Thursday, November 1, 2007

another blessing to be thankful for

when i got sick last September, hubby and i realized that it was high time we get a vehicle of our own for mobility purposes, especially in cases of emergency. thankfully, Ryan had just passed his driving licensure practical exam with the Roads & Transport Authority, so that made us officially eligible to own a vehicle in this country.

our main requirement for our first ride is that it must be of substantial size enough to fit a small family. it should be able to seat people comfortably at the second row with ample shoulder and leg room, and must have a big space accessible at the back/trunk for bulky items such as luggage, a week’s stock of grocery items, and even a baby’s stroller in the future. but it should also be compact so that i can manage to drive it easily and not have any trouble parking it – that is, if i ever get around to getting my own license…LOL!

of course, since this is a desert country, we also considered the functionality of the vehicle. these are a few of its must-haves:
  • 2 wheel and 4 wheel drive option
  • fog lamps, which are crucial when it suddenly becomes hazy or foggy depending on the weather change
  • cruise control for long drives
  • dependable braking system
  • exceptional safety features

originally, we were pining for the Toyota RAV 4. it fits almost all of our requirements (except for the fog lamps). it was pricey for a 2.4 litre, 4 cylinder engine compared to its contemporaries, but we were so convinced that we were ready to buy one. or so we thought.

one morning during Ramadan when my Filipino colleagues and i were having our coffee at the pantry, Raquel mentioned to us in passing about the new 2008 Mitsubishi Outlander that she and her husband were considering to purchase. we weren’t aware that Mitsubishi had already released a newer version of their slightly smaller SUV, so as soon as i got back to my desk, i straight away shared this with hubby over the phone. now you must know that Ryan is a huge fan of Mitsubishi motors. he loves Ralliart and has always dreamed of owning at least one Evolution in his lifetime. just imagine him hearing this piece of news…i tell you, he was instantaneously excited about it! later that evening, i found him busy googling and checking out reviews of his latest discovery.

apparently, compared to its predecessor, the new Outlander has the 3.0 litre, 6 cylinder option with the latest MIVEC engine, and multi-select 4-WD mode. not only that – it has a paddle shift, and boasts of a Rockford Fosgate audio system with 9 speakers. eagerness had struck Ryan big time, so that very same weekend, he dragged me to the nearest dealer to see the actual piece in the showroom. when we took our first glance at it, we were instantly dazed by its classiness and bang for the buck features. it was a case of love at first sight!

after two days, we came back to submit our requirements for financing and placed our order. since it was newly launched, no units were on stock, and the local dealer had to order it straight from Japan. we got a bit disappointed when we were told to wait for 3 more weeks to a month for the 1st shipment to pull in, but settled on the idea of waiting since we already fell in love with it.

from then on, hubby started counting the days till “Yumi” arrived. (yep, he already thought of a name for his new babe! Yumi is a Japanese word translated as “beauty”) and i’ll even let you in on a little secret: every night, he would browse at the catalogue as if it’s his favorite fairy tale book. i wasn’t surprised at all that that he had memorized all of its features in less than 3 days! :D

until finally, Monday of last week, our much-awaited ride arrived to the shores of Dubai. we’re so delighted that the unit was worth all the delay. she’s a total black beauty inside and out, and more importantly, she’s a practical choice for a starting family. with all the add-ons that aren’t available in other compact SUVs in the market, plus with the price tag that goes with it, it was a sure-fire winner. you bet Ryan was over the moon when he drove it home. he was too excited that the following morning on our way to work, he exceeded the maximum speed limit and got a ticket for it. (sheesh, what is it with boys and the fast lane...seriously?)

anyhow, we are now the proud owners of one of the first 2008 Outlander units here in the UAE. we had her blessed at St. Mary’s Church last Saturday before meeting Aris for his Dubai tour, and this coming weekend, she’s already due for her 1,000 km check-up.

we gladly welcome “Yumi” to our family, and cheers to the many memories our family will share with you!

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