Throughout my days as a car nut watching out for and attending various car events, I notice that these things have a natural tendency to come out together. It’s like there are magnets around certain dates which cause the manufacturers and dealers to pick them. A good example was the last weekend, where this writer attended no less than five events throughout the Klang Valley.
Among the five, is the Naza Carnival 2008 at the Naza Auto Mall along the Federal Highway. I usually don’t care much for showroom events organised by Naza Motors, because for all the glamorous machines they have on display, all you’ll ever do is just to look at the cars and do nothing more.
The thing about me is this, as crazy as I am about cars, the idea of just seeing a car without driving it doesn’t excite me terribly – no matter how ‘up there’ it is. As such, I usually give events without test drives a skip.
So, you’d probably understand that I did not go to the Naza Carnival 2008 on Sunday at Naza Auto Mall with bags of enthusiasm, even though there was a test drive for the Peugeot 407 available, part of the 407 Test Drive Me campaign, and a row of Kia test cars parked in front of the showroom.
My companion and I tested none of those. Instead, we went around looking, admiring and photographing the what everyone knows to be the largest collection of the finest and most exotic automobiles in the country. My personal guess is that the nett worth of their cars is probably worth, no, not a house, but a whole premier housing estate.
As we were walking, a young (and reasonably attractive) lady approached me to give me a little sticker, assuring me that it’s absolutely free, and then convincing me to part with forty one and a half of my ringgits for an RM36 Shell petrol card, a Shell James Bond Aston Martin DBS collector’s toy car and a total of RM60 worth of lubricant vouchers. It was a reasonable deal, if only for the lubricant vouchers, though I must admit that a male salesperson won’t stand half a chance sealing the deal.
Not long after handing over my cash to the lady, there was the cracking sound of a Ferrari V8 engine nearby. They were having a ‘Product Presentation’ session for the Ferrari F430. There was also another one for the 599 GTB Fiorano scheduled earlier, but I missed that one.
And here’s my opinion on the ‘Product Presentation': it was not up to scratch. The presenter was fumbling through his ‘cheat sheet’ stammering through words. It begs the question why an entity of Naza’s considerable resources did not spend more of it to train him better before going on stage.
However, that presentation, together with our up close encounters with the likes of the Nissan GT-R, the BMW M3, the Mercedes-Benz SLR McLaren, the Ferrari Enzo, the Maserati MC-12, and many others, faded into obscure memory for me and my companion as we came across something a lot more astonishing – at the Peugeot section!
Believe it or not, on our way home, our thoughts were dominated by the humble Naza 206 Bestari. In all my years following the car industry, never before in my life, have I ever come across a deal that reads like this: RM0 downpayment, 0% interest for 12 years. Yes, that’s right.. 12 YEARS! The amount of time needed to raise kids, and we have a loan package that lasts that long and charges no interest.
Staring in disbelief, we scratched our heads at the incredulity of the deal and pressed the poor salesgirl serving us to reveal all the fine print. There was none. You pay an RM100 booking fee, you wait one week, you drive the car away – just like that. Then each month, for the next 144 months, you pay RM390 (M/T) or RM425(A/T) back to Naza Credit, you get yourself a brand new Naza 206 Bestari.
We pressed to ask if the offer was just 0% interest for the first one or two years, but the salesgirl firmly said 0% for 12 years – a claim verified by her colleague. Now, I am used to hearing all sorts of baseless claims from salespeople, but the black and white on the pamphlets are clear: 0% interest for 12 years – no fine print whatsoever.
Here’s the most astonishing thing: after adding up the total instalments of RM390 and RM425 respectively over 12 months times 12 years, we arrived at a figure LOWER than the advertised price. There was no indication how long this offer is going to last, but I’d recommend anyone shopping for a car to check this deal out. I am not recommending whether you buy it or you don’t, but this is too amazing not to even look at it.
Now, do you still recall the Ferraris, the M3 or the GT-R earlier in this post? Don’t worry, neither did I.