Monday, September 25, 2006

What The Richest Men in the World Drive

Cars are the ultimate status symbol.

When I drive my friend's BMW, people who see me in it think that I'm rich and tend to pay me a little more attention.

(Except when I drive my other friend's BMW 318i in which people probably look at me and think "Oh.. here's a young fool who couldn't afford a PROPER BMW and had to settle for the cheapest 318i instead of a 325i").

But when I drive my OWN Proton Waja, people DON'T see me in it. Simply because they just don't bother looking at the poor man driving the Proton Waja.

My father always tells me
"Don't be deceived by the cars people drive. Just because he drives a BMW doesn't mean he's rich. It could just mean that he's willing to borrow money just to put on a good front or that his company's giving him a car to drive".

He told me the story of one of his friends who once bought a very expensive car that he couldn't afford just to show bankers that he was "Financially Okay" when he really wasn't. He ended up selling the car a few years later after defaulting on the loan.

So with this perspective. I started trying to pay attention to what people drive and who they really are.
My partner from Singapore (Ming), once told me that he heard a lot of Penang people are very very rich but they just never show it.

I told him that I doubt that the rich in Penang are anywhere close to the rich in KL but how would I ever know anyway.

My mind thought back to the time when I met this Penangnite in his forties that I knew was filty rich.

He had inherited a fortune in property from his father that was put in a family trust. His share of that trust alone was worth millions... not just a few millions... but tens or maybe even hundreds of millions (who knows)?.

But what car did he drive?

A PROTON SAGA that was almost as old as I am.
So I started looking online at what the richest people in the world drove.

Of course, there are among the super-rich in the world that were willing to splash money on Bentleys, Maybachs and Ferraris.

Some like Prince Waleed take it another step higher by having his car custom-made to be covered with diamonds costing approximately RM17,520,000.
And rightfully so!

If you've made your money (in honest ways of course), you deserve to splash every cent of it.

But then there are the super-rich who don't splash their money on cars but put their money on other causes.

Take for example Warren Buffet, the 2nd Richest Man in the World worth an estimated $44 billion .

He drives a 2001 Lincoln Town Car which is honestly... nothing to shout about. So where does he spend his money then?

It was recently reported that Warren Buffet was going to donate $37 billion of his fortune to charity.

What about the other richest men in the world like Ingvar Kamprad who owns IKEA and is estimated to be worth $23 billion.

Well he drives... THIS
An old Volvo that he has had since 1993, long before most of us reading this blog knew how to say the word "Kinky".

Then there's Jim Walton of the Wal-Mart family who's worth $18.2 billion but drives a PICKUP TRUCK.
Oh but lets not forget Paul Allen, Co-Founder of Microsoft who's worth $21 billion and drives an old 1988 Porsche.Now an old Porsche like that is too old to be put in the class of today's luxury cars and too new to be considered a 'classic' or 'antique' car. So... it's just a car... and it doesn't matter if it's a Porsche.

And finally, lets also look at Steve Ballmer, another Microsoft billionaire worth $12.1 billion but drives this...That's right.. no Maybachs, no Ferraris, not even Mercedes 0r BMWs... and they have all the money in the world.

I guess some people love to spend on flashy cars.... and some don't.

As for Stewie... Stewie loves cars...


Applegal said...

Oh I'm first!

I guess some people don't want to drive expensive cars for fear of being robbed in the streets or tailed to their homes.

Here in Malaysia you have robbers slicing off thumbs to get past the car security features in luxury cars -__-

So, morale of the story: If you're willing to give an arm or a leg for an expensive car, beware that you might have to give up your fingers as well! O__O!!!

Mz said...

it's really true dat u shouldn't judge a person by the car they drive. but who doesn't?? heck, i wouldn't go out with a guy who doesn't drive!

bmws are cheaper nowadays, can't afford a 325i? go for a 318is then, go for those really well taken care of E30s, put in a good service n a top-class polish, voila.. u've got urself a car to be seen in. newer models pop in n out too quickly, go for older models which values don't drop as quickly. or go for an "old bull" (hokkien) merc. dat would do the job.. hehe, i can be a car person too.. altho i'm drivin the wrong-colored (ice blue) stock honda jazz..

Anonymous said...

car only mar. if you can afford it, buy lor. if not, drive small car still a car mar ;) still hv 4 wheels, gets u from point A to B. if ppl wanna judge u by the wheels u hv, let them lor. be ur own judge :) y let other superficial ppl bother you, rite?

Anonymous said...

Never judge a person by it's car. Lotsa student at my uni drove nice car bought by their parents and bragged a lot about it. We should judge person by how true his bragging is.

Merv Kwok said...

I ride a bicycle and EVERYONE notices me when I'm paddling away. So I guess I must be worth quite a lot. Or more likely, I'm a road hazard

Mic. Tham said...

No point driving a car with pennyless in the pocket...kiasu sometimes kills.

There are many ppl who are rich but never show off. A fren of mine staying in "xx Heights" with a lift in a 3-storey bungalow, he wears faded t-shirts everyday. Using a random 3-series Nokia hp...I never know he came from a billionaire family until I visit his house!!!

Another uncle I knew owns 23 bungalows in Msia, but he wears those kind of ahpek whitish singlets everyday, driving his old Mazda 323, live in small towns...who knows he is millionaire then?

They are the "crouching tiger hidden dragon"!

Anonymous said...

yeah ur Dad's right. tat's wat mine told me too :) i'd just get a car which consumes little petrol when i earn my own $. heh.

Boss Stewie said...

applegal: yes so the morale of the story is... rob people who drive old proton sagas... not those that drive mercedes

mz: ok.. this is embarrassing.., having a guy ask a girl this.. but what is an E30?

olivia: hear hear!

chapree: once again.. HEAR HEAR!

merv: ah yes.. i notice all u cyclists.. always make me nervous when i drive

mic: ah yes.. i love these stories

alex: yes.. in that case buy kelisa

cely: it tells us that u are blardee rich

Anonymous said...

I drive a nissan sunny 130Y...much older than any cars driven by the i on the right track of being a billionaire boss stewie??

Boss Stewie said...

gin: u stay in a 5 story house with a snooker table and a view of the sea with 5 mercedes and 1 mitsubishi pajero parked in its porch.. are you already a billionaire? you tell me

Anonymous said...

What car does Donald Trump drive a? Hehe

Boss Stewie said...

limousine eh.. and i think his company has a couple of maybachs too

ynshng said...

fuarrrRR, bling bling ride!!

is that car for real? zomfg!

Boss Stewie said...

yenshiong: yes.. it is.. hahaha.. bling bling

Anonymous said...

I wanttttttt a Mazda RX-8/Toyota Celica! And that's the remotely I-can-still-dream-about-it dream cars. Then there's the Lamborghini Murcielago... Dear G-d. ;)

陈一豪 said...

The 318i is FIA homogolated, beats the 325. Lighter too.

But yeah, I'll love an Elise.

J said...

If you are filthy rich and love cars then I guess it's ok to spend lots of money on cars...
(although there are SO many better things to spend on)

Essentially though, cars are just depreciating assets on four wheels - the more you spend on it, the more money you are wasting.
(Ooh, I sound like so boring)

Gwendolynne said...

That's how they save money ... by investing smart. :P

Eve said...

very educational post ya..hehehe..thanks for sharing :)

Anonymous said...

i just wan abe rich enough to join Gumball3000 race ... thats enough liao


Boss Stewie said...

alynna: celica is nice but not exactly too nice to drive.. i've driven boss lepton's and it's not exactly fast

dr tan: what's FIA homogolated?

j: u're exactly right... which is why i don't understand why some people rather spend their money on buying a luxury car first instead of buying a home

gwen: ahh yes gwen... we should learn a thing or two from them :P

eve: hehehe sure eve

earl: what the heck is gumball3000 race?

Anonymous said...

wow. diamonds on a car? he'd have to spend another bomb on REALLY tight 24-hour surveillance just to jaga his diamonds. what a dumb prince we got there..

and so boss, what kind of a car lover are YOU? :D

Boss Stewie said...

me love ferrari long time

Mz said...

stewie, as i found out, i didn't really know wat an E30 is, as i thought they only looked a certain boxy way? so i checked them out, n found out dat E30s are actually the BMW 3 series manufactured from 1983 til 1994. or the M3 series manufactured from 1987 til 1991.

take a look? ;)

Anonymous said...

ohh this one

i had a friend who drove this around... not the m3 version though

Boss Stewie said...

ohh this one

i had a friend who drove this around... not the m3 version though

Anonymous said...

should mention that Paul Allen's car is a rare 1988 porche 959 coupe (1 of 230). Bill Gates has one too.

Unknown said...

super busy, finals coming... sorry ya boss, so long only come buat kacau here...
i have a bike since 1st year in uni ok, so far i'm the ONLY one hardcore to cycle to class everyday (since 4 years ago till this very day). *proud siut*... but then i still want a car!!! 4 wheels, 1 engine and moves.
~Me Beemer Fan~ no need ferraris or lambos, M6 will do me good :D

Boss Stewie said...

anonymous: is it rare? i had a relative who had one but it's so old nobody wanted to buy it

william: M6.. now that's an expensive target to reach

Anonymous said...

stewie : it's a 959 coupe, not a chaplang 911. check out

extract "While the initial selling price was $230,000, today one of these cars would be worth upwards of a million dollars"

Anonymous said...

what the ... Gumball3000 is a race around the world with with lots of celeb and exotic cars ... and its a 24k pound entrance fees too ...

Boss Stewie said...

anonymous: ouch ok.. forgive my ignorance on cars

earl: what?!?! wahh who is so free enough to go