Welcome to My Wheels, Alex. Your i8 gets a lot of attention — and not just because of the gunmetal wrap with yellow trim and the AC Schnitzer kit — but because there’s a social media celeb behind the wheel too! How did you get into doing what you do?
Driving and cars have always been something I’ve loved, it’s in my blood. My mum and dad always loved to drive and we used to go on long road trips as a family, so I spent a lot of time in cars growing up. A few times a year we would drive out to a property that was 12 hours away from where we lived… so that’s a lot of time both in a car, and looking at other cars on the road. There wasn’t much to keep you entertained on a road trip back in the Nineties so looking at cars must’ve been something I spent a lot of time on!
Growing up, I always wanted to get to the point where I could own a supercar, it was a dream of mine. When I was a host on the radio in Dubai, I was given the opportunity to drive a few different Bentleys and I felt like I was living the dream. I just casually started uploading photos of my experiences driving these cars to my old personal Instagram page a year and a half ago. I started getting more creative with the shots and videos I took of supercars as time went on and my following started to grow because I guess others wanted to share in these moments with me — whether that was hearing the roar of a Lamborghini or seeing a McLaren spitting flames... I wanted to share it. I’m just documenting what I see on a daily basis with people who don’t get to see these cars very often. As my following grew, I got to work with more and more car companies in order to create these fun moments to share on social media.
The i8 was our 2016 Car of the Year — it deserved that honour didn’t it...
Yes, definitely! When the car came out, it was so different from anything else on the market, and I know that’s what you guys look for each year. For me, this car bridges the gap between the hybrid hypercars, the 918 or P1 for example, that almost none of us can afford, and the other boxy smaller hybrid cars that really aren’t that great on the eye. I love the sound of a V8, but I equally enjoy the spaceship sound of the i8 when you throw it into electric mode. It’s something completely different to experience. The looks are also out of this world. I find it gets more attention on the road than many supercars.
I was considering a Lamborghini Huracán, a Ferrari California T and a McLaren 650S — I love them all but just fell for the i8 the moment I drove it. I’m someone who changes cars every year or so, so I’m not ruling out any of the above cars in future.
My BMW has a three-cylinder 1.5-litre engine with an electric engine and it feels zippy and light when you drive it. The instant injection of power from the electric engine makes the drive quite fast. I love how unique it is in both looks and how it drives. It’s one of the smoothest cars I’ve ever driven, and also one of the best looking in my opinion. It feels special and I look forward to seeing how they improve future models.
It looks great but do you have any plans to customise it further?
I bought the i8 with the AC Schnitzer kit, then added an additional Vorsteiner rear diffuser and wrapped it in a colour combo I love. So at the moment no plans to customise it further, I just want to enjoy it as it is and it seems everyone else enjoys it too; I’ve often come back to my car parked somewhere with an actual crowd of people, usually tourists, taking photos with the car. It’s an awkward moment, because I don’t want to walk in to the middle and get in, leaving them or myself feeling red-faced, so I end up just standing back and watching until I can make a break for it.
Your first car was a far cry from your BMW, tell us about it...
It was a Mitsubishi Lancer that was passed down to me from my older brother and sister. That car was good to us, it rarely had any issues. However, we used to joke that it had a turbo button, which was actually the air conditioning on/off button. If I needed to go up a hill, I would have to switch off the air con (or turn on the turbo), to make sure it could maintain its speed. Otherwise, with the air conditioning on, it would slow from 100kph to 60kph up the hill!
In the last few years I’ve owned a Porsche Boxster, a Golf GTI, a Jeep Wrangler, then an Audi A4, then another Boxster in Green. I like to change cars often because driving them is an experience. Once I’ve experienced it, I’m ready for the next adventure.
I got to test an AMG 6x6 a few weeks ago, which was surprisingly easy to drive. I would have thought from its size, it would feel like a truck, but it’s actually very easy to manoeuvre. I also recently got to drive a Lamborghini Diablo. It was the first time I’d driven a manual Lamborghini, and it gave me more of an appreciation for the drive.
Finally, what’s the dream?
The Bugatti Chiron and McLaren P1 are both high on the list. If I could drive a Koenigsegg Agera RS or get behind the wheel of a Pagani one day I’d pinch myself. More realistically though, I would love to own a Huracán one day soon.
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