Drivers looking for a bit of luxury on the road between Dubai and Abu Dhabi will soon be able to take advantage of an exclusive members-only car lane when it comes into service next year.
The ‘Gold Class’ lane, which will be available for a set monthly fee, offers a full range of extras unavailable in the other lanes. Gold Class drivers will be given an extra 10kmph top speed limit, newly laid top-of-the-range gold painted tarmac and discounts at various service stations. The whole lane will also be an extra 50cm wide, and will be cordoned off from the other lanes with a red velvet rope.
“We live in a society where luxury lovers can enjoy exclusive access to special areas in the nightclub, metro and supermarket,” said project spokesperson Tarek O’Dowd. “Given our deep love of cars and driving, it seems ridiculous that we hadn’t yet brought this service to the road.”
While the price has yet to be revealed, organisers have said it would be set “disruptively high” in order to prevent the Gold Class lane from becoming overcrowded.
“We want our VIP users to be able to enjoy privileges befitting of people of their elite status. The Gold Class lane will offer them the world’s most lavish drive, be it to work, the beach club or the nine-star underwater shopping mall.”
Unfortunately for some, the new lane won’t be available to all drivers. Only owners of top-end car brands – a list of which will soon be released – can apply.
“And we’ll be installing manned vehicles along the route – almost like club bouncers – to ensure someone in a dusty Lancer or Corolla doesn’t try to take advantage of the lane and ruin the experience for our members,” says O’Dowd.
Response to the proposal has been positive, with several people who regularly drive between Dubai and Abu Dhabi saying they’d certainly like to give the new luxury lane a go.
“I’ve often thought that it just felt somewhat wrong to be sharing a lane with much cheaper cars,” said Ferrari-owner Feras Mettle. “I look forward to using Gold Class and ensuring my fellow users are similarly high net worth individuals.”
But Aston Martin driver Clive Dumbridge said he believed that, like other facilities across the UAE, there should be a two-tier approach to the new luxury offering.
“It just concerns me that they might be putting, say, a Corvette in the same category as my vastly more expensive vehicle. Perhaps there should be a VVIP or Platinum Class lane as well,” he said.
Despite this, O’Dowd claims that interest in the Gold Class lane has already been “extremely high” and that should it prove a success, there are plans to expand it to other roads across Dubai and Abu Dhabi.
“We’re also looking at separating the lane from the others via a 20cm wide pane of glass and using genuine flakes of 20-carat gold in the paint, just for that added touch of luxury.”