Yes. United Arab Emirates? No.
Further to the generations of Skyline arriving, another convoy consisting of 370Zs wasn’t all that far behind.
The street itself became a hotbed of car sighting activity, with vehicles either casually cruising up and down or parking up for a bit before leaving again.
While I did pop back into the show for a while, I continued to stick my head outside again on occasion to see if anything else had arrived. Naturally, there was always something new each time.
Some more R34 GT-Rs had joined their older brethren, although they were curiously left-hand drive for the most part. Apparently this was a common modification to make in the UAE before some laws or regulations put a stop to it, but the conversions were superb. They could have comfortably passed for factory left-hand drive GT-Rs.
The S2000, Supras, 300ZX and Mercedes-Benz AMG GTS were all added bonuses.
Even as we left the show after dark, we were treated to a stunning example of an original MkIV Supra with super low mileage (Supra low, some might say). Unfortunately, due to the dark and not being all that familiar with local customs, I didn’t want to shine a torch inside the car to take more photos. Maybe next time?
While this might be the ultimate ‘I digress’ story, I do think it offers further insight to a country we really need to explore more in the future. In the meantime, I’ll be back shortly with the next and final piece of my MADE event coverage…Just A Few More…