We go for a spin in Akshay Sardana's 1960s Mercedes
Time Out Dubai staff
Dubai’s residents are famous for their flash cars, so it’s easy to become desensitised to the parade of Ferraris, Lamborghinis and Rolls Royces cruising along Jumeirah Beach Road or The Walk in JBR every weekend. But it’s the classic cars that really stand out – which is why we collared 27-year-old Dubai-based financier Akshay Sardana to tell us about his beloved automobile. A 1960 Mercedes 190 SL convertible, Sardana’s car – which he lovingly refers to throughout our meeting using female pronouns – was little more than a skeleton when his dad bought it in 1986. It was only about 10 years ago that they started restoring her –
a process that took six years, such was their determination to make sure every single piece was authentic. ‘When we got the car, customs considered it scrap, and at that point there weren’t many sites online from which we could obtain parts, which is why it took so long,’ he explains. ‘But with a project like this, it’s never really finished. There are always small improvements to be made and little pieces you have to keep searching for to restore it to its original glory.’
One of Akshay’s favourite parts of the car is the horn (which we don’t spot until he points it out): the thin metal circle inside the main wheel.
It took two years of searching before the Sardanas found an original radio online and had it shipped from the US. Though made in the ’60s, it still functions perfectly, though there’s no iPod input or CD drive so Akshay plays his iPod via speakers in the back of the car.
‘The hardest part of the car to track down was the original clock. We only found this two years ago,’ explains Sardana, motioning to the dial affixed to the passenger glove compartment.
Absolutely everything in the car is an original part, right down to the polished wood trim
along the top
of each door.