British tourist still in possession of million-dirham Huracan but rental company has his passport
Found: The Lamborghini at the centre of British tourist's Dh170,000 speeding fine gathers dust outside Dubai hotel
Parked up outside one of Dubai’s most prestigious hotels, the Canary yellow Lamborghini Huracan is fast becoming a major talking point for guests.
And not just because it is the kind of supercar many can only dream of, this Dh1.3 million supercar is now at the centre of a complicated legal dispute after it was leased to 25-year-old British tourist Farah Hashi, according to documents.
Just hours after it was hired from the city's Saeed Ali Rent a Car last week, the vehicle racked up Dh170,000 in 33 separate speeding penalties.
The question now is who pays those fines, and what will happen to the vehicle and its driver.
Meanwhile, the Lamborghini is gathering sand and dust parked outside the front of the hotel, little more than a piece of expensive street furniture.
“It’s been here for almost a week and people have been asking about it,” a valet at the luxury Five hotel on Dubai's Palm Jumeirah island said on Tuesday.
“It’s not unusual to have a car like that here, this is a nice hotel. But I don’t think it will be going anywhere soon."
Although it is understood Mr Hashi’s holiday in the UAE is due to come to an end on Wednesday, he may well have to extend his stay.
During a high speed tour of the city on July 31, the Lamborghini was caught speeding 32 times on Sheikh Zayed Road and once on Garn Al Sabkha Road.
Records from Dubai Police reveal the car was clocked on traffic radar speeding between 126kph and 230kph, between 2.31am and 6.26am.
Since then Mr Hashi, from Newport, south Wales, appears to have kept a much lower profile. Attempts by The National to reach him in his hotel room on the phone on Tuesday failed.
On Tuesday, documents appeared to confirm that Mr Hashi paid Dh6,000 to hire the sports car for two days, leaving his passport as a guarantee with the rental company.
Other luxury vehicles available for hire from Saeed Ali Rent a Car include a Ferrari 458 Spider for Dh1500 an hour, Porsche Cayenne GTS at a daily rate of Dh1,100 or Audi R8 Spyder for Dh2,500 a day.
A spokesman for the firm said the company was now refusing to collect the vehicle due to concerns it will have to pay the fines if the penalties go unpaid.
In similar previous incidents in the UAE where police have impound cars with unpaid fines, the owner of the vehicle rather than the driver who rented it has been forced to pay any penalties.
The case has exposed the vulnerability of rental firms in the luxury car market, should tourists hire vehicles on a short term stay and accumulate large speeding fines.