Ms. Sun, the Group CEO of Dynaforce International, a leading purveyor of health equipment and outdoor furniture, drives short distances in Singapore, mostly from home to office and back. It’s a 15-minute drive mainly inside a tunnel, and because her office hours are flexible, she can time it to avoid the traffic. “In fact, in Singapore, I seldom drive for long distance or over an hour at a time. However, in Melbourne I do enjoy long distance driving, especially when we visit the countryside.”
In Singapore, I mainly drive a sports car for convenience and ease of handling,” says Ms. Annie Sun. “I would take the sedan for a spin once or twice a week just to keep the battery charged.” In Melbourne, where she and her husband have another home, she drives an SUV.
Other than the office and church, Ms. Sun and her husband spend a fair bit of time at their town and country clubs, while social events take them to hotels and restaurants downtown. “In Melbourne, which is a much bigger city, most of our friends live far away from us, so we find ourselves driving into the suburbs quite often.”
Ms. Sun has simple requirements for a car. “Good back support and a properly adjusted head rest with a good front vision makes the world of difference to me when it comes to comfort. I’m most comfortable in my sports car; it is like being in a cocoon. Once I am strapped in, I feel secure and in control, and comfort sets in.” She may not like speeding, but she insists on superior acceleration. “I do enjoy that feeling of taking off in a performance car.”
Although she thinks their four-door sedan offers the maximum comfort, she sometimes feels like she is driving a tank in it. “I’m always under stress when I drive up narrow ramps and small parking spaces, particularly because our sedan is a little longer than the normal ones. Meanwhile, our SUV is more versatile. It’s a cross between the sports car and the sedan.”
Worship songs calm Ms. Sun while she drives, and the heat and ambient noise bother her, so a good sound system, soundproofed windows and air-conditioning are a must when she drives in Singapore. “In Australia, I often drive with my window down to enjoy the fresh and crisp air,” she says. “Somehow there is less ambient noise there as well.”
The car should also be equipped with the latest gadgets. However, Ms. Sun draws the line between the useful and simply fancy. “These days, cars come supercharged with too many gadgets and Apps, many of which I don’t use or have forgotten how to use after the salesman has taught me.”
Ms. Sun admits a preference for European cars, which she thinks are “more reliable” and “offer superior performance with stylish design”. The ideal car for her is “an elegant, stylish sports car which is reliable and needs little maintenance. It should not be too low slung and should be able to ride comfortably on the road”.
“I look for a good reliable brand first. Price is, of course, important, as are the warranty package and after-sales service, although I must add that the level of professionalism in the automobile industry has gone up in recent years.”
Ms. Sun gamely accepted an invitation to drive the Aston Martin DB11. At perfect ease in driving sports cars, Ms. Sun handled the car with skill but was nonetheless impressed by some of its features. “I particularly liked the understated elegance of the car’s exterior. It speaks volume of the heritage of the car. I was also impressed with the uncluttered design and the quality of the leather craftsmanship of the interior,” she enthuses.
She was equally surprised with how smoothly the car went over every bump and humps on the road. “I practically floated over each bump, much unlike other sports cars I have been in before.”
When we asked what she would do if she owned a DB11, she simply said that she would not do anything different than what she is doing now, “except probably to make it my car of choice to drive on a daily basis”. She acknowledges the difficulty of keeping two cars in Singapore, but concedes that it is necessary. “We need one to ferry our guests and business associates around and another to enjoy that performance or pickup of a sports car. With the DB11, you can do both, so it may be the very good compromise.”
But will the DB11 fit into her lifestyle? “At this stage of my life, I prefer not to make a loud statements, so the DB11 would fit in with its understated elegance, class and heritage."